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Sugar alcohols: Chemical structures, manufacturing, properties and applications

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Sugar alcohols (Polyols), are currently used as bulk sweeteners in reduced calorie foods. They are part of human diet for thousands of years and are present in fruits such as pears, melons, and grapes as well as mushrooms and fermentation foods (wine, soy sauce and cheese). The most common sugar alcohols that are available in the market are sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, erythritol, isomalt, lactitol, maltitol, and hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH). Sugar alcohols are believed to be good sugar substitutes for people with diabetes plus they do not contribute to dental caries (cavities). Their caloric value are generally half that of sugar sucrose. Plus they have a very low glycemic index, which are great for controlling blood sugar levels. Chemical structures of sugar alcohols are a hybrid between sugar molecule and an alcohol molecule. However they are neither a sugar nor an alcohol. Keywords: Sorbitol; Mannitol; Xylitol; Erythritol; Isomalt; Lactitol; Maltitol; Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates; Glycemic Index; Diabetes; Sweeteners; Dental Caries; FDA
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Cronicon
OPEN ACCESS EC NUTRITION
Mini Review
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and
Applications
Osama O. Ibrahim*
Consultant Biotechnology, Bio Innovation, USA
*Corresponding Author: Osama O. Ibrahim, Consultant Biotechnology, Bio Innovation, 7434 Korbel Dr. Gurnee IL, 60031, USA.
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Received: May 17, 2016; Published: June 01, 2016
Abstract
Sugar alcohols (Polyols), are currently used as bulk sweeteners in reduced calorie foods. They are part of human diet for thou-
sands of years and are present in fruits such as pears, melons, and grapes as well as mushrooms and fermentation foods (wine, soy
sauce and cheese). The most common sugar alcohols that are available in the market are sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, erythritol, isomalt,
lactitol, maltitol, and hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH). Sugar alcohols are believed to be good sugar substitutes for people
with diabetes plus they do not contribute to dental caries (cavities). Their caloric value are generally half that of sugar sucrose. Plus
they have a very low glycemic index, which are great for controlling blood sugar levels. Chemical structures of sugar alcohols are a
hybrid between sugar molecule and an alcohol molecule. However they are neither a sugar nor an alcohol.
Keywords: Sorbitol; Mannitol; Xylitol; Erythritol; Isomalt; Lactitol; Maltitol; Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates; Glycemic Index; Diabe-
tes; Sweeteners; Dental Caries; FDA
Introduction
       
and vegetables, but they are widely consumed in sugar-free and reduced-sugar foods. The sweetness of sugar alcohols varies from 25%
to 100% comparing to the table sugar sucrose. The reason sugar alcohols are used in sugar-free foods because they are slowly and in-
completely absorbed in the body and use almost zero insulin to be converted into energy. Plus sugar alcohols partially passes into the
bloodstream, through the small intestine and the rest passes from low intestine into the large intestine is fermented by colonic microbes.
Sugar alcohols are found in a vast array of sugar-free food products items like candy, gum, ice cream, baked good, and fruit spreads.
They can also be found in oral hygiene products like toothpaste, mouthwashes and breath mints; they are also found in medicines like
cough syrups and lozenges; and most importantly they can be found in lots of sports nutrition products like protein powders, pre-workout
supplements, and low-carb products.

