When it comes to sugar alternatives, consumers are opening the door of possibilities to reduce sugar intake. Alternatives, such as stevia, are becoming more popular as people opt-out of artificial options.
Learn more about stevia as we dive into common myths about it and uncover the facts.
What is stevia?
Stevia is a non-nutritive or zero-calorie natural alternative to sugar. Stevia comes from the plant known as stevia rebaudiana, and it derives from South America. For over 200 years indigenous people have been using this plant to provide a sweet taste to their food or beverages.
According to a recent article from Food Insight, "...stevia sweeteners range from being 200-350 times sweeter than sugar, and as such only small amounts of stevia sweeteners are needed to match the sweetness provided by sugar." Stevia is a popular option for those looking to cut back on their sugar intake, without sacrificing a flavorful taste.
With stevia becoming more and more popular for its sweet benefits, there are still common myths that need debunking. Let's dive into myths and separate fact from fiction.
Myth 1: Stevia is bad for you
Let's be honest this is by far one of the most pervasive myths about stevia. In today's world, it's so easy to Google something and find 10 articles that can state an item is bad for you, without evidence to support their claims. According to a study by Oxford Academic, stevia provides health-promoting properties through its leaves that are packed with nutrients and phytochemicals. These compounds can help regulate blood sugar levels, oral health, cholesterol, and more.
Regulate blood levels:
Stevia is an ideal replacement for diabetics or people with carbohydrate-controlled diets since they can consume sweet foods without having to worry about complications. This sugar alternative is a non-carbohydrate glycoside compound. When it breaks down the glucose-containing particles are absorbed by bacteria instead of being released into the bloodstream, which affects the body's glucose levels.
Maintaining oral health:
Stevia has been found to minimize bacterial formation, making it popular for preventing cavities and gingivitis. According to the International Journal of Advances in Pharmacy, Biology, and Chemistry, "This fact, combined with the naturally sweet flavor of the herb, make it a suitable ingredient for mouthwashes & for toothpaste..." Due to stevia's antimicrobial action, microbes and other streptococcus mutants do not thrive in the presence of non-nutritive stevia constituents.
Lower cholesterol levels:
A study has shown that stevia can lead to a reduction in bad LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which in turn increase HDL cholesterol levels. This finding shows that stevia can create healthy cholesterol which is good for lipid profile. According to N. Sharma, R. Mogra & B. Upadhyay, "Thus it is concluded that stevia extract have hypolipidaemic effect and can be used to reduce the risk of CVD in future."
Myth 2: Stevia is an artificial sweetener
This is far from the truth! Stevia is a natural sweetener that comes from the plant known as stevia rebaudiana. Whereas, artificial sweeteners such as aspartame and sucralose are chemically created in a lab.
Stevia often gets mislabeled as an artificial sweetener due to its extraction process. The FDA recognizes stevia as safe (GRAS); although the stevia leaf is not GRAS approved. The stevia we consume is an extract from the leaf, instead of the leaf itself.
When you drink or eat foods made with stevia you can avoid worrying about increasing calorie intake. In one study researchers found that drinking a stevia-sweetened beverage can assist with reducing appetite and total energy intake, without affecting glycemia.
Keep in mind we're not saying stevia alone contributes to weight loss, but more so the fact that it doesn't add calories to your diet. We like to think of it as a part of living a healthier lifestyle. There are many other factors that can contribute to healthy weight loss. Balance is always the key to giving your body what it needs.
Does blk. use stevia?
Stevia is used as a sweetener within blk. flavors, not including our original and drops. By adding this natural substitute we are able to formulate a delicious functional beverage without man-made artificial sweeteners or sugar. Our fulvic infused beverages combine fulvic acid, which has over 77+ trace minerals, and stevia extract for an enjoyable taste.
Each flavor is packed with gut-healthy ingredients that support the microbiome, so you can enjoy a tasty drink with added health benefits.
This has not been evaluated by the FDA. * The content in this email is for informational purposes only, is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and does not constitute medical or other professional advice.