Aid Overall Health / Cleanse/Digestion / Lose Weight

Mannitol is a sugar alcohol that naturally occurs in mushrooms, algae and trees. It is used as a sugar substitute that may be safe for people with diabetes. Mannitol is also a low-calorie alternative to table sugar. Though not generally used for cooking or baking at home, it is commonly added to commercial foods.

Mannitol is used as medicine too. The drug comes in an inhaler and as an injection. Mannitol is also available in powder form for use as a sugar substitute.

Mannitol is also added to personal care products like toothpaste and mouthwash.

Not all types of physical activity are suitable for everyone. Users take training advice at their own personal risk.


Mannitol is a natural polyol that is found in fresh mushrooms, marine algae and as a liquid that oozes out of trees. Polyols are sugar alcohols. They are found in foods and in medicine. Mannitol is one of the sugar alcohols approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is safe to ... more

Mannitol is a natural polyol that is found in fresh mushrooms, marine algae and as a liquid that oozes out of trees. Polyols are sugar alcohols. They are found in foods and in medicine.

Mannitol is one of the sugar alcohols approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is safe to eat and added frequently to sweeten foods. According to the Mayo Clinic, sugar alcohols are less sweet than table sugar but contain fewer calories. Mannitol is approximately half as sweet as sucrose, according to

Mannitol has been in use for more than 60 years. Several manufacturers in the United States sell mannitol, including SPI Polyols, Cargill and Roquette America. These companies and others sell mannitol in granular and powder forms, according to

Often times, mannitol is added to foods by manufacturers. Sometimes, manufacturers blend mannitol with other artificial sweeteners. Mannitol provides several benefits: it can keep food moist, adds bulk and texture, has a cooling sensation and prevents browning.

Mannitol and other sugar alcohols are used in foods and personal care products. According to the Mayo Clinic, common foods containing polyols include:

  • Baked goods
  • Candy
  • Chocolate
  • Frozen desserts
  • Fruit spreads
  • Gum
  • Mouthwash
  • Toothpaste

Weight Loss

Mannitol can help with weight loss because it has fewer calories than table sugar. Mannitol contain 1.6 calories per gram; table sugar has 4 calories per gram.

One pound of fat consists of 3,500 calories so significantly reducing calories by switching to a low-calorie sugar may promote weight loss.


Mannitol may be beneficial for people with diabetes, according to Diabetics have three major concerns: regulating blood sugar, body weight and lipids, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Mannitol can assist with weight control because of its low calorie content, but it may also be useful for diabetics because of its affect on blood sugar. Regular table sugar significantly raises blood glucose (sugar); mannitol and other sugar alcohols do affect blood sugar but the body does not absorb all the sugar alcohol that is in the body. Therefore, eating mannitol does not increase blood glucose levels as much as table sugar.

However, foods containing mannitol are not automatically good for every person with diabetes. Foods with mannitol may have other ingredients that contribute significant calories or carbohydrates that raise blood sugar, warns Diabetics should ask their physicians if mannitol and specific foods are appropriate.

Dental Caries

Sugar promotes tooth decay and cavities by feeding the bacteria that attacks the teeth.

Mannitol and other sugar alcohols do not contribute to cavities because they are not a food source for those bacteria.

Side Effects

The Mayo Clinic warns that there are some potential side effects of eating mannitol. Consuming large amounts of polyols may have a laxative effect, resulting in diarrhea, abdominal bloating and intestinal gas. Typically people need to eat more than 50 grams, but some people are affected by as little as 10 grams.

Mannitol as Medicine

Mannitol is used as medicine for a variety of conditions. It may be taken orally, inhaled with a puffer or injected via an IV.


Mannitol is an osmotic diuretic, according to Osmotic diuretics are nonabsorbable substances, like mannitol, that cause an increase in urination.

As a diuretic, mannitol may help prevent or treat conditions that cause an excess amount of water in the body by encouraging urination. Increasing urination assists to reduce pressure in the eyes and brain and helps the kidneys get rid of fluids. It is therefore useful for brain swelling, eye pressure and some kidney conditions. The diuretic effect during acute renal failure may help to prevent irreversible renal failure.

According to, doctors may also give mannitol injections to promote urination for the purpose of getting toxic substances out of the body.

Side Effects

According to, there are certain side effects associated with using mannitol for medicinal purposes. Dizziness is a common side effect. Mannitol may also cause:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Runny nose
  • Frequent urination

Elderly adults are more sensitive to mannitol's effects than younger adults. Alcohol and certain medications may also worsen side effects associated with mannitol use. Driving cars or operating heavy machinery is usually not recommended.

Some people may experience severe side effects from mannitol use that require medical attention. Dangerous side effects include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Chest pain
  • Chills
  • Confusion
  • Cramps
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Irregular heart rate
  • Muscle weakness
  • Reduced alertness
  • Severe dizziness
  • Urination difficulties

Mannitol injections may cause additional adverse reactions, such as:

  • Acidosis (an excess of acid in the body's fluids)
  • Arm pain
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Fluid and electrolyte imbalance
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Dehydration
  • Blurry vision
  • Skin necrosis
  • Headaches
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Osmotic nephrosis (acute kidney injury)
  • Retaining urine
  • Rhinitis (sneezing or nasal congestion)
  • Increased thirst
  • Thrombophlebitis (vein inflammation)

Allergic reactions can also occur, resulting in:

  • Chest tightness
  • Hives
  • Itchy skin
  • Rash
  • Swelling of the mouth, face or tongue
  • Pain, redness and swelling at the injection site of mannitol injections

Side Effects in Children

According to the Kids Health website, children may also experience side effects from taking mannitol. An injection can lead to low potassium levels. Potassium is an important electrolyte and mineral. Symptoms of low potassium include:

  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle cramps
  • Numbness
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Tingling
  • Weakness
  • Upset stomach
  • Vomiting

Mannitol may also cause dizziness in children. Parents should advise children sit up slowly and to be careful climbing stairs. Mannitol may also cause headaches and dry mouth. Older children can suck on hard candy that is sugar-free to help with dry mouth as well as nausea.


Not everyone should take mannitol. People with a history of heart failure, severe dehydration and bleeding in their brains should generally not take mannitol.

Lung problems, like pulmonary edema, may also contraindicate mannitol use. Anyone with bleeding in their brain or severe renal disease are not advised to use mannitol.

Learn more about other nutritional supplement with the FREE supplement finder. Click "Buy Now" to compare prices on thousands of products from over a dozen different online merchants. We do all the work to help you find the best price available!






  • Side Effects
  • Other Names
  • Uses
Blurred Vision
Chest Pain
Chest Tightness
Dry Mouth
Electrolyte Imbalance
Excessive Thirst
High Blood Pressure
Irregular Heartbeat
Itchy Skin
Low Blood Pressure
Minor Headaches
Muscle Cramps
Muscle Weakness
Redness And/Or Irritation At Injection Site
Arm Pain
Osmotic Nephrosis
Reduced Alertness
Skin Necrosis
Aridol, Osmitrol
Sugar Substitute
Dental Health
Sugar Alcohol