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Thread: Stevia

  1. #1

    Default Stevia

    Has anyone else heard of this?

    Since being diagnosed with severe insulin resistance (my blood tests surprised and scared my specialist), we've been looking at options to reduce carbohydrate intake, particularly from sugars.



    I read a little about stevia - that it has zero calories and no effect on blood sugar levels. I decided to check it out. I don't consume a lot of sugar - generally just my morning cup of tea with two teaspoons of sugar (not counting of course, the sugar that is in things like fruit naturally), and I was not enjoying cutting that back to one!

    This morning I drank my tea with one stevia tablet - which proved to be very, very sweet! I was starting to get used to the less sugar idea, so it was a bit of a surprise. Even more surprisingly, none of that nasty chemical after taste that comes with artificial sweeteners.

    Some interesting information I found on a web site about stevia:

    Stevia is one of the most health restoring plants on earth. Native to Paraguay, stevia is a small green plant bearing leaves, which have a delicious and refreshing taste that can be 70 to 400 times sweeter than sugar, depending on the quality of the plant. As well as the intensely sweet taste, various studies have found the leaf to contain proteins, fibre, carbohydrates, iron, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, zinc, rutin, vitamin A, vitamin C, and an oil that contains 53 other constituents.

    Because the human body does not metabolise the sweet glycosides (they pass right through) from the leaf or any of its processed forms, the body obtains NO CALORIES from stevia.

    Unlike artificial sweeteners, the sweet glycosides do not break down in heat, which makes stevia safe to use in cooking and baking.

    Since its introduction into the United States, numerous people have reported that taking 20-30 drops with each meal brought their blood glucose levels to near normal. Studies have shown that stevia tends to lower elevated blood pressure and it also inhibits growth of some bacteria, including the bacteria that causes tooth decay and gum disease. This explains reports of lower incidence of colds and flu’s amongst those who use stevia.

    Stevia is also an excellent aid in weight loss programs, it reduces cravings for sweet and fatty foods. Taking 15 drops of stevia, 20 minutes prior to each meal, reduces hunger sensations.

    Users of stevia, have reported that it decreases their desire for tobacco and alcoholic beverages.

    Other benefits from taking stevia, include improved digestion and gastrointestinal function, soothed upset stomachs and quicker recovery form minor illness.
    I think I'm hooked!

    BW

  2. #2

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    Default

    BW, I'm doing the Tony Ferguson diet and they mention Stevia as an alternative sweetener. I don't drink tea or coffee, and I can't have carbs, so I have no need for it.

    I'm glad you've found something good for you.

  3. #3

    Default

    BW - had to dig this old post up...can you tell me where to get Stevia?? Do I need to go to a health food shop or something?

    Assuming it's ok whilst breastfeeding? I seriously need to cut back on my sugar intake now the cold weather is here and I'm drinking so much tea (de-caf of course!)
    Last edited by Willow; May 26th, 2008 at 05:21 PM.

  4. #4

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    you get stevia from health food stores

    i use it all the time - 1/16 of a teaspoon is equiv to 1 teaspoon of sugar

  5. #5

    Default

    Willow, if memory serves correct on location, try the health food shop in High St Penrith. I've found that not all of them carry it, but that one always does.

    BW

  6. #6

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    You can buy it online from Sandra cabot too. I have some but I don't like the way it makes my cup of tea taste. Apparently it can take a while for the taste of it to 'hit' you.

  7. #7

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    Ooh, thanks BW, I know that shop, that's where I got my RLT when prg!

  8. #8

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    yup the better health food stores should stock it....love my stevia!!! If you have a MACRO food store up your way (I know there are a few in the sydney and surrounds) they stock it in the bigger size jars which are better value for money.

  9. #9

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    I use it in some baking. Mostly pancakes - it is difficult to use in some recipes as obviously the bulk isn't there. I have learnt to modify some of my favourite recipes so it can be used.

    I also use spelt flour to bake with which I find I need to use more liquid with, but with stevia it kinda pans out.

    Butterfly have you read the book "Nourishing Traditions". A very interesting read for folk like us...

  10. #10

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    Deb - who is the author of that book?? I am looking at trying to manage the risk of GD this time so I would be interested.

  11. #11

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    Haven't heard of that book, Deb. I'd love more information...

    BW

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