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579 Responses to “Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural?”

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  2. Lisa Ammann

    Hello, I really loved your article. Unfortunately, the most hilarious parts were because of experiencing those bad side effects myself. I am actually having trouble searching for help on the subject because I am so dizzy I am having trouble walking from the bathroom to my computer! I wish this was funny, but I am scared. I wish I never saw that package of xylitol at the health food store! I chew xylitol gum all the time and never had this problem.

    • Maj

      I get dizzy, too!! For me, though, I can’t even have xylitol in gum. I had two pieces while I was driving on a trip, and I had to pull over because I couldn’t continue driving. It was incredibly scary.

      • Jim

        We paid $.43 per ounce for the xylitol hoping for a healthy substitute for sugar. Instead, we got constant diarrhea, serious cramps and massive amounts of gas! I am not kidding folks. I was trying to eat more healthy and this is what I get? Call me if you want a nice size bag of this crap “really” cheap! The upside is…the cats are moving out!

    • Ruthann

      This article about Xylitol and some of the responses are so comforting. As I write this I am listening to my stomach rumble around loudly and am also experiencing some slight dizziness. My daughter on the other hand swears by it and is learning to use it to cook and bake with! All I can add is each and every person’s chemical make up is slightly different. Our bodies tolerate and process different chemicals in different ways. Maybe if I continue to use Xylitol my system will get use to it but I’m not sure I want to find out! I will be returning to using a teaspoon of honey, processed in glass jars for the future sweetening of my morning coffee.

    • Don

      Wow, you actually take offence at people who vehemently disagree with you. Your article was poorly researched. Getting a so-called “chemist” to speculate, yes speculate, that because a lot of xylitol is manufactured by a big bad company means it must be bad for you. He discredited himself from any ability to influence on is “authority” from the get go with this silly observation. As a result, authoritative at all, he is not.

      I won’t call you names. I can see why you regret writing your article, and why you are saying you won’t address xylitol again. I understand that you would just like the nightmare to end.

      Perhaps retracting the worst of the article would help you, as again, it is so poorly researched, and it is so utterly lacking in solid scientific foundation, that the entire thing should probably go.

      I am not a big xylitol user and I have no relationship whatsoever with xylitol manufactures. I am just a discerning reader. Yes it is YOUR blog. That is o excuse for having some dependable substance to what you post, however. And, your getting rid of the comments that disagree, and leaving only those that jump in and support you, well, that renders your blog not objective, not fair, and not worth reading again….ever.

      • Don

        And………great science…….”rip up your insides”………this “people’s chemist” can’t do better than that in his explanation of xylitol’s effects on the stomach, colon, liver, gallbladder?!?!? I don’t trust a word he says. A high school chemistry student could have done better.

        My MD at Whitaker Wellness recommends xylitol, thank you very much Mr. “chemist”.

        • Sometimes user experience speaks more loudly than anything else. An MD could recommend Xylitol to me, but that MD isn’t lying here with stomach cramps after consuming Xylitol like I am. I found this site when I suspected the Xylitol I used for the first time today was causing all these cramps. Turns out, there are many people experiencing the same thing as evidenced by all the responses here. I choose to listen to my body over any study or expert out there. My body right now is telling me Xylitol–>not for me!

  3. Stone

    Thank you SO much for your article! I had been searching for a whey protein powder as a supplement for my gym workouts. I have an extremely sensitive and motile GI tract and when I came upon a powder with only stevia and xylitol, I thought I hit the jackpot. Was I wrong! Cramps, bloating, pain. When I read your post I began to understand why. So glad I came upon it.

    Yes, the media should have picked this up long ago. But sadly, consumers have too often been to weak to combat corporate profit economics. Maybe someday…..

  4. **Melinda

    Wow! I never experienced this, but had sweetened tea that my family drank with me and they all had stomach issues! Now I know!! My nutritionist put me on the stuff, just purchased liquid stevia, hope it’s safe?

