Stevia: Is it worth it?

Stevia on Keto: Is it worth it? The Ultimate Guide

On the ketogenic diet, sugar is considered to be the enemy. To stay in ketosis, your carb intake must be extremely minimal. Most people on the ketogenic diet have a daily net carb intake of 30 grams or less. Fortunately, there are other ways to achieve the same effect. A lot of people mistake the sweetener Stevia for Splenda. Both items claim to be low-carb sugar substitutes but differ in practice. This article will answer your questions about Stevia if you're new to the ketogenic diet. In this post, we'll learn about Stevia, a sugar substitute that's 100 per cent natural and has multiple health advantages.

Stevia on a keto diet

  1. Stevia: What Is It?
  2. Is Stevia a More Secure Substitute?
  3. Comparison between Natural and Synthetic
  4. How is Stevia made?
  5. How Does Stevia Sweetener Work?
  6. What Are Stevia's Health Advantages?
  7. The Sugar-Free Hype and Relationship with Keto
  8. A Variety of Sweeteners Made from Stevia
  9. A Comparison of Stevia and Monk Fruit
  10. What Sets Stevia Apart from Its Competitor, Sucralose (Splenda), And What Is the Difference Between the Two?
  11. Conclusions: Is Stevia Safe to Consume While Following Keto Diet?

Stevia: What Is It?

I think we should begin by discussing what Stevia is not. When it comes to sweetness, Stevia is not a sugar substitute. Understandably, you'd be sceptical of a "zero-calorie sweetener," given the association between aspartame and cancer and other artificial sweeteners. [1]

Stevia: What is it?

However, Stevia is not manufactured like other sugar substitutes. A South American shrub called Stevia rebaudiana is the source. However, it was in the 1970s that Japanese people started using it as a sweetener, even though it had been utilised by indigenous for over 200 years.

Is Stevia a More Secure Substitute?

The amount of data and commentary out there on sugar-free alternatives is staggering. Learning how or if Stevia is significantly different from other products on the market is the most significant way to evaluate its healthfulness.

Comparison between Natural and Synthetic

As one of the few sweets derived from plants rather than synthetic chemicals, advocates of Stevia argue that it is also one of the few truly "natural" sweeteners available. Products that use Stevia as a sweetener are often advertised as "no artificial sweeteners" on the label. It's important to realise that the phrase "natural" is now used extremely loosely and doesn't mean much according to labelling requirements, even though it sounds beautiful (and may be significantly better than alternatives).

How is Stevia made?

Sweeteners containing Stevia are made from the leaves of the South American shrub Stevia rebaudiana (Bertoni). Dietary supplements made from stevia leaves and crude extracts have been on the market for hundreds of years, but the plant has been used for centuries in cooking and medicine. To produce stevia sweeteners, steviol glycosides are extracted from the stevia plant leaves and then purified to remove some of the bitter qualities present in the crude extract. Glycosides of steviol share a structural component termed steviol. Compounds like rebaudioside A, the most common of numerous rebaudioside, and stevioside are examples (or reb A). 1 Bioconversion and fermentation are two other methods used to manufacture steviol glycosides, allowing for the mass production of rebaudioside with enhanced flavour and reduced bitterness, such as reb M.

Calories from steviol glycosides are not added to the body, and they do not affect blood sugar levels since they are not absorbed in the upper digestive tract. Gut microorganisms sever the glucose molecules and utilise them as fuel once they reach the colon. The remaining steviol backbone is absorbed by the portal vein, processed in the liver, and eliminated in the urine.

What Are Stevia's Health Advantages?

Let's take a look at the science behind the benefits of Stevia so you can understand the buzz around it before we get into the pros and downsides of taking it in your keto diet.

Reduce Blood Pressure

Research has indicated that consuming stevioside as a dietary supplement can help reduce high blood pressure, significantly increasing cardiovascular disease risk. The occasional use of actual Stevia as a sweetener in coffee or baking is unlikely to lower blood pressure substantially, but it certainly won't hurt.

Reduce blood sugar

Maintaining a Healthy Glucose Level

In contrast to white sugar and many other sugar substitutes (including honey and maple syrup, which are superior to refined sugar), Stevia helps regulate your blood sugar levels rather than spike them. Stevioside is used to treat type 2 diabetes, and research shows that consuming Stevia can positively affect blood sugar levels in the hours following a meal. Stevia's ability to increase insulin sensitivity may be responsible for this effect.

Accelerate Your Effortless Weight Loss

Because it contains no calories, green leaf stevia is an excellent addition to any diet designed to help you shed pounds. Stevia's potential blood sugar-balancing properties have sparked speculation that it could benefit people who struggle with cravings. This leads me to my next point: the role of any sweetener in a keto diet.

The Sugar-Free Hype and Relationship with Keto

Like fruit, keto-friendly sweeteners like Stevia might cause an increase in insulin production or a preference for sweet tastes even if they don't contribute many calories. It's best to avoid these foods, especially at the beginning of your keto journey while your body transitions from burning sugar to burning fat. One of the most significant long-term benefits of adopting a ketogenic diet is a reduced desire for sugary foods due to the satiety of good fats.

In other words, most of you are adopting a ketogenic diet to make less sugar a staple of your diet. All sweet sensations are likely to drive subsequent demands for sugars and carbohydrates, but undoubtedly certain sweeteners are far healthier and less destructive than others.

