What is Stevia?

WHAT IS STEVIA

Stevia is a plant, originally from South America. In Paraguay, they named this plant “Ka’aHe’e” which  means the sweet leaf, in the natives’ dialect.
The leaf extract is used as an alternative to sugar substitute and in the treatment of a number of health problems for centuries. As the demand for low-calories and low carbohydrate food increases, stevia has become a more popular option among food manufacturers as well as health-conscious individuals. Stevia’s popularity  has grown among the years. What  first started thousand years ago by local natives in Paraguay and Brasil, now days Stevia is used across the world, from United States, Switzerland to Japan.

KEY POINTS
• Stevia is a beneficial herb. Its small leaves contain vital minerals and vitamins that are selectively absent in the artificial sweeteners.
• It contains stevioside and rebaudioside that are 200-300 times sweeter than table sugar.
• Natural Stevia is used as raw material (powder with minimum 95% steviol glycosides), has a sweetening power of 1/240 compared to sugar and is 100% originating from Paraguay.
• Botanical Name: Stevia rebaudiana is an endemic plant of Paraguay where the excellent weather conditions for many centuries favor the production of the best Stevia plant worldwide.
• Stevia leaves contain:

▶ Many minerals and micronutrients (chromium, magnesium, manganese, potassium, selenium, zinc).
▶ B vitamins (especially niacin).
▶ Phytonutrients such as chlorophyll and herbal sterols.

• Unlike table sugar, it is not conducive neither to the development of tooth decay nor to the growth of the fungus Candida albicans.
• Is metabolized in the organism, without significantly affecting blood sugar and without requiring the production of insulin.
• Numerous scientific studies as well as International organizations (FDA, JECFA, EFSA) confirm the completely safe use of Stevia.

BASIC INFOS
• It does not contain any kind of calorific ingredient, therefore it yields minimum calories compared to table sugar.
• There is no indication of adverse effects on the human organism according to studies up to date.
• It is used in cold beverages, juices, fruit salads and anything we want to sweeten.
• Cooking: A special advantage is that it does not decompose at high temperatures up to 200 degrees Celsius.
• Ideal to be used in cooking, hot drinks, pastries which require boiling (e.g. jams, fruit preserves) and baking (cakes, cookies, etc.).