Dr. Weil on Stevia

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Dear Group,
Have you seen this comment from Ask Dr Weil?  Here he condemns the FDA.  Iove the Treasure Stevia quote!
Judith.

Stevia
Stevia comes from a shrub native to Paraguay, Stevia rebaudiana. It also grows in Brazil and Argentina, and is now widely cultivated in China. The leaves have been used for centuries by native peoples to make sweet teas, or to sweeten other foods, with no evidence of adverse reactions. In Japan, Brazil and other countries, people use the extracted sweet principle, called stevioside, as a table sweetener. It tastes faintly of licorice and is many, many times sweeter than sucrose. Stevia has minimal calories and is reputed to have beneficial effects on fat absorption and blood pressure. The Food and Drug Administration has been trying to suppress stevia for years, some say at the instigation of the manufacturer of aspartame. The agency still refuses to classify it as a safe food additive, a position I find untenable. The easiest way to use stevia is to dissolve the granular white powder in water and use drops as a sweetening solution. You can use it in anything -- on your cereal, in baked goods, whatever. But you do need to adjust recipes to make it work, because you're using just a few drops of liquid instead of a cup or so of sugar. One reference I've seen replaces 1 cup of sugar with 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of the herb, or 1/4 teaspoon of the white powder extract. I'd check with your supplier to get information on the best way to do this without ending up with flat muffins or rock-hard cookies. Stevia is especially useful for people who cannot tolerate sugar, including diabetics. And despite the FDA's import ban on foods sweetened with stevia, you can find it sold as a dietary supplement.


And this gem of a quote from the Treasure Stevia site:

Treasure Stevia is the natural sugar alternative for those of us sick of sugar making us sick and tired of the MS and Lupus like symptoms caused by the registered pesticides masquerading as viable sweetener alternatives.



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Xylitol

There is new research showing that a sugar called xylitol can significantly improve oral health, improve calcium absorption, increase bone density and remineralize tooth enamel. Xylitol also helps prevent or eliminate gum disease, cavities, tooth loss, asthma, inner ear infections, chronic throat and sinus conditions, osteoporosis, and cardiovascular disease. Xylitol has only 2.4 calories per gram, compared to 4 calories per gram for sucrose sugar. Xylitol is digested slowly, making it easier on your pancreas and useful for diabetics. You can purchase xylitol in five pound bags and use it in cooking and for all purposes you would ordinarily use sugar. Due to the health benefits from consuming xylitol, we suggest that it is a good substitute for ordinary sugar.

The herb stevia is the best no-calorie sweetener. Available in health food stores.



 


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