It's easy to get "stuck" in the sugar and carb cravings loop because, like the artificial sweeteners in diet drinks, sweet flavour will operate upon sweet taste receptors on the tongue and trigger similar reward circuits. If you're still training your metabolism to be flexible, you may be fostering the cravings you're trying to overcome by giving in to them instead of squashing them immediately.

A Variety of Sweeteners Made from Stevia

Have we convinced you yet that Stevia is worth trying? Various stevia sweeteners are available, and you should be aware of these differences before rushing out to the store to buy any. Just below, you'll find a rundown.

Stevia powder

Remember that there are significant quality differences between the many powdered forms of Stevia sold in the UK.

Green leaf stevia powder is only about 15 to 20 times sweeter than sugar if you buy the pure leaf variety [2]. The process involves drying the leaves and grinding them into a powder.

You should look for a powdered stevia product that contains nothing but pure leaf stevia extract and no fillers like corn sugar, inulin fiber, molasses, or even cane sugar, as many of these products have undergone extensive processing.

Products with these components are meant to last longer on store shelves, so it's best to avoid them if you can. When shopping for Stevia, you must be sure you're getting a high-quality product that has been processed as little as possible.

Stevia powder

Drops of Stevia

Many people choose liquid Stevia because it's simpler to incorporate into drinks and other dishes. A word of caution, though; some liquid extracts are extensively processed, so choose wisely. Did you know you can buy different flavours of stevia drops from our store?

Benefit plant extracts that have been overheated will not provide the same health benefits as those found in a more carefully crafted product. Another thing to watch out for is any added sweeteners, preservatives, or other chemicals in the liquid extract.

Stevia Extract, Highly Concentrated

Pure stevia extract has the highest sugar content. As we've already established, it can be up to 300 times as sweet as table sugar. Since this is the case, you'll only need a pinch of it when you cook.

To ensure you're getting the most out of your money, search for a product that doesn't use filler or other components that water down the plant's concentrated amounts.

Supplemental Sweeteners Made Using Stevia

To enhance the flavour of your food, Stevia is sometimes used with other zero-calorie sweeteners (Such as Stevia with erythritol). Make sure the Stevia you're using is combined with just natural sweeteners. Two of the ketogenic diet's most incredible zero-calorie sweeteners (along with Stevia) are erythritol and monk fruit. Avoid sucralose and aspartame, two artificial sweeteners that can cause inflammation in the body.

A Comparison of Stevia and Monk Fruit

If you are on a ketogenic diet, both monk fruit and Stevia are excellent choices.

Monk fruit, like Stevia, is a sugar substitute from a plant and does not affect blood sugar levels because it has zero calories. When compared to Stevia, the sweetness of monk fruit is noticeably lower. Sweetness comparisons to regular sugar demonstrate that it's just about 150-200 times sweeter. [3]

The sweet taste of monk fruit comes from an antioxidant called mogroside, which has been found to lower oxidative damage that can cause disease.

You can use monk fruit instead of Stevia when you want less sweetness in your recipe, or vice versa. As an alternative to Stevia, monk fruit is favoured by those who dislike the aftertaste of the latter.

Comparison between stevia and monk fruit

Naturally occurring in foods like fruits and fermented foods, erythritol is a zero-calorie sweetener with numerous health benefits. Sugar alcohols have a sweetness level between 60% and 80% of table sugar.

Erythritol has been shown to reduce the risk of numerous diseases by acting as an antioxidant in the body. Erythritol, like monk fruit and Stevia, can help you stay on track with your ketogenic diet.

What Sets Stevia Apart from Its Competitor, Sucralose (Splenda), And What Is the Difference Between the Two?

The source of Stevia and sucralose is where you'll find the most distinction. Stevia is derived from the naturally occurring stevia plant, whereas sucralose is a modified form of sugar (made by removing sugar-oxygen groups of sugar and replacing them with chlorine).

What's the Difference Between Stevia and Splenda?

Splenda is a synthetic sweetener, while Stevia comes from plants.

A product of "crazy science," Splenda has been heavily criticised. Thus, sucralose is not found in nature because it is a synthetic chemical substance. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with this; however, individuals who prefer organic options may find Stevia, a naturally derived, plant-based sweetener, to be a better fit. (However, it's important to note that you can also find Stevia in highly processed blends like Truvia and Stevia in the Raw.)

Stevia is less sweet than Splenda.

Despite popular belief, pure table sugar does not rank first on the sweetness scale. Splenda and Stevia are both sweeteners that are more effective than sugar. Compared to sugar, Splenda is 700 times sweeter, while Stevia is only 300 times sweeter. These items are sweet enough for most people's tastes, though.

Conclusions: Is Stevia Safe to Consume While Following Keto Diet?

The verdict is, you guessed it, that including Stevia in your keto diet plan is entirely up to you and your individual needs. Fortunately, it's easy to do some basic experiments on yourself to find out! The consumption of keto-approved sweeteners, such as Stevia, should be closely examined if sugar and carb cravings persist despite a long period of ketosis. Try going without them for a month and see if that helps you get more out of the keto diet. It could make all the difference.

Sustainability is an additional crucial factor to consider. Whether on keto for the long haul or just trying to cut back on carbs, you deserve a reward every once in a while. A stevia-based treat is probably not a big concern after you've reached a state of fat adaptation and metabolic flexibility, and it's light years better than a doughnut loaded with refined sugar.

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