T Nation


Has anyone here ever used or even heard of Xylitol. It is a “Sugar Free” sweetener made from birch tree (and various other sources). My mother-in-law picked it for me at a health food store she shops at. Would mind hearing from any of the nutrition guru’s that work for T-Nation about their take on it.

This is what is says on the package:
“Looks and tastes like sugar, with no after taste. 40% fewer calories than sugar. Use just like sugar in cooking, baking, hot or cold drinks. Good for diabetics-low glycemic index (Berardi imput about this would be useful)! Unlike sugar, xylitol fights plaque by neutralizing plaque acids.”
One tsp. yields 10 cals.
Let me know what you all think.

Xylitol is actually a sweetener used in many brands of sugarless gum. Trident uses Xylitol in it’s products and calls it Dentec as it is reported to have cavity fighting abilities.

As an aside, xylitol is also said to decrease the risk of ear infections in children.

Why not use splenda (has 90% less calories than sugar)?

Xylitol is extracted from birch cellulose and is considered to be a carbohydrate alcohol. While it has the same amount of calories as sucrose, it metabolizes in a dissimilar manner and may be used safely for diabetics and hypoglycemics. Bacterial salivary organisms do not feed, grow or ferment on xylitol as they do on other simple aforementioned sugars.

“Sugar-Free” chewing gum contains xylitol because it does not produce the bacterial support for increase of cavity causing acids. Studies show that prolonged use or large intake may produce the following side effects: weight gain similar to that associated with high/prolonged sucrose intake, diarrhea, tumor growth, and liver/kidney/brain dysfunction. Many manufacturers have withdrawn xylitol from their product formulation!

And for Splenda, I don’t use it. I’ve read TONS of articles advising against it. I find that stevia is the best sweetener out there.

Are the articles supported scientifically? I’ve seen plenty of stuff online about aspartame disease as well but have yet to see any real justification for such drastic claims.

I use stevia as well, btw.

I also use stevia. I prefer the white powder form (no jokes please) but I gather some like the liquid form it comes in better.

Most of what I’ve read about Splenda comes from the alternative medicine community. So they do not have any mainstream research behind them, but there is backing from the alternative medicine community.
However, with that being said, all of my experiences with ‘alternative’ health (the stuff involving whole, natural foods) have been positive, so I stick with it.

But backing in what form? You can’t go wrong by omitting splenda (as long as you omit sugar as well ), but that doesn’t prove it’s a harmful product. There needs to be something more other than ‘it’s not natural’. JMHO.

[quote]Zulu wrote:
Are the articles supported scientifically? I’ve seen plenty of stuff online about aspartame disease as well but have yet to see any real justification for such drastic claims.

I use stevia as well, btw. [/quote]

there has been some work done on aspertame, and basically the stuff sucks. soy is bad for your balls, aspertame is bad for you brain. the chemicals in it go to your brain and undergo a few chemical reactions and stimulate your nerves. this may seem like a good thing, however it stimulates them to death. aspertame kills brain cells, and that’s bad. especially if you have a normal IQ. there have been studies on mice monkeys and one on humans that i’ve found that prove aspertame lowers iq, memory, et cettera ad infinium. just don’t eat sweet foods, replace coke with coffee, drink your tea unsweet, or with lemon, but if you’re going to splurge, use real sugar. I find that chrushed glucose tablets make a good post-workout pie.

I just did a search (albeit not so comprehensive) of Pubmed and could find no support for the dangers of Xylitol. I’ve also not seen any conclusive data on the long term negative effects of aspartame.

If you have the actual studies could you please post the references. I’d love to drag those into the lab on Monday.

I read about a doctor who uses xylitol and mustard (not the condiment but mustard seeds and vegetables in the mustard family) to treat all sorts of illnesses. Unfortunately the page didn’t cite any references but interesting none the less. I’ll try to dig up the link for this.

here’s the link:


One time I ate an entire pack of those chocolate-flavored altoids in like five minutes. I was shittin’ my brains out right away. Turns out they were sweetened with xylitol, which in large concentrated doses will give you quite a mean case of the shits.


Still waiting for studies showing the dangers of Xylitol or Aspartame.

There’s an article which states, “Xylitol has been shown to increase ATP, to increase fat release and utilization, to replenish glycogen, to be anabolic, anticatabolic, antioxidant and it helps fight muscle fatigue”.
Sounds too good to be true, aye?
What’s the reality?