Things You Need To Know About Xylitol
You may have heard about the xylitol. It is a naturally occurring sugar which is derived from birch trees and corn cobs. Generally, it is considered as an alternate for the traditional sugar which is a known destroyer of oral and overall health. Still, you may be wondering how anything sweet can actually improve your oral health. Well, this is what we are going to talk about in this article.
Xylitol for cavity prevention
First, you need to understand how cavities are formed. Cavities develop in the mouth due to bacterial action on the sugars and carbohydrates left in the mouth after you eat your foods. The bacteria, as a result of this sustenance provision, result in the production of acids which lead to the erosion of tooth enamel. This is how the cavities are formed.
Now, you may wonder how xylitol can help in the prevention of cavities. A few points are worth mentioning in this context.
- Some properties of xylitol make it indigestible for bacteria. It means that bacteria will not be able to produce acids since they will have nothing to be sustained by.
- Acidic environment of the mouth can lead to the enamel erosion. Xylitol essentially raises the pH level of the mouth in order to discourage the acid production in the oral cavity.
- Xylitol can contribute in raising the calcium level in the mouth. This way, you will have support for the tooth enamel.
Xylitol is not unprocessed
Although xylitol is a naturally occurring sweetener, it is still processed in order to make it usable. For instance, the most famous source of xylitol is birch tree. In order to make it usable, there is no way the extract can be left unprocessed.
Xylitol is not a zero-calorie solution
Despite what advertisers would want you to think, xylitol has calories and it is something you will have to be aware of especially if you have the problem related to blood sugar level. However, it has 40% less calories as compared to other sugar-based sweeteners.
Xylitol and gastrointestinal issues
The use of xylitol can lead to the pulling of water into the intestinal tract. This process can result in bloating, gas, and diarrhea. Having that said, you should avoid using xylitol if you have IBS. Moreover, the xylitol should be introduced slowly to the body in order to avoid side effects.
Make sure that you are good with your preventative dental care
While research suggests that use of xylitol can help you prevent cavities, it is unclear whether it is specifically qualified to help you with cavity prevention. Therefore, if you want to get your foods sweetened and you want to retain the best smile, you have to make sure that you are sticking with your oral hygiene routine. Moreover, you also have to make sure that you visit your dentist after every 6 months.