Dental Health and Xylitol

More and more information is coming out that tells us our general health is interrelated to our dental/oral health. I will be talking more about the acidity and alkaline of our bodies in future blogs. Dr. Phillips a dentist in Rochester, New York has been studying the correlation between the acidity in our mouths with tooth decay. She has a website: www.zellies.com where you can read more about her findings. She believes that xylitol, a type of sugar, is very beneficial in neutralizing the acidity in our mouths. Below is a summary by Dr. Phillips on the subject of xylitol.

Xylitol – the Good Sugar!

By Dr. Ellie Phillips DDS

Xylitol is a naturally-occurring sweetener extracted from fruits and vegetables including birch wood, corncobs, andplums. Xylitol is even found in the human body in small amounts. It is a safe and healthy product for people with diabetes  Forty years of research shows xylitol is well tolerated and has a variety of health benefits. Most interesting are its effects on the number one childhood disease in America: tooth decay. Results show a 70% reduction in cavities when two teaspoons of xylitol are consumed regularly. Xylitol may be the best and most cost effective tools for the prevention of cavities and gum disease.

How it Works

Bacteria in the mouth damage teeth by the acids they produce. Harmful mouth bacteria are fueled by sucrose and certain sugar-substitutes. Harmful bacteria cannot utilize xylitol and disappear from the mouth. The best time to eat xylitol is after eating or drinking, as bacteria multiply. Five daily exposures to xylitol will reduce plaque on teeth.

For Baby Teeth

New parents can use xylitol to prevent the spread of harmful bacteria from their own teeth to their baby’s mouth. It is best that parents begin before the baby is born and continue until their child has teeth. This simple measure may result in amazing long-term dental benefits for their child.

For Childrens Teeth

Regular use of gum or candies made from 100 percent xylitol can virtually eliminate cavity forming bacteria from a child’s mouth within two years. The effect on oral health can be long lived, particularly if the change happens before adult teeth erupt.

Additional Benefits

Xylitol has an impressive list of additional benefits. Studies show a reduction in ear infections when children consume xylitol. A xylitol nasal wash may prevent sinus, ear, and upper respiratory infections, and xylitol has been used in skin care products. This good sugar has been endorsed by the Finnish Dental Association in 1988, the Swedish Dental Association, and the British Dental Association. It is a household name in Asia and Scandinavia and several Hygienists’ Associations in the US have now accepted xylitol for its therapeutic benefits. Xylitol is truly a wonderful, natural ally to improve your teeth and help protect your general health.

Xylitol Products

Grandular xylitol can be purchased from Nature Sunshine Products at:

http://www.naturesunshine.com

in health food stores, or found as an ingredient in candies and chewing gum. It is important to avoid products  that combine xylitol with cheaper, artificial sweeteners that may have similar sounding names. Xylitol can be chewed, swallowed, rinsed or sprayed into the mouth. Dozens of companies offer products sweetened with 100% xylitol. Xylitol will be effective, even when baked into cookies or used in custards or ice cream.

Taking responsibility for our own health can be simple and exciting. This is one step to achieving that goal.

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