Describe stevia. How much can be safely consumed by diabetics, children, and pregnant women.


Because stevia is primarily prized for what it doesn’t do, it is possibly unique among food components. There are no extra calories. Unlike other sugar alternatives, stevia is a plant-based product. There are some concerns about its efficacy as a tool for weight loss or as a diabetic diet strategy.

Stevia, commonly known as Stevia rebaudiana, is a plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family’s Chrysanthemum subfamily (ragweed family). The stevia you can cultivate at home differs significantly from the stevia you can get at the grocery store


In 1987, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the United States outlawed the commercialization of stevia as a food additive. However, stevia recovered its reputation as a sweet, long-lasting food additive in 1995. Since then, stevia-containing products have increased in number by 58 percent, reflecting the sweetener’s soaring popularity.


On-shelf stevia products like Earthomaya and Stevia in the Raw don’t actually contain whole stevia leaves. They are created using rebaudioside A, a highly purified stevia leaf extract (Reb-A).

In reality, very few stevia-containing goods actually contain any at all. Table sugar is around 200 times sweeter than Reb-A.

Reb-A-based sweeteners are referred to regarded as “novel sweeteners” since they are combined with other sweeteners, like erythritol (sugar alcohol) and dextrose (glucose).


Natural flavours are also present in certain stevia brands. The term “natural flavours” is acceptable as long as the associated ingredients don’t contain any synthetics, artificial flavours, or additional colours, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Even so, “natural taste” ingredients could contain a lot of processing. Many contend that this proves they are not naturally occurring.

The leaves of stevia plants can be grown inside and used to sweeten meals and beverages. Reb-A sweeteners come in granulated, powder, and liquid forms.


Stevia, an alternative to sugar

Stevia is now available on the market for sugar substitutes. High-purity steviol glycosides, an extract of the stevia plant, are deemed generally safe for use in food by the Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, according to the FDA, stevia leaf and unprocessed stevia extracts are not generally recognised as safe (GRAS) and cannot be used in food


Does stevia really work?

Stevia has no calories and, as was already established, is 200 times sweeter in the same concentration than sugar.

According to the article in the International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, a 2004 study in rats discovered low-calorie sweeteners made the animals binge, presumably because of a discrepancy between the perceived sweetness and the predicted calories from sugar. Later, the study’s author suggested that individuals who use artificial sweeteners may have health issues linked to eating too much sugar, such as metabolic syndrome, which can be a prelude to diabetes.

However, there is also proof that stevia has no immediate impact on metabolism or eating patterns. Several artificial sweeteners were put to the test in a 2010 study published in the journal Appetite on 19 lean and 12 obese persons.


In a 2013 opinion letter published in the journal Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism, Dr. Susan E. Swithers stated that “a number of studies suggest those who routinely use ASB [artificially sweetened beverages] are at greater risk compared with those who do not consume ASB.”


Stevia may be used to treat endocrine conditions like obesity, diabetes, and hypertension, according to a 2017 publication in the Journal of Medicinal Food, but additional research is required.


According to Ulbricht, “the available research is encouraging for the use of stevia in hypertension.” Ulbricht claimed that stevia received a “rating B for efficacy” in decreasing blood pressure from Natural Standard.

And a great deal more research on it.


Do you think st?


evia is safe

The stevia plant raises certain potential health issues. Some people who use blood pressure drugs may be concerned about the possibility that stevia will lower their blood pressure. Additionally, there is an ongoing investigation into certain compounds found naturally in stevia that have been linked to cancer and genetic abnormalities.


“When taking drugs that may also drop blood sugar, caution is suggested. A licenced health care provider, such as a pharmacist, should constantly monitor individuals taking oral diabetes medications or insulin “said Ulbricht.


According to Dr. Permara Linda, stevia may also interact with pharmaceuticals such as fertility enhancers, calcium channel blockers, anti-inflammatories, anti-microbials, anti-cancer treatments, anti-virals, hunger suppressants, and others. Before taking stevia in significant doses, people should consult their doctor.


Important Information: Steviol glycosides do not contain any calories and have no effect on blood sugar levels because they are not absorbed in the upper gastrointestinal tract. Gut microorganisms split off the glucose molecules as they get to the colon and consume them as fuel. Following absorption through the portal vein, liver metabolization, and urine excretion, the remaining steviol backbone is eliminated.

Stevia during pregnancy?


On the safety of stevia during pregnancy, there is little research.


No published studies have looked into the potential effects of pure steviol glycosides on breastfeeding and pregnant women.


