If you do not find what you are looking for here... we highly
recommend searching our resource
center... Click Here.
Is Steviva available in
Currently Steviva is available only in a few stores. In
the near future it will be through out the US. Join our
Steviva Newsletters for store
locations and dates.
Is Steviva going to be sold
in single serving packets?
There are other companies selling single serving packets.
However, they are using Maltodextrin to prevent caking as
well as reducing the concentration. We are currently working
with a company that will package Steviva in a very small
single serving packet without any additives thus reducing
package size and waste of paper.
Is Steviva available in a
If you would like Steviva in a liquid form, simply mix one
part Steviva with four parts water in a small bottle and
refrigerate. This way you can save yourself a bundle over
what other companies charge for their liquid.
Does Steviva have an aftertaste?
If used in excessive amounts Stevioside has been found to
produce a slight licorice taste. If used in moderation you
may find that Steviva produces no aftertaste whatsoever.
Can I cook with Steviva?
There have been several cookbooks written about cooking
with stevia. You can find many of them by clicking
here.Steviva can resist heat up to 377° f. There
have been several recipes floating around the internet that
we have heard very good things about. The best thing to
do is find out through trial and error and email us the
results so we can pass them along to others who have made
this a frequently asked question. If you are interested
in baking... we strongly suggest you use the Steviva
Blend. It is all natural and has the same sweetness
and texture as sugar but without the carbs and the calories.
Are there any known side
effects to using stevia
The Japanese during their evaluation of stevia
as a possible sweetening agent performed elaborate safety
tests. Few substances have ever yielded such consistently
negative results in toxicity trials as have stevia.
Almost every toxicity test imaginable has been performed
on Stevioside at one time or another. The results are always
What is stevia?
Rebaudiana is an herb in the Chrysanthemum family which
grows wild as a small shrub in parts of Paraguay and Brazil.
The glycosides in its leaves, including up to 10% Stevioside,
account for its incredible sweetness, making it unique among
the nearly 300 species of stevia
There are indications that stevia
(or Ca-he-he) has been used to sweeten a native beverage
called mate since Pre-Columbian times. However, a Scientist
named Antonio Bertoni first recorded its usage by native
tribes in 1887.
How much stevia is used around
Exact numbers are unavailable at this time. However, as
an indication, Japanese consumers used the equivalent of
700 metric tons of stevia
leaves in 1987 alone. This number does not include other
major consuming countries such as Brazil and the whole of
South America; South Korea, China and the whole of the Pacific
Rim; as well as Europe, Australia and North America. I would
also assume that the Japanese figure has increased since
What is the FDA's position
The FDA's position on stevia is somewhat ambiguous. In 1991,
citing a preliminary mutagenicity study, the FDA issued
an import alert which effectively blocked the importation
and sale of stevia in this country. Ironically, this was
the year that a follow-up study found flaws in the first
study and seriously questioned its results.
In September of 1995, the FDA revised its import alert
to allow stevia and its extracts to be imported as a food
supplement but not as a sweetener. Yet, it defines stevia
as an unapproved food additive, not affirmed as GRAS (Generally
Recognized as Safe) in the United States. The following
is a portion of this revised alert:
"If stevia is to be used in a dietary supplement for
a technical effect, such as use as a sweetener or flavoring
agent, and is labeled as such, it is considered an unsafe
food additive. However, in the absence of labeling specifying
that stevia is being or will be used for technical effect,
use of stevia as a dietary ingredient in a dietary supplement
is not subject to the food additive provisions of FD &
Where is stevia cultivated?
Mainly in Paraguay, Brazil, Japan and China. There are other
growers scattered across the Pacific Rim. stevia is also
being cultivated in Southern Ontario and Mexico. Surprisingly,
it has been successfully grown in California and the South
of England as well.
How has stevia been used
in food applications?
First, as a prepackaged replacement for sugar and artificial
sweeteners. Second, it has been used in various food products,
including the Japanese sugar-free versions of Wrigley's
gums, Beatrice Foods yogurts and even diet Coke. It has
also been used in Japanese style pickles, dried seafoods,
fish meat products, vegetables and seafoods boiled down
with soy sauce, confectioneries and a host of other products.
Whether it will reach into food applications such as these
in the U.S. market depend largely on the FDA's regulatory
position and health industry efforts to re-classify stevia
as a GRAS (generally recognized as substance.
Is stevia safe?
In general, stevia is an all-natural herbal product with
centuries of safe usage by native Indians in Paraguay. It
has been thoroughly tested in dozens of tests around the
world and found to be completely non-toxic. It has also
been consumed safely in massive quantities (Thousands of
tonnes annually) for the past twenty years. Although one
group of studies, perform 1985 through 1987, found one ofthe
metabolises of steviosides, called Steviol, to be mutagenic
towards a particular strain of Salmonella bacteria, there
is serious doubt as to whether this study is applicable
to human metabolism of stevia. In fact, the methodology
used to measure the mutagenicity in this test was flawed
according to a follow-up piece of research which also seriously
questioned the validity of the results. For myself, I intend
to use the product with both confidence in nature and respect
for the healthy moderation and balance which nature teaches
Can stevia replace sugar
in the diet?
