Hi there, it's Dr. Corey Howard,

I'm a physician

and a question to me today is,

is stevia a safe alternative to sugar?

Now stevia is about 200 times more,

200 times sweeter than sugar,

and the question really becomes,

is there a problem with carbohydrate metabolism?

Do people think that when they eat it,

there are other issues related to that?

The bottom line is this,

that stevia's been around

for well over a thousand years,

used around the country.

Japan, the country of Japan

consumes something like 40%

of all the stevia in the world.

They just use it.

There's been no known complication,

no known data,

no known data that really says

that this is something that's not good for you.

In fact, there was a study of end this year,

in Food and Chemical Toxicology,

tested in mice with type two diabetes,

it actually may have decreased

what's called fatty liver a little bit,

but ongoing studies will be needed

to see that this actually is, is true or not.

Bottom line there is it doesn't look like

it causes problems.

In fact, it might be beneficial.

The active component of it,

has a little sugar part.

One that's absorbable,

one that's not.

And the question is,

whether or not that's gonna increase sugar levels.

That has not been shown

to be the case yet either.

Although that does need

to be looked into further.

One of my concerns is that

the way that it's extracted,

it's used, a couple of products used

to extract it in a organic way,

which is methanol and ethanol.

And in that extraction process,

I just always wonder

if there's something else that happens.

For that impurity of, for that process,

I'd rather have natural products

than use something like that if necessary.

So it really becomes,

do you really need it?

Do you really need to have

that kind of sweetness, or not?

Can you use sugars?

Can you make date paste?

Can you make other products

that might be better,

rather than using that particular leaf in itself?

I find it very difficult to manage

from a standpoint in cooking and baking,

and I don't really like the taste, overall, myself.

It can interact with some of your medications

that are metabolized through the liver

so I would offer some caution there.

But generally, stevia does seem

to be a safe alternative to sugar

if that's what you really need.

Thanks a lot for the question.

Dr. Corey Howard signing off here.

Thanks a lot.

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