Stevia – many people have heard about it, but not everyone knows about its properties and its use. Below you can find out what stevia is and in which cases it is worth using it.
Stevia and its valuable properties
The term stevia is used to describe a plant of the aster family, which naturally occurs in Central and South America. It is also called a candyleaf, which is directly related to its properties. The plant is a rich source of steviol glycosides (mainly found in its stems and leaves), which have an incredibly high level of sweetness! The sweetness obtained from 1 teaspoon of powdered stevia leaf is comparable to a full glass of white table sugar (which, according to the experts, means that it is about 300 times as sweet). It is not difficult to guess that only a little bit of it is enough for a meal to have the desired and incredibly sweet taste.
Another and equally valuable property of this sweetener is that it does not contain calories! The glycosides contained in the plant are additionally not subject to digestive processes, which prevents stevia from being accumulated in the body or depositing it in the form of undesirable fatty tissue. What is more, stevia is a perfect substitute for unhealthy sucrose in the kitchen. Especially as it shows a high level of resistance to high temperatures.
What are the uses of stevia?
It is easy to guess that the main use of stevia will be as a sweetener for various products and dishes. Its high sweetness, low calorie content and no clear effect on sugar fluctuations (i.e. glucose and insulin levels) make the candyleaf an exceptionally beneficial alternative to popular and obesity-promoting sucrose. Due to its low glycemic index value, stevia can also serve as a substitute for honey, e.g. for people at real risk of postprandial hyperglycemia.
In what cases can stevia be used?
- for tea, coffee or other beverages (including home made juices!)
- for cakes, baked goods and various types of desserts
- preserves in the form of jams or marmalades
The valuable properties of stevia were used in the Veggie Protein Complex protein supplement by Olimp Sport Nutrition. It is a product in the form of a powder, which makes it possible to supplement the daily diet with complete plant proteins (peas, brown rice and pumpkin seeds) and supports the growth and preservation of muscle mass. The manufacturer has decided to add the sweetener to reduce the calorific value of the supplement, emphasize its taste and, above all, provide only plant-based and healthy ingredients! The supplement was created for vegans and vegetarians, as well as anyone who wants to maintain a varied diet.