Xylitol at 10 and 20 per cent disturbed gastro-intestinal function but was tolerated better than sorbitol or mannitol. Toleration improved when dietary polyol levels were increased gradually to a maximum of 20 per cent. Twenty per cent of xylitol in the diet replacing that amount of sucrose reduced the level of caries, but 20 per cent of wheat starch was equally effective. Ten per cent of xylitol in place of sucrose produced as much caries as the basic cariogenic diet, but xylitol at a level of 2 per cent was associated with an increase in caries. There was no confirmation of an active caries-reversing effect of xylitol when xylitol-containing diets were alternated with the basic high-sucrose cariogenic ration. © 1983.
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