The new zero-calorie sweetener under the name of Truvia is not that natural as it is said to be.The FDA has approved that the leaf of stevia can only be sold as a herbal supplement, thus changing the description of stevia as a supplement to a food that is generally recognized as safe. Corporation Cargill is said to be behind this FDA approval.
Big Food is also a part of that scheme because people have recognized the potential risks of artificial sweeteners, which consequently led to a decline in sales of diet sodas.
In order to overcome those health issues, Coca Cola introduced Truvia, and Pepsi introduced PureVia.
Diet sodas were advertised as healthy refreshment which won’t get you fat. Later on, many people were affected by ill effects from drinking diet drinks. It was even reported in the news that diet sodas were harmful to human health.
Truvia was introduced as a natural sweetener. Now it is a second best-selling artificial sweetener, with the income of $400 million in 2014.
But the question is how Coca Cola and Cargill can hold the patent to make it if powdered stevia comes from a plant?
Leaf from stevia was traditionally put into a hot drink to sweeten it. But this new product that is being advertised for its natural sweetness is something else. A few years ago, Cargill even had to settle a lawsuit on account of their claims that the product was natural.
Truvia mostly consist of erythritol, which is a sugar alcohol derived from genetically modified corn, while only 5% of the mixture comes from the stevia plant. But, according to the website, the origin of corn is not in question because it went through many stages of processing, thus the end product is not affected by its origin. The explanation states that even though the corn used comes from the genetically modified corn that is grown in the US, the erythritol is derived from a yeast organism. In order for yeast to produce Truvia’s natural sweetener, it has to ferment or digest dextrose. Dextrose originates from the starch component of U.S.-grown corn.
Another ingredient of Truvia is Rebiana. Rebiana is retrieved from the stevia leaf, but according to the Patent held by Coca Cola, it is revealed that it takes 40 steps to extract the substance. The process does not only include soaking of stevia leaf in water, but also substances like acetone, methanol, ethanol, acetonitrile, and isopropanol.
The last ingredient comes in the form of natural flavoring. The term can be so broad, because what is natural to one is not of natural origin to others.
It should be also mentioned that a product Stevia in the Raw, primarily consists of dextrose and maltodextrin.
This all gives enough evidence to conclude that Truvia is not Stevia.
People should just learn how to curb their sugar cravings. A healthy sweetener is a myth. And a healthy sweet without calories is more dangerous to your health than the one made of regular sugar. If you want to add stevia to your drink, make sure it was picked from a plant in Paraguay.