Fructose Intolerance

Erythritol, xylitol, and stevia: an answer to fructose intolerance?

People with a fructose intolerance are often reluctant to consume foods containing sucrose, the chemical name for table sugar, since the compound consists of 50% fructose (and 50% glucose). Instead, sufferers opt for expensive sugar substitutes that are often specifically marketed as fructose-free alternatives. Here we take a closer look at three substitutes – xylitol, erythritol, and stevia – and assess their pros and cons compared to regular household sugar.


Do you know how much fructose you are eating?

From a historical point of view, fruits and honey were the only fructose-rich foods in our diet. In the 17th century the average sugar intake of each person was as low as 5 g per day.

Big changes of dietary habits only occurred after the industrial scale production of sugar from sugar cane, sugar beets and the introduction of high-fructose corn syrup. Suddenly sugar was available in large quantities and at low costs.