And what about stevia?

I little over a year ago, I wrote about how stevia had been approved by the FDA for human consumption.  I’ve been using stevia for about five years now and so-far-I-haven’t-had-any-problems.

A day or two ago I came across this little tidbit on a paleo blog I read.  And I wanted to share.

There’s some scientific evidence to support the notion that Stevia is safe, even in type 2 diabetes patients1, 2. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated to have antihypertensive properties, as shown by Chan et al.3 and a long-term study4.

The bottom line is that Stevia seems to be safe, but we need more research to rule out possible side effects.

Yay!  Stevia = safe!  But hmmm…  Could there be side effects?  Wonder what those could be…  Perhaps it’s best to continue to use stevia in moderation, eh?

The great thing about this post too, is that they list references.

  1. Gregersen S, Jeppesen PB, Holst JJ, Hermansen K. Antihyperglycemic effects of stevioside in type 2 diabetic subjects. Metabolism. 2004 Jan;53(1):73-6.
  2. Barriocanal LA, Palacios M, Benitez G, Benitez S, Jimenez JT, Jimenez N, Rojas V. Apparent lack of pharmacological effect of steviol glycosides used as sweeteners in humans. A pilot study of repeated exposures in some normotensive and hypotensive individuals and in Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics. Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2008 Jun;51(1):37-41. Epub 2008 Mar 5.
  3. Chan P, Tomlinson B, Chen YJ, Liu JC, Hsieh MH, Cheng JT. A double-blind placebo-controlled study of the effectiveness and tolerability of oral stevioside in human hypertension. Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2000 Sep;50(3):215-20.
  4. Hsieh MH, Chan P, Sue YM, Liu JC, Liang TH, Huang TY, Tomlinson B, Chow MS, Kao PF, Chen YJ. Clin Ther. 2003 Nov;25(11):2797-808. Efficacy and tolerability of oral stevioside in patients with mild essential hypertension: a two-year, randomized, placebo-controlled study

2 Responses to And what about stevia?

  1. Michal says:

    I’m just as suspicious of these as any other artificial sweeteners. This is something that for the purposes I describe acts just like an artificial sweetener. For the long version
    http://www.paleonu.com/panu-weblog/2009/6/17/what-about-diet-soda.html

    Sweet shit triggers an insulin response. Since there is no sugar in your blood from eating Stevia but there is an insulin response your blood sugar will drop. This will make you feel hungry. Over time some resistance to this insulin will develop.

    Personally I avoid sweetened things but would prefer to eat sugar than to eat Sucralose, Aspartame, Sacharin, Stevia, or whatever the sweetener de jur is.

    • gilliebean says:

      I totally get where you’re coming from Michal, and I love Kurt’s post(s) on the topic. However, I find personally that my insulin response is much less with stevia than it is with real sugar. Sure there’s still an insulin response; but if it’s less, then that’s optimal, yes? I think so. Especially if stevia is every bit as natural as natural sugar. The others are chemicals. Ew!

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