1. Monosaccharide- derived sugar alcohols.
2. Disaccharide -derived sugar alcohols.
3. Polysaccharide-derived sugar alcohols mixture.
818
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Group 1: monosaccharide - derived sugar alcohols.
Sorbitol
(2S, 3R, 4R, 5R)-Hexane-1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6-hexol
Figure 1: Sorbitol.
Sorbitol also known by the name D-glucitol, is a six carbon sugar alcohol C6 H14 O6 
in fruits such as apples, grapes, plums, peaches, and cherries. Also presents in algae, and seaweeds. Because of its extraction from fruits
or seaweeds are not economically feasible, it is produced by the reduction of D-glucose or D-fructose using high pressure hydrogenation
[1]. Sorbitol is about 60% as sweet as the same amount of sugar sucrose. Sorbitol resist fermentation to acids by microorganisms in the
mouth and therefore it does not contribute to the incidence of dental caries. Its sweetening properties allow it to be used as sugar substi-
tute as low calorie sweetener in foods products [2] such as frozen desserts, sugar- free chewing gum, and drinks. In medicine it is used as
a sweetening agent in medicinal syrups and suspensions, such as cough syrups. Also, it is used as a laxative to relieve constipation and as
a diuretic to induce urination. In cosmetic products it is used as thickener and moisturizer.
Mannitol
(2R, 3R, 4R, 5R)-Hexane-1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6-hexol
Figure 2: Mannitol.
Mannitol also known by the name mannite or manna sugar is a six carbon sugar alcohol C6 H14 O6 
present in all plants and seaweeds. Mannitol concentration in these natural products can range from 20% in seaweed to 90% in plants.
   
18% from these original natural products. It can be also produced via the hydrogenation of the sugar mannose into mannitol [3]. Mannitol
has sweet taste as the same amount of sugar sucrose and commonly used in foods and medicines [1]. In foods mannitol has lower glycemic
index than sucrose and therefore used as a sweetener for people with diabetes. It has lower solubility than other sugar alcohols, however
when mannitol is completely dissolved it induce a strong cooling effect. Mannitol is a very useful as a coating for hard candies, dried fruits,
and Chewing gums due to its lower hygroscopic property comparing to other sugar alcohols. Mannitol is recognized by” the World Health
Organization’s list of essential medicines for basic health systems”. It acts as an osmotic laxative in oral doses larger than 20g, and is also,
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
819
(2R, 3r, 4S)-Pentane-1, 2, 3, 4, 5-pentol
Figure 3: Xylitol.
used for medical treatments such as certain cases of kidney failure with low urine output, decreasing pressure in the eyes, elimination of
 
that mannitol could be a new approach for treating Parkinson’s disease (PD).
Xylitol
5 H12 O5
is widely used as a sugar substitute and in “sugar-free” chewing gums, mints, candies, and other oral care products to prevent tooth decay
and dry mouth. In medicine xylitol is used as a sugar substitute for people with diabetes. It has sweet taste but, unlike sugar sucrose, it is

-
tion. The bacteria in large intestine ferment xylitol into low calories short fatty acids that are absorbed by the small intestine into blood

(wood sugar) into primary alcohol. Another method for xylitol production is by microbial fermentation of the sugar xylose. Common
yeasts for the production of high yield of xylitol by fermentation are Candida tropicalis and Candida quilliemondii. Xylitol is categorized
by FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) as a food additive in sweetened products with the claim that do not promote dental cavities.
Erythritol
(2R, 3S)-Butane-1, 2, 3, 4-tetraol
Figure 4: Erythritol.
Erythritol is a four carbon sugar alcohol C4 H10 O4 
and fermented foods such as wine, and cheeses. It has been approved for use as food additive through much of the world. Erythritol is
produced by microbial fermentation [4,6] of sugar glucose using the osmophillic yeast such as Moilliella pollinis and Trula coralline.
Mutants of these yeasts are capable to produce up to 20% erythritol yield and over 49% conversion rate of glucose into erythritol. It is
a zero calorie sweetener with 60-70% sweetness comparing to the same amount of sugar sucrose, and it does not affect blood glucose
[5]. Erythritol is non fermentable sweetener and does not contribute to tooth decay [7]. It does not have laxative property comparing to
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
820
other sugar alcohols because in human digestive tract [8]. It is completely absorbed from small intestine into the blood circulation and
then secreted in the urine [9]. It is widely used as sweeteners in foods, confectionary [10,11] and beverages to enhance sweetness of other
high intense zero calorie sweeteners such as stevia to mask the after taste property of the sweetener stevia. In pharmaceutical products

inhibit bacteria in cosmetic products.
Group 2: Disaccharide - Derived Sugar Alcohols
Isomalt

Figure 5: Lactitol.
Lactitol is belong to disaccharide sugar alcohols C12H24O11
and sorbitol (glucitol). It is a reduced calorie sweetener with a sweetness of about 40% comparing to the same amount of sugar sucrose.
It is produced by hydrogenation of the disaccharide lactose in whey [15]. Similar to other sugar alcohols it has a negligible effect on blood
sugar levels and can be used in diabetic and diet foods. It is used as a sweetener and texturizer in sugar-free foods, such as ice cream,
chocolate, candies, baked goods, chewing gum, and infant formula. It is has applications in medicine especially used in medicinal tablets
and as an osmotically acting laxative. In human digestive tractonly about 2% of ingested lactitol is digested in small intestine to glucose
and sorbitol, and absorbed into the blood circulation, the undigested portion of lactitol is passed into large intestine where it is fermented

     
Those with health conditions should consult their physician or dietician prior to the consumption of products containing lactitol. In Euro-
pean Union lactitol is labeled on food products as E966.
Maltitol

Figure 6: Maltitol.
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
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.2 (2016):
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Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
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Maltitol is belong to disaccharide sugar alcohols C12H24O11alpha 1,4 glyosidic bond between glu-
cose and sorbitol (glucitol). It is a reduced calorie sweetener with sweetness about 80% compare to the same amount of sugar sucrose.
It is produced by hydrogenation of the disaccharide maltose obtained from starch hydrolysis [17]. It exhibits negligible cooling effects
in comparison to other sugar alcohols, and its high sweetness power allows it to be used without mixing with other sweeteners. Maltitol
is used in foods, particularly sugar-free hard candy, chewing gums. Chocolates, baked goods, and ice cream. In pharmaceutical industry
maltitol is used as an excipient and as low calorie sweetening agent for oral medicines. Its similarity in taste to sugar sucrose allow it to
be used in medicinal syrups with the advantage that it does not crystallized comparing to sugar sucrose (crystallization cause bottle cap
to stick). Maltitol is not metabolized by oral bacteria, so it does not promote tooth decay and because of its less absorption in human di-
gestive tract by the small intestine than sugar sucrose [14,18]. It is more suitable for diabetes than sucrose. Its only disadvantage that its
consumption at large quantities exceed 100 grams per day could have laxative effect.
Group 3: Polysaccharide Derived Sugar Alcohols
Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH)
Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH) are mixtures of several sugar alcohols such as sorbitol, maltitol, and other higher-order
sugar alcohols such as Maltotriitol. They are a sweetener providing 40- 90% sweetness compare to the same amount of sugar sucrose.
Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates are produced by the hydrogenation of partial hydrolyzed starch from corn, potato, or wheat. They are
similar to sorbitol if the starch is completely hydrolyzed into single glucose units before hydrogenation process. Hydrogenated starch
hydrolysates are used commercially in foods and medicines as other common sugar alcohols. They are often used as a sweetener and as

body, texture, and viscosity to food products [19]. Also, they can be used to protect biological and food products against damage from
freezing and drying.
Similar to other sugar alcohols hydrogenated starch hydrolysates are non-fermentable by oral bacteria and are used to formulate
sugarless products that do not promote dental caries. In human digestive tract hydrogenates starch hydrolysates are adsorbed slowly
from small intestine into blood circulation, thus have a reduced glycemic potential relative to the natural sugar glucose or sucrose [20].
However Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates are also have a laxative effect when consumes in large amounts.
Discussion
Sugar alcohols or polyols have been used in diabetic foods for many years. They are carbohydrates with a chemical structure that
partially resemble to sugar and partially resemble to primary alcohol, but they do not contain alcohol as alcoholic beverages. Sugar alco-

