Sugar Substitutes II: Stevia.

28 06 2009

Stevia, known as “sweet herb”, this plant is 25 times sweeter than sugar when made as an infusion with 1 teaspoon stevia leaves to 1 cup of water. Two drops of this infusion equal 1 teaspoon of sugar in sweetness.

It is safe for a diabetic as it is does not change blood glucose levels. It does have a bit of an aftertaste you need to get used to. In South America and the Orient a product derived of Stevia called Stevioside has a 41% share of the food sweetener market.

There are some healing benefits of stevia as well.

  • Stevia is known to help regulate blood sugar,
  • helps to lower high blood pressure,
  • aids in weight loss by decreasing the desire for sugary foods.
  • Some people even report that it reduces their desire for tobacco and alcoholic beverages.
  • Stevia is also used in facemasks to smooth out wrinkles and heal skin blemishes and acne.

So why don’t we see more of it? Apparently the import of stevia was heavily influenced by Nutrasweet politics.

You can actually buyt a Stevia plant from Wal-Mart. It’s and annual plant and grows quite well. You harvest the leaves just as the flowers bloom, dry them, and then use them in teas, or crumble them up and use them in cooking.

You can get Stevia drops or packets in your local health food store. It can also be purchased in bulk form.

stevia-powder-facts

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78 Reasons to Ditch Sugar.

28 06 2009

In addition to throwing off the body’s homeostasis, excess sugar may result in a number of other significant consequences. The following is a listing of some of sugar’s metabolic consequences from a variety of medical journals and other scientific publications.

1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.

2. Sugar can upset the body’s mineral balance.

3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, concentration difficulties, and crankiness in children.

4. Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.

5. Sugar can adversely affect children’s school grades.

6. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.

7. Sugar contributes to a weakened defense against bacterial infection.

8. Sugar can cause kidney damage.

9. Sugar can reduce helpful high-density cholesterol.

10. Sugar can promote an elevation of harmful cholesterol.

11. Sugar may lead to chromium deficiency.

12. Sugar can cause copper deficiency.

13. Sugar interferes with absorption of calcium and magnesium.

14. Sugar may lead to cancer of the breast, ovaries, prostate, and rectum.

15. Sugar can cause colon cancer, with an increased risk in women.

16. Sugar can be a risk factor in gall bladder cancer.

17. Sugar can increase fasting levels of blood glucose.

18. Sugar can weaken eyesight.

19. Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitter called serotonin, which can narrow blood vessels.

20. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.

21. Sugar can produce an acidic stomach.

22. Sugar can raise adrenaline levels in children.

23. Sugar can increase the risk of coronary heart disease.

24. Sugar can speed the aging process, causing wrinkles and gray hair.

25. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.

26. Sugar can promote tooth decay.

27. Sugar can contribute to weight gain and obesity.

28. High intake of sugar increases the risk of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

29. Sugar can cause a raw, inflamed intestinal tract in persons with gastric or duodenal ulcers.

30. Sugar can cause arthritis.

31. Sugar can cause asthma.

32. Sugar can cause candidiasis (yeast infection).

33. Sugar can lead to the formation of gallstones.

34. Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.

35. Sugar can cause ischemic heart disease.

36. Sugar can cause appendicitis.

37. Sugar can exacerbate the symptoms of multiple sclerosis.

38. Sugar can indirectly cause hemorrhoids.

39. Sugar can cause varicose veins.

40. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraception users.

41. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.

42. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.

43. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.

44. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.

45. Sugar leads to decreased glucose tolerance.

46. Sugar can decrease growth hormone.

47. Sugar can increase total cholesterol.

48. Sugar can increase systolic blood pressure.

49. Sugar can change the structure of protein causing interference with protein absorption.

50. Sugar causes food allergies.

51. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.

52. Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.

53. Sugar can contribute to eczema in children.

54. Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease.

55. Sugar can impair the structure of DNA.

56. Sugar can cause cataracts.

57. Sugar can cause emphysema.

58. Sugar can cause arteriosclerosis.

59. Sugar can cause free radical formation in the bloodstream.

60. Sugar lowers the enzymes’ ability to function.

61. Sugar can cause loss of tissue elasticity and function.

62. Sugar can cause liver cells to divide, increasing the size of the liver.

63. Sugar can increase the amount of fat in the liver.

64. Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in the kidney.

65. Sugar can overstress the pancreas, causing damage.

66. Sugar can increase the body’s fluid retention.

67. Sugar can cause constipation.

68. Sugar can cause myopia (nearsightedness).

69. Sugar can compromise the lining of the capillaries.

70. Sugar can cause hypertension.

71. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraines.

72. Sugar can cause an increase in delta, alpha and theta brain waves, which can alter the minds ability to think clearly.

73. Sugar can cause depression.

74. Sugar can increase insulin responses in those consuming high-sugar diets compared to low sugar diets.

75. Sugar increases bacterial fermentation in the colon.

76. Sugar can cause hormonal imbalance.

77. Sugar can increase blood platelet adhesiveness which increases risk of blood clots.

78. Sugar can increase the risk of Alzheimer Disease.