When you think of the dangers of stevia sweetener, weight gain does not seem a probable side effect. Steviol glycosides, chemical compounds causing the sweet taste, are the active components of stevia sweetener. Our bodies can neither digest them nor decompose. Thus stevia sweetener goes through our mouths and excretes through urine without adding a single calorie.
Let’s calculate… (despite my poor math skills)!
According to Mayo Clinic, we need to burn 3500 calories to lose one pound of body fats. Suppose you take averagely 5 cups of tea or coffee a day with one serving of sugar cube or roughly two teaspoons of granulated sugar. If each cube contains 9 grams of sugar (36 calories), your sugar intake with tea or coffee would be 180 cal/day and 5400 cal/month.
Now you decide to replace sugar in your tea and coffee with stevia sweetener. Ideally, you would be avoiding 5400 calories every month, which theoretically should reduce one and a half pounds of your fat every month and 18 pounds a year. You should continue more weight loss in the coming years.
Does it happen?
If yes, please share your experience at the end of this page.
However, despite the increasing popularity of non-nutrient sweeteners, including stevia, the obesity rate in adults has touched 39 percent in the United States alone. It has become an epidemic all around the world.
Interestingly, all non-nutrient sweeteners, including stevia, are proving one of the leading causes of obesity. It works in this way. As soon as we place stevia sweetener in our mouth, our taste receptors in tongue communicate the message to body that some sugary calories are arriving. Our body prepares it, as it has been doing for centuries, by releasing various hormones and enzymes.
However, that expected sugar does not arrive. Body cells need it for various functions. So they continue signaling for more sugar or energy. It increases hunger, and we eat more to get the required glucose and gain weight.
Prof. A. Douglas Kinghorn, from the University of Illinois at Chicago, USA eludes towards dangers of stevia sweetener as:
Iryna Liauchonak, Bessi Qorri, Et al. confirm A. Douglas Kinghorn by suggesting that stevia sweetener and other NNS [LINK TO MY PAGE-STEVI SIDE EFFECTS] activate various hormones, but when the body doesn’t get the required food, a hunger–satiety cycle starts.
They have also observed dangers of stevia as:
“Indeed, the low or zero caloric value of NNS can result in caloric compensation, whereby there is an adjustment for calories consumed at one occasion by reducing caloric intake at subsequent opportunities. Thus, weakened caloric compensation can result in excess energy intake that ultimately leads to increased weight gain.”
They have also recorded, "The use of a sweet-taste inhibitor decreased glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) and peptide YY (PYY) secretion by L cells, without affecting cholecystokinin (CCK) secretion from I cells, which are known to not express sweet-taste receptors. Thus, it appears that this network of sweet taste signaling pathways in the oral cavity and the GI tract mediate the hormonal responses that orchestrate the hunger–satiety cycle."
Dr. Bruce Fife’s book "The Stevia Deception" exposes dangers of stevia and other NNS that “There was a 41 percent increase in the risk of being overweight for every can or bottle of diet soft drink a person consumes each day.”
You can read a lot of blogs and YouTube videos, praising stevia sweetener. Even some dietitians may recommend switching to stevia for sweet taste. However, very few would be highlighting the real dangers of stevia.
Dr. Bruce Fife advises otherwise that the stevia sweetener is an anti-diet compound. He says in his famous book “The Stevia Deception”:
"Stevia seemed to block weight loss even when combined with rigorous weight-loss diets. It was more of an anti-diet product."
At another place, he suggests:
“This so-called health food does not help with weight loss; in fact, it promotes weight gain, negating the primary purpose for using it.”
The author tells the story of Tammy, who not only lost her baby while using stevia sweetener during pregnancy but also found it hard to reducing weight even after quitting stevia for months.
He has given a discount on an experiment where rats were distributed in three groups. One group was given a glucose solution while other two were given saccharin and stevia extract. In the end it was observed that “Both the stevia and saccharin groups gained significantly more weight than the glucose-fed animals.”
He has also observed, “Several large-scale human studies have also found a clear correlation between non-caloric sweetener use and weight gain… A multitude of animal and human studies have now shown that non-caloric sweeteners stimulate appetite more than sugar and encourage overeating.”
These studies prove stevia decreases peptide YY which is a hunger suppressor, as soon its sweetness touches your tongue. Resultantly you feel more hunger than sugar users and eat more, which leads to weight gain. Regular use or excessive consumption can make you obese easily and fast.
Saqib Ali Ateel
Stevia is a natural, zero-calorie popular sweetener. You may disagree what is written above. It is comparatively a new switch from sugar. You are welcome with your point of view, your personal story of using it or even new research which refutes or alleviates moringa benefits. You are requested to share it with our visitors.