• You're all caught up!

Which Foods Have Sorbitol?

author image Sriram Ramgopal
Sriram Ramgopal is a medical graduate from Sri Ramachandra University, India. He currently lives in the the greater Boston area and works as a Neurology Research Fellow at Children's Hospital, Boston. Ramgopal is also the co-founder of Sangam India, a nonprofit urban development organization based in Chennai, India.
Which Foods Have Sorbitol?
Sorbitol is a sweetener. Photo Credit Apostolos Mastoris/iStock/Getty Images

Sorbitol, also called glucitol, is a sugar-alcohol that is present in a wide variety of foods. Sorbitol is about 60 percent as sweet as sucrose and has a characteristic texture. Its flavor is similar to that of sucrose but it lacks the aftertaste of most other sugars. Sorbitol is found in a variety of natural fruits. Manufactured sorbitol is commonly used as a sweetener and emulsifier in a variety of food products. Though sorbitol is generally considered to be safe, large amounts of it may cause diarrhea.


Which Foods Have Sorbitol?
Pears contain sorbitol naturally. Photo Credit Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

Sorbitol was first discovered in its naturally occurring form in 1872 and is in a variety of fruits and berries. Common fruits which contain this sugar are the stone fruits, such as apples, pears, peaches, apricots and cherries. High quantities of Sorbitol are also found in dry fruits such as prunes, raisins and figs. Sorbitol in these fruits is often associated with gas formation and aggravation of irritable bowel syndrome.

Artificial Sweetener

Which Foods Have Sorbitol?
Artificial sweetener. Photo Credit Santje09/iStock/Getty Images

Sorbitol is now made chemically from corn syrup and is in a variety of foods. Because it contains one-third the calories found in glucose, it is widely present in a variety of diet drinks and foods. Sorbitol is found in puddings, pancake-mix, cookies, oatmeal, and a variety of other foods. Foods products labeled as "containing no sugar" or "lite" frequently contain sorbitol as an artificial sweetener. A number of health and nutrition bars also advertised for diabetics also contain quantities of sorbitol.


Which Foods Have Sorbitol?
Candy contains sorbitol. Photo Credit Diana Taliun/iStock/Getty Images

Sorbitol is widely found in a variety of chewing gums and candies. Sorbitol is especially common in a number of 'sugar-free' variants of candies and and gums. Sugar-free versions of Altoids and Lifesavers also contain sorbitol. Sorbitol is especially useful in this regard as it does not cause tooth decay. Candies such as Brach’s Star Brites, Life Savers, peppermint drops; Cary’s Maple Syrup; Simply Sugar Free Chocolate & Vanilla Caramels, Fruit Taffy Whips, and Coffee Toffee are reported to have larger quantities of the sugar, with more than 10 grams per serving size.

Medical Products

Which Foods Have Sorbitol?
Sorbitol may be used for children. Photo Credit YanLev/iStock/Getty Images

Sorbitol may be used as a laxative. Because it is slowly digested by the intestine, it tends to linger and draw water into the interior of the gut. This increased liquidity can facilitate the passage of stools. Sorbitol is also in many medicines for children, where it helps to make them more palatable for consumption.

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
  • Female
  • Male
ft. in.



Demand Media