Ingredient Database

ToxicFree Foundation / Ingredient Database / Xylitol
    Type in the name of an ingredient to learn how it has been rated by ToxicFree Foundation
    Green Light



    What is it?

    Xylitol ®

    Safe and natural low-glycemic sugar that is helps prevent tooth-decay

    Xylitol is a new sugar-substitute that is not only low-glycemic, but helps to prevent tooth-decay, which is why it is now being used as the sweetener in some toothpastes and chewing gum.

    Xylitol is a white crystalline sweetener that occurs naturally in berries, fruit, vegetables, mushrooms and birch trees. In fact, in Finland it is known as “birch sugar”, because the principal raw ingredient in its manufacture is xylan or wood fibre. It even occurs naturally in our bodies, and has been shown to be completely non-toxic and safe to take (unlike many other alternative sweeteners).

    Recently, Xylitol has become very popular as a sugar substitute because it has been shown to dramatically reduce tooth decay and even reverse it when it is already present. It can do this because of its molecular structure which makes it unusable by the mouth bacteria that cause dental caries – plaque cannot grow with it. Also, as saliva that contains Xylitol is alkaline (the pH is above 7), the calcium and phosphate salts in our saliva can start to naturally remineralize our tooth enamel in the places that they are lacking, which has a hardening effect on decay-softened enamel.

    One of the added benefits of Xylitol is the fact that it is both a low-glycaemic sweetener and alkalizing to the body, making it an ideal sugar substitute for those on weight-loss diets and for those wanting optimum health without the “sugar-blues”. (Please note, however, that Xylitol is not a low or no calorie product... each teaspoon or 4g contains 9.6 calories as opposed to normal sugar's 15.8 calories for the equivalent weight.) As it is low-glycemic, it has also become popular as a sweetener for diabetics.

    The Really Healthy Company’s Xylitol is 100% pure-grade white crystalline powder which can be used as a healthy sugar substitute, or just taken orally and swished around the mouth for good dental care. It is identical in taste and sweetness to normal sugar except that it has a slight cooling effect on the tongue. There is also no bitter after-taste as with other sugar substitutes.


    Key Information

    • Oral Health - ideal in toothpaste, mouthwash and breath sprays because it helps prevents tooth-decay.

    More Information

    Xylitol from US hard wood trees is the substance that has been rated a green light.  If Xylitol is derived from corn, it may not be as clean of a source.  Look at labels or check with the company marketing a product, to confirm source of the Xylitol.


    This ingredient is commonly used in: