The latest product expected to join the zero or low-calorie sweetener market is called Stevia.Dr. Mona Khanna, provides a taste of things to come.
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Rebecca Fox: You’ve seen pink, blue and yellow sweetener pockets, the latest product to expect to join the zero or low calories sweetener market is called Stavia and there is plenty of buzz surrounding it. Well currently available in some stores, Stavia can only legally be sold as a dietary supplement and less it receives the food and drug administrations approval for use as a sweetener. Well the FDA is expected approval to shake up away we place our palates, ICYou’s Medical Editor Dr. Mona Khanna join us now with the taste of things to come. And Dr. Mona how is Stavia different? Dr. Mona Khanna: Well the most important difference Rebecca is that Stavia is actually an herb whereas the other sugar substitute are created synthetically they are artificial sweeteners. The Stavia is been using in Japan since 1970 and just be used in the number of different products. Like you mentioned in this country we can only use as a supplement until it receives that longer waited FDA approval and in that point will be able to use and call a sweetener. It is about 300 times as sweetest shifter. Rebecca Fox: Wow 300 times, will how dangerous or beneficial is it to us? Dr. Mona Khanna: Well you can look it at from both thing, the first thing is that in the countries that has been use such as Japan but many other countries in fact it was first found in Brazil, the herb was found in Brazil. It’s being used as a sugar substitute now, what that does is when people taking less sugar they have a less of a chance or they put themselves at less of a risk of developing diabetes since diabetes is a disorder of your blood sugar system and your insulin system, that’s the first thing. The second thing is Stavia is actually been said that it actually reduces plaque on your teeth then if does that then it will reduce obviously the number of cavities you have. In 1991 the FDA did say it was dangerous that’s possibly immunogenic which could lead to a cancer causing event but in 1995 they would track to that because of additional studies and that’s one they give approval for be use as a supplement. So, you always have the way the risks versus the benefits but the FDA is right now looking very, very closely at different studies to make sure that before you give any kind of approval for to uses as sweetener which means will be dispense Stavia more widely that it needs to safety level test. Rebecca Fox: What types of foods can Stavia be using then? Dr. Mona Khanna: Believe it or not almost anything it’s most commonly use in fruit, additives is most commonly use in dairy products that it has been shown to be able to be an effective sweetener and anything from drink like lemonade all the way to chocolate chip cookies is even been use in gum in some countries. There is a couple of different thing about it, the first is that it’s very, very sweet so the amount you use a lot’s more than regular sugars I’ve mentioned earlier its 300 times the sweetest sugar. The second thing is the tend to have a little bit of an after taste so you have to tamper that again with the amount of Stavia that you use. Some people say the after taste is similar to liquorish. And the third thing is that will it’s fairly stable in high temperatures, it doesn’t have many of the baking properties that sugar has. So if you do want to use it in bake goods you have to be aware that it doesn’t caramelized like sugar does that it doesn’t for meant like sugar does so that may limit its use in certain products. Rebecca Fox: Well sweeteners can be very expensive and we watching our wallets especially nowadays, what is that mean the fact that it’s a natural product to an herb it doesn’t mean that’s going to be more expensive or less expensive to use as a sweeterner? Dr. Mona Khanna: Well ironically will probably more expensive and the reason is because the artificial sweeteners that we are using now and let’s say exactly what they are. The first one is sacchar