Stevia is a plant that is used in traditional medicine and has many beneficial properties. Let's find out what it is and what they are
The use of stevia, despite being widespread throughout the world, is still prohibited due to some substances contained in the plant itself. The free use of this vegetable is allowed only in 3 states: Brazil, Paraguay and Japan. The beneficial and medicinal properties of stelvia are so many that one should write about it in an entire book. However, it must always be used with due precautions, since, according to some statistical studies carried out in the United States of America, the active ingredients of this plant could lead to cancer.
The debate on the effects of stevia is still ongoing in the European Union, so much so that on the one hand it is claimed to have to liberalize its use and consumption, while on the other hand that the vegetable, if not used properly, can harm health. However, even in Europe the use of this plant as a food supplement is allowed. Stevia has been discovered as a sweetener. In a not too distant past, this plant was imported to Europe and then added to various types of sweets.
All thanks to the sugars contained in its leaves. By being added to another substance, the stevia leaves release their carbohydrates, which give the cake a very particular flavor. The active ingredients that determine this sweetening use are stevioside and rebaudioside A. Always these substances allow the plant to be preserved for long periods of time, without ever being damaged. The places where it grows – mainly in the hills between Brazil and Paraguay – give the plant an unmistakable flavor. And if its use in the kitchen is purely sweetening, in medicine it has various purposes.
The first of them is surely to be a food supplement. Stevia has been specially studied and its essence is added to energy bars or various protein cocktails to dampen the flavor and provide the body with a significant amount of energy. The liquid stevia extract is drunk by people suffering from diabetes, as it is recommended by the Dukan diet for diabetics. In addition, it has a beneficial property useful to many women: that of making you lose weight. In fact, drinking the stevia extract allows you to take in particular sugars that bind to other substances, burning them. It is, however, a fairly ineffective way to lose weight if done alone.