Common name: sweet leaf, , sugar leaf, stevia
Stevia is one of a family of plants that are native to South America and have been used for centuries to sweeten drinks and foods. Stevia leaves are said to be from 30 to 300 times sweeter than sugar * though the amount of sweetness varies from leaf to leaf and plant to plant. It is touted as a natural alternative to artificial sweeteners. To date, chemical analysis and studies show that the leaf powder adds no calories, has no harmful side effects and is more palatable with less aftertaste than any artificial, chemical sweetener to date. Stevia powder has been in wide use in South America for centuries, and in Japan since the government banned the use of artificial sweeteners. To date, no harmful side effects have come to light, making stevia one of the most promising sugar alternatives available. Stevoside, made from stevia powder, is approved as a food additive in Korea, and is widely available throughout China, Taiwan and Malaysia.
Ingredients: Diterpene glycosides, steviol, dulcoside, rebaudioside C, rebaudioside A, isosteviol, stevioside, jhanol, flavonoid glycosides, quercetin,
HOW IT WILL HELP YOU?
• High blood pressure. Some research suggests that taking 750-1500 mg powder per day of stevioside, a chemical compound in stevia powder, reduces systolic blood pressure (the upper number in a blood pressure reading) by 10-14 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure (the lower number) by 6-14 mmHg within one week of starting treatment. However, other research suggests that taking stevioside in doses up to 15 mg per kg per day does not significantly reduce blood pressure in patients with mild high blood pressure.
• Diabetes. Early research suggests that 1000 mg daily of stevioside, a chemical compound in stevia, might reduce blood sugar levels after meals by 18% in people with type 2 diabetes. However, other research suggests that taking 250 mg of stevioside three times daily does not significantly affect blood sugar levels or HbA1c (a measure over blood sugar levels over time) after three months of treatment in people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
• Preventing pregnancy.
• Weight loss.
• Water retention.
• Heart problems.