126 of 131 people found the following review helpful
A perfect, natural sugar substitute,
Now Foods' erythritol is a sugar substitute made from corn. By fermenting the corn's sugars, the manufacturer produces a naturally-occurring sugar alcohol product. Sugar alcohols taste exactly like sugar, but without the calories and blood sugar spike. And they are alcohols in chemistry terms only, not to be confused with the kind of alcohol one finds in adult beverages.
* Tastes just like sugar and has no unpleasant aftertastes, unlike stevia.
* Has a glycemic index of zero. Great for diabetics or those simply wishing to eliminate excess sugar from their diets.
* Contains virtually no calories.
* Made by a manufacturer committed to a wide range of sweeteners and food products, so the company is experienced and trusted in its field.
* Erythritol occurs naturally in many foods. The FDA recognizes it as a viable and safe sugar substitute. Erythritol-based sweeteners have been on the market in other countries for years.
* Unlike some other sugar alcohols such as xylitol, mannitol, and sorbitol, it will not cause gas if consumed in large amounts.
* Not only does erythritol not promote tooth decay, it actually prevents it, inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth.
* Can be used in baking.
* Not quite as sweet as sugar. You need about a quarter to a third more erythritol by volume for an equivalent.
* Though it tastes exactly like sugar, erythritol has a slight, mint-like, cooling effect on the tongue. In foods where that effect would be undesirable, erythritol would need to be combined with another sweetener to diminish the effect. (This effect seems to vary from person to person, too.)
* In some clear liquids such as tea, adding erythritol will initially cloud the liquid, though the cloudiness fades quickly. (That issue probably comes from the release of oxygen bubbles as the product dissolves.)
* Though it dissolves, erythritol does not do so as rapidly as sugar. It will retain its granularity in some foods. (Some people recommended powdering it to compensate.)
* Because it involves more steps to make than corn syrup or sugar, this is not a cheap product. Perhaps in the future, economies of scale will drive the price down.
Many companies are discovering the benefits of erythritol as a natural sugar substitute that lacks the nagging questions that dog artificial sweeteners like sucralose and aspartame. Now Foods' erythritol is one of the best values in this natural sweetener on the market, available at a much lower price point than some competitors' products. Though not cheap compared with sugar or some artificial sweeteners, as a healthy alternative, it more than makes up for its higher cost.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 10, 2013 10:23:48 PM PDT
Jacqueline Jackson says:
Posted on Apr 11, 2013 3:58:14 AM PDT
Daniel L Edelen says:
Regarding my statement about erythritol not having the same GI effects as other sugar alcohols, the Cargill article you quote states the same thing: "low laxative effect vis-a-vis other polyols." In addition, that same article notes that the EU's concern over erythritol use is more about Cargill's stated number on possible GI effects overexposure in children. This is more a questioning of a number provided and not the product itself. Lastly, the argument is whether there might be might be a laxative effect in small children versus no possible effect at all. When one sees that the EU's no effect limit consists of 2/3 of a liter of soda, one must ask if there are more pressing issues when a kid is drinking that much soda. Erythritol is safe, even at high levels. Is it possible that if you overindulge it might give you a little gas? Possibly, if you're a kid and you overindulge. But then so does all that soda carbonation!
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