I read in your latest newsletter that Xylitol candies might prevent tooth decay. Should I be giving them to my kids as a regular treat?

There is evidence that shows that Xylitol helps prevent cavities, but we are still hesitant about recommending it for regular consumption. A  study in the British Dental Journal advised caution with Xylitol, specifically products containing acidic preservatives or flavorings such as orange, lemon or lime. The researchers found that while Xylitol products can help slow decay, they may erode your enamel if they contain acidic flavoring.

The bottom line is, as usual, use common sense. For those of you prone to cavities who have a sweet tooth you just can’t shake – by all means go for the Xylitol candies, preferably the chocolate kind. But there is no need to begin a Xylitol candy habit if you don’t have to.

A sweet tooth is a sweet tooth and as long as you can avoid creating one in your children, the better, not just for their teeth but for their health in general.