News about Sugar X and Sugar E . . .
According to Jonathan V. Wright, M.D., just as there are good fats and bad fats, there are good sugars and bad sugars. And knowing the difference and making the right choices can help to transform your health rapidly for the better.
The truth is that bad sugars attract dangerous germs such the pathogenic S. mutans bacteria that dwell in your mouth. Bad sugar isn’t just sweet for us — germs love it too. And bad sugars are everywhere, not found only in table sugar, but in pastry, candy, processed food, and especially soda.
When you eat bad sugar, your body sends out chemical signals that attracts germs like moths to a flame. Empowered by the bad sugar, these germs target cells all over your body, wreaking damage wherever they can. But what if you could avoid those chemical signals and turn the tide against your microbial enemies?
You can do just that with good sugars, some small amounts of which show up in certain fruits, like cranberries. Their molecules are just a little different, but it makes a huge difference to germs . . .
Strange as it may seem, these good sugars overwhelm the chemical “radar” of germs and block the cellular receptors these pathogens grab on to, thereby preventing their havoc in your mouth … and elsewhere in your body.
Unblocked bacteria can travel through your bloodstream and under the worst circumstances infect the interior linings of the heart, causing infectious endocarditis, a very serious disease. However, when these germs are blocked, they are disabled and have a hard time finding cells on which to cling. And because they can’t hang on, your body fluids effectively wash these germs away thus rendering them harmless. Is this too good to be true? According to Dr. Wright, good sugars can do exactly this.
And among these good sugars is one that has this antibacterial qualities and tastes sweet yet can’t be metabolized, as can other sugars, to produce calories.
It’s xylitol, a sugar alcohol produced from plant sources and also made naturally in our bodies. Several companies have come out with xylitol-sweetened gum, which they claim will help prevent caries. Improving on artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, xylitol goes beyond just tasting sweet and depriving oral bacteria of nutrition—it actually inhibits the growth of S. mutans, thereby significantly reducing plaque and tooth decay. Moreover, it’s so good at this that it has been endorsed by the professional dental associations of England, Ireland, Finland, and Sweden.
The regular use of xylitol-containing food and oral hygiene agents have been shown to reduce dental plaque growth, to interfere with the development of caries-associated bacteria, to decrease the incidence of dental caries, and to help with remineralization of caries lesions.1
Known as sugar E, erythritol has also been shown to reduce tooth decay. In in vivo studies, cultivation experiments support the use of xylitol and especially erythritol for inhibiting the growth of several strains of Streptococci mutans.2 What’s more, combinations of xylitol and erythritol may reduce the incidence of caries more effectively than either good sugar alone.1
In a recent study, researchers created chewing gum pellets made from xylitol, each containing 1 g of the good sugar. Amazingly, people who chewed three pellets a day significantly reduced levels of S. mutans, even though they didn't change their eating habits.3 But it gets better . . .
A recent study found that xylitol oral syrup administered topically two or three times per day at a total dose of 8 g was effective in preventing early childhood caries.4 Not only that. A minimum of 5 to 6 g, three times daily in chewing gum or candies are needed for clinical effect in adults.5
Furthermore, both the good sugars xylitol and erythritol have been shown to act as free radical scavengers in biological and experimental systems.6 Also, erythritol acts as an antioxidant in vivo and may help protect against hyperglycemia-induced vascular damage.7
Related to these findings is the observation that both erythritol and xylitol can decrease polysaccharide-mediated cell adherence that contributes to plaque accumulation.8
Not to be topped. in a recent study with lab animals, body weight gain was significantly lower in rats consuming xylitol compared to sucrose. Also, significantly better glucose tolerance was observed in the xylitol group compared with the control and sucrose groups. Lastly, serum triglycerides were found to be lower with xylitol compared to sucrose. Altogether, this study suggests that xylitol can be a better sweetener than sucrose to maintain diabetes-related parameters at a physiologically safer and stable condition.9
Many of the sugar alcohols are associated with gastrointestinal intolerance. Far less is this the case with xylitol and practically not at all with erythritol.10 All in all, that’s a modest trade-off for a great deal of success. Put sugar X and sugar E into your diet today and start to notice the difference!