In the last blog I promised to provide everyone with my recommendation for a no calorie sweetener.
It’s only fair after I’ve told you how potentially harmful splenda, nutrasweet, and equal are to your bodies, and I’m often asked, “so if you don’t use artificial sweeteners, what do YOU use?” My response is that I generally don’t sweeten anything I drink, but if I do need a sweetener for something I always choose the natural and no calorie sweetener, Stevia.
Stevia is my favorite alternative to sugar for these four reasons.
1. It is all natural!
Stevia is derived from the, you guessed it, stevia herb, specifically the compounds Stevioside and Rebaudioside A found in the plant. This herb is native to South America and has been used there for hundreds of years as a sweetener along with other things. Recent medical studies have revealed that Stevia isn’t just “not harmful”, but that it has actual health benefits, having been shown to help control cholesterol and blood pressure.
2. It isn’t low calorie, it’s NO calorie!
One of Stevia’s only similarities to other artificial sweeteners is that it does not metabolize inside your body, making it a no calorie sweetener. It is sometimes mixed with dextrose or maltodextrin to remove the natural bitter taste of the Stevia plant, which can result in 1 calorie per packet.
3. It is delicious!
One of the reasons Stevia has been used for hundreds of years is because of how sweet it is. In fact the sweetening compounds inside the leaf, Stevioside and Rebaudioside A, are up to 300X sweeter than sugar! For those that have grown accustomed to a certain sweetness in their diet, Stevia is what you have been looking for.
4. It is a ZERO Glycemic Index, so it has no effect on my blood sugar!
The natural compounds that make up Stevia are not absorbed by the body, giving it a GI of Zero. Studies have also shown that stevia can actually stabilize blood sugar over time by increasing insulin resistance, inhibiting the absorption of glucose, and promoting the health of the pancreas. These factors make Stevia the go to sweetener for diabetics.
For all these reasons and more I continually recommend Stevia to my patients, friends, and family. Please comment below if you have anything to add to the discussion and if you have any questions feel free to to contact me by filling out the contact form or clicking the microphone on your screen. Your question could be the topic of our next blog!