Exploring the Potential Health Benefits of D-Xylose & Xylitol Products

By David Smith

Jan 11, 2024

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In 2006 we launched a product called Xylotene, containing a blend of two rare sugars xylitol and D-xylose. Since its launch, there has been a growing interest in healthier alternatives to traditional sweeteners/sugars, and two of those alternatives that have gained popularity are xylitol and D-xylose. Derived from natural sources like birch bark, xylitol is a sugar alcohol that has become a key ingredient in a variety of products, ranging from chewing gum to toothpaste and D-xylose is a monosaccharide used in food and beverage as a sweetener.

Xylitol has been used by medical professionals since the 1960’s in infusion therapy and shock therapy. More recently xylitol has been used as a sweetener in products promoting oral health and in healthier options in confectionery, where the sugar content has been replaced with xylitol.

In this article we explore some of the studied benefits for xylitol and D-xylose.

Dental Health:

One of the primary reasons for the increasing use of xylitol is its positive impact on oral health. Unlike regular sugar, xylitol does not contribute to tooth decay. In fact, it actively works to combat it. Xylitol inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth, preventing the formation of plaque and reducing the risk of cavities. Many dentists recommend xylitol-infused products, such as mouthwashes, chewing gum and mints, to promote good oral hygiene.

There are numerous clinical studies [1][2] highlighting potential benefits of using xylitol for dental health as well as approved food claims on the EU Register of Health Claims [6][7].

Weight Management:

Both D-xylose and xylitol are sweeteners that are lower-calorie than traditional sugars, making them attractive options for those aiming to manage their weight. Both provide a sweet taste without the same caloric content, making them useful tools individuals seeking to reduce their overall calorie intake and control their weight [3][4].

Osteoarthritis and Osteoporosis:

Xylose is a an important glycocomponent of chondroitin sulphate [8], directly utilised in forming cartilage, and together with its ability to make more calcium available for the bones, it thus addresses the two major factors in arthritis-associated bone and cartilage problems and may help to increase bone density with regular use.

Gut Health:

Xylitol has prebiotic properties, meaning it promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut. This can contribute to improved digestive health and a balanced gut microbiome, especially when used in conjunction with a live bacteria product such as those from our UniBac range. A healthy gut microbiome has been linked to various health benefits, including better immune function and overall well-being.

Low Glycaemic Index:

Xylitol has a low glycaemic index, which measures how quickly a food or beverage causes blood sugar to rise. This is especially important for individuals with insulin resistance or those looking to maintain stable energy levels throughout the day. Xylitol's slow absorption into the bloodstream helps avoid rapid spikes and crashes in blood sugar [4].

Anti-Inflammatory Properties:

Some studies suggest that xylitol may possess anti-inflammatory properties. Chronic inflammation is associated with various health issues, including heart disease and certain autoimmune conditions. By incorporating xylitol into one's diet, individuals may potentially experience a reduction in inflammation markers, contributing to overall health and well-being [5].


Products infused with xylitol and D-xylose offer a fantastic alternative to sugar and come with a range of potential health benefits, from promoting dental health to aiding in weight management and supporting gut health. Both xylitol and D-xylose have become a versatile and appealing options for those looking to make healthier choices in their daily lives. More human trials are required to fully understand the potential benefits around weight management, anti-inflammatory properties, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis.

Just like all supplements, it's essential to consume xylitol in moderation and as with any dietary changes, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the most suitable options for individual health needs.

Links to Studies & EU Health Claims Register:

[1] Xylitol in preventing dental caries: A systematic review and meta-analyses - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5320817/

[2] The effect of xylitol on dental caries and oral flora - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4232036/

[3] Effects of xylitol on metabolic parameters and visceral fat accumulation - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3128359/

[4] The Effects of xylitol on Body Weight Loss Management and Lipid Profile on Diet-Induced Obesity Mice - https://www.scirp.org/journal/paperinformation?paperid=60202

[5] Xylitol, an Anticaries Agent, Exhibits Potent Inhibition of Inflammatory Responses in Human THP-1-Derived Macrophages Infected With Porphyromonas gingivalis - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4775082/

[6] Chewing gum sweetened with 100% xylitol - https://ec.europa.eu/food/food-feed-portal/screen/health-claims/eu-register/details/POL-HC-6266

[7] Sugar replacers, i.e. intense sweeteners; xylitol, sorbitol, mannitol, maltitol, lactitol, isomalt, erythritol, sucralose and polydextrose; D-tagatose and isomaltulose - https://ec.europa.eu/food/food-feed-portal/screen/health-claims/eu-register/details/POL-HC-6466

[8] Recognition of acceptor proteins by UDP-D-xylose proteoglycan core protein beta-D-xylosyltransferase - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9111016/

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