disaccharides-derived (e.g. isomalt, lactitol, and maltitol), and polysaccharide-derived mixture (e.g. hydrogenated starch hydrolysates
mixtures).
Sugar alcohols occur naturally in wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and seaweeds but are commercially produced from other carbo-
hydrates, such as glucose, mannose, xylose, lactose, maltose and starch. They have a long history of use in wide variety in food products
like candy, gum, ice cream, baked goods, and fruit spreads. In medicines they have applications like cough syrups, and medicinal tablets;
in oral hygiene products they have applications like toothpaste, mouthwashes and breath mints; plus they have some applications in
cosmetics. From all sugar alcohols, sorbitol is the most used one with higher market chare comparing to others due to its lowest manu-
facturing cost from glucose or fructose.
All sugar alcohols are regulated by FDA (Food and Drug Administration) in United States and by other worldwide similar organiza-
tions. They are Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) and approved by all worldwide authorities for the application in foods as food addi-
tives and in other products such as medicine and cosmetics.
Sugar alcohols playing important roles in health, they are partially absorbed from small intestine into blood circulation with a minimal
effect on blood glucose and insulin.
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Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Dental caries is the major problem in regards to excessive natural sugar consumption especially by children, but with sugar alcohols as
sweeteners this is not a problem, since the bacteria in the mouth don’t ferment sugar alcohols into acids. Due to non-fermentable proper-
ties of sugar alcohols manufacturers of chewing gums and sugar less candies and breath mints incorporate sugar alcohols as sweetener
such as xylitol in their products. The sugar alcohol xylitol are more desirable in these products because it has a similar sweetness taste
compare to the same amount of sugar sucrose as shown in table (1).
Some of sugar alcohols are not absorbed into blood circulation and direct pass through the small intestine into large intestine where
are fermented by the bacteria in the large intestine into abdominal gas causing discomfort and diarrhea for some individuals. Given the
increasing availability of sugar alcohols sweetened foods and due to the expanded number of low calories food products in the market the
total daily intake per day of each sugar alcohols are considered to prevent GI disturbance or laxative effects. In European Union products
containing sugar alcohols must be bear a statement” “excess consumption may have laxative effect”.
As shown in Table (1) Sugar alcohol’s caloric value, and sweeteners level comparing to the same amount of sugar sucrose in foods are
listed and showed the following
The Sugar Alcohols
Type Calories per Gram Approximate Sweetness
(Sucrose = 100%)
Typical Food Applications
Sorbitol 2.6 50-70% Sugar free candies, chewing gums, frozen desserts and
baked goods
Xylitol 2.4 100% Chewing gum, gum drops and hard candy, pharmaceu-
ticals and oral health products, such as throat lozenges,
cough syrups, children’s chewable multi vitamins, tooth
pastes and mouth washes, used in foods for special
dietary purposes
Maltitol 2.1 75% Hard candies, chewing gum, chocolates, baked goods and
ice creams
Isomalt 2.0 45-65% Candies, toffee, lollipops, fudge, wafers, cough drops,
throat lozenges
Lactitol 2.0 30-40% Chocolates, some baked goods (cookies and cakes), hard
and soft candy and frozen dairy desserts
Mannitol 1.6 50-70% Dusting powder for chewing gums, ingredient in choco-

