The Sweetner Xylitol is conquering the world, one smile at a time

Fazer Finnish Confectionery Company Xylitol Report:

Xylitol was first discovered by German Chemist Emil Fisher and French Chemist M.G. Bertrand, but it became significant when Finnish researchers found that it exhibits superior dental benefits. Xylitol sweetened chewing gum and pastilles are great Finnish inventions.

Industrialized xylitol manufacturing began in Finland and the first xylitol chewing gum and pastilles in the world were also manufactured in Finland. Soon those became a healthy habit in every Finn´s daily life.

NATURAL-Xylitol is formed from the Greek word “xylon” meaning hardwood, whereas the ending “oli” refers to the terminology of organic chemistry. From a chemical standpoint, xylitol is a sugar alcohol, not actually a sugar.

Unlike any other polyol sweetener, xylitol has a five-carbon structure. This is the key reason why xylitol has been proven to be the only sweetener which shows both passive and active anti-caries effects.

Xylitol is naturally present in many fruits and vegetables. The levels found are normally less than 1%, however it can be said that xylitol has been a natural component of mankinds diet throughout the years. Xylitol is also produced by the human body, from 5 to 15 grams per day, as an intermediate in the normal metabolism of glucose.

FUNCTIONAL-Xylitol exhibits dental health benefits which are superior to other polyols, in all areas where polyols have been shown to have an effect so far. Furthermore, it´s specific effects on oral flora and on mutans streptococci add to its caries-preventive profile and gives xylitol an important role in preventive dental care.

In addition, it has also been found through research that regular consumption of xylitol-containing products by children can reduce the occurrence of Acute Otitis Media (middle ear infection). As a result of the benefits related to the usage of xylitol, it has been granted Functional Food Status in Finland.

SAFE-The safety of xylitol has been proven in long-term clinical studies and has been confirmed by all the major regulatory bodies worldwide. Xylitol is approved for use in food and especially in oral hygiene products, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. Currently xylitol is approved in more than 60 countries.

Xylitol is metabolized independently of insulin and is slowly absorbed. Therefore it is suitable for diabetic patients as well. Xylitol is considered a low glycaemic ingredient, having a glycaemic index of approximately 8.5.

Just like any other polyol sweetener such as sorbitol, xylitol may induce laxative effects. However, the amounts required for sufficient every day dental care (5-10 grams) do not cause such effects.

Xylitol has been evaluated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)/ World Health Organization (WHO), Joint Expert Committee of Food Additives (JEFCA) and the EU Scientific Committee for Food (SCF). JEFCA allocated an Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) for xylitol of “Not Specified”, which represents the safest category into which JEFCA can allocate a food additive.

Xylitol has been approved for food within the European Union (EU) since 1994. The United States Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) has approved xylitol for use in “foods for Special dietary purposes”. The Japanese Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) has approved the use of xylitol for food application since 1997.

SWEET & COOL-Xylitol is sweet – the sweetest of all of the known polyols.

Xylitol is just as sweet as sugar with however 40% less calories than regular sugar.

Caloric value for xylitol is 2,4 kcal/g in EU and USA and 3,0 kcal/g in Japan and Canada.

Xylitol is cool – the coolest of all of the known polyols. Xylitol has a pleasant cooling sensation when it dissolves in the mouth. This makes xylitol a perfect sweetener in chewing gums and pastilles, especially with peppermint and fruit flavours. Xylitol does not have an unpleasant after taste.

RECOMMENDED-100% xylitol sweetened chewing gum or pastille is a natural part of an every day dental care. It tastes good, it is easy to use and it does not require any specific dental programmes that are complexed to follow. It is recommended by professionals worldwide.

In 1988 the Finnish Dental Association gave the first xylitol endorsement in the world, followed by Swedish and Norwegian Dental Associations few to mention.

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