Chewing Gum. Your Mom Hated it. Mother Nature Does Too.
Let's face it: we all love it, and we all step in it.
Chewing gum originates from the tree resin enjoyed by indigenous people, but today we smack a few more syllables. Gum's ingredients are often masked behind the ambiguous "synthetic base," but can include questionable additives like aspartame, inflammatory titanium dioxide, and possibly carcinogenic butylated hydroxyanisol (BHA).
According to the Vegetarian Resource Group:
“Most chewing gums innocuously list ‘gum base’ as one of their ingredients, masking the fact that petroleum, lanolin, glycerin, polyethylene, polyvinyl acetate, petroleum wax, stearic acid, and latex may be among the components.”
In addition to its questionable health impacts, gum is also an environmental pest - this daily habit accumulates more than 250,000 tons of waste per year. We see it on our streets, our sidewalks, our lamp posts.
Look - no one actually likes posing for a photo at the gum wall. No one.
City Workers Cleaning Seattle's Gum Wall, courtesy of the Odyssey Online.
For those who can't kick the habit, there are plenty of alternatives! Check out the list below for natural gum products with a plastic-free base.