Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Truvia - The Natural Sweetener

The other day when I was parked on the couch in front of the TV watching the Mentalist, I came across an ad about Truvia, the zero-calorie natural sugar substitute. Surely enough, it got me curious. So naturally I googled it and came across their website to learn more about it. Truvia is a product of the Stevia plant that hails from the sunflower family.

The Truvia website says: Truvia™ natural sweetener is refreshingly uncomplicated. Sprinkle it on your grapefruit. Spoon it in your coffee. It won't end up on your conscience or your thighs. One packet of Truvia™ natural sweetener provides the same sweetness as two teaspoons of sugar.Truvia™ natural sweetener is a great alternative for people with diabetes. It is also kosher certified.

Water. Sunshine. Nutrients from the earth. That's what goes into the stevia plant. Then nature works her magic and creates a wonderfully sweet taste. Next, we steep the leaves, much like making tea, that begins the process of capturing rebiana, the best tasting part of the stevia plant. Ultimately, this little leaf gives back a recipe for sweetness that's both delicious and zero-calorie guilt free.

Now this all sounded good, so I decided to dig a little deeper...Let's see what Wikipedia.com says about what this stevia plant is. Well Wikipedia says, "The species Stevia rebaudiana, commonly known as sweetleaf, sweet leaf, sugarleaf, or simply stevia, is widely grown for its sweet leaves. As a sweetener and sugar substitute, stevia's taste has a slower onset and longer duration than that of sugar, although some of its extracts may have a bitter or licorice-like aftertaste at high concentrations. Medical research has also shown possible benefits of stevia in treating obesity and high blood pressure. Because stevia has a negligible effect on blood glucose, it is attractive as a natural sweetener to people on carbohydrate-controlled diets. However, health and political controversies have limited stevia's availability in many countries; for example, the United States banned it in the early 1990s unless labeled as a supplement. Stevia is widely used as a sweetener in Japan, and it is now available in Canada as a dietary supplement. Rebiana is a trade name for a zero-calorie sweetener containing mainly the steviol glycoside rebaudioside A (Reb-A), which is extracted from stevia."

What I don't seem to understand is that if this plant is soo beneficial, why was it banned back in the early 1990s especially when the US was rapidly becoming the fattest country of the world. Diseases such as diabetes, obesity was soaring like a rocket? Although everything thats been written on it so far has been fine dandy, I know that my cynical mind can not be easily tricked. There is always a good and bad side and I guess We just have to wait until someone does more research on it and I have access to it on the the Internet. Until then, try it and let me know what you think. Anything and Everything is good in moderation!

Enjoy this next picture...

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