Xylitol widely exists in straw, wood, and food such as fruits, vegetables, grain and mushrooms. It can be used as a sweetener, a nutrient or a medicine.
We should treat xylitol objectively. It is a carbohydrate like dextrose. During the latter period of metabolism, it also requires the help from insulin. Therefore, it can not totally replace dextrose. And it does not help in reducing the blood sugar or urine sugar and it doesn’t improve other clinical symptoms. Clinic experiments indicate that it does not function in curing diabetes. Moreover, too much of it would heighten the triglyceride in blood and even lead to coronary arteries arteriosclerosis. So it is suggested that diabetics not eat excessive xylitol. Although it is good for our teeth, eating too much may cause side effects like diarrhea. We cannot neglect such disadvantages.
This sugar suits for two types of people. The first type is diabetics. Doctors argue that most sugar-free or low-sugar products are meant to improve the quality of diabetics’ life. It cannot lower the sugar proportion in blood. Consumers should not trust some irresponsible advertisements, holding the view that it is used to cure diabetes. Patients should ask doctors and nutritionists for advice when using it as a sweetener in diet. Patients should also be aware that sugar-free food like cakes and mooncakes are made from flour. Eating too much of this kind of food definitely would heighten the blood sugar.
The second type is those adults and children whose teeth are easy to decay. Chewing gums can eliminate peculiar smell of the oral cavity. It can also exercise the muscles of the jaw and relax those pressured people. Chewing a gum is becoming a fashion welcomed by adults and children, especially by the youngsters. But people have neglected that the sugar in chewing gums also raise the risk of decayed teeth. Therefore, sugar-free chewing gums become the only choice.
As a sweetener in making gums, xylitol tops the chart. It not only has a good taste, but also restrains the growth of the streptococci and thus prevents the decay of teeth. Chewing gums’ home, Finland, only exports xylitol chewing gums. So the chance that people in Finland suffer from decayed teeth is much lower. In America, 50% of adults have decayed teeth and 77% of children who are under the age of 5 suffer from it. But it is not the case with Finland.