Don't Chew Gum Before Having Sex. Here's Why

It's a chilly night and you're snuggling up with your sweetheart. The cuddling is getting closer and you know that sometime soon you're going to be kissing.

So what do you do? Many of us will quickly check our breath on the sly. If it's not fresh, and smells a bit funky, you'll probably opt to slip a piece of gum in your mouth. Mint flavored gum is a popular choice because commercials tell us it will make your breath reminiscent of freshly fallen snow or frigid frozen ice caps.

Contrary to what you might think, you don't want to make this mistake. Your breath may smell minty fresh, but in time, you'll be emitting other odors from somewhere else other than your mouth.

It's true. Like broccoli or garlic, gum is something you may want to avoid before having sex. The following are a number of reasons you'll want to consider skipping the gum chewing if you plan on getting intimate with a special someone.

Gum wreaks havoc on your digestive system

When you chew gum, you're doing a couple of things to your digestive system that often results in unpleasant odor a little later on. Chewing gum tells your stomach that food is on its way down — except it isn't. In anticipation of being fed, the stomach activates and releases its digestive juices that aid in the breaking down of food (via The Gastric Guru). When those enzymes go unused, the result is tummy bloating and wind from down under.

Instead of solids (i.e., food), the physical act of chewing gum introduces air into your digestive system when you swallow. Experts at Men's Health say this builds up gas in the digestive system resulting in burping, and yes, farting. 

If that's not enough to put an end to sexy time, know that gum has one more trick up its sleeve that may stop you from proceeding.

Gum may affect testosterone levels

Whether it's you or your partner that's the gum-chewer, you'll be disturbed to learn that research has shown that peppermint — found in mint gum — can lower testosterone levels. A study published in the medical journal Urology, reported that male rats who were given herbal mint tea experienced a drop in testosterone secretion. Granted, the subjects were not humans, but why take the chance that a drop in testosterone may also lower your sex drive?

If fresh breath is desired, focus instead on other ways to maintain your oral health rather than chewing gum. Dentist Michelle Chan, suggests regularly brushing your tongue along with your teeth as part of your daily hygiene routine (via Cosmopolitan). In addition, drink lots of water, as dehydration can reduce saliva production. Saliva is essential for fresh breath as it helps break down food, wash it away, and prevents leftover bits from getting stuck in your teeth, all of which set the scene for undesirable odor.

What you'll want to drink less of, or possibly eliminate altogether, is alcohol. Alcohol interferes with the healthy balance of bacteria in your mouth and dries out your mouth. The unfortunate results? Less-than-fresh breath that tempts you to pop in some gum. If you're looking to get lucky, you may want to consider alternative ways to freshen your breath.