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5 Myths About Xylitol

Is xylitol really as sweet as sugar?

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Xylitol Myths

1. Xylitol is Less Sweet Than Sugar

This myth stems from the fact that most sugar alcohols, also called polyols, are less sweet than sugar. Xyltiol is a sugar alcohol, just like erythritol, sorbitol, and maltitol. Xylitol actually has the same or even more sweetness, depending on the study or person you ask. We’ll get more into the details of that in myth #2.

2. Xylitol is as Sweet as Sugar

This is actually a half myth.

The main study that is used for this “fact” is based on the sweetness of xylitol fully dissolved in water. Xylitol is up to 1.5 times sweeter than sugar when not dissolved in water.

I usually recommend using about 75% of the amount of sugar specified in a recipe to get the same sweetness as with sugar.  This usually works out quite well for the consistency of recipes since xylitol absorbs more water than sugar. The exception on the consistency is for desserts that depend on sugar caramelizing, since xylitol doesn’t caramelize.

3. Xylitol Is Dangerous for Dogs

This is true, for dogs and ferrets, but still a half myth.

Dogs eat plums. It’s not good for the too, but the big danger there is them choking on the pit. Of the sugar in a plum, 10% of it is xylitol. So xylitol as an ingredient isn’t the actual problem.

The problem for dogs is pure xylitol without any sugar. Xylitol alone causes an insulin spike in dogs, which can put them into a diabetic comma and very tragically, in some cases, kill the dog.

4. Xylitol is an Artificial Sweetener.

That xylitol is an artificial sweetener is a total myth – just tell that to the plum who naturally contains 10% xylitol or your own body that uses xylitol as a side product of the Krebs Cycle. On the other hand, the xylitol you buy in the store is made in a factory, bulk produced like most of the supplement and vitamins we’re taking, but we’ll talk more about that in myth #5.

5. Xylitol Contains Nickel

We need to talk about this…

In the large-scale world of bulk ingredients xylitol is currently only being made in two ways. In the US and Europe from xylose in birch and beech trees or in China from xylose in corn husks. Both of these processes use nickel together with hydrogen to convert the “wood sugar” xylose into xylitol. The xylitol is then purified to remove the nickel, but traces could remain in the xylitol.

I always choose birch xylitol produced in Europe or the US, both because of the smaller environmental footprint, bus also because the levels of nickel are more tightly controlled. The maximum nickel allowed to be in the finished xylitol is 1mg/kg, which is 1/4th of the nickel in cashews or 1/27th the nickel in chocolate.

I would prefer a different way to mass produce xylitol and would be very willing to promote any company that is trying to do that. But I believe the health positives are stacked in xylitol’s favor.

The Bottom Line

The biggest threat against our health is the over consumption of sugar.

I agree with those that say we should not eat any sweeteners. No sugar, honey, syrups, stevia, erythritol, xylitol. That’s best.

I also realize that’s not an option for many people, and in that case xylitol is the best tasting sugar alternative, that also protects your teeth, and helps stabilize your blood sugar.

 

Emelie Kamp is an entrepreneur, licensed nutritional counselor, wellness coach, green living coach, author of The Sugar Story, creator of the Dark Chocolate Diet and health industry consultant - working towards transforming the way we feel and the way we see ourselves. Be encouraged, be empowered, live your purpose.

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The Dark Chocolate Diet

The fun not-a-diet that focuses on what you get to enjoy, sets you free from sugar and teaches you to control your blood sugar levels.

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When I started as a nutritional counselor I had a 100% success rate with my weight loss clients. I thought I had figured it all out… If I could keep your blood sugar stable until the end of the day, you win – as in lose the weight, beat the cravings, stop the snacking – win.

In part that’s still the program I walk my clients through, but now I know that it’s more about you than the method.

You have your own life, with your own history, your own struggles, and your own body. Very few things are ever simple and when things don’t work like they are “supposed to,” then somehow the blame seems to land on you. Let me be very clear about this – you are not the problem.

I designed the Dark Chocolate Diet to be everything that dieting isn’t.

The Dark Chocolate Diet focuses more on what to eat rather than what not to eat.

When I first took charge of my own health, sugar-free dark chocolate was one of the tools I used to do so without falling into the same traps I did in the past – without failing, again. I took joy in what I was moving towards rather than what I was walking away from.

When I learned to focus on eating the right things for breakfast, I realized I didn’t have to struggle so much with lunch, dinner, or anything after that.

When I began focusing on what I get to eat rather than on limitations, my journey towards a lifestyle of health became fun.

The Dark Chocolate Diet is a program focused on fun, on joy, on hope. It’s a lifestyle with the right tools to keep you from failure.

There’s a lot that’s special about the Dark Chocolate Diet, but here’s what matters. You.

If you are ready to end the sugar cravings, be done with the snacking, get out of the cycles of trying and failing again, then I want to invite you to sign up to the Dark Chocolate Diet community.

I’ll see you there!

Join the Dark Chocolate Diet

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