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Everyone loves a delicious treat, but consuming too much added sugar can have negative side effects. The CDC says that eating and drinking too much added sugar can lead to weight gain, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other health complications over time. But since the USDA’s recommended daily limit for added sugar is only 10% of your total calories (about 50 grams per day if you’re on a 2,000-calorie diet), it can be very easy to consume “too much.”
Fortunately, there are plenty of no-calorie sweeteners on the market, like Stevia In The Raw, that can easily help you cut some of your sugar calories when a sweet craving hits. But what exactly is stevia, where does it come from, and what can you do with it? Read on for more facts about stevia you didn’t know before.
Some no-calorie sweeteners, like stevia, are derived from plants.
Stevia is a zero-calorie sweetener that comes from a green, leafy plant known as Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni. This plant is part of the Asteraceae family, which includes sunflowers, daisies, and chrysanthemums. It is native to areas like Paraguay and Brazil, but can also be easily grown in people’s homes.
So how does this leafy plant turn into the powdered sweetener found at your local grocery store? When the stevia plant is ready, it is harvested, dried, and then the dried leaves are soaked in water. Soaking in water creates an extract that is then dried and crystallized.
Not all no-calorie sweeteners are the same.
Many stevia powders you see in stores are not pure stevia extract and are mixed with different ingredients. So it’s important to know which stevia products have the purest ingredients. For example, Stevia In The Raw avoids artificial flavors or additives, which other brands use to enhance flavor, and gets virtually all of its sweetness from Stevia leaf extract. Contains levels of dextrose and maltodextrin to make it more measurable and comparable to sugar.
Not all have a bad aftertaste!
Although you may notice that some no-calorie sweeteners leave a strange taste in your mouth after consuming them, that’s not always the case, as long as you choose the right brand. The high level of purity of the Stevia Leaf Extract in Stevia In The Raw eliminates the aftertaste found in some less pure Stevia products from other brands.
Yes, they actually contain zero calories.
Stevia is a great sugar replacement when you’re still craving something sweet but need to cut back on sugar because it’s zero calories. Plus, stevia leaf extract is 300-400 times sweeter than regular cane sugar, which means you’ll be able to use much less to achieve the same amount of sweetness you’re used to.
Stevia is good for a variety of different diets.
Due to the zero calorie nature of Stevia, it can fit into a multitude of different diets and eating patterns. Most types of Stevia sweeteners are suitable for diabetics or people who want to lower their blood sugar. Stevia In The Raw has less than one gram of carbs per serving, making it suitable for diabetics who still want to indulge in something sweet.
Due to the low sugar/carb content of stevia, it is also a great sugar alternative for those on the Keto diet. Since most people on Keto (depends on your specific needs) limit their carb intake to about 20-50 grams per day, using stevia as a sweetener can save you calories from sugar.
Stevia In The Raw is also completely gluten-free and never touches wheat products in the manufacturing process, making it perfectly safe for those with celiac disease. And if you’re vegan or plant-based, you can rest assured that this product is certified vegan.
Stevia contains zero allergens.
If you have a food allergy, then you know that sometimes it can be difficult to find safe and reliable foods at your local grocery store. Stevia In The Raw, however, is totally free of 8 major allergens: wheat, dairy, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, soy, fish, shellfish, and sesame.
You can use stevia like regular sugar.
You can use sugar substitutes like stevia in things like coffee, yogurt, or smoothies, but you can also cook and bake with it the same way you would use regular sugar.
Each brand of Stevia will have their own ratios for how you can substitute it in a regular recipe. Stevia In The Raw can be used with the same measuring volume, which means that one cup of sugar in a recipe is one cup of Stevia In The Raw. However, In The Raw notes that when you bake something like cookies or cakes, regular sugar helps provide the right texture, so replacing it entirely with stevia may produce an undesirable result. They suggest trying half sugar and half stevia instead.