Frequently Asked Questions
Stevia, or stevia rebaudiana Bertoni, is a plant of the Asteraceae (sunflower) family, whose leaves have been used for more than 200 years to sweeten food and beverages in Paraguay. In 1931, two French chemists isolated the glycosides that give stevia its sweet taste. Today, stevia is grown commercially and used in many countries around the world as a great tasting sweetener. It is 100% natural, has zero calories, and is suitable for those with diabetes.
Stevia is the first 100% natural, zero-calorie sweetener made from a plant. It does not include any added chemicals, and it can be anywhere from 50 to 450 times sweeter than sugar. GLG produces only the purest, most refined form of stevia by extracting the sweetest components and separating them from impurities. This produces a superb taste with no lingering aftertaste. Further, stevia is stable at high temperatures (thus safe for cooking purposes) and has been shown in clinical trials to have many additional health benefits.
GLG is able to produce highly refined grades of stevia that models the taste of sugar very closely. Lower grades of stevia often found on the market today sometimes leave behind a lingering aftertaste or bitter flavor due to leftover impurities in the product. GLG produces only high quality stevia to provide consumers with a lasting, consistently sweet taste.
Since stevia is natural and derived from the leaf of a plant, it does not contain any harmful chemicals often found in artificial sweeteners. Stevia is safe for diabetics, has been shown to help prevent tooth decay, and has even been recommended by the World Health Organization for use as a treatment for hypertension. By replacing sugar with stevia, consumers are able to decrease caloric intake, helping to reduce obesity and other associated health risks.
International organizations, such as the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), have determined that stevia is safe for consumption. There are also no known side effects or allergies from the use of stevia extracts in foods and beverages.
Stevia extracts are made through water extraction and refining of the sweet components of the stevia leaf.
Yes, stevia extracts are the sweet compounds found in the leaves of the stevia plant, which is a small herb indigenous to Paraguay.
Clinical studies show that stevia extracts do not affect blood pressure or blood glucose levels. As a zero-calorie sweetener, stevia extracts help diabetics to manage their total calorie intake.
Stevia extracts can be used in a wide variety of food and beverage applications.
Stevia extracts have are zero-calorie.
GLG does not genetically modify its stevia plants. New plant varieties are through selective breeding.
Currently, stevia is approved as a food additive in many places, such as the United States, China, EU, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Mexico, Paraguay, Korea, Brazil, Israel, Malaysia, and Taiwan. In Paraguay, it has been used for over 200 years to sweeten food and beverages. In other parts of the world, stevia is very widely used and even now accounts for a huge portion of the sweetener market in Japan.
Yes! On December 17, 2008 the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of high quality stevia extract in food and beverages. Currently, many companies are working to introduce products using stevia as a new sweetening solution and thereby offering consumers healthier choices while maintaining a sweet, sugar-like, all natural taste. For more information please visit our Stevia Regulatory Environment page, which provides the latest updates on stevia's worldwide acceptance as the next generation of sweeteners.