Dangers of Stevia Revealed
By Elena Mauceri

Are there dangers of stevia?

According to my research, No.

The question you should be asking is "what are the benefits of stevia"? The benefits may be great.

The research shows that there are no dangers of stevia or stevioside (the component that makes the herb so sweet).

In fact, here are its BENEFITS:

o improves insulin sensitivity and reduces blood sugar, aiding weight loss

o reduces inflammation

o fights cancerous tumors

o lowers blood pressure

The research shows no danger of stevia. In fact, here's the latest news...

This JUST in...

The most recent research published on June 14, 2006 in the Phytotherapy Research journal states that "the results suggest that...stevioside is safe and supports the well-established tolerability during long term use as a sweetener".

That pretty much says it all.

The FDA and Stevia: Our Government Says There ARE Dangers of Stevia

The FDA has not approved stevia as a sweetener in the U.S. It is only approved for use as a "food supplement". However, the Japanese have been using stevia for decades--and it is used in many packaged food products in Japan. It is also widely used as a sweetener in Brazil. Obviously, the Japanese and Brazilians don't feel there are any dangers of stevia (stevioside) nor any danger in stevia rebaudiana (the whole herb).

The FDA feels that there is a danger of stevia, citing one study that showed fertility problems in male rats when they were given large doses of stevia. However, another study conducted on hamsters showed no fertility problems in either female or male sexes.

You can decide for yourself whether that's enough to scare you off. For that one study showing potential dangers of stevia, there are hundreds of other studies showing its positive effects.

And if you're wondering "well, did they study the herb in its WHOLE form (leaf), or the isolated stevioside?" Bravo! That's a very good question!

The majority of studies showing positive effects (and certainly no negative effects) have used stevioside--which is what comprises the stevia sweetener products. Those that studied the actual herb in its whole form (stevia rebaudiana) also found positive, therapeutic abilities.

Money Talks

You may have heard some people's theories that the reason the FDA will not approve it as a sweetener is not because of any true danger of stevia, but because of pressure from the companies who own patented artificial sweeteners like aspartame (Nutrasweet) and sucralose (Splenda).

These companies make a huge amount of money on their patented sweeteners, and they may very well feel threatened by a natural product such as stevia. Since stevia is natural, it cannot be patented (mother nature "owns" the patent!). Therefore, there can be no real money made from its production like something that is created in a lab.

So, in light of this recent research that proves no dangers of stevia, how long before it's approved as a sweetener in the U.S.?

I wouldn't hold my breath.

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