Xylitol Facts

Facts about Xylitol. Xylitol creates a perfect pH balance in the mouth to stimulate a healing process that can naturally repair your teeth. When Xylitol is eaten it not only brings minerals by salivary stimulation but creates an alkaline environment in which these minerals can help heal soft or damaged areas on teeth and help to rebuild and strengthen them.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Hi, Dr. Ellie,
I have been trying the system for some time now and I have noticed a gradual yellowing of my teeth. I did a little research and I am concerned that the ACT I am using is causing fluorosis. Is this normal? I don't want yellow teeth!

Hi H

I am going to assume that " trying the system" means you're using exactly the products that I recommend -- with exactly the method I recommend.

I often refer to this as a recipe, and changing ingredients or methods will affect the outcome!!

I am also assuming you have sufficient xylitol -- at least five exposures to xylitol during the day, everyday - preferably after meals.

The second thing that you mentioned is you have been using the system "for some time". I wonder if you mean days, weeks, or years. I will assume you have been using the system for months, and have been using it exactly as described.

The color of teeth.
Don't be fooled that teeth resemble little rocks, or ceramic pebbles in your mouth. It is better to imagine teeth as they really are -- a soft, yellowish-colored interior that contains cells -- and is alive. This delicate center of your tooth is covered with a clear, translucent, glass covering - we call enamel. This outer shell protects the inside of your tooth -- and the covering shell has no color. (Imagine a window - you see no color -- nothing -- just what is the other side).

So how does a tooth look white?
It is all about reflection of light off the surface. If glass is soft, rays of light travel through it -- and you see the yellowish color underneath. If this glass covering is strong and hard ( because it contains lots of minerals) then light rays will bounce off its surface. When light bounces off the surface of your tooth it will behave like a diamond - reflecting in many directions. This makes your tooth sparkle and appear white -- naturally.

Acidity and dry mouth
Acidity, and mouth dryness, are the two reasons that teeth look darker and more yellow. So anyone that tells me their teeth are getting darker are giving me information --that their teeth are being dissolved in acidity, or that their mouth is drier than usual. The acidity that dissolves teeth can be from your diet, soda, citrus or fruit ( acidic) drinks -- particularly lemonade, sports drinks, etc. Look closely at your summertime diet - particularly drinks. Are you sipping something acidic during the day -- or worse yet during the night?
Protect teeth with Xylitol - all day
The answer to acidity is protecting your teeth with xylitol. I have a friend who likes to eat grapefruits and lemons. She had ruined many teeth before she met me, but now she still enjoys grapefruit -- she just eats a fruit Zellie to protect her teeth immediately after the acidic attack. You see, xylitol is able to take away acidity, and help put minerals into the tooth surface -- to make it stronger.
Xylitol and ACT work together
It is also important to allow the final rinse --ACT -- to work on your teeth. The dilute fluoride in this rinse helps put minerals into teeth faster than any other way. The combination of using xylitol during the day and these mouth rinses at night will help mineralize, strengthen, and brighten your teeth.

The more you damage your teeth with acidity -- the more xylitol help you need!! The outcome is the balance between softening 9 by acidity ) and hardening ( with ACT and xylitol).

I hope I have explained this -- it is such an important piece of information. The marketing companies want you to see teeth in a different way. They want you to purchase whitening products.

Most of them are acidic, which is ironic!! The whitening products etch the outside of the glass and make your teeth "appear" whiter -- but of course your teeth will be softer, and look yellower in the end! Then of course, you'll need more whitening!
How long does my system take two whiten teeth? It does take some time. Mark eight weeks from now on your calendar.Stop peering at your teeth during this time!

Then check -- making sure you look at your teeth in daylight, and not fluorescent lights. Fluorescent lights will always make tooth enamel looked yellow -- that's another trick to make you buy whitening!

Hope this helps,

Best Wishes,
Ellie Phillips DDS
Dental Health for Everyone!
Author, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye
26 Corporate Woods, Rochester NY 14623
585-272-0705 (Fax)

Centers for Dental Management

Dear Dr. Ellie,

What do you know about the CDM program(s)? I recently had a report of 11 4mm's,26 bleeding (17%), a positive BANA test, and 13 total sites (13 %) of bacterial plaque. My CRP was 1.25. I am a diabetic on glyburide/metformin 2x day. My dentist called me in for a "consultation" appointment and launched into what I would have to describe as an "Amway" type presentation (no offiense to Amway, the makers of some good products but lousy sales approaches). The bottom line is that he wants me to sign up for a $2233.00 program for 6 months to scrape/plane and laser treatment and purchase a fancy motorized toothbrush, a hydrowash thing, some costly supplements, and Closys mouthwash and toothpaste. I didn't feel right about it, the insurance won't cover most of it, and so I walked away. I decided I needed to know more. I began by looking up Closys on the internet and that is how I finally found your site. I think I am going to try your approach for a year and see how my 6 and 12 month checkups come out before I sign up for any procedures. "Can't hurt, might help", as my dad used to say. I am a big fan of the K.I.S.S. principle and wholistic approaches. Most of my major medical problems were caused by medical procedures and medicines, so I go forth into any treatments very reluctantly.

On to my questions though...
1) As I asked above, what do you know about the CDM program(s)?
2) When, if ever, shoud I consider scaling and root planing?
3) What about the laser treatments? Are they effective or hype? When should (if ever) they be considered? Any downsides?

Thank you for the work you are doing. I'm hoping it works for me.


Hi L,

Thanks for your message. Sadly, I receive a lot of messages similar to yours. I cannot comment directly on the advice you have been given by your health professional, and obviously I have not seen your teeth. So this is generalized advice, but I would give it to anybody in your situation.

More than once, people have come to me with folders in their hands. The folders gave a detailed outline of in-depth cleanings, a year-long program, medications, and products they were supposed to purchase. The treatment plans were usually several thousand dollars, and the question was whether or not this would be worth the money.

My System:
Providing you follow my instructions -- the exact mouth rinse system -- the exact products -- in the exact way -- you will see immediate improvements. You will feel immediate improvements -- which is good, because you will know you are heading in the right direction.

Because of this, I often recommend people try my system first before they do anything else. Remember, nature is pretty good at telling you things - by the way they feel. You know if you feel healthy, and interestingly your teeth can tell you the same. You may not understand this yet, but get on my system and you will know what I mean!

You must have enough xylitol, and the correct rinse products.
This is why I usually recommend you purchase the starter kit -- everything you need to begin (we have free shipping this week). Once you know what to do, you can buy your products anywhere -- at your local drug store -- take the empty containers with you!

In the cases where I intervened, after six months on my system-- even the periodontist saw no reason for more treatment. Other people who used to go for cleanings four times a year -- are now going for a quick check up and an occasional polish once or twice a year.
This system works for all age groups -- even people in their 80s have seen dramatic improvements, beyond their wildest dreams! My system is unique in the way you use the products -- and I believe the results are equally unique.

I'm often asked about dentists and who is good or not -- which treatment is good, who to recommend etc. When you are empowered and experience exceptional oral health( that requires no treatment) by using products I recommend on a daily basis, you will only need a checkup -- a quick evaluation! These questions therefore become moot.You will not place your oral health into someone else's hands - you will be in control.

I really think you would enjoy my book, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye, it would explain a lot of things about the system.

Please send me any more questions you may have,

Best wishes,

Ellie Phillips DDS
Dental Health for Everyone!
Author, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye
26 Corporate Woods, Rochester NY 14623
585-272-0705 (Fax)

Xylitol Critical Mass Question

Dr. Ellie,

Is xylitol helpful for dental health in amounts smaller than your recommended 6 grams per day? I have read some negative things about the health effects of xylitol and I don't feel comfortable consuming 6 grams of sugar every day. Can I get some benefit from starting out with zellies mints two or three times a day, or is it a waste of money and energy to take less than the full 6 grams? (I have been following your 3 rinse program but not the xylitol program yet). I am in a position to offer a xylitol candy as a treat to my young music students when they come in for their weekly lesson. Will the xylitol provide them some dental health benefit to them or do they have to be on the full program to get dental benefit?

Thanks for your response,

Hi KC,

Thanks for your message I will try to answer your questions in the order you ask them!
Anytime you eat xylitol, some plaque bacteria in your mouth will be inactivated - which means less mouth acidity, and a reduction in damage to teeth.

One exposure is unlikely to make a noticeable difference. Frequent exposure will make a difference in ANY mouth.

Even people infected with sufficient harmful bacteria to have multiple cavities, can -- with frequent small exposure to sufficient xylitol -- eradicate their disease.

Xylitol is your helper!
How much you need -- depends on how much damage you are experiencing -- in other words, how much plaque do you have on your teeth?

Another way to explain this, is to say how high is your risk for plaque will cavities?
If you have very little risk -- for example, you have a lifetime with no cavities, no gum disease, and perfect checkup appointments at your dentist -- then you probably don't need a lot of extra help. For someone in this situation, a little xylitol after meals may help maintain this standard of oral health.

This evaluation is called "risk assessment".
The more risk you have -- the more help you need -- the more xylitol you need! Research has shown that when people are at high risk, small amounts of xylitol are not enough to eradicate the disease. The research explains a minimum amount of xylitol is needed -- somewhere in the region of 6 g is necessary to overcome and reduce plaque.

The research also shows that above 10 g of xylitol each day -- will not speed up improvement - so there is no extra benefit from eating more than this for your teeth. This is called a plateau effect. (However, some doctors recommend 20 g a day of xylitol a day for osteoporosis management).

This is why dentists recommend between 6 and 10 g of xylitol each day:
approximately 1 to 2 teaspoons per day.

I'm interested to know the negative effects that you mention. As far as I know, there are no negative effects for humans ( dogs can have sensitivity to xylitol) from 100% xylitol.

In fact, you are going to find xylitol in health stores -- and multiple health benefits have been reported. Xylitol has a low glycemic index of 7, and it can help stabilize blood sugars, possibly reduce sugar cravings, and may be one of the healthiest sweeteners -- used in moderation, I agree. I think Zellies are an excellent treat to offer to your students! Not only are you offering something healthy, but xylitol helps stimulate a flow of good saliva - which would be particularly useful for any singers or trumpet players!

Years ago many people confused sorbitol with xylitol -- completely different products.
Sorbitol will give gastric distress at a very low dosage. I would never recommend sorbitol.

Please let me know if there is anything else you wish to ask,

Best wishes,

Ellie Phillips DDS
Dental Health for Everyone!
author, Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye
26, Corporate Woods, Rochester NY 14623
585-272-0705 (Fax)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Glycerine and Teeth

Dear Dr. Ellie:

I can get hold of the Colgate Fluorguard, but unfortunately it contains glycerin, which I couldn't see in the ACT. I understand that glycerin coats the teeth, preventing absorption, and isn't quick to clean off.
Thanks again.

Dear Friend:
I know that lots of people worry about glycerin - but I do not think there is enough true research to worry about this - certainly not as a primary concern.

I have always believed glycerin interference may be a "possibility" but it has been talked about as fact recently - without studies. This "fact" is frequently used by people who make products without glycerin!!

SLS is another product - not good, but not possibly not quite as bad as people believe - I think there may be qualifying facts. The only companies that extol the horrors of SLS are people who sell products without it!!

Now I see toothpaste companies generating fear among hygienists about abrasion - what a joke. These same companies provide pastes that cause damage by whitening agents! Fear is a great selling point!!