  5. jeannine

    Hi Crunchy,

    Your a hoot! What a great way to deliver information. So sorry you had to deal with negative defensive remarks. I wanted to share that I was at the dentist yesterday and was mentioning that my adult son is having cavity issues and beside the bad genetics’ I gave him what could he do? I told her we don’t use fluoride unless there is a itsy bit in our toothpaste.He is a biologist and I am in the health and fitness area so I am fairly well versed in what is natural. I don’t even do x-rays at the dentist or ever use OTC for pain. She was so excited to tell me all about Xylitol… Just another way to confuse and scam the public. People need to do their research and come up with the choice that’s best fits them, but don’t lie to them about it being natural!!! Im with you 100%. Unfortunately if they told the truth we would still have clean soil, produce which still had it nutrients and the big companies and Monsantos in particular would have a little less $$$. Its painful to watch the government deceive the people.

  6. Dean Ellis

    Well, I’m here just doing some checking for both sides of the story. I just bought some Xylitol at the recommendation of a doctor who is a wiz at curing candida. He says to use Xylitol as a sweetener because it has been shown to actively kill candida yeast…………waiting a moment for this to sink in……………..now it should be sunk in.

    The reason people have digestion issues on Xylitol is because of the candida. Those who do experience these symptoms should put themselves on a candida cleanse then try the xylitol again. I’d bet my left arm your symptoms will be gone. The greater your candida overload the greater your symptoms will be.

    And a little bit of moisturizer could help you with that crunchy. LOL.

  7. Connie

    Thanks for the informative blog. Since I am sensitive to so many things, I will save my bowels and forgo the xylitol. It’s just not worth sitting on the toilet for.

  8. Crunchy Mama

    Right on! Way to tell it like it is! We have been duped over and over with all of these “natural” products that are actually so bastardized in laboratories! Stick to food, people! Not food-like man-made substances!

  9. Frannie

    I have dry mouth from a couple of meds and saw on Amazon that xylitol mints recommended for that problem. I bought the lemon flavored ones, loved them, put them next to my computer keyboard, and kept popping them in my mouth. My gut, it turned out, did not love them. My gut, in fact, was seriously offended. No more xylitol mints for this lady. No problem with gum containing xylitol, however. Apparently it has a lot to do with how much of the stuff you ingest. Ah, well, we live and learn. Thanks, Betty! Ran across your web site looking for confirmation of my suspicion that the xylitol mints were indeed cause of my problem, since I had not eaten anything else unusual or strange or suspect. I will be back here in the future. VERY good information and very well written, and despite the nature of the problem with xylitol, with even a wicked sense of humor!

  10. I really appreciated reading this and am very happy to feel like I actually know what xylitol is now! Thank you for researching and writing this post!!!

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  12. pagau

    In answer to the question, Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural?
    Yes, absolutely. I don’t understand why you would get criticism for this. I use xylitol myself. I don’t seem to have the same issues others, but I have thought there will come a time when opinions will turn and people will begin to talk about the downsides to xylitol. I suspect it may contribute to problems with the eyes simply because similar sounding products do. I use it in moderation, usually along with stevia.

  13. Mark Duffy

    I too was taught Xylitol was good for me especially my teeth. They give it to children after lunch in Finnish schools.
    Alas I didn’t really hear much about the negatives – least not until tonight when my jack Russel ate a dozen pieces of Wrigleys spearmint – she is now in intensive care in the local animal hospital with suspect liver failure
    This stuff is anything but natural and really should carry a health warning – even if only for dogs

  14. jesse

    Xylose is a wood sugar used to make xylitol, a wood sugar alcohol, which is not absorbed in your small intestine and when it reaches your large intestines your good bacteria use it like fiber which is why you get the squats, it is best used as a toothpaste additive or mouth rinse because of its anti bacterial and anti fungal properties. Xylose is largely absorbed in your small intestine and excreted through your kidney ,so no laxative effects ( when overused most sugars have that problem with bacteria using sugars as dietary fiber) ,you use only about one third the calories as table sugar , it has the same sweetness as xylitol, and has teeth benefits, and is a 7 to sucrose’s 100 on the glycemic index ,some studies suggest it can reverse diabetic problems. It also increases calcium asbsorbtion rate in the body. Yes it is processed much like all the other sugar substitutes but it tastes great with no after taste. So xylose awesome, xylitol,use sparingly, the Asians have been using xylose for awhile,I don’t know why the usa doesn’t. I use it in all my hard candies, something impossible to do with xylitol.

  15. Gudrun B

    even though i use it – sparingly mind you! may be 1/2 pound/YEAR – partly due to the fact that i never sweeten coffee and tea with honey if that – i recently read the ingredient list on the gum (Spry); despite my semi shock i did order it again – since it is still less chemical stuff than regular gum, imo any way, and supposedly is good for the teeth; OK i chew may be one piece per day, nothing drastic, though even little bits add up in the end :(
    after reading this, i will NOT order the “sugar” ever again! the gum, i will just have to keep looking if i can find some thing better….. shucks BUT:
    Thanks for all the info!

  16. Simone

    I would like to let people know that after eating two biscuits that my mother had baked using Zylitol that within minutes I went into an intense reaction with vomiting, stomach craps, diarrhoea, passing out, blurred vision, pins and needles in my fingers and blood in my urine and diarrhoea. This was intense for 2 hours after which the light headedness eased and the frequency of the vomiting and diarrhoea reduced. The vomiting stopped 9 hours later and the diarrhoea the next day.

    Now 4 days later I still have cramps, no energy, little appetite and can only eat small amounts. My doctor said it was probably an anaphylactic reaction with some kidney damage even though I didn’t have swelling of the face or throat and that if I consumed any again it will be worse and possibly fatal. I now have an Epi Pen and have to read read every label. I am 49 years old and do not have any other food allergies.

    We are sure it was the Xylitol because my mother started using it occasionally in baking after being told she is getting close to having diabetes 2. She had used it in a slice she baked 4 days earlier of which I only had a taste and ended up vomiting all afternoon ( I thought I had a virus). Zylitol was the only common ingredient in the slice and biscuits.

    After this I did a google search and found that to make Zylitol that the base is natural, usually corn, beets, sugar cane or the like which is then hydrogenated and soaked in Sulphuric Acid. I googled Sulphuric Acid and Wikipedia describes it as a highly corrosive strong mineral acid. Corrosive on materials like metal, living tissue and stone.

    I may be a minority but this stuff really isn’t as safe as its made out to be. In that two hours of severe reaction I felt like I had been poisoned and I personally would like to see it removed from the market.

  17. Lynn

    for Chr**t sakes!!! I have been dizzy too!! i purchased 100% Xylitol thinking that i finally found a replacement for sugar. It has GMO free, all natural, made from hardwood all over the packaging. This really pisses me off. What can i use for sweetener…..is Stevia natural?

  18. Agnieszka

    Hi there, thank you for your investigation and sharing with us the result of it. Having read about how good xylitol is for your health I decided to find a way to do it myself, because I have a couple of birches. Of course, it is not THAT natural … Anyhow, when I read it can also be produced of corn, I started be more suspicious regards the M-company. If Monsteranto is envolved, than I better tell my friends and relatives and avoid this from far. People have to know and here in Europe some still cannot realize what you guys in US have to struggle against in that matter. Thank you once more.

  19. An excellent source of calcium are dairy items, such as soy milk.

  20. Nicole

    YOU ROCK! Thanks for sharing this info. I loved reading this post and was so surprised to read that you got negative feedback in your update. Not cool! My favorite part was when you wrote: This my blog, MY blog…..so true! So keep saying what you need to say, girl….and forget the haters who want to damn you for sharing information that quite clearly triggers their addiction to sweet stuff. Either that or threatens the income they are making off of it.

  21. A

    Regular sugar is bad for your immune system and is linked to a host of other diseases because of the reaction it has to your insulin level. Xylitol does not spike those levels and it is the only thing that I have found that tastes just like real sugar with no aftertaste like the good Stevia and those artificial sweeteners that have been proven harmful. I could not find any information wrong with Xylitol except you would not want to use too much of it because of its laxative effect. My concern is the long term effect it may have on the liver, though. Anyone have more info on that? I only put it in my coffee to cut down on having too much sugar during the day since I can’t control all the sugar that is in everything else. Supposedly it does not give you that tired, “let-down” later, either.

  22. Corella

    Thanks so much for your blog. I was looking for a protein powder n thought I found a good one until I read xylitol.
    I googled the name n found your blog. You saved me wasting over 200. Au $ plus my health. I don’t need to gamble with my health by taking this dicey replacement for sugar. I appreciate finding your blog such good reading n all the helpful comments kindly given. I’m so glad I googled xylitol n was informed of the dangers giving me a choice.

  23. Susan

    I have used very small amounts of xylitol occasionally over the last few years without noticeable side effects. But about 36 hours ago I baked some gluten free brownies using half organic sugar and half xylitol–about 1/4 cup each. My bladder has not been the same since. Overactive–discomfort–the urge to go right after emptying it. I hope these symptoms will clear up since. I will never use any sugar alcohols again.

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  25. vanessa palmer

    LOVED your last post about XYLITOL……love your writing style, info and humour.

    KEEP GOING !!!

  26. Kate

    THANK YOU so much for this post! I came across it after googling “xylitol effects on GI”. I am all about natural everything and usually use stevia, maple syrup, agave, etc as sweeteners. A friend introduced me to xylitol and I have been using it in my coffe and oatmeal for the past 3 months or so. Over the past few weeks I have noticed that my stomach feels like I ate glass… so much gas, loose stool, pain, and weird constipation. I had an itch that it was the xylitol because my diet is very clean for the most part and I couldn’t think of anything that would be causing these symptoms. Switching back to stevia ASAP… I would take the extra sweetness over GI upset anyday. Thanks again!

  27. Ryan Johnson

    I would have to agree that it should not be called natural but I believe that it is really good for you. I have two autistic sons and we give it regularly to them for the purpose of cleaning out their guts. Xylitol has been proven to break down biofilm, which is a byproduct of bacteria. So since there is good bacteria and bad bacteria, there is also good biofilm and bad biofilm. Plaque in your mouth is biofilm from bacteria in your mouth, which is why they put xylitol in toothpaste to help break it up. Normally a layer of biofilm in your gut acts as a barrier or a filter to bad things in your food and does not let some things through to get into your blood. But in the case of my boys, they had more bad bacteria in their gut than good. So we give them xylitol to clear out their digestive track and then give them good bacteria to grow in its place, and therefore, good biofilm. When I started taking xylitol, it gave me diarrhea as well but after continuing to take it, it has stopped. My personal theory is that people who respond badly at first to it have thick layers of biofilm in their guts and therefore there is much to strip out. The body makes thick walls of biofilm to protect. But if you are constantly eating junk food (lots of preservatives, nitrates, and processed food) than taking xylitol may be more bad than good. However, if you are eating healthy food regularly than taking xylitol will actually help you almost like a cleanse. I have changed my diet and like I said, xylitol no longer hurts me. I have switched to Xyla which is made from hardwood and that seemed to help as well. This is just my theory of course and I hope it helps someone. Ryan

  28. I too am against using xylitol. I actually wrote a post on my blog stating why. I first learned about it thru The Fat Burning Man because they promote it, if you can believe that!
    Keep up what you are doing because I for one love your blog and you do “make me happy”!

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  30. Sarah

    I have 4 year old twins who recently went to the dentist. He suggested 5-6 servings of xylitol per day because it’s so good at killing bad bacteria in your mouth, thus less cavities. I looked around and found some lollipops online (expensive ones, I might add! About $7 for 25 lollipops) and started letting them each have one per day “as a treat”. Within days, they both started complaining of stomach pain. I thought it was your typical little kid potty problem. But they kept saying it every day for about two weeks. I started thinking about any changes in their diet and it always came back to the lollipops. I then googled “stomach cramps with xylitol” and came across your post. I am NEVER giving my kids xylitol ever again. It’s obviously not meant for their consumption. Thank you for more information that solidifies my decision!

  31. lorilee

    Greetings from Florida! Just read your blog regarding xylitol. I appreciate your sharing your opinions, as always, whether it goes with the majority or not. Your insights have been invaluable when researching something I want to know more about. I am severely behind the curve here having just beginning this journey! Thanks for all your advice and recipes etc! Keep up the charge for health!

  32. TUMO

    This is helpful,I have been using Xylitol and because I have been having some complications; I decided to find out about it, and this has been very informative. cheers

  33. Confused Confucius

    Boston cream pie, why on earth did you post your personal medical information here?
    As for the blog post, I would also just like to point out that sugar is also “all natural” and bad for us in large quantities. Good article. Gives us plenty to think about in order to make more informed decisions. That’s important.

  34. Confused Confucius

    Boston cream pie, why on earth did you post your personal medical information here?
    As for the blog post, I would also just like to point out that sugar is also “all natural” and bad for us in large quantities. Good article. Gives us plenty to think about in order to make more informed decisions. That’s important. Also, historically, I recall reading that birch tree twigs were commonly chewed on in societies that had “good teeth”. Perhaps in its true, unprocessed and natural form it is meant for us to chew on for our oral health, but maybe not so much for processing to a form used for baking etc. Just a thought.

Trackbacks

  1. […] the fact that its a white as white can be powder made me a little suspicious. Then I came across this article, which delves into how xylitol is processed and where it comes from (spoiler: its […]

  2. […] Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural? | Crunchy Betty Truth About Xylitol Found these on the inter webs, too. So much for believing people that tell me xylitol is "natural" and "safe". A "health coach" I'm working with told me not to use any other artificial sweetener. See how much she knows. Janet Blessed are we who can laugh at ourselves for we shall never cease to be amused. A1C 5.6 6/13 Diagnosed T2 6/12, A1C 5.2, FBS 150 Metformin ER 500mg daily Victoza 1.2 mg daily Levothyroxine 88 mg daily Wellbutrin XL 150 mg 2 x day Lamotrigine 25 mg 2 x day Atenelol 25 mg daily Losartan 50 mg daily Multivitamin daily Ativan 1mg 2x day Probiotics 2x day Beet flow 3 -4 caps w/ each meal Bile-E-Mulsion 1-3 caps between meals 3 x day Reply With Quote […]

  3. […] it may be pulled from a natural source, when highly concentrated and eaten in larger amounts, can we really call it a natural substance? One thing about xylitol is that it is not converted into harmful acids in the mouth that cause […]

  4. […] toothpaste recipes prefer xylitol, but I still haven’t decided if it’s harmless or just plain creepy.) […]

  5. […] it may be pulled from a natural source, when highly concentrated and eaten in larger amounts, can we really call it a natural substance? One thing about xylitol is that it is not converted into harmful acids in the mouth that cause […]

  6. […] a kukoricáéban is. Nem véletlen, hogy a boltokban kapható xilitol általában kukoricából készül. Nagyipari előállítása többlépcsős, bonyolult kémiai […]

  7. […] Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural? | Crunchy Betty – So, xylitol is known to cause stomach problems and diarrhea if used in large amounts. There are plenty of studies that confirm this, but it’s always worded in ways that make it seem like you’d have to eat your weight in xylitol to be affected. […]

  8. […] Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural? | Crunchy Betty – How natural is xylitol, exactly? How safe? I talk to Shane Ellison, The People’s Chemist, to try to get some answers. […]

  9. […] Xylitol: Should We Stop Calling It Natural? | Crunchy Betty – So, xylitol is known to cause stomach problems and diarrhea if used in large amounts. There are plenty of studies that confirm this, but it’s always worded in ways that make it seem like you’d have to eat your weight in xylitol to be affected. […]

  10. […] based on this article and this article and the horrible stomach cramps I got after eating it several times, I decided […]



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