Side Effects and Dangers of Erythritol

Some of the side effects and dangers of erythritol in the blood are strokes and heart attacks. Yes, this is what the latest research from the Cleveland Clinic has demonstrated.

They found that erythritol is associated with over responsiveness of platelets to clotting. We are constantly in a state of repair especially in our vascular system. The size of the clot needed really depends on the size of the wound.

However in people with elevated erythritol, the amount of clotting stimulus goes up 100% compared to the baseline needed to heal an area.

Risk factors for excess clotting

If you have diabetes, are on birth control, obese, or adhering to the Standard American Diet then consuming erythritol can become a significant issue.

If you have challenges regulating blood sugar, meaning your glucose levels tend to be consistently above 100 on fasting blood draws, then you are creating what is called the pentose phosphate pathway excess erythritol. 

Some will argue that the problem is not the crazy amounts of erythritol being consumed but rather the preexisting metabolic disease and fat that most Americans are walking around with. This study doesn’t show that to be the case.  

Side effects of erythritol

When participants consumed erythritol sweetened foods, levels in the blood rose 1000 fold above natural levels in the blood.

Often erythritol is touted as this great sweetener because it is almost entirely unchanged as it goes from the keto cookie, through your gut, into the blood, throughout your entire body and then out your kidneys and into the toilet. 

Unfortunately, in the process, it deranges gut bacteria and now we see it leads to overactive platelets and clotting. 

The keto cookies, ice cream, breads and bars loaded down with these artificial sugar ingredients should really be considered pharmaceuticals as they are promoting supraphysiological changes in the blood and there is a huge downside, namely the risk of clotting skyrocketing.

Processed erythritol vs natural erythritol

It is true that erythritol is found naturally in fruit, but the concentration is multiplied times higher in these processed sugar-free items. 

Not only that but the erythritol used is not extracted from fruit. It is artificial and created in a lab. Look at your protein bars, protein powders, greens powders and of course any sugar free, keto marketed food item you are consuming as they are likely loaded with erythritol. 

Often a typical pint of keto ice cream will have over 30 grams of erythritol. I see macro counters promoting this stuff to my patients all the time as a way to fit a lot of sweet food into a macro counting routine, but time and time again, I see this backfire.

If the food routine doesn’t have at its baseline whole foods, you want to pass on it because it will leave you wanting.

Raw honey, maple syrup, molasses, stevia, monkfruit are the sweeteners I would accumulate health with. 

Watch the monkfruit and stevia though as they are often loaded with erythritol. 

The popular Lakanto monkfruit and Truvia stevia are essentially all erythritol with a splash of monkfruit and stevia.

Erythritol has no nutritional benefit. It is basically us humans trying to find a short cut to still consume highly processed foods and hopefully get away with it. There are no short cuts. But thankfully there is health accumulation which every one of us can do. 

Have you experienced any side effects with erythritol? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.

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