Maybe most people already knew this, but i was buying some chocolate the other day and I saw a box that said sugar free, but on the nutritional content it said 16g of sugar alcohol. I was thinking to myself, sugars are alcohols so whats the difference? Well after looking it up I found this distinction. Carbohydrates (or sugars) are either aldehydes or ketones (hence reducing sugars). A sugar alcohol is a carbohydrate that has its carboxyl group reduced to either a primary or secondary hydroxyl group. This is really good because now you can eat sweets without worrying about tooth decay (cavities)! This fact could have saved my parents a fortune in dental bills! Bacterias in your mouth have capsules that adhere to your teeth and when you eat high nutritional foods that the bacteria can digest (like sucrose in sweets), the bacteria metabolizes it and releases lactic acid which leaves a nasty cavity on your teeth. Bacteria, however, cannot metabolize sugar alcohols and it will leave your mouth feeling clean (orbitz commercial ) and cavity-free. Pretty nifty idea from the chocolate factory don't you think?