Posted & filed under All About Foods.

stevia plant

What is Stevia?

Originally found in South America, stevia is a green, leafy plant known for its potent sweetness. Quite interestingly, in some cultures, it has been around for many centuries and has been mostly used for the treatment of diverse kinds of illnesses. If you were to stumble upon a stevia plant out in the fields, you would easily notice its sweet scent and potent flavor. Its leaves contain a peculiar source of natural sweetness and they are calorie free you only need a small amount to sweeten up your cup of coffee, bowl cereal etc. without going overboard.

Why is the plant is good for you?

Using stevia could be immensely beneficial to you as it does not raise your blood sugar level, making it an ideal option for those who are mindful of their sugar intake. Also, anything natural and organic is more often than not, a better option for a healthy diet. One of the major reasons why stevia is good for you is basically because it’s got no calories. A high sugar level is never advisable, hence in order to keep your sugar levels normal and yet enjoy sweetened food, stevia will work just fine as it has a glycemic index of zero. This means it doesn’t affect your blood sugar levels, making it an ideal sweetener for people who suffer from candida or diabetes.

Some side effects to look out for

Yes, there are side effects of using it, they say too much of everything is not good, but in this case, you don’t have to use too much to get plagued with side effects. Here are some side effects to be aware of before consuming stevia:

Allergies:

There can be extremely severe allergic reactions that could result from the mere use of stevia as a sweetener. Although it’s quite a rare occurrence, allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis can be very dangerous. If you are allergic to stevia plant and products you would most likely experience symptoms like hives, dizziness, nausea, fatigue and the likes.

Digestive issue:

Since it’s no more news that stevia is low in sugar, carbs as well as non-fattening, the plant is a household name in the weight loss industry. When you consume it, there is a chance of developing the feeling of fullness which could escalate in the long run. Some major components of stevia can irritate your stomach and cause bloating, reduction in appetite as well as flatulence.

Muscle pain:

Another side effect of it is the possibility of suffering muscle pains for prolonged hours and for no obvious reasons. Although this side effect is not frequently reported, it is still worthy of note.



Regardless of these above mentioned side effects, stevia is still considered the best sugar substitute, as the side effects are rarely reported.

Also when purchasing it, there are a few flavors and forms available to choose from. Flavored stevia could be gotten off the shelf at grocery stores around you. Just like milk, stevia is available in liquid form popularly known as stevia drops. You can also opt for stevia powder depending on your preference. One thing is sure, stevia is 10-15 times more potent than regular refined white sugar.