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What Is Healthier Erythritol or Stevia?

Written by:

Obi Obadike

Obi Obadike

Celebrity Fitness & Nutrition Expert, CFT, SFN, M.S. Founder & CEO – Ethical Inc.
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What is healthier erythritol or stevia? Erythritol is the type of natural sugar found in foods like fruits or mushrooms. At times it is added to foods as a low-calorie sweetener. It is an alternative to sugar, and it can be found in low-calorie products. Erythritol contains about 5% of the calories that sugar contains at about 0.2 calories per gram. It is about 60 to 80% sweet as regular sugar.

A lot of people buy erythritol powder to replace regular sugar when they must prepare their favorite sweetened foods or snacks. When examining stevia, it is considered a nonnutritive sweetener. Stevia is calorie free and can be in the range of 50 to 400 times as sweet as sugar. Stevia sweetener contains small amounts of vitamins and minerals, but it is removed during the processing stage.

What is healthier erythritol or stevia? Photo Credit: iStock-VvoeVale

Possible Effects On Blood Sugar

There was a 2018 animal study that revealed that erythritol can reduce blood sugar levels by decreasing the absorption of sugar in the blood and increasing the uptake of sugar in the muscles. As well as altering the enzymes that engage in the control of blood sugar levels.

This was done on animals and not on humans so more research is needed in this area on humans. One of the reasons why stevia may be a better choice over sugar is it will not spike your blood sugar the way sugar does.

Some Side Effects Of Stevia and Erythritol are:

Both stevia and erythritol have very few side effects but some of them are bloating gas and diarrhea as well as small digestive issues. And some animal studies have suggested nonnutritive sweeteners which can cause negative issues with gut microbiome. And other research studies have found that stevia and erythritol have no effect on gut microbiome.

“Stevia is calorie free and can be in the range of 50 to 400 times as sweet as sugar.” Celebrity Fitness & Nutrition Expert Obi Obadike

The Bottom Line is if you are looking for the two best alternatives to sugar then stevia and erythritol are your top two choices.

They will not raise your blood sugar levels like sugar will. And it will help decrease your calories compared to consuming sugar all the time.

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References

  1. Nettleton JE, Klancic T, Schick A, Choo AC, Shearer J, Borgland SL, Chleilat F, Mayengbam S, Reimer RA. Low-Dose Stevia (Rebaudioside A) Consumption Perturbs Gut Microbiota and the Mesolimbic Dopamine Reward System. Nutrients. 2019 May 31;11(6):1248. doi: 10.3390/nu11061248. PMID: 31159256; PMCID: PMC6627124.
  2. Nettleton JE, Cho NA, Klancic T, Nicolucci AC, Shearer J, Borgland SL, Johnston LA, Ramay HR, Noye Tuplin E, Chleilat F, Thomson C, Mayengbam S, McCoy KD, Reimer RA. Maternal low-dose aspartame and stevia consumption with an obesogenic diet alters metabolism, gut microbiota and mesolimbic reward system in rat dams and their offspring. Gut. 2020 Oct;69(10):1807-1817. doi: 10.1136/gutjnl-2018-317505. Epub 2020 Jan 29. PMID: 31996393; PMCID: PMC7497576.
  3. Mahalak KK, Firrman J, Tomasula PM, Nuñez A, Lee JJ, Bittinger K, Rinaldi W, Liu LS. Impact of Steviol Glycosides and Erythritol on the Human and Cebus apella Gut Microbiome. J Agric Food Chem. 2020 Nov 18;68(46):13093-13101. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.9b06181. Epub 2020 Jan 7. PMID: 31869223.
  4. Becker SL, Chiang E, Plantinga A, Carey HV, Suen G, Swoap SJ. Effect of stevia on the gut microbiota and glucose tolerance in a murine model of diet-induced obesity. FEMS Microbiol Ecol. 2020 Jun 1;96(6):fiaa079. doi: 10.1093/femsec/fiaa079. PMID: 32356872; PMCID: PMC7233940.
  5. Lenhart A, Chey WD. A Systematic Review of the Effects of Polyols on Gastrointestinal Health and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Adv Nutr. 2017 Jul 14;8(4):587-596. doi: 10.3945/an.117.015560. PMID: 28710145; PMCID: PMC5508768.
  6. Regnat K, Mach RL, Mach-Aigner AR. Erythritol as sweetener-wherefrom and whereto? Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2018 Jan;102(2):587-595. doi: 10.1007/s00253-017-8654-1. Epub 2017 Dec 1. PMID: 29196787; PMCID: PMC5756564.
  7. Chukwuma CI, Mopuri R, Nagiah S, Chuturgoon AA, Islam MS. Erythritol reduces small intestinal glucose absorption, increases muscle glucose uptake, improves glucose metabolic enzymes activities and increases expression of Glut-4 and IRS-1 in type 2 diabetic rats. Eur J Nutr. 2018 Oct;57(7):2431-2444. doi: 10.1007/s00394-017-1516-x. Epub 2017 Aug 2. PMID: 28770335.
  8. Regnat K, Mach RL, Mach-Aigner AR. Erythritol as sweetener-wherefrom and whereto? Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2018 Jan;102(2):587-595. doi: 10.1007/s00253-017-8654-1. Epub 2017 Dec 1. PMID: 29196787; PMCID: PMC5756564.
  9. Wölnerhanssen BK, Meyer-Gerspach AC, Beglinger C, Islam MS. Metabolic effects of the natural sweeteners xylitol and erythritol: A comprehensive review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2020;60(12):1986-1998. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2019.1623757. Epub 2019 Jun 16. PMID: 31204494.
  10. Ashwell M. Stevia, Nature’s Zero-Calorie Sustainable Sweetener: A New Player in the Fight Against Obesity. Nutr Today. 2015 May;50(3):129-134. doi: 10.1097/NT.0000000000000094. Epub 2015 May 14. PMID: 27471327; PMCID: PMC4890837.
  11. Arumugam B, Subramaniam A, Alagaraj P. Stevia as a Natural Sweetener: A Review. Cardiovasc Hematol Agents Med Chem. 2020;18(2):94-103. doi: 10.2174/1871525718666200207105436. PMID: 32031079.

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