Australia's Leading Natural Health Retailer

Stevia, the natural sugar alternative

Stevia, the natural sugar alternative | Mr Vitamins
Is there a healthy sugar alternative? Yes there is! Stevia or Stevia rebaudiana, as it is properly known, is a natural and safe alternative to sugar. Stevia is a herb that belongs to the Sunflower family and has been used in South America for centuries as both a sweetener and for medicinal purposes. The plant contains glycosides that are responsible for the sweet taste. These glycosides are 300 times sweeter than cane/beet sugar. Extracts of Stevia are made from both the leaves and the stems.


  • has no calories
  • does not affect blood sugar levels and
  • is safe for most diabetics or anyone with insulin resistance
Stevia is traditionally a medicinal plant. It has been used to help those who suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity.

The health benefits of using Stevia

  • Lowers blood pressure This herb helps lower blood pressure in a few different ways. The first way is that it has a similar affect on the body as calcium channel blocker drugs that are prescribed for high blood pressure. Secondly it is a mild diuretic. Stevia increases the muscle contractions that pump the blood to the heart. This makes it easier for the heart to work. Stevia is also known as a vasodilator (helps open restricted veins).
  • Weight loss Stevia can help you lose weight. Choosing Stevia as a natural sugar alternative will help you cut down on carbohydrate calories. It also has no affect on blood sugar levels. Sugar and other sweeteners cause blood sugar levels to spike, which can lead to weight gain.
  • Increases glucose tolerance Less sugar in the body means less work for your pancreas and more stable blood sugar. Regulating blood sugar levels naturally can lead to an increase in overall health.
  • Lowers uric acid levels Stevia has properties that help lower uric acid levels. Lowered levels are helpful to those who suffer from gout or urinary tract problems.
  • Decreases heartburn Stevia reduces stomach acidity. Sugar is a known cause of heartburn due to its acid nature in the digestive tract. Stevia does not increase stomach acid and has components that help increase digestive and intestinal health.

Stevia natural sweetenerStevia is readily available and easy to use

Making the switch to Stevia is easy as it comes in many usable forms, both liquid and powder. It is typically a concentrated substance so only small amounts are used. Stevia is also available in a dried leaf herb format and is used in larger quantities than the powdered or liquid forms.  Stevia can be used in both hot and cold beverages and can be sprinkled or mixed in with foods. It can be used in both cooking and baking but does not ‘brown’ or ‘crisp’ the way sugar does. This sweetener may have a bitter or licorice after taste. Try different brands until you find one that you prefer or decrease the amount you use. For guidance and advice on Stevia and other natural sweeteners 'ask a naturopath' at Mr Vitamins.