Monday, April 21, 2008

Herb of the Month: Stevia

Last month I purchased Stevia & have it planted with my other herbs! I can't wait to harvest it this fall! Here is a little info about the herb:

Stevia is a small perennial shrub that belongs to the Chrysanthemum family of plants and is native to Paraguay.
Stevia has a inordinate ability to sweeten. Stevia in it's natural herb form is approximately 10 to 15 times sweeter than common table sugar. Its common form a white powder extracted from the leaves of the plant is rated at 70 to 400 times sweeter than sugar.Stevia may well be the most remarkable sweetener in the world. The following are some of the characteristics of Stevia:

*It is diabetic safe
*calorie free
*does not adversely affect blood sugar
*is non toxic
*inhibits the formation of cavities and plaque
*contains no artificial ingredients
*can be used for cooking

Stevia has also been known to posses some medicinal properties and was used by Indians for medicinal purposes for hundreds of years.

Stevia makes up around 40% of Japans sweetener market and consumption. It is also used in many other parts of the world.

3 comments:

Hannah said...

Dear Mia!
I just stubled across your blog this afternoon. It's lovely! :) My mother came across Stevia too a few years ago. You can't get it here in Germany very easily - you have to ask in a heath food shop or something. They don't have it on the shelves. But it's amazing how sweet it is! You only need the tip of a knife (in powdered form) to sweeten your tea for example. And it's got a very clean taste!
Have fun growing it! :)
Lots of love,
Hannah :)

V said...

Hey Mia,
Have you heard of Xylitol? This is also a sugar natural from a tree. I was just wondering if you heard of it. Stevia is great too!
Mrs.V

Melissa said...

Wow, what great information. I just found your blog and started looking through. I am very impressed and so glad that you can be a part of our lives and influence our daughter.

This caught my eye. I want to start growing some of our own herbs and I think this will be one of them.

Melissa