As society has made a transition from demonizing fats to being more cautious of processed foods and added sugars, there has been a surge in artificial sweetener use. Chief among them is erythritol, an artificial sweetener found in a variety of products including some of my favorite low-calorie ice creams and energy drinks. Erythritol is a sugar alcohol naturally created endogenously via the pentose-phosphate pathway in humans, and it also pops up naturally in some fruits and vegetables. Erythritol's claim to fame is its ability to sweeten foods at a fraction of the calories required to reach similar levels of sweetness with sucrose (table sugar). This has made it popular for weight loss and products marketed as "keto-friendly".
A recent study published in Nature Medicine assessed the association between circulating blood levels of erythritol with MACE (major adverse cardiovascular events) in adults.