Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Stevia Delivery Methods

Trader Joe's provides many different ways to deliver real, organic, healthy stevia into your diet.  I've tried each one, and have found that my favorite is the liquid version.
The liquid version uses ethanol as the carrier.  Three or 4 drops from the eye dropper make a cup of tea or coffee as sweet as a heaping teaspoon of sugar, but adds zero calories.  And it is organic, so there are NOT any residual fertilizers or pesticides on the leaves used to make it.  Good stuff.

My next favorite form is the organic stevia extract 1 oz. (28.35 gram) bottle.  It comes with a tiny little 45 mg spoon, that has the same sweetness to it as the 3 or 4 drops in liquid form.  The only minor downside, is that in a low humidity environment (like S.CA or Arizona) the liquid can dry out around the eye-dropper cap can make it harder to open if your fingers are weaker.  Again, it is organic.

The powdered stevia extract in packets is "convenient" for traveling, as there is no mess, no spillage, and it travels well.  Sadly, they use lactose to add bulk to it, since the 45 mgs would be so small, most Americans would feel they're being shorted, so something powdery and sweet is added - which sort of defeats the purpose of using the stevia to avoid sugar intake.

The least favorite stevia delivery method is the GIANT 276 gram "Stevia Extract" (see above on the right).  It is not organic, and it is LOADED with useless lactose.  Sure, it is cheaper than the bottle that is 1/10th its size, but instead of using 45 mg per serving, you're supposed to use a whopping 876 mg!  Almost 20 times more, and most of that is lactose masquerading as stevia.  Bleh!

Of course the first three of these Trader Joe's stevia offerings are better than the Sam's Club and COSTCO distributed stevia packets that contain either sucrose, lactose, phenylketonurics (aka nutrasweet), with just enough stevia content to dupe purchasers into assuming they're really buying something natural and sugar-free.  The 276 gram Trader Joe's cylinder is probably made by the same manufacturers who push their big-box store diluents.

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