Is Stevia Bad For You?

There’s a lot on information, and misinformation, about Stevia on the internet. As you look at the back of any can of poppi you’ll find stevia is an ingredient. People often ask us if stevia is ok to drink and they worry about trying poppi because of it. We want to set the record straight about Stevia and answer some of the questions you may have about it. Here are commonly searched questions about stevia:

Question: Is Stevia an artificial sweetener?

Answer: Stevia is a natural sweetener but often gets mistaken as an artificial sweetener because it doesn't contain any calories. Artificial sweeteners are man made where as stevia is derived from the leaves of the Stevia rebaudiana plant, an herbal shrub native to South America. To extract the plant's intense sweetness, stevia leaves are harvested and dried.The leaves are then steeped in hot water.After multiple stages of filtering and centrifuging to concentrate the sweetest components of the leaf, the resulting purified stevia leaf extract is ready to be sold commercially.

Questions: Is Stevia bad for gut health?

Answer: The US Department of Agriculture did a study on stevia and researched stevia's was impact for gut health. We know more now than ever before that taking care of our gut can improve so many areas of our overall health. It's not wonder people worry about Stevia and their gut. Her findings contain good news for those trying to watch their sugar intake by adding Stevia into their diet and also trying to maintain good gut health. We loved this quote from the reported study.

"Research molecular biologist, Karley Mahalak, conducted in vivo and in vitro experiments and discovered that the compounds found in stevia extracts did not significantly alter microbial composition or diversity in the gastrointestinal tract.   These compounds (including steviol glycosides and erythritol, another non-nutritive sweetener that can be found in fruits) also did not affect natural gut function, including crucial metabolic processes required to break down the fats/lipids and fiber that we consume through food. In fact, Mahalak noted, the erythritol in commercially available stevia products could even help increase levels of butyric acid — a crucial fatty acid created when good bacteria break down dietary fiber — in the human gut.  This effect could potentially be helpful in promoting good colon health, especially with regard to those suffering from conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's disease."

She also concluded that the opposite is true about artificial sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose. She found "significant impact on human gut microbial community composition and structure, which indicates the potential for major changes in gut function".

Question: Is Stevia safe?

Answer: Stevia is recognized by the FDA as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS). It is helping people limit their intake of sugar but should always be used in moderation just like with most foods we consume. Most products on the market contain a very low level of stevia. Stevia is the very last ingredient found in poppi beverages and contains just a smidge. That's what makes poppi so great. It's the perfect combination of refreshing and lightly sweet with ingredients that you can read and understand.

Question: Is Stevia really zero calories?

Answer: Good news! Yes, stevia is actually zero calories. To put it plainly, stevia leaf extract is not metabolized, so it provides zero calories. Research shows that there is no accumulation of stevia in the body and that it passes through us during metabolism. Energy from fermentation of glucose is so low that it is minimal, and so, effectively, stevia can be said to provide zero calories.

Question: Is Stevia safe for diabetics?

Answer: A study done for National Library of Medicine found that there is no reported difference in glucose levels from drinking stevia in your favorite beverage. There were no significant differences in their fasting blood sugars 2 hours after drinking something with stevia in it. It's a healthy alternative to artificial sweeteners for diabetics, and all of us, as it has no effects on participants blood sugar levels.

So, is stevia bad for you? The answer to that question is no. This makes poppi the perfect choice for swapping out those sodas filled with tons of sugar or artificial sweeteners to a prebiotic soda. It's filled with healthy ingredients and amazing flavors in each can.

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