STEVIA: The Herbal sugar for the 21st Century. Make your own natural powdered sugar by grinding leaves in a mixer grinder. Stevia is an all-natural sweetener with zero calories, zero carbohydrates and a zero glycaemic index & pharmaceutical properties therefore key source sweetener for the diabetic world.
With no calories and very little bitter aftertaste, stevia is an excellent alternative sweetener to sugar for teas, soft drink, confectionery, bakery etc. As a supplement to the diet, natural Stevia Rebaudiana reduces one's craving for sweets and fats, and "turn off" hunger sensations.
The plant Stevia rebaudiana has been used for more than 1,500 years by the Guarani people of South America who called it ka'a he'ê ("sweet herb"). The leaves have been used traditionally for hundreds of years in both Brazil and Paraguay to sweeten local teas and medicines, and as a "sweet treat".
Stevia rebaudiana (Bertoni) was discovered by Europeans in Paraguay in 1888 by Dr.M.S.Bertoni. He later botanically described and named the plant (1905) in honour of Paraguayan chemist Dr. Rebaudi.
Stevia possesses medicinal properties due to the presence of phytochemicals. It is sweet due to the presence of glycosides. Since glycoside is not a carbohydrate-based molecule therefore stevia is calorie-free. Stevia is a natural sweetener without any calories.
Stevia's excellent stability against pH, salt and high temperature conditions makes it an ideal sugar substitute for many baking and cooking applications. It does not ferment, colour or precipitate.
KEY APPLICATION: Increase mental alertness, energy levels, lowers blood pressure, cholesterol, control diabetes, prevent tooth decay, gingivitis, cavities, mouth sores, help in stomach disorders & helpful in digestion, lower blood sugar & weight loss.
PLANT FAMILY: Asteraceae
BOTANICAL NAME: Stevia Rebaudiana
VERNACULAR NAMES: Stevia, Sweetleaf, Sweet honey leaf, Candy leaf, Madhu Patra, Honey yerba
CHEMICAL COMPOSITION OF LEAF
Stevia contains eight glycosides. These are the sweet components isolated and purified from the leaves of stevia. These glycosides include: Stevioside, rebaudiosides A, C, D, E, and F, steviolbioside, dulcoside A. Stevioside and rebaudioside A are the most plentiful and are responsible for sweet taste.
Stevia leaf having rich nutritive ingredients such as nine essential amino acids (aspartic acid, glutamic acid, lysine, isoleucine, serine, alanine, proline, methionine and tyrosine), water-soluble vitamins (folic acid, vitamin C and vitamin B2), six fatty acids (stearic, oleic, linoleic palmitic, palmitoleic and linolenic acids), active phytochemicals (steviol, austroinullin, β-carotene, rebaudi oxides, dulcoside, nilacin, stevioside, riboflavin and thiamine), minerals (calcium, phosphorous, sodium, potassium, iron, magnesium and zinc)
The understanding of medicinal properties will help us utilize the herb better. Below are medicinal properties along with its meaning indicating multiple health benefits:
· Antioxidant- Neutralize the oxidation effect of free radicals.
· Anti-inflammatory- Reduces redness, swelling, pain, tenderness, heat etc.
· Anti-diabetic- Used to control the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood.
· Anti-Hypertensive- Reduce high blood pressure.
· Anti-tumour- Prevent or inhibit the formation or growth of tumours.
·Antimicrobial-Destroy or inhibit the growth of microorganisms and especially pathogenic microorganisms.
· Anti-Hypoglycaemic- Prevent abnormally diminished content of glucose in the blood.
· Diuretic- An agent that increases flow and volume of urine.
The information provided is for educational purposes only. This data is not to be considered complete and is not guaranteed to be accurate.