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Xylitol – A Healthy Sugar Substitute

chemical formula of Xylitol

Xylitol benefits make it one of the best sugar substitutes.  Advantages are low calories, antibacterial activity, clean sweet taste, and it’s glycemic index which is very low.

What is it?

Xylitol is a sugar substitute that has properties that make it superior to other sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose. It was actually discovered in 1891 by a German chemist and later used during World War 2 due to shortages of sugar.

It is a naturally byproduct of glucose metabolism in plants, animals, humans, and even bacteria. Thus it is naturally present in our bodies, and is metabolized without insulin and it’s glycemic index makes it safe for diabetics.

It looks and tastes very much like sugar, but without the negative health effects. It’s a great choice for use in a number of food products. It is used in cooking, baking or in sodas and soft drinks. It is also used in chewing gum, mint candies, mouthwash and even nasal sprays due to its antibacterial effects.

There are multiple sources for xylitol, one of which is corn. If you have issues with corn allergies or sensitivities (like me) then look for the kind that is made from birch bark, to avoid adverse reactions you might have to the corn derived product!

Although xylitol looks and tastes like sugar it does not have the negative health effects of sugar. Below are some excellent reasons to use this amazing sweetener!:

  • Very low glycemic index ( 7 ) – negligible insulin response
  • Protects teeth and gums from bacteria and inflammation
  • Reverses the negative effects of sugar on dental health
  • Shown effective in inhibiting Candida Albicans (yeast overgrowth)
  • Can help prevent and reverse bone loss by increasing calcium absorption
  • Can help stop sugar and carbohydrate cravings due to its low glycemic index
  • Safe sweetener for diabetics

The Antiaging Connection

This sweetener is associated with two things that are critical to your long term health, your oral hygiene and blood sugar control. Bacteria in your teeth and gums are associated with increased risk of heart disease.

Poor blood sugar control is also associated with a number of health problems that can have serious consequences, sometimes referred to as metabolic syndrome. Because of the glycemic index of xylitol it minimizes insulin release when used as a sweetener.

Scientists have found in studies of laboratory animals that insulin levels are the biggest predictor of lifespan.

Lowering insulin levels by controlling blood sugar control is the most important factor in your antiaging efforts and this alternative sweetener can help you do it.

This is one instance where something that seems too good to be true actually IS true!

You might want to check out a product called “North American Xylitol” as it is made from birch bark rather than corn. Native Americans instinctively knew that chewing birch bark helped keep their teeth healthy, and now thanks to modern science we know why.

Add xylitol benefits to your nutritional bag of tricks to sweeten your foods and keep your teeth and gums healthy!

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