There have been a lot of new artificial sweeteners released on the market. As times change and diets grow more complex, people are looking for ways to satisfy their sweet tooths without consuming more calories than they intend to.
As an alternative to the saccharine taste of days past, people have taken up using artificial sweeteners or sugar substitutes as an aid to managing their blood sugar levels. This is best for people with diabetes and others who need to manage their blood sugar levels.
Like these artificial sweeteners, products derived from stevia do not kick up blood sugar levels. If dieting is a challenge that you’re facing, stevia products might be a great alternative to sugar since they offer sweetness with no calories, also using them in your recipe book won’t contribute to any weight gain.
Two popular sugar substitutes are Truvia and stevia. While both are natural products, there are important differences between the two sweeteners that you should think about before making your decision. Consider what dietitians have to say about both substances and know their pros and cons so you can figure out whats suits your taste.
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Truvia is a natural sweetener made by two of the largest food and chemical companies in the world (Coca-Cola and Cargill). It comes from refined stevia plant extract and is sold in both liquid and powder form, and therefore it is categorized as a natural product. However, it’s refined and removed further from its roots. It also contains other ingredients, including erythritol and natural flavors. In some countries around the world, you’re most likely going to find it on supermarket shelves as an alternative to sugar. You can either add it to coffee or use it as a flex sweetener for whichever products you want to bake or cook.
Truvia became the fourth stevia-based sweetener with overwhelming commercial success after it was introduced in December 2008. Today, Cargill confirms Truvia is now the leading natural zero-calorie sweetener available in retail outlets across the United States.
The nutrition information provided is by the USDA for a one-teaspoon serving. Note that in addition to nutritional facts specific to Truvia, they also provide combined nutritional stats for other stevia sweeteners such as Steviva, Stevia in the raw, Pure Via, and products produced by the same company.
The information given below is in line with the Truvia product label. However, the nutritional information that it displays lists a single serving as 3/4 teaspoon.
- Calories: 0
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: 0mg
- Carbohydrates: 3g
- Added sugars: 0g
- Fiber: 0g
- Protein: 0g
The three grams of carbohydrate come from Erythritol(sugar alcohol). Erythritol is a polyol or polyalcohol compound that naturally occurs in grapes and mushrooms. Erythritol occurs naturally in some fruits, vegetables, sausages and cheeses. It is commonly manufactured through a fermentation process similar to that of beer.
Erythritol’s bulk composition as well as its sugar-like crystalline appearance and texture make it an ideal artificial sweetener for almost any food and can be easily included in any recipe book or product.
Typically, each gram of carbohydrate provides four calories, but erythritol is a sugar alcohol and the body cannot absorb it. Since the body can’t break them down, they do not affect blood glucose or insulin levels.
Truvia, in common with many other sweeteners in the marketplace, relies upon the power of stevia, a substance that is 200 times sweeter than sugar. Because it’s such a strong flavor, the Truvia manufacturers add erythritol to balance out the sweetness and ensure consumers can enjoy the natural taste (without an aftertaste) of their ingredients which vary from product to product.
Just one packet supplies sweetness similar to 2 teaspoons of sugar (which would correspond to approximately 30 calories). There aren’t many taste tests published on Truvia. But Consumer Reports compared it to sugar back in 2009. In that study, taste testers found that the aftertaste was bitter.
A pleasant and lasting sweetness was also noted. However, taste testers liked that the product dissolves like sugar in cereal and has a similar taste and texture to sugar when eaten with fruit.
Truvia is widely used as a sweetening alternative for daily use. It can be used in your coffee and can also be sprinkled onto fruits or cereal. Within the Truvia product family, there are several products for you to choose from.
Although not extensively studied for its health benefits, it has nonetheless been used within the medical field and has been approved by the FDA as safe to consume by anyone. The main ingredient of Truvia, stevia and erythritol will now be discussed for their numerous health benefits.
Anti-diabetic and anti-hyperglycemic effects
Erythritol is believed to have some anti-diabetic properties and may be a great substitute for those who are put off by the aftertaste that accompanies high-intensity sweeteners in commercially available cookie recipes. In a published review investigating several sweetening agents, Erythritol was identified as one of the few artificial sweeteners that won’t cause spikes in blood sugar levels, an important element if you’re attempting to regulate or keep them within normal limits.
May improve dental health
Particular foods containing erythritol may aid in oral health management, especially in younger individuals. Specifically, Erythritol can help lower the incidence of cavities.
To sum up, research also shows erythritol may have anti-oxidative and endothelium-protective properties as well as anti-obesity effects, through mechanisms including increased malabsorption of fructose.
Pros and cons
- Truvia is non-GMO and it’s gluten-free
- Vegan and vegetarian-friendly
- Provides sweetness with zero calories
- Has a taste and texture similar to sugar
- Truvia is more expensive than sugar
- Truvia have been studied to cause some serious gastrointestinal issues
- Some say the taste is displeasing
Stevia is a plant-based, zero-calorie sweetener that can add to your food’s nutritional value and make it tastier. A variety of its leaves are considered to be sweet and are used as an herbal supplement and food additive.
This leaf is indigenous to people of South America and they have been using its leaves as both sweet and savory seasoning agents for centuries, leading to the common names ‘sweet leaf’ and ‘sugar leaf’. Rebaudioside A (known as rebiana) is a highly refined form of Stevia that is located in the leaves of the plant and has been deemed safe for consumption by the FDA (The U.S. Food and Drug Administration).
Non-fermented leaves aren’t FDA-approved for use in foods, but are sold as a health food supplement in powder and liquid form. This is because the FDA limited studies suggest raw or less fermented stevia products can damage the heart and reproductive health.