While being careful not to exceed their needs, all women who are pregnant or breastfeeding need the proper nutrients and calories for their baby’s healthy growth and development.




It’s okay to consume stevia drop. People with diabetes are frequently advised to substitute stevia-sweetened foods and beverages for those that are sweetened with sugar in order to satisfy their sweet tooth while controlling their carbohydrate intake. Numerous studies have demonstrated that stevia sweeteners have no effect on human blood glucose control or levels.



Kids and Stevia?


Stevia can assist in reducing added sugar consumption, which may be especially advantageous for kids.


The American Heart Association (AHA) contends that increased consumption of added sugar raises children’s risk of developing heart disease through altering triglyceride and cholesterol levels and causing weight gain.


This is due to the fact that youngsters find it far simpler to exceed the daily stevia allowance, which is 1.8 mg per pound of body weight (4 mg per kg) for both adults and children (9Trusted Source).


Limiting your child’s intake of stevia-sweetened foods and other sweeteners, such as sugar, can help avoid negative side effects and promote general health.



Stevia for Losing Weight?


The majority of scientific studies exploring the connection between the use of low-calorie sweeteners and body weight evaluate a variety of low- and no-calorie sweeteners, including blends. As part of a programme that includes 12 weeks of weight loss followed by 40 weeks of weight-maintenance interventions, over 300 participants were randomly allocated to drink either water or low-calorie sweetened beverages for a year. This was done as part of a randomised clinical trial in 2016. In comparison to the water group, which lost 2.45 kg, individuals allocated to the low-calorie sweetened beverage group lost an average of 6.21 kg.


Weight loss and/or weight management may be aided by swapping out full-sugar foods and drinks for those that have been sweetened with stevia sweeteners.


It’s crucial to remember that maintaining a healthy weight entails using several strategies at once. One strategy is to make a single adjustment, such as switching to low-calorie sweetened products instead of full-calorie, sugar-containing items. Achieving weight loss and weight maintenance objectives requires adopting the lifestyle and behavioural strategies like eating healthfully, exercising frequently, getting adequate sleep, and maintaining social support networks.


Analysis of stevia


Compared to stevia, Splenda is significantly sweeter.


Sucralose, often known as Stevia and Splenda, is a sugar substitute.


No matter what kind of sweetener you choose, sweetness is a personal preference, so you’ll need to experiment to discover the right quantity.



Steviol glycosides, which are organic substances found in the stevia plant, are what make stevia roughly 200 times sweeter than sugar.


Splenda, however, has 450–650 times the sweetness of sugar.


While some studies show no impact, some indicate that stevia can interact with drugs that lower blood sugar and blood pressure. Additionally, stevia mixes may contain sugar alcohols, which might upset sensitive people’s stomachs.



Overall, the data points to stevia having fewer possible negative health consequences than either of the other sweeteners, however additional long-term research is required.


Since a researcher spilt the chemical molecule on their fingers and discovered it tasted sweet, saccharin has been present since the late 1800s. It is most commonly referred to as Sweet’N Low and is between 300 and 500 times sweeter than table sugar.


Side effects


Stevia extract has been deemed safe in safety investigations.

Whole leaf stevia is less generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the Food and Drug Administration than refined steviol glycosides, which can be added to foods. The stevia plant, on the other hand, can be cultivated at home, and there are numerous uses for the leaves.


Sugar alcohol is also present in some stevia products. Although one form of sugar alcohol, erythritol, poses less risk of symptoms than others, people who are sensitive to sugar alcohol may develop bloating, stomach cramps, nausea, and diarrhea.


Stevia won’t have any negative effects as long as it is ingested in moderation and is well purified.


How can Stevia be used?


More than 6000 food and beverage products use stevia as a common sugar alternative.


It can be used as an ingredient in products as a sugar-free sweetener:


  • Icy dessert


  • Desserts


  • Sauces


  • Yogurts


  • Preserving foods


  • Bread


  • Softer drinks


  • Chewing gum


  • Candy




Ready-to-eat vegetables


The conclusion


A natural sweetener called stevia has been linked to many advantages, including decreased blood sugar levels.


To promote one’s wellbeing, it is essential to live a healthy, active lifestyle that is suited to individual objectives and priorities. One method to cut back on added sugar intake and control calories—both crucial elements in maintaining health and lowering the risk of lifestyle-related diseases—is to choose foods and beverages sweetened with low- and no-calorie sweeteners like stevia sweeteners.


Because there is little research on whole-leaf and raw foods, it is best to eat them in moderation.

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