Dear Dr. Ellie,
I am a 70 year old man with diabetes, and my granddaughter suggested I contact you about xylitol, can you give me some more information?
Robert in Albany, NY
Besides being good for your dental health, xylitol is an excellent sugar-replacement for diabetics. The main goals of diabetes management are the control of your blood glucose, your lipids and your weight. Xylitol is a low glycaemic sweetener, and is slowly absorbed and metabolized independently of insulin. Xylitol does not cause the dramatic increase in blood sugar level or serum insulin response and Xylitol can be used as a sugar-free sweetener for diabetics. Xylitol also has low calories per gram (2.4) and can help the diabetic with weight control. Xylitol can be purchased in “sugar” form for sweetening and cooking and can be bought as mints and gums.
Good luck, and as always when introducing new foods/sweeteners/medications, consult your primary care physician.