Erythritol 0-0.2* 60-80% Bulk sweetener in low calorie foods
Hydrogenated Starch
Hydrolysates
3 25-50% Bulk sweetener in low calorie foods, provide sweetness,
texture and bulk to a variety of sugarless products
Table 1: Calories, sweetness and food applications for common sugar alcohols.
The highest calorie in all sugar alcohols are hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (3.0 calorie per gram) and the lowest one is erythritol
(0.2 calorie per gram).
In term of sweetness comparing to the same amount of sugar sucrose, demonstrated that the highest sweetness in all sugar alcohols is
xylitol (100%) and the lowest one are hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (25-50% depend on the type of application).
Conclusion
For decades sugar alcohols have been used as alternative to sugar. They look and taste like sugar but with lower calories and many
studies show that they lead to health improvements and fewer negative effects.
823
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
Citation: Osama O. Ibrahim. “Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications”
.
EC Nutrition
4
.2 (2016):
817-824.
Because sugar alcohols have similar chemical structure as sugar, they are able to activate the sweet taste receptors in the tong. This
chemical property allows the application of sugar alcohols as alternative sweetener to high glycemic index sugars without negative effect
on products quality and taste. The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly foods raise blood sugar level, and consuming food that is
high in glycemic index is associate with obesity and numeric metabolic health problems. Sugar alcohols have a negligible effect on blood
sugar level and for people with metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes or diabetes; sugar alcohol can be considered as excellent alternative
to sugar.
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817-824.
Sugar Alcohols: Chemical Structures, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications
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114.
Volume 4 Issue 2 June 2016
© All rights reserved by Osama O. Ibrahim.
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Mannitol is a fructose-derived, 6-carbon sugar alcohol that is widely found in bacteria, yeasts, fungi, and plants. Because of its desirable properties, mannitol has many applications in pharmaceutical products, in the food industry, and in medicine. The current mannitol chemical manufacturing process yields crystalline mannitol in yields below 20 mol% from 50% glucose/50% fructose syrups. Thus, microbial and enzymatic mannitol manufacturing methods have been actively investigated, in particular in the last 10 years. This review summarizes the most recent advances in biological mannitol production, including the development of bacterial-, yeast-, and enzyme-based transformations.
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Constipation is a common problem for adults and paediatric patients and can generate considerable suffering for patients due to both the unpleasant physical symptoms and psychological preoccupations that can arise. Since disaccharide sugar is widely prescribed osmotic laxative in India, we decided to do systematic review to compare the efficacy and safety of lactitol versus lactulose in the management of constipation. All randomised, non-randomised and open trials, with head to head comparison of lactitol versus lactulose were included. After intense literature search we included six clinical trials for comparison. The relevant studies that were included in meta-analysis included 349 adult patients with mean age group of 19 to 85 years and 81 children from age group of 8 months to 16 years. Duration of treatment was 3 days to 4 weeks. In terms of efficacy lactitol was found to be comparable to lactulose in terms of normal consistency of stool and number of bowel movement per week. Better acceptance by the patients was reported with lactitol as compared to lactulose (73.2 % versus 26.8 %). Lactitol was found to be significantly superior as compared to lactulose in terms of less number of adverse events (31.20 ± 0.8000 % versus 62.10 ±1.100 %, p= 0.0019). Better efficacy was adjudged by the physicians in favour of lactitol as compared to lactulose (61.91 % versus 47.83%). In addition compliance with lactitol was found to be better due to superior palatability. Also in paediatric patients the dose of lactitol required was almost half the dose of lactulose (250-400 mg/kg/day versus 500-750 mg/kg/day). Lactitol should be preferred over lactulose in the management of chronic constipation because of its superior efficacy as adjudged by the physician, better palatability, lesser incidence of adverse events, better acceptance and compliance reported by patients.
Article
Two strains of osmophilic yeast which were isolated from honey-comb, produced good yields of erythritol as a main product. These strains were identified as Trichosporonoides sp., 150-5 and 331-1.From the fermentation studies with these strains using glucose and sucrose as substrate, strain 331-1 produced more erythritol as the sole polyhydric product,with trace quantities of glycerol, than strain 150-5.
Article
Although other polyols have been described extensively as filler-binders in direct compaction of tablets, the polyol isomalt is rather unknown as pharmaceutical excipient, in spite of its description in all the main pharmacopoeias. In this paper the compaction properties of different types of ispomalt were studied. The types used were the standard product sieved isomalt, milled isomalt and two types of agglomerated isomalt with a different ratio between 6-O-alpha-d-glucopyranosyl-d-sorbitol (GPS) and 1-O-alpha-d-glucopyranosyl-d-mannitol dihydrate (GPM). Powder flow properties, specific surface area and densities of the different types were investigated. Compactibility was investigated by compression of the tablets on a compaction simulator, simulating the compression on high-speed tabletting machines. Lubricant sensitivity was measured by compressing unlubricated tablets and tablets lubricated with 1% magnesium stearate on an instrumented hydraulic press. Sieved isomalt had excellent flow properties but the compactibility was found to be poor whereas the lubricant sensitivity was high. Milling resulted in both a strong increase in compactibility as an effect of the higher surface area for bonding and a decrease in lubricant sensitivity as an effect of the higher surface area to be coated with magnesium stearate. However, the flow properties of milled isomalt were too bad for use as filler-binder in direct compaction. Just as could be expected, agglomeration of milled isomalt by fluid bed agglomeration improved flowability. The good compaction properties and the low lubricant sensitivity were maintained. This effect is caused by an early fragmentation of the agglomerated material during the compaction process, producing clean, lubricant-free particles and a high surface for bonding. The different GPS/GPM ratios of the agglomerated isomalt types studied had no significant effect on the compaction properties.
Article
Erythritol is a sugar alcohol which is obtained through a cultivation of glucose and Aureobasidium sp. The sugar is about 70-80% as sweet as sucrose and is also non-hygroscopic. The effect of erythritol on cariogenicities of mutans streptococci (serotype a-h) and certain oral microorganisms was studies. Erythritol was not utilized as a substrate for the growth, lactic acid production and plaque formation of mutans streptococci (serotype a-h). It did not serve as a substrate for cellular aggregation of mutants streptococci (serotype d, g, h) and was not utilized water-insoluble glucan synthesis and cellular adherence by glucosyltransferase from S. mutans PS-14 (c) or S. sorbrinus 6715 (g). Erythritol was not also utilized for the growth and lactic acid production of certain oral microorganisms although some growth was seen with Actinomyces viscosus. SPF SD rats infected with S. sobrinus 6715 were fed a diet containing 26% erythritol or 26% sucrose for 53 days. A significantly (p less than 0.01) lower caries score (mean +/- SE; 3.1 +/- 0.5) was observed in the rat fed a diet containing erythritol than the control (60.5 +/- 2.0). The caries inhibition rate is 94.9%. Also, rats infected with S. mutans PS-14 were fed a diet containing 56% erythritol chocolate or 56% sucrose chocolate for 58 days. The mean total caries score of rats fed a diet containing 56% erythritol chocolate was 6.7 +/- 0.8, while the mean total caries score of rats fed a diet containing 56% sucrose chocolate was 82.8 +/- 2.8. The value between both groups was significant at 0.01 level, and the caries inhibition rate is 91.9%.
Article
To quantify small bowel digestion and absorption of sorbitol, isomalt and maltitol in ileostomy patients and estimate the metabolizable energy. Study A: Nine ileostomy patients, under a constant controlled diet, ate during three consecutive days 2 milk chocolate bars per day, containing 2 x 15 g of polyol, each day with another polyol in random order. The first bar was taken 30 min after breakfast, and the second bar, 7 h after breakfast. Effluents were recovered during the whole study. Study B: 5, 10 or 20 g of sorbitol or isomalt were consumed each day in a drink during two 3-day periods by two ileostomy subjects. The recovery in the ileal effluent was measured over 24 h. Study A: Carbohydrate recovery in ileostomy effluent was 26.8 +/- 2.8% (mean+SEM) for sorbitol, 24.8 + 5.7% for maltitol (2/3 as sorbitol) and 40.0 +/- 0.7% for isomalt (1/3 being sorbitol and mannitol). Ileal excretion, compared with a day without polyol, was compared in 4 subjects. The total volume excreted, as well as dry matter increased after polyol consumption. When taking this extra loss into account, the metabolizable energy value of the polyols for 2 x 15 g intake were: sorbitol, 12 kJ/g (2.8 kcal/g); maltitol, 13 kJ/g (3.1 kcal/g); isomalt, 9 kJ/g (2.1 kcal/g). Study B: The level of digestion and absorption of both sugar alcohols was dose dependent. These results indicate that sorbitol, maltitol and isomalt are rather extensively absorbed, but the digestibility of the other nutrients is also reduced, due to the osmotic load caused by the polyols in the small intestine. There are evidences of a dose dependency of the energy value of the polyols.
