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  • Writer's pictureDr. Clifford Brown

Caution: Erythritol and cardiovascular events

From the National Institutes for Health comes the following report:

Artificial sweeteners have become a widespread way to reduce sugar and calorie intake.

Erythritol is a natural sweetener in fruits and vegetables, and made inside our cells. As an artificial sweetener it is 1,000 times stronger than found in natural foods, but it is not required to be listed individually on Nutrition Facts labels.

In U.S. and European research studies led by Dr. Stanley Hazen totaling almost 4,000 people, those with the highest erythritol levels (top 25%) were about twice as likely to have cardiovascular events over three years of follow-up as those with the lowest (bottom 25%).

One drink of a beverage sweetened with Erythritol increased blood levels of erythritol 1,000 fold for several days.

By increasing blood clot formation the risk of heart attack or stroke was doubled. With this finding in mind, the researchers stated that:

  • further safety studies of the health risks of erythritol are warranted, and

  • we should be cautious in the use of artificial sweeteners at least until definitive studies are completed.


Clifford Brown, OD, MPH, FAAO(D)


Director of Public Health

Custer County

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