The USDA combines the nutritional information for several stevia-based sweeteners, including truvia, Stevia in the Raw, and Pure Via. They also provide a listing specifically for stevia extract. The following information is provided for one serving of the extract:
- Calories: 0
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: 0mg
- Carbohydrates: 1g
- Added sugars: 0g
- Fiber: 0g
- Protein: 0g
While it seems like Truvia has fewer carbohydrates than stevia, the difference is actually due to the serving size in each case. The USDA and other agencies usually provide a certain number of carbs per serving for each food item.
The nutritional information provided by the USDA regarding Truvia is based on a one-teaspoon serving which comes out to be three grams. Stevia is based on one gram per teaspoon as well, and also includes a packet option that counts as a different serving. Looking at total carbs for both ingredients regardless of how many servings are involved, we notice that the carb count for both is one gram.
Unlike Truvia, the amount of sweetness you taste in stevia will depend on the product you choose. Purified extracts can contain one glycoside, or several different glycosides and these can typically be up to 250-300 times sweeter than sugar.
Each brand is formulated differently. Stevia in the Raw, for example, has a formulation that results in one packet equaling as much sweetness as two teaspoons of table sugar.
The actual taste and texture also depend on the specific brand that you buy. For example, Stevia in the Raw brand sells powdered packets as well as stevia to use for baking purposes. In their packet sweetener, they add dextrose, a carb made from corn.
The dextrose doesn’t affect the taste in any way, but it does affect the texture slightly. Its purpose is to make the leaf extract more palatable for consumers.
There are many ways in which people use it to sweeten their foods and drinks. This could include using it along with sugar on coffee or cereal, as well as sprinkling it onto homemade fruit juices, or even baking this wonderful herb into delicious treats like cakes and muffins. In baking, some cooking experts say that you should only replace half of the sugar with stevia. This way you’ll get the right volume and texture.
It is beneficial for glucose and insulin response
Zero-calorie and no-calorie sweeteners can help you cut calories and reduce your sugar intake when used in recipes.
It may not be beneficial or helpful for everyone, but research has shown that Stevia may be the best for people who are trying to lose weight. For example, a study that was published in 2018 by ADA (American Diabetes Association) investigated its effect on blood sugar and insulin levels in overweight individuals.
Prevent dental cavities
Consuming stevia as a sweetener instead of sugar may help prevent dental cavities.
Improves blood pressure
Studies have been conducted to determine how stevia consumption affects blood pressure. Results so far have been inconsistent, but most studies seem to agree that its consumption has an effect on humans’ blood pressure.
Truvia vs. Stevia comparison
The two sweeteners are so close in relation to each other that it can be challenging to determine which one best fits your taste, your health, and your diet. In this article, we talked about how Truvia contains stevia. It is worthwhile to take a look at the pros and cons of each sweetener discussed already in this article as well as getting advice from qualified dietitians before making a decision based on these facts alone.
Stevia in the Raw vs Truvia
Stevia in the Raw is Steviol Glycosides with little to no effect on blood glucose (providing it’s consumed after a meal) that can be successfully used by people who are on carbohydrate-controlled diets.
Stevia in the raw includes a number of beneficial properties that are ideal for those who eat a healthy and balanced diet. For example, they have been found to be an effective way to help maintain glycemic control in those suffering from diabetes, as well as assist with bringing down blood pressure in people with high blood pressure.
|Stevia in the Raw||Truvia|
|Stevia is a type of plant which is used as a sugar substitute. Its alcohol extraction makes it able to be used as a sweetener in beverages and food, making it possible for diabetics to enjoy sweets without the insulin spike that would normally come with them.||Truvia is a zero-calorie sweetener containing stevia and erythritol that comes in small packets like sugar (sweeteners)|
|Stevia Glycosides can help people who are on carbohydrate-controlled diets and want to lower the levels of glucose in their blood.||Truvia is made, in part, with erythritol derived from an all-natural fermentation process. It also has a significant amount of natural flavors.|
The two items have a similar amount of health benefits, but they differ in how they affect your body differently.
Stevia vs Truvia vs Splenda
Splenda is also a sugar substitute often used as an alternative in beverages and foods that contain sugar. It’s found to be 600 times as sweet as table sugar and generally is made from sucrose which is combined with other low-calorie sugars, maltodextrin or dextrose.
In contrast to Truvia and Stevia, Splenda is a mass-produced artificial sweetener that’s derived from sucralose. Although Truvia is made from leaves of stevia and in most cases is considered to be a healthy alternative to sugar, Splenda is still the sweeter alternative to sugar.
But, as one may predict, there are numerous problems that Splenda can bring about if it is taken in high doses. Some of these problems include liver swelling and, at higher doses, an increase in insulin. As opposed to the negative side effects that Splenda causes, Truvia and stevia have fewer adverse health-related problems.
It is important to act safely when it comes to consuming these products. You should never take them if you do not fully understand the possible negative side effects of doing so as well as what your body can handle.
Pure via Stevia vs Truvia
Stevia is a perennial shrub that comes from South America, and it has grown on the French Guianan coast since the late 1980s. Truvia is a tabletop sweetener and food ingredient used primarily in beverages and baking. Purevia is a tabletop sweetener and food ingredient used primarily in beverages, cereals, dairy products, yogurt, desserts, and dietary supplements. The bulking agents used are different inside Truvia and Purevia recipes, causing each to have a different taste.
Stevia is a plant-based sweetener and is calorie-free. It may benefit blood sugar control and heart health when used to replace sugar. Research on the long-term effects is lacking, however, for optimal health, both sweeteners like Truvia and stevia as well as artificial ones like Splenda should be kept to a minimum.
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