Erythritol is a polyol or sugar alcohol, a non-nutritive (low calorie) sweetener which is considered safe to use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Sugar alcohols are neither sugar or alcohol but a whole different type of carbohydrate that can be found naturally in fruits and vegetables but are most often made from carbohydrates.
Erythritol is often found in low or no calorie beverages and food and is often mixed with stevia. Sugar alcohols are not well-digested so they can often cause gastrointestinal “distress” (gas, bloating, diarrhea) if too much is consumed at one time.
(Source and for more information: http://www.foodinsight.org/articles/sugar-alcohols-fact-sheet)
Leah McGrath, RDN, LDN
Ingles Markets Corporate Dietitian