The Xylitol it is known above all among chewing gum chewers because it is often mentioned even on shiny packaging to show how that product is tastier and "less full of sugar". In truth it is Xylitol it is a sugar and has a sweetening power very similar to that of sucrose but what it is appreciated for is the fact that it has much fewer calories. Here's the trick.
It is so interesting as a substance that it is certainly not only used for chewing gum, let alone, we find it in many other foods and products and it seems to be present too some health benefits. However, it has a flaw, at least one flaw: it does not contain vitamins, mineral salts or other useful substances, such as refined sugar. Not everyone knows it and those who don't know still believe the brands that present it Xylitol as a healthier alternative to sucrose. There would at least be discussed.
Xylitol: what it is
It is a substance sweetener, a hybrid between a sugar molecule and an alcohol molecule Thanks to this characteristic, it is able to stimulate the sweet taste receptors on the tongue. We have seen that it is a very used sweetener for chewing-gum, candies, mints but if you notice it well, you can also find it in many oral hygiene products. In nature? It is found in small quantities in fruit and vegetables and also our body produces a minimum of it through the metabolism.
Let's focus now on the characteristic that makes it so loved Xylitol from many of us, the fact that it is sweet but does not have many categories. This is no hoax: white sugar contains 4 calories per gram, lo xylitol contains 2.4 per gram, therefore about 40% less. Not bad. I understand that dieters can have beneficial effects.
In addition to keeping us fit, if we don't abuse it, it does Xylitol it also seems to have beneficial effects for our teeth and mouth. The bacterium Streptococcus mutans, among those responsible for plaque, it feeds on the glucose present in the mouth thanks to food, but cannot use it xylitol. Here is therefore explained why it is Xylitol it's good for your teeth: it keeps the bacterium that causes plaque at bay and “starves to death”. It's not over.
From some studies it appears that it is xylitol is also able to block the metabolism of bacteria, especially as regards their ability to derive energy from glucose. There are researchers who claim it helps in reducing harmful bacteria present in the oral cavity 25 to 75% and at the same time, that it has no effect on beneficial bacteria. From a dream, it seems made for the health of our teeth.
As for the rest of the mouth, it is xylitol it improves the absorption of calcium in the digestive system, increases the production of saliva and reduces its acidity, helps prevent and reduce tooth decay, alongside inflammation of the gums.
Xylitol: glycemic index
When we eat too much sugar, side effects include spikes in blood glucose and rapid release of insulin. Precisely in this regard it seems that this sweetening substance can help out because, compared to sweeteners like it white sugar, has a very weak action on the level of glucose in the blood and on insulin.
This is explained by the fact that the glycemic index is equal to 7, while that of refined sugar is 60-70. On paper, from the point of view of the glycemic index, it could represent an alternative to refined sugar for those at risk of diabetes and for those suffering from obesity but it is always better not to trust recipes that are too easy and consult your doctor before acting.
Xylitol is extracted mainly from birch trees, but also from some types of fruit, such as strawberries and raspberries, and from wheat. Alternatively, we can obtain it thanks to an industrial process that transforms vegetable fibers called xylans into xylitol. We "consumers" can find it xylitol for sale as a powdered sweetener on the internet and in health food stores. As food additive in Europe it is indicated by the number E967, try to take a look at the labels of the products you have at home to find out how much Xylitol you are already ingesting.
When consumed in exaggerated quantities, it Xylitol it can be the cause of intestinal fermentation and digestive problems but in general it does not have major side effects even if those suffering from irritable bowel syndrome should avoid it. If we humans do not have to worry, dogs do and if we are dog owners it is good to be on guard.
If the human body absorbs it xylitol slowly and with little effect on insulin production, the dog's body behaves differently. It causes them a high production of insulin, it can even be fatal. Only 0.1 grams per kilogram of dog weight is enough to have negative effects. Less than a single one contains chewing gum.
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