You will be fine with the Colgate Fluorigard!

Dr. Ellie

Stevia vs. Xylitol

Hi Dr. Ellie,

I find that I am sensitive to Xylitol in that it can cause me diarrhea sometimes. What do you think of gum sweetened with stevia?

Thanks and regards,


Hi S:

Thanks for your message, and I appreciate your concern.

When people tell me they are sensitive to xylitol, my first question would be, "what kind of xylitol are you using?" I do not believe all xylitol is created exactly equal.

The effects of xylitol are good, no matter how it is consumed. This means you can eat Zellies mints, chewing gum, or granular xylitol and have benefits. On the other hand, I have discovered people who were sensitive to one BRAND of xylitol, but not Zellies.

Other people who appear sensitive to xylitol, are often nervous of xylitol.
Don't be afraid of xylitol -- Native Americans believed that birch trees were God's gift to man!

Xylitol appears to have many general health benefits and the amount necessary for oral health is tiny -- 1 teaspoon a day! It is extremely rare to find sensitivity at such a low amount -- even in small children.

I would look closely at the type of xylitol you are eating, and ensure that it is not a mix of sorbitol with xylitol. Sorbitol has sensitivity effects for many people at extremely low doses.

Truly, if you are eating Zellies gum and finding it upsets your stomach, my recommendation would be to start more slowly. Take a month to go from two pieces of gum a day to five pieces a day.

Make a plan -- week by week on your calendar -- add it slowly into your diet.
Xylitol behaves like fiber; and if you are not used to fiber, things will be different.

Stevia is popular in health food stores. I really do not have a reason to support Stevia, one way or the other. As far as I am aware it has no dental benefits, and although it may be sugarless, I think it may have a high G. I . ( glycemic index) -- which makes it a less healthy . Don't quote me on this -- I'm not a Stevia expert!

Thanks again for your message,
For oral health, I continue to suggest a little xylitol regularly, frequently, and in addition to my complete mouth care system!

Best wishes,

26 Corporate Woods
Rochester, NY 14623

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Xylitol and Dogs

It is important to know that xylitol can be dangerous to dogs. Keep your xylitol mints and gum away from your pets--all too often curious dogs get into a purse, or bag and are poisoned by well-meaning, or forgetful owners...also, there are other foods that are not healthy for dogs - chocolate, raisins and grapes for example.

Some good information about the effects of xylitol on dogs can be found here:

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

How Many Calories are in Xylitol?

Xylitol is gaining popularity as a way to heal tooth caries and increase oral health. But is it healthy?? Well, yes! One teaspoon of xylitol contains 9.6 calories and one teaspoon of sugar has 15 calories--making xylitol a lower-calorie alternative.

Xylitol also contains zero net effective carbohydrates, and sugar contains 4 grams per teaspoon., which makes xylitol safe for diabetics.

Studies are also being done that indicate that xylitol may be beneficial for individuals wishing to avoid bone density loss. Also, xylitol has been known to aid in the prevention of ear infections.

Xylitol has very few known side effects, although some people report diarrhea when addiding xylitol into their diets.

The benefits of xylitol are just being fully realized. But the positive effect on dental health is well documented. If you have questions about xylitol, feel free to contact us at webmgr@zellies.com.

The Zellies Team

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Why is Xylitol "Tooth-Friendly"?

Question: Why is Xylitol considered "tooth-friendly"?

Xylitol has multiple beneficial effects, which is why it is considered tooth-friendly. Xylitol stops the acids in your mouth that attack your teeth after you eat or drink. Because the bacteria in the mouth causing caries (cavities) are unable to ferment xylitol, the bacteria growth is diminshed. Ninety percent of acid-producing streptococci and lactobacilli may be reduced with the use of Xylitol, and no acid is formed. After taking Xylitol, the bacteria is not absorbed well on the surface of the teeth and the amount of plaque decreases.

