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Sorbitol

A naturally-occurring sugar substance which can also be synthetically manufactured; it"s used as an artificial sweetener.

It's about 60 per cent as sweet as sugar and is popular among diabetics since it doesn't raise insulin levels as sharply as table sugar.

Most sorbitol is converted in the body to carbon dioxide and fructose, , with only a small part of it being converted to glucose; this is then absorbed through the intestines over a relatively long period of time so that a sharp insulin release isn't triggered as is the case with table sugar.

Since insulin is known to promote detrimental changes in the cardiovascular system, sorbitol is therefore a much more desirable sweetener than ordinary sugar, even for healthy people.

In addition, sorbitol causes far less tooth decay.

Sorbitol increases the absorption of certain vitamins, which is why it's included in many multi-vitamin tablets.

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