Stevia: Exploitation of sweeteners from nature?



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Stevia: Exploitation of sweeteners from nature? According to media reports, the sweetener stevia is to be mass-marketed in the coming months. While the call for natural sweeteners has come from naturopathy for a long time, industry has now discovered it and is beginning to seize it.

(2010-04-23) According to media reports, the sweetener stevia is to be brought onto the market in bulk in the coming months. While the call for natural sweeteners has come from naturopathy for a long time, industry has now discovered it and is beginning to seize it. Stevia is a South American plant whose leaves are about 30 times sweeter than cane sugar. South American Indians have been using the plant as a sweetener for centuries. The extracted ingredients, the steviol glycosides, of the plant are said to be 300 times sweeter than sugar.

The good thing about the plant is that it only resembles our sugar in taste, but there are no other side effects of our sugar, such as weight gain (stevia has practically no calories) and tooth decay. In addition, the honey herb, as it is also called, can be used almost safely by diabetics because it does not raise the blood sugar level. On the contrary, it is said to even be able to lower blood sugar. Naturopathy has known “Stevia Rebaudiana” for a long time. It is sometimes used as a naturopathic remedy for high blood pressure and heartburn. One effect is also the inhibition of plaques (dental plaque) and thus as a possible caries prevention, which is why stevia can be found in some mouthwashes and toothpastes.

The need to use natural sweet herb as a sweetener instead of sugar has been around for a long time. But when stevia emerged about 30 years ago, a US study that is said to have been co-financed by the sweetener industry showed that the sweet leaf has carcinogenic tendencies. But now the food industry has discovered stevia as a new means of generating profit. According to a report by Spiegel Online, one of the sweeteners contained in stevia, rebaudioside A, is said to have been chemically manufactured and patented. Stevia remains banned, but the ingredient is approved and a source of money to replace the expiring and expiring patents of aspartame and other sweeteners. According to Spiegel Online, the company Coca Cola should already have registered 24 patents for the stevia plant in 2007 and is working with its American partner Cargill to expand the product range.

Japan is the global pioneer in stevia use. Stevia has been grown here for about 50 years and used for almost as long. South American sweet cabbage can be found in many foods and beverages there and is said to have a market value of over 40 percent. Stevia has not yet been approved as food by the European Commission (EC). According to media reports, the ban is circumvented by introducing stevia as an ingredient in other products. (Thorsten Fischer, HP Osteopathy)

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