Xylitol the Natural Alternative

So what should I brush my teeth with if fluoride is poison? The answer is a natural compound that has been proven to prevent cavities and is used in toothpaste in the U.S., Europe and around the globe by health conscious individuals. This natural substance I'm referring to is Xylitol.

What is Xylitol?

Xylitol is a sweetener that occurs naturally. It can be found, for instance, in berries, fruit, vegetables and mushrooms. The Finnish name for it, "koivusokeri", or "birch sugar", derives from the fact that the original way to make xylitol industrially is from birch, by chopping up and rendering down the structural fibre of the wood, xylan.

Xylitol was first discovered almost simultaneously by German and French chemists in the late 19th century. It was used in the Soviet Union for decades as a sweetener for diabetics, and in Germany in solutions for intravenous feeding. In China, xylitol has been used for numerous medical purposes.

After over 25 years of testing in varying conditions, it is confirmed that xylitol is the best sweetener for teeth. Xylitol use reduces tooth decay rates all groups, high-risk groups (high cavity prevalence, poor nutrition, and poor oral hygiene) and in low risk groups (low cavity incidence using all current prevention recommendations). Sugarless chewing gums and candies made with xylitol as the principal sweetener have already received official endorsements from at least six national dental associations.

The dental significance of xylitol was discovered in Finland in the early 1970's, when scientists at Turku University showed it could prevent tooth decay.

Xylitol-Jenkki, the first xylitol chewing gum in the world, was launched by the Finnish company Leaf in 1975.


Here's what The California Dental Association has to say about Xylitol:

The Decay-Preventive Sweetener

"Xylitol is a natural sugar alcohol that helps prevents cavities. You may recognize other sugar alcohols used in sugarless products, such as mannitol and sorbitol. Xylitol is the sugar alcohol that shows the greatest promise for cavity prevention. It is equal in sweetness and volume to sugar and the granular form can be used in many of the ways that sugar is used, including to sweeten cereals and hot beverages and for baking (except when sugar is needed for yeast to rise).

How does xylitol prevent cavities?

Xylitol inhibits the growth of the bacteria that cause cavities. It does this because these bacteria (Streptococcus mutans) cannot utilize xylitol to grow. Over time with xylitol use, the quality of the bacteria in the mouth changes and fewer and fewer decay-causing bacteria survive on tooth surfaces. Less plaque forms and the level of acids attacking the tooth surface is lowered.

Studies show that Streptococcus mutans is passed from parents to their newborn children, thus beginning the growth of these decay-producing bacteria in the child. Regular use of xylitol by mothers has been demonstrated to significantly reduce this bacterial transmission, resulting in fewer cavities for the child."

See the whole page about Xylitol here at: http://www.cda.org/popup/xylitol

Here is another study on how mothers chewing gum with Xylitol reduce their child's risk of Streptococcus mutans being passed to them.


Finnish scientists discovered the uses of xylitol on dentistry in the early 1970's. Further research on xylitol chewing gum and xylitol pastilles has set the trend making xylitol an integral part of dental health promotion.The benefits of xylitol are gaining increasing recognition on a worldwide scale.

The Editors of Poisonpaste.com endorse and use all natural toothpaste brands that use Xylitol as its anti-cavity agent. Toothpaste brands that use Xylitol can be purchased at even Walmart, like "Tom's of Maine" with Xylitol. (Be careful to get the right Tom's of Maine with Xylitol, one has Fluoride.) My favorite is "Spry" Non-Flouride Toothpaste and my youngest son's favorite is "XyliWhite". I think its not as minty as Spry, but I think Spry has the best flavor of all of the ones I have tried.

Other popular brands include: Squigle Toothpaste, Tom's of Maine, XyliWhite, Epic Dental Xylitol Toothpaste, and Xlear Spry Cool Mint Xylitol Toothpaste.

Xylitol is also great in chewing gum.

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