Stevia Sugar: Benefits, Side effects, and A Complete Guide

Everything you need to know about Stevia sweeteners

What is Stevia?

An extract derived from leaves of a plant Stevia Rebaudiana has widely grown in Brazil and Paraguay, which has 30 to 150 times more sweetness than in traditional sugar. Since 2008 Stevia is widely allowed in food products and production worldwide.

As for sugar alternatives, stevia will gain market share in 2017 and beyond. Once restricted to the health food market as an unapproved herb, these plant-derived sweeteners known as stevia – is so popular that it has replaced artificial sweetening as the most popular alternative for many consumers, although it is restricted to health and food markets. Let’s get to know the truth about Stevia being a healthy alternative for regular sugar intake.

Stevia Sugar: Benefits, Side effects, and A Complete Guide

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Is Stevia a plant-based sweeteners?

Of course yes, Stevia is a plant-based Sweetener. SweetLeaf Stevia sweetener started as a product of Nestlé”s partnership with the stevia plant in the late 1990s, but by the time the product hit the shelves, very little was left of the stevia plant. Sweet Leaf, the company’s first product, Sweet and Purified Sweet, is said to be 200 to 400 times sweeter than sugar, and its leaf extract comes from a natural source.

Stevia is widely accepted as a natural zero-calorie sweetener for cooking foods at home and even in the food manufacturing industry. but the biggest problem with stevia is we can’t entirely replace the traditional sugar with this alternative sweetener because of its aftertaste bitterness.

however, scientists are still working on this sweet issue to find an alternative way to extract sweetness from stevia leaves without bitterness.

The sweets and baked confectionaries made from 100% Stevia sweetener won’t taste that great compared to the sweets made from traditional sugar because of the lack of Maillard Reaction in Stevia sweeteners

Maillard Reaction, the chemical reaction between the amino acids and the reducing sugar while heating gives food a distinctive brown color and a distinctive caramel flour
Click here to know more about Maillard Reaction

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You should have wondered is stevia safe?
Stevia sugar substitutes can be a good way to reduce the amount of sugar intake, but they suggest choosing options that are considered safe, including stevia leaf extract and erythritol. The CSPI continues to warn consumers to avoid any other sugar substitutes containing sugar, such as artificial sweeteners, artificial preservatives, and artificial flavorings. Stevia brands such as Stevie Raw can replace table sugar (such as a teaspoon) in sweet drinks and sauces and can also be used in baked goods.

As an alternative to sucrose and table sugar, stevia sweetener has the potential to have significant health benefits as a sweetener. Consumed in reasonable amounts, it can be as good as any other plant-based on sugar substitution,

Consumption of foods sweetened with estevia (as opposed to sugar) is equivalent, but there does not appear to be any difference in calorie intake. It can also help to lower your insulin levels compared to artificial sweeteners, and stevia has been shown to significantly lower insulin levels with each meal compared to aspartame (a sugar-free artificial sweetener). 

Dr. David R. Schulman, professor of nutrition at the University of California, Berkeley.

What you should know about Stevia before you buy

Stevia sweetener comes from the sweet leaves of the Stevia Rebaudiana plant, but the leaves are not really used to make the stevia you buy in the grocery store. There is a lot of confusion about what is not really “pure” Stevia, whether it is bought in the grocery store or grown at home. If you’re looking for a product with 100 percent stevia, you should read the label carefully: Stevia products are available in grocery stores do not contain the entire stevia leaf. The leaves are not the only ingredient to produce Stevia sweetener.

The answer is “Yes”. As Stevia sweeteners have zero-calorie and no carbs, It will be a perfect alternative for people who plan to keep their weight in control. This may help to stabilize your blood glucose levels and weight, Stevia may significantly reduce your risk of heart disease in the future as proven in some animal studies.

Downside:
Stevia is an Exterme sweetner which may increase the Craving for sweets, you shouls have a good mind control practice to over come this craving, otherwise it result in obesity.

Are there downsides to the sweetener Stevia?

Anyway, Nature’s Zero-Calorie Sustainable Sweetener Stevia is an intense sweetener that can badly affect your metabolism and health. Furthermore, Stevia and other zero-calorie sweeteners may still cause an insulin response, due to their extreme sweet taste, even if they don’t increase blood sugar levels.

Stevia is a zero calorie sweetener derived from the natural
plant and its a favorite sweetener for the dietitian.

Pregnancy mayincrease sweet craving for some people so the Stevia based sweetener may be the best choice to keep the sugar levels in control

As per FDA Stevia sweetener is Generally recognized as safe (GRAS) but the FDA has not approved Stevia Sweetener yet. Stevia is considered as a dietary supplement. Experts say Stevia sweeteners do not possess any health risks (no raise in sugar levels or any other adverse effects)

Its always best to consult your doctor before you intake Stevia sweetener during your pregnency.

Summary

The best practice is to use lesser sugar and a few sugar alternatives like Stevia. It’s better to opt for natural sweetness from fruits for healthy living.

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