Article
To investigate the effect of an oral administration of erythritol on serum glucose and insulin levels in healthy subjects and estimate available energy of erythritol in human. Ingestion of erythritol (0.3 g/kg body weight) or the same dose of glucose as a control. Omiya Research Lab., Nikken Chemicals Co., Japan. 5 healthy male volunteers aged 45-58 years. Serum glucose, insulin and erythritol levels after erythritol ingestion. Urinary erythritol excretion. Erythritol did not increase serum levels of glucose or insulin, while the same dose of glucose increased rapidly glucose and insulin levels within 30 min. Erythritol did not induce any significant effects on serum levels of total cholesterol, triacylglycerol, free fatty acids, Na, K and Cl. Also, urinary Na, K and Cl were not affected by erythritol ingestion. Serum levels of erythritol reached the maximum concentration of 426.5 +/- 113.4 micrograms/ml at 30 min and declined to 13.5 +/- 3.2 micrograms/ml at 24 h. Total urinary excretion of erythritol was 85.8 +/- 4.6% for 24 h and 90.3 +/- 4.5% for 48 h, respectively. Erythritol did not affect serum levels of glucose, insulin or other serum constituents. More than 90% of ingested erythritol was readily absorbed and excreted in urine without degradation. This fact suggests that available energy of erythritol in human is less than 1.7 kJ/g (0.4 kcal/g). DESCRIPTORS: erythritol, glucose, insulin, low energy sweetener.
Article
Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH) are mixtures of polyhydric alcohols such as sorbitol, maltitol, and higher-order sugar alcohols. They are important food ingredients because of their sweetness, low cariogenic potential, and useful functional properties. These traits permit HSH products to be used as viscosity or bodying agents, humectants, crystallization modifiers, and rehydration aids. A substantial body of safety information is available for HSH products and their individual chemical components. Based on this information, the substances have received favorable evaluations from international expert safety organizations such as the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) and European Community's Scientific Committee for Food. This same information has been submitted to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as part of the petitioning process to affirm the generally recognized as safe (GRAS) status of these substances. Some of the animal feeding studies important to a full safety assessment for HSH substances, while long available to international safety expert organizations and governmental organizations, have never been published in the literature. Three of these studies, i.e., a chronic (24-month) feeding study, a multigeneration reproduction study, and a teratology study, are reported on this article, together with metabolic information. The results of this evaluation establish HSH substances as safe food ingredients.
Article
A critical and comprehensive review of the safety information on erythritol was undertaken. Numerous toxicity and metabolic studies have been conducted on erythritol in rats, mice and dogs. The toxicity studies consist of long-term feeding studies conducted to determine carcinogenic potential, intravenous and oral teratogenicity studies to determine the potential for effects on the foetus, oral studies in which erythritol was administered over one or two generations to determine the potential for reproductive effects, and studies in bacterial and mammalian systems to determine mutagenic potential. The majority of the safety studies conducted were feeding studies in which erythritol was mixed into the diet at concentrations as high as 20%. The metabolic studies in animals have shown that erythritol is almost completely absorbed, not metabolized systemically and is excreted unchanged in the urine. The safety studies have demonstrated that erythritol is well tolerated and elicits no toxicological effects. The clinical program for erythritol involved a series of single-dose and repeat-dose, short-duration studies which have been used to investigate the human correlates to the physiological responses seen in the preclinical studies. The clinical studies showed erythritol to be well tolerated and not to cause any toxicologically relevant effects, even following high-dose exposure. Erythritol administered orally to humans was rapidly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract and quantitatively excreted in the urine without undergoing metabolic change. At high oral doses, urinary excretion accounted for approximately 90% of the administered dose with minimal amounts appearing in the faeces. A comparison of the human and animal data indicated a high degree of similarity in the metabolism of erythritol and this finding supports the use of the animal species used to evaluate the safety of erythritol for human consumption. It can be concluded, based on the available studies that erythritol did not produce evidence of toxicity.