Alternative sweeteners, both artificial and natural, are widely accessible. Alternative all-natural sweeteners are no exception to the rule that natural substances are generally superior. The popular plant-based sweetener Stevia is something that many people keep in their kitchen cupboards.
Stevia is a calorie-free sweetener that tastes great and is a great substitute for sugar. These are the most widely used high-intensity sweeteners that replace sugar. Additionally, it is one of the most widely utilized sweeteners for industrial applications and large-scale food production.Do you want to learn more about this calorie-free, high-intensity sweetener?
Let's find out.
What is Stevia?
Stevia, a member of the sunflower family, is a little, bushy shrub that is native to Paraguay and Brazil. For millennia, people have used it as a sweetener and even a digestive aid in powder form. All 150 of the stevia species are indigenous to North and South America.
Stevia provides us with a calorie-free sugar fix and is around 30 times sweeter than sugar. It is an all-natural substitute for sugar and other artificial sweeteners.
What does it taste like?
Start with a small quantity if you're using stevia for the first time (for instance, in your morning tea or coffee). The sweetness could be too much for some people because it's so much more concentrated than sugar. Be cautioned that not everyone enjoys the flavor and that certain brands are superior to others. It might also have a bitter aftertaste.
Benefits of Stevia:
- Because the steviol glycosides in stevia travel through the body without having an impact, it offers a delightfully sweet flavor without adding calories.
- Stevia has no impact on insulin levels, making it a sweetener choice for diabetics trying to control their blood sugar. The glycemic index and load of stevia are both zero.
- Stevia is a naturally-derived sweetener because, after extraction and purification, the sweet components remain unchanged, leaving only the steviol glycosides contained in the leaf as the final stevia ingredient.
- Stevia is a sustainable crop; to produce the same amount of sweetness as other plants, stevia production, extraction, and purification often use only a fifth of the land and significantly less water.
Is Stevia FDA approved?
The FDA has classified stevia extract, sometimes referred to as steviol glycosides, as generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for use as a sugar substitute in food. The FDA has decided that substances that have been given the GRAS designation are safe through scientific evaluations, expert consensus, and extensive use without side effects. Stevia is, therefore, safe to use in moderation.
Where Can You Substitute Stevia?
In baked foods, stevia works well since it is heat stable. In order to lower the overall amount required, you might blend stevia with other healthful sweeteners. Since yeast requires sugar to activate it, stevia cannot be used in yeast bread because it does not contain any sugar.
Stevia is considered by numerous research to be the optimum substitute for sugar and other artificial sweeteners. Select pure Stevia extract rather than Stevia-based sweeteners, which may contain undesirable additives and chemicals. The least processed and purest form of stevia is the liquid extract, so choose that instead of eating the leaf directly.
With Stevia readily available in your pantry, you may enjoy sweetening all of your foods and drinks, including tea, coffee, and pastries, without worrying about endangering your oral health, elevating your blood sugar, ingesting empty calories, or encouraging obesity.
Stevia, Nature’s Zero-Calorie Sustainable Sweetener, a New Player in the Fight Against Obesity
Stevia (Stevia rebaudiana) a bio-sweetener: A review
- Stevia Leaf to Stevia Sweetener: Exploring Its Science, Benefits, and Future Potential
Priscilla Samuel, Keith T Ayoob, Bernadene A Magnuson, Ursula Wölwer-Rieck, Per Bendix Jeppesen, Peter J Rogers, Ian Rowland, Rebecca Mathews