Research has shown that the use of Xylitol also helps correct some damage to the tooth enamel. Saliva in itself protects the mouth and teeth, when that saliva is a neutral pH. However, after meals and drinks, during illness and at certain times in one's life, saliva may not be neutral, or in enough supply to facilitate the protective qualities. Your saliva after taking Xylitol stimulated and is more alkaline than saliva stimulated by other sugar products. After taking Xylitol products, such as Zellies, the concentration of basic amino acids and ammonia in saliva and plaque may rise, and plaque pH rises as well. When pH is above 7, calcium and phosphate salts in saliva start to develop into those parts of enamel where they are lacking. Thus, soft, calcium-deficient enamel sites begin to harden again--strengthening the teeth, and making them more resistant to decay.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Facts for Parent: Children's Dental Health

"As a mother of 5 children, and a dentist, I wanted to give my children the gift of healthy teeth--a gift that would last a lifetime. Thirty years of research has helped me to give you a way to protect your children's teeth and let them enjoy optimum oral health without dental pain and fear" - Dr. Ellie Phillips

According to the National Institute of Health (NIH) Survey:
  • Nearly 20% of children between 2 and 4 years have experienced a cavity.
  • By age 17, nearly four out of five young people have had at least one cavity.

Xylitol and your family:
  • When children eat Xylitol, it can reduce the chance of cavities up to 80%.
  • Imagine how happy your children will be to avoid dental treatments.
  • Imagine how good it will feel giving them the gift of a healthy smile!

The problem:
  • It is acids that damage a child's teeth.
  • Acids can be from foods and drinks, but also from "cavity forming" germs on your teeth.

How to prevent the problem:
  • Sugar is involved in the problem. Sugar is virtually everywhere: in sodas, snacks, foods, even in some things we would never guess contain sugar, such as medications and certain toothpastes.
  • Many parents have tried to control sugar but children today consume it in record amounts.

The surprising facts:
  • Sugar itself doesn't harm teeth, but it gives "acid making" germs the energy to grow. Even tiny amounts of sugar help them multiply.
  • The more germs, the more acids in your mouth

Parents take charge!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Facts about Xylitol

This blog is dedicated to the facts about Xylitol. Comments are welcome. Here are a few xylitol facts:
  • Pregnant women will benefit from eating Xylitol to keep their own teeth healthy especially during the last trimester of pregnancy, when teeth are especially soft.
  • Eating Xylitol mints or gum after any drink or snack to protect your teeth (especially before sleeping). By bringing the PH levels close to neutral.
  • Xylitol is a natural choice for athletes and anyone who wants to take care of their teeth: Athletes are at higher risk for cavities and dental damage because they consume acidic sports drinks frequently, eat carbohydrates often and spend hours dehydrated and breathing through a dry acidic mouth. Each of these is a risk factor for tooth decay and gum disease: fortunately Xylitol can help.
  • A dry mouth promotes the growth of harmful germs which damage your teeth. Xylitol will make your mouth an inhospitable place for these dangerous germs.
  • Exercising or sleeping without cleaning your teeth leaves them at risk. Eat Xylitol gum or mints before and during exercise, before napping and whenever you need to clean or protect your teeth.
  • Eating Xylitol gum or mints stimulates saliva flow and also makes the mouth acid-neutral (pH 7.0)
  • Eating Xylitol after sports drinks and sodas, will help protect your teeth from damage (diet soda has a pH 2.2).
  • Xylitol can control plaque and lessen the need for dental visits.
  • If you have early gum disease or cavities, there is a chance these problems can be reversed (yes, repaired) by you, at home! If you have advanced gum disease and large cavities, regular use of Xylitol can stop things from getting worse.

Would you like to Ask Doctor Ellie a question about dental health, preventative detistry or xylitol? Go to the Ask Dr. Ellie blog.

For Xylitol products - go to www.zellies.com