Courtesy dailysnapAnd, once again, we must ask ourselves, “Is chronic diarrhea funny?”
The answer is, of course, “yes,” but with the caveats “in other people,” and “from chewing too much gum.”
Man, you just never know what will happen in this sparkling land we call “the future.” Yesterday we get zombie rat hearts (or the zombie hearts of rats), and today I learn that chewing too much gum can give you serious chronic diarrhea (as if chronic diarrhea were ever not serious).
I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “But, JGordon, if constant gum chewing gives you chronic diarrhea, how were the Doublemint twins able to ride that tandem bicycle everywhere?” Well, that’s a good question, Buzz enthusiasts, and the answer is this: the Doublemint twins didn’t have chronic diarrhea, they had chronic depression, and so were able to ride their bike comfortably (yet sadly).
See, it turns out that not all gum leads to chronic diarrhea, only sugar-free gum. And not even all sugar-free gum leads to chronic diarrhea, only those brands that use sorbital. Sorbital, as it happens, is also used as a laxative.
The link between gum and chronic diarrhea surfaced after a Berlin hospital received two baffling cases in which the patients had suffered massive weight loss due to initially unexplainable bowel problems (chronic diarrhea). Blood tests, colonoscopies, ultrasound and computed tomography scanners all indicated the patients, a young woman and a middle-aged man, to be otherwise entirely healthy. It wasn’t until the doctors got their hands dirty, as it were, and tested some stool samples, that the problem began to reveal itself. All samples from the patients showed “extremely high levels of potassium and sodium.” When questioned more thoroughly about their diets, the patients revealed that they were heavy sorbital-sweetened gum-chewers. The woman chewed about 12 sticks a day, and a man about 20, which would have given them 20 and 30 grams of sorbital (respectively). Enough, apparently, to cause chronic diarrhea.
Chronic Diarrhea from 12 sticks of gum a day - that’s a lot of gum, but not that much, right? It’s about a pack, I think. Consider that, gum-chewers, and, what’s more, consider yourself warned…
Number of times “chronic diarrhea” was used in this post: 12.
The Doublemint twins on their bike: Here. (Think I was making up the depression thing? Look at their faces.)