The Mediterranean diet doesn’t include a lot of added sugars and so added sugars should be limited if you’re sticking to this diet. This means staying away from candy, most baked goods, and sugar and syrup-sweetened drinks like soda and artificial juices.
Coming from a South American plant, stevia rebaudiana Bertoni, the new sweetener has the wind in its sails. It is said of this stevia that it is 300 times sweeter than sucrose, without calories, without harmful effects on health
What Is Stevia?
Used for centuries in South America, stevia is still part of their herbal medicine today. The Guarani Indians lend it many properties including lowering the level of glucose in the blood. It would also have a beneficial effect on hypertension, dental caries, and water retention. With us, this natural sugar was authorized in 2010. Since then, success has been at the rendezvous. Manufacturers integrate it into many processed products such as sodas, cakes, yogurts, and sweets. It is true that stevia (E 960) appears to be the most virtuous compared to synthetic sweeteners such as aspartame (E 951).
A Natural Sweetener
The sweetening power of stevia is 300 times higher than sugar and this is without calories! Its other big advantage lies in its almost zero glycemic indexes. A strong argument is when you watch your line or suffer from diabetes. Remember that in the case of diabetes, the blood shows too high a level of glucose. Hence the interest in consuming foods with a low glycemic index so as not to increase this rate. Stevia is found in the form of powder, pieces, lozenges, and syrup. You can also grow it in its natural state on your balcony. You will then use its leaves. They can be consumed fresh in your drinks or dried before being powdered. In practice, stevia sugars wonderfully dairy products, drinks, and desserts. Be careful, its licorice taste can displease. To remedy this, it is enough to dose correctly.
Does Stevia Make You Fat?
Stevia does not make you lose weight. It simply avoids a surplus of calories in your diet. Does it make you fat? It can be an effective way to control your weight but the calorie saving is derisory next to all the sugar consumed in everyday consumer products.
Dangers Of Stevia And Health Effects
At present, no side effects are to be deplored even if the controversy remains: no carcinogenic effects, mutagenic, it is not toxic in any case in reasonable quantities (do not exceed 1 g of stevia per day, which is nevertheless considerable). Treatment adjustment may be necessary for non-insulin-dependent diabetics and hypertensive people. Note that it is useless for pregnant women. There are possible interactions with medications or dietary supplements. It is then better to take medical advice before consuming it.
Stevia looks attractive since it represents a natural alternative to sugar and synthetic sweeteners. If you want a natural alternative to stevia, bet on coconut sugar, honey, or maple syrup.
Good news then! Sweets are not prohibited as part of a Mediterranean diet. Stevia does not make you fat. However, this natural sweetener is not going to make you lose weight. To lose weight, one of the keys to success lies in a healthy and balanced diet.