Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that is naturally present in small amounts of various fruits and vegetables. The Finnish name for xylitol is "koivusokeri", or birch sugar, a reference to the extraction of xylitol from birch bark. NOW® Pure Xylitol is derived from a corn source.
Considerable amounts of xylitol are formed in the body every day as a result of normal metabolic processes. Although it is classified as a carbohydrate, this sweet crystalline substance is slowly absorbed from the digestive tract and does not cause rapid rises in blood glucose. In addition, the caloric impact of xylitol is typically about 40% lower than other carbohydrates, making it a healthy addition to any diet.
Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that cannot be utilized by undesirable particles in the mouth. Discovered simultaneously by French and German chemists in 1891, xylitol has been safely used since the 1970s as an ingredient in gums and candies. Dentists and nutritionists alike encourage the use of xylitol due to its unique and clinically proven dental benefits.