Frequently Asked Questions
What is Xylitol?
Pure xylitol is a white crystalline substance that looks and tastes like sugar. On food labels, xylitol is classified broadly as a carbohydrate and more narrowly as a polyol. Because xylitol is only slowly absorbed and partially utilized, a reduced calorie claim is allowed: 2.4 calories per gram or 40% less than other carbohydrates. It has been used in foods since the 1960’s and is a popular sweetener for the diabetic diet in some countries. In the U.S., xylitol is approved as a food additive in unlimited quantity for foods with special dietary purposes.
Over 25 years of testing in widely different conditions confirm that xylitol is the best sweetener for teeth. Xylitol use reduces tooth decay rates both in high-risk groups (high caries prevalence, poor nutrition, and poor oral hygiene) and in low risk groups (low caries incidence using all current prevention recommendations). Sugarfree chewing gums and candies made with xylitol as the principal sweetener have already received official endorsements from six national dental associations.