Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving

Grocery Store Lessons: Excel Naturally Sweetened Gum


Last week my friend Mark tweeted this:


I think our fear of “unnatural” or “artificial” ingredients has gone too far. I’m generally one to go for real sugar any day over artificial sweeteners. I prefer the flavour and I’m of the opinion that a little of the “real” thing is better than a lot of the fake. In some case though it just doesn’t make sense to be choosing real sugar.

There is no benefit to choosing sugar-sweetened gum over gum sweetened with sugar alcohols. We know that sugar consumption, especially when in products that spend a long time in the mouth (such as gum) promotes the development of cavities. While xylitol (the sugar alcohol generally found in sugar-free gums) may not be the great cavity preventer it was originally touted as, it certainly doesn’t promote the development of cavities like sugary gum does.

It’s beyond me why anyone would think that a “natural” (and come on, how natural is commercial chewing gum anyway?) gum containing sugar is a superior choice over artificially sweetened gum. Shame on Excel for taking advantage of the fear of the “unnatural” by reverting to a product that is likely to incense dentists, dietitians, and doctors alike. File this product under another great example of a natural fallacy.

Author: Diana

I'm a registered dietitian from Nova Scotia, living and working in Ontario, Canada. My goal is to help people see food and nutrition from a different perspective and understand that nutrition and health are not necessarily a result of personal choice.

5 thoughts on “Grocery Store Lessons: Excel Naturally Sweetened Gum

  1. Hi there, the reason I was looking into the ingredient for this naturally sweetened gum was because my dog ate my pack of it, and I saw that xylitol found in most gums was poisonous for dogs. I was incredibly relieved to see this gum did not have that ingredient. Just giving you some perspective.. I don’t understand why you are shaming and bashing this gum. What exactly are the benefits of artificial sweeteners? I did a research report on artificial sweeteners and they were found to alter gut bacteria and cause weight gain after long term use. Not saying sugar is better, but before bashing it… think why are you promoting artificial sweeteners.


    • I’m not promoting artificial sweeteners. I’m also not bashing sugar. In the case of chewing gum, sugar is best avoided due to the fact that it’s in your mouth for an extended period of time which promotes the formation of cavities.


  2. I am unable to eat artificial sweeteners because they cause me severe reflux and stomach pain. I was delighted to finally find some gum that wouldn’t cause me pain. Until you know everyone’s situation, you can not decide what is right for others to put in their mouth.


  3. I’ve learned that the gums with artificial sweetners cause me headaches or my jaw aches. I’m sticking with the sugar gums for that reason


  4. I always liked this gum because I hate the over-sweetness and aftertaste of artificial sweeteners. Sad to see it going out of stock everywhere.


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