UTU Masters | The mystery of one word
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The mystery of one word

When I came to Finland I heard the word “Xylitol” a lot of times, but couldn’t catch its meaning. In a while I made a conclusion that xylitol was a Finnish brand of chewing gum. And when it seemed that the mystery of this word was solved I was totally confused when it turned out that my assumptions were wrong.

To make it short, xylitol is a natural sweetener which is used to replace sugar in a chewing gum. It makes it suitable and useful even for children. That’s what I actually paid attention to during one of the kindergarten visits which was part of a course I attended. All the kids had small cute boxes of chewing gum with xylitol. To my mind, it shows that Finnish people try to prevent not only dental cavities, but also sugar addiction starting from childhood. And according to the popularity of xylitol chewing gum, it seems to be quite successful.

I also learnt that the positive influence of xylitol on teeth was studied at the University of Turku. I must confess I was proud of this fact even if I am far from this field of research.

P.S. If you have no idea what to buy as a small souvenir from Finland for your friends, try a xylitol chewing gum. At least it will be a “healthy gift” ; )

Anna Skuratova
anna.skuratova@utu.fi
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