Yes. Refined sugar is virtually devoid of nutritional benefits
and, at best, represents empty calories in the diet. At
worst, it has been implicated in numerous degenerative diseases.
stevia is much sweeter than sugar and has none of sugar's
How sweet is stevia?
The crude stevia leaves and herbal powder (green) are reported
to be 10-15 times sweeter than table sugar. The refined
extracts of stevia called steviosides (a white powder, 85-95%
Steviosides) claim to be 200-300 times sweeter than table
sugar. My experience is that the herbal powder is very sweet
while the refined extract is incredibly sweet and needs
to be diluted to be properly used. Both products have a
slight bitter aftertaste, also characteristic of licorice.
Can stevia replace artificial
sweeteners in the diet?
Yes! I do not believe that humans should consume anything
artificial in their diets. stevia offers a safe, all-natural,
alternative to these "toxic time-bombs." And industrial
usage in Japan proves that this substitution is both practical
How many calories are in
Virtually none. And the refined stevia extracts are considered
to be non-caloric.
Will stevia raise my blood
Not at all. In fact, according to some research, it may
actually lower blood sugar levels. However, this research
has yet to be confirmed and contradictory results make any
Can I use stevia if I am
Diabetes is a medical condition which should be monitored
and treated by a qualified physician or health care practitioner.
However, stevia can be a part of a healthy diet for anyone
with blood sugar problems since it does not raise blood
sugar levels. If in doubt, ask your doctor. However, if
they do say no, ask them politely for the current research
to support their opinion.
Can I combine stevia with
Most certainly. However, sweeteners in general should be
used in moderation in a balanced healthy diet. And refined
and artificial sweeteners should be avoided altogether.
Will stevia harm my teeth?
Apparently not. Two tests conducted by Purdue University's
Dental Science Research Group have concluded that Stevioside
is both fluo-ride compatible and "significantly"
inhibits the development of plaque, thus stevia may actually
help to prevent cavities.
Can stevia be used in cooking
Absolutely! Industrial research in Japan has shown that
stevia and Stevioside extracts are extremely heat stable
in a variety of everyday cooking and baking situations.
Does stevia contain vitamins
Raw herbal stevia contains nearly one hundred identified
phytonutrients and volatile oils, including trace amounts
of Rutin (from the Callus) and B-Sitosterol (from the leaves).
However, in the quantities typically consumed, the nutritive
benefits will be negligible. The extracts of stevia, being
more refined, will contain far fewer of these phytonutrients
and volatile oils.
How are stevia extracts prepared?
Extracts of stevia leaves can be prepared by a number of
methods some of which are patented. One researcher states:
"Production of Stevioside involves water extraction
from the dried leaves, followed by clarification and crystalization
processes. Most commercial processes consist of water extraction,
decoloration, and purification using ion-exchange resins,
electrolytic techniques, or precipitating agents."
Can I make my own stevia
Yes. A liquid extract can be made from the whole stevia
leaves or from the green herbal stevia powder. Simply combine
a measured portion of stevia leaves or herbal powder with
pure USP grain alcohol (Brand, or Scotch will also do) and
let the mixture sit for 24 hours. Filter the liquid from
the leaves or powder residue and dilute to taste using pure
water. Note that the alcohol content can be reduced by very
slowly heating (not boiling) the extract and allowing the
alcohol to evaporate off. A pure water extract can be similarly
prepared, but will not extract quite as much of the sweet
glycosides as will the alcohol. Either liquid extract can
be cooked down and concentrated into a syrup.
What is the replacement factor
for stevia herbal powder and extract in terms of common
Since stevia is 10 to 15 times sweeter than sugar, this
is a fair, if approximate, replacement factor. Since the
crude herb may vary in strength, some experimentation may
be necessary. The high stevioside extracts are between 200-300
times sweeter than sugar and should be used sparingly. Unfortunately,
FDA labelling guidelines may prevent manufacturers from
providing a specific replacement factor. The Steviva Brand
stevia blend is equal in sweetnes to sugar and be used in
baking and cooking quite easily.
What can't I do with stevia?
stevia does not caramelize as sugar does. Meringues may
also be difficult since stevia does not brown or crystalize
as sugar does. But the Steviva Brand, stevia Blend does
brown, carmelize and crystalize just like sugar. Try it.
Where can I buy stevia herbal
powder and extract?
At Steviva.com or your local natural food store. As stevia
gains consumer acceptance, it may also begin to appear in
supermarkets and grocery stores, but probably only in its
What is the future of stevia?
Very bright, as long as the gene stock of the Native Paraguay
Rebaudiana species is preserved in the wild. Overharvesting
and foreign transplantation has depleted this stock which
contains the greatest possible gene diversity, essential
to the strength and continuance of the species.