What is this???? It’s stevia! Why is it green? LISTEN UP! Below I explain why I avoid stevia EXCEPT when in this form. Most are already aware that stevia comes from the stevia plant/leaf, and because of this fact it is considered “natural”. Yes, it is natural in it’s purist form.
The stevia found on grocery shelves and foods we eat (protein powders, snacks, etc) is overly processed “stevia”. It’s really not stevia at all by time it goes through a 42-step process! First, the rebaudioside is extracted from the stevia leaf, and then chemical solvents are added, including acetonitrile, which is toxic to the liver and is a carcinogen. Then the producers add in a GMO corn derivative called erythritol.
Since highly processed stevia starts as a natural substance but gets so significantly refined, the FDA finds it hard to label stevia packets and drops, so they label them as novel sweeteners (a combination of multiple types of sweeteners). Commercial brands (organic or not) actually contain less than 1 percent stevia! If you avoid those white powders and liquid drops and choose the right stevia product, then dangerous stevia side effects are basically nonexistent (unless you’re allergic to ragweed – part of the same plant family).
Upset Stomach – Stevia sweeteners usually cause an upset stomach, bloating, headaches, and many other digestive issues not only immediately after consumption, but long after as well. And I personally have experienced all of them.
Metabolism Change – Experiments showed that refined, processed stevia can cause interference in the way the body absorbs carbohydrates. This ultimately limits your ability to convert food to energy!
IT ALTERS YOUR GUT MICROBIOME
Researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) in Beersheba, Israel, focused on stevia in a study that recently featured in Molecules. Their findings suggest that stevia can have a negative effect on gut health.
The research team studied two forms of stevia: the commercialized herb supplement and purified stevia extract. The study showed that stevia may contribute to an unbalanced gut and that’s just ONE of many studies out there (I urge you to reserch yourself)
Refined stevia is sold under countless brand names such as Sun Crystals, SweetLeaf, Truvia, PureVia, Stevia in the Raw, Pyure, and NuStevia to name a few….
Green leaf stevia (shown here) are basically just dried and ground into powder form – that’s it! This is the type of stevia that’s been used in South America and Japan for centuries as a natural sweetener and health remedy.
Resources and GREAT Articles to Read:
Method for extracting active ingredient of natural product (stevia) and uses
Patent – High-purity rebaudioside A and method of extracting
Patent – Process For Extraction And Debitterizing Sweet Compounds From Stevia Plants
Patent – Process for production of steviosides from stevia rebaudiana bertoni
The Aspartame / NutraSweet Fiasco
A Tale of Two Sweeteners – Stevia and Aspartame