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Stevia and insulin?

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  • Stevia and insulin?

    Hi, guys. I have seen conflicting things about stevia and whether or not it produces an insulin spike like sugars and artificial sugar substitutes do. I am considering cutting it out of my diet because of this reason (some say it does) but then I read in other places that it's actually helpful for people with insulin resistance.

    Is there no definitive answer to this problem?

    Has anyone here cut out stevia and been helped by it? Or perhaps uses it and sees no negative side effects in this regard?

    Thanks!

  • #2
    What I've read is that not only does stevia not have an insulin response, but it helps promote insulin sensitivity and reduces blood pressure as a side effect. Now, does it increase insulin sensitivity by replacing sugar in a CW diet, or will it further increase insulin sensitivity in someone that has no added sugar in their diet to begin with? That is the question. I'm guessing its promotion of insulin sensitivity is because its use causes people to use less sugar, so someone that's primal and adds no sugar to begin with will see no effect. I have ZERO proof of this statement and it's just my own bias. Hopefully, someone more knowledgeable will reply. I use stevia pretty much on a daily basis - a cup of decaf tea with half a teaspoon of stevia makes me feel better in the morning at work.
    Don't put your trust in anyone on this forum, including me. You are the key to your own success.

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    • #3
      Steviol, the cousin of sorbitol, is a sugar alcohol found in stevia. Yes, it absolutely raises blood sugar and causes an insulin response. You can find charts of the sugar alcohols and their conversion rate to glucose on the Internet. Also, if you are buying crystalized packets of purified steviol (such as Truvia), read the label: the number one ingredient is dextrose (sugar). Same for all those crystalized sugar substitutes (that are actually sugar).
      “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” W. Edwards Deming
      Blogging at http://loafingcactus.com

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      • #4
        Originally posted by ChocoTaco369 View Post
        What I've read is that not only does stevia not have an insulin response, but it helps promote insulin sensitivity and reduces blood pressure as a side effect.
        I thought Xylitol was the one that did that.

        *wanders off to look up sugarless sugar studies*

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        • #5
          Originally posted by brahnamin View Post
          I thought Xylitol was the one that did that.

          *wanders off to look up sugarless sugar studies*
          Erythritol registers a 0 on the glycemic index scale. Maybe that's what you're thinking of. Xylitol ranks I think a 13 or something close.

          I'm not aware of a stevia insulin response. Stevia is not a sugar alcohol. It is an herb. I don't buy fake stevia, though (Truvia, Purvia, etc.). I buy Stevita off Vitacost, which is 95% pure stevia and 5% erythritol.

          According to Wikipedia:

          The steviol glycosides are responsible for the sweet taste of the leaves of the stevia plant (Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni). These compounds range in sweetness from 40 to 300 times sweeter than sucrose.[1] They are heat-stable, pH-stable, and do not ferment.[2] They also do not induce a glycemic response when ingested, making them attractive as natural sweeteners to diabetics and others on carbohydrate-controlled diets.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steviol_glycoside
          It's Wiki, so take it for what it's worth.
          Don't put your trust in anyone on this forum, including me. You are the key to your own success.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by ChocoTaco369 View Post
            Stevia is not a sugar alcohol. It is an herb.
            I'm not sure what is meant?
            “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” W. Edwards Deming
            Blogging at http://loafingcactus.com

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            • #7
              I like to get Sweet Leaf stevia, the ingredients is just stevia and soluble vegetable fiber which Sweet Leaf clams to help nourish good gut flora. A packet claims to have 0 on the glycemic index.

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              • #8
                how about the reason your using it...

                apart from the insulin response which i dont think it has, if anything in a person w/o blood sugar issues it can cause hypoglycemia and too low blood pressure...

                look at why you need sweet. are you doing something weird and gross like putting stevia on your eggs? in everything you eat or drink? are you using it as a clutch because you think fruit is gonna give you a fat liver? something like this, it mental and IMO just as important as the insulin response. you need to ween you brain off sweet altogether and enjoy it naturally.

                i know, its a herb, but imagine if it was something like oregano or thyme... use it the same way
                Get on my Level
                http://malpaz.wordpress.com/

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by loafingcactus View Post
                  Steviol, the cousin of sorbitol, is a sugar alcohol found in stevia. Yes, it absolutely raises blood sugar and causes an insulin response. You can find charts of the sugar alcohols and their conversion rate to glucose on the Internet. Also, if you are buying crystalized packets of purified steviol (such as Truvia), read the label: the number one ingredient is dextrose (sugar). Same for all those crystalized sugar substitutes (that are actually sugar).
                  Actually the number one ingredient is erythritol followed by rebiana and "natural flavors". Not seeing dextrose on the label. Are you thinking of Splenda?

                  Truvia® Ingredients - What Goes Into Every Packet and Scoop

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                  • #10
                    Thank you for the correction. So another sugar alcohol instead.

                    And yes, I do kind of have a vendetta against sugar alcohols. When I first got my glucose monitor and was in range and everything was going well, I ate a "sugar free" product and watched my blood sugar soar. I know about "transfat free" having transfats and all of that, but I had no idea about the "sugar free" scam. I was so mad I got scammed!!
                    “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” W. Edwards Deming
                    Blogging at http://loafingcactus.com

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                    • #11
                      If you're buying Stevia in a white, powdered form - it's most likely processed crap. Real stevia is a type of tea leaf - it is green, not white. It does not taste very good. It just tastes like semi-sweetened bitter tea.

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                      • #12
                        Erythritol is supposedly not as bad for blood sugar (or those super fun gastrointestinal issues) as some of the others. Still, I use NOW liquid stevia extract which doesn't have any of that. I've tried the Truvia/PureVia and didn't have any GI issues from it. I only had one packet, though. I don't track my blood glucose. I've been thinking I might start just as a fun experiment.

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