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Chew and spit
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Questions in the Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge Eating Forum are being answered by Dr. Patricia Pitts, PhD, a Clinical Psychologist from The Bella Vita Program - CA.

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Chew and spit

Where does this fall in eating disorders? I do this all the time. I know it is gross, but is it dangerous in any way? I have read that stimulating insulin and not swallowing the food can cause diabetes. Is this true? Because I have never heard of one person developing diabetes from chewing and spitting food. Wouldn't chewing and spitting food be better than binging and purging?
Tags: spit, chew, food
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Dear PeneolpeAnn,

Chewing and spitting out food is in The Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition. It is under Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified.  Over my 27 years of treating eating disorders, I have known numerous teeth problems of those who chew and spit up.  It is also common for those individuals to gain weight, not realizing the calories they do ingest.  I am not familiar with it causing diabetes.  

For more information on Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified or Binge Eating Disorder, visit our website.

Dr. Pitts

Patricia Pitts, PhD
The Bella Vita
Los Angeles, California

2 Comments
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Thank you. I don't gain weight because I also don't eat enough calories including anything I get with chewing and spitting. I also exercise, but I wouldn't say in excess when looked at alone, but in relation to the calories I take in, then yes, I might exercise too much. In fact, I am in a battle to not lose weight.

I was wondering about the dental problems too. What is the mechanism for it to cause teeth problems? Is it bringing up all of the enzymes in the saliva? Or the types of food people choose to chew and spit?
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