Being on a reduction, we often miss something sweet, which could be consumed without fear of losing the effects that we have undoubtedly worked hard for. Often, however, in our favorite products we find information that if there was no amount of carbohydrates and fat per 100g of the product, which leads to the need to get around the taste. And then we start looking for low carb products. As I myself had this type of problem and in the forum I did not find Art directly about this problem, I decided to look for a bit and build an article about basic information about sugar substitutes used in the food industry, namely Polyols. 


Here you can find sweeteners – CLICK


So at the beginning, basic info polyols are alcohols derived from simple sugars (eg Sorbitol, mannitol, lactitol) used as sweeteners. Their calorific value varies from 0.2 kcal (erythritol) to about 2.6 kcal (sorbitol). All polyols used in the food industry belong to the group of so-called Cukroli. It is important for us that they do not increase the blood sugar level, or do it in a very small way, so they are a good solution for people who use the low-glycemic diet. However, they are included in carbohydrate carbohydrates, although it will not be completely absorbed, it should not be overdoed. In large amounts they can cause laxative effects. 

Erythrite, erythritol – Suitable as a sweetener, with a sweetness of 60 – 75% sweetness of sucrose. Low calorie (0.2 kcal / g), does not cause tooth spoilage. Used in medicine. The erythritol tetra-nitrate has explosive properties. 

Xylitol – sweet-flavored polyhydroxy alcohol (zircon). Used in the food industry for sweetening as a food additive E967; mainly chewing gum and candy due to anticaries effect. Also recommended for diabetics, because it is metabolized with a small share of insulin. It has many times lower glycemic index (IG8) than glucose or sucrose. Xylitol helps in the absorption of calcium, therefore it has a positive effect on teeth and bones. You should not consume more than 40 grams of xylitol per day. 

The popular xylitol sweetener can cause serious liver damage and even death in dogs. Ingestion of xylitol in an amount> 100 mg / kg body weight causes the dog to secrete large amounts of insulin, leading to a significant reduction in blood sugar (hypoglycaemia) 

Isomaltitol – a polyhydric alcohol produced in finely crystalline and fine powder form, the particle size of which can be adapted for special applications. Its main application is sugar-free hard candies and bread, which grow is possible at lower humidity. 

Mannitol, mannitol – polyhydroxy sugar alcohol. It occurs in the form of two enantiomers – D and L. It is a rich source of available carbon and therefore it is added to culture media (eg Chapman’s substrate used to isolate and identify bacteria from the genus Staphylococcus). 

He was used as a diuretic in medicine. Can be used 

– in the prevention of irreversible kidney damage in oliguria, 

– to reduce intracranial pressure, 

-to increase the excretion of urine (and also toxins) in poisoning. 

Sorbitol – a colorless crystalline substance with a sweet taste (zircon), well soluble in water. It is obtained by reducing glucose. Used as an E420 food additive. 

Perseitol – a sweet-flavored polyhydroxy alcohol (zircon). 

β-sedoheptiol – a sweet-flavored polyhydroxy alcohol (zolrole). 

Wolemitol – a sweet-flavored polyhydroxy alcohol (zirconium). 

Often, there are also questions about the side effects of using polyols. Well, here the opinions are divided. In most people, moderate use of polyols does not completely cause any side effects, however, depending on the type of polyol, side effects may occur, ranging from purgation to nausea, vomiting and fever. However, the chance of limiting energy obtained from sucrose, prompted scientists to carry out research on various aspects of the harmful effects of the so-called Intensive Sweeteners (various types of aspartame and acesulfams) and polyols. The effect is so-called ADI (acceptable daily intake) or acceptable daily download. The ADI value is expressed in mg / kg body weight / day and includes the total number of substances that can be taken by man from all sources throughout life without harming his health. This is presented in the table below

Sweetener ADI (mg / kg body weight / day) 

Aspartame 40 

Acesulfame K 9 

Cyclamines 11 

Saccharin 5 

neohesperidin (NHDC) 5 

Thaumatin Not designated 

Polyols (including maltitol) Not designated 

(studies conducted by the Expert Committee on Food Additives by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Office) 

In the case of polyhydric alcohols, including maltitol, used in amounts necessary to obtain the desired effect, no doubts have been raised about their adverse effects on health. 


You can read also: Sugar – yes or no?

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