Xylitol is one of the great hidden secrets in our society and shows considerable promise where obesity, oral health and diabetes is concerned! How I wish I had known about it when it was first introduced into the U.S. some 30 years ago. It's is my favorite sweetener for a variety of reasons:
1. Actually promotes anabolism and is anti-catabolic. Great news for body builders. Contains anti-oxidants as well.
2. It is vegan. Xylitol is predominantly derived from birch wood and is found in lettuce, strawberries and some grains. It is so natural that the human body produces approximately 5 mcg of it daily.
3. Xylitol paradoxically actually diminishes sugar cravings and has 40 percent of the calories, ounce per ounce in comparison with sucrose.
4. It is non-cariogenic. Many studies within the field of dentistry suggest that it actually retards the growth of strep mutans in the mouth by promoting an alkalizing environment and gives harmful bacteria 'acid indegestion' due to xylitol's pentol structure--s. mutans is unable to properly metabolize it.
5. It tastes sensational--better than sugar in that it is cool tasting, dissolves well and relieves dry mouth.
I could go on lauding the wonderful benefits of adding xylitol to your diet. Instead, I'll let the experts further enlighten you: