Xylitol “the good sugar”

Most Americans consume huge amounts of sugar with no idea of the long term damage they are inflicting on their bodies. It is widely known that sugar represses the immune system. It has been said that one teaspoon of sugar represses the immune system for an hour. If that is true then what do you think a soft drink, which averages 8 teaspoons of sugar, does to the immune system? Regularly eating large amounts of sugar will cause significant harm. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia and weight gain, leading to diabetes and obesity in both children and adults. It leaches the body of vital minerals and vitamins. It raises blood pressure, triglycerides, and the bad cholesterol (LDL), increasing the risk of heart disease. It causes tooth decay and periodontal disease, which leads to tooth loss and systemic infections. It makes it difficult for a child’s brain to learn, resulting in a lack of concentration. Both children and adults exhibit disruptive behavior, learning disorders, and forgetfulness from sugar consumption. It initiates auto-immune disorders such as arthritis, allergies, and asthma. It also upsets hormonal balance and supports the growth of cancer cells.

Recognizing the harmful effects of sugar consumption makes it a natural choice to seek a healthy alternative. Fortunately, there are several good options such as stevia, xylitol, and honey. My favorite natural sweetener is Xylitol!

Although xylitol tastes and looks exactly like sugar, that is where the similarities end. Xylitol is like sugar, except good for you. While sugar damages the body, xylitol heals and repairs. It also builds immunity, protects against chronic disease and has anti-aging benefits.

Xylitol has only a negligible impact on blood sugar and insulin levels. This means that unlike sugar, there are no highs and lows: no roller coaster for your energy or your mood, and no subsequent cravings for more sweets and carbohydrates. No adrenal fatigue, no weight gain, no increase in cortisol levels. In fact, xylitol can help keep you hormonally balanced through its insulin stabilization factors.

Xylitol alkalinizes the mouth. It not only reduces bacterial growth but actually inhibits and interferes with development of plaque, and bad bacterial strains such as strep. The Journal of the American Dental Association said “Xylitol is an effective preventive agent against dental caries… Consumption of xylitol-containing chewing gum has been demonstrated to reduce caries in Finnish teenagers by 30-60%. Studies conducted in Canada, Thailand, Polynesia and Belize have shown similar results…” A study conducted at Harvard School of Dental Medicine concluded that “Xylitol can significantly decrease the incidence of dental caries.” – which is why more and more dentists are recommending it, in toothpastes, gums and candies. Sugar increases the acidity of the mouth and the body as a whole, as well as bacterial growth and the incidence of cavities. Among young children whose mothers chewed xylitol gum, there was a 70% decrease in tooth decay, presumably because it inhibited bacteria that are normally passed back and forth with shared kisses, drinks, food, etc. If used consistently over time, Xylitol may even repair some damage from cavities.

Xylitol slows stomach emptying time, promoting a feeling of fullness. According to research, including xylitol around mealtime significantly decreases the number of calories needed to feel full. Obviously, this can have great potential for weight management.

8-10 grams of xylitol daily led to a 30% decrease in ear infections in young children. This is attributed to its anti-microbial effects, particularly on strep and flu viruses. Many people are discovering the benefits of using a Neti Pot for help with allergies, colds, and sinus infections. Take advantage of xylitol’s anti-microbial properties by adding some to your neti therapy. Start with just 1/4 teaspoon: a little goes a long way.

Xylitol is alkalinizing to our systems, making us less hospitable to harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi of all kinds. Keeping the body alkaline makes it easier and more likely for you to stay healthy and balanced in every way. Sugar, in contrast, creates an acidic environment, feeding destructive microbes and weakening the immune system.

Animal studies suggest that regular consumption of xylitol can improve bone strength during aging, probably because of the increased consumption of calcium, as well as the alkalinizing effect. The more acidic your system, the more the body will leech calcium from bones and teeth to re-balance itself.

Xylitol is the only sugar that does not feed yeast. Not only is it safe for those struggling with candida, it is actually beneficial. This is not true of any of the other sugars or sugar alcohols, including sorbitol, mannitol, maltitol, as well as fructose, honey, maple syrup, agave, malt, molasses, etc.

Xylitol is safe. It was approved as an additive by the FDA in 1963, and recognized as a safe sweetener in 1986. Although some people experience some initial GI discomfort as they incorporate higher amounts, this is usually temporary. My experience indicates this is caused by an existing imbalance in the GI tract which is important to be addressed on its own. Once this is cleared, xylitol is well-tolerated.

Xylitol has a consistency, texture and flavor virtually identical to sugar, although it slightly less sweet. It is great for tea, cookies, candies, brownies, etc. Because it does not feed yeast, it does not work for bread.
For oral health, use xylitol mints or gum 3-5 times a day, and especially after meals and snacks. Toothpaste with xylitol is great too, and is becoming more widely available.

If one of your New Years Resolutions was to regain control of your health, implementing Xylitol into your diet on a daily basis can make it much easer to reach your goals! Try it, I think you will love it!

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