Q and A with Dr. Hull

Q&A With Dr. Hull

Q: What do think about stevia?

A: I support using stevia and am dedicating January's newsletter to it, actually. Many people inquire about its safety as an alternative to chemical sweeteners. As with ALL things, use stevia in moderation and make sure the brand you buy is pure. Due to its popularity, the manufacturers may some day adulterate some natural forms of stevia by adding fillers, preservatives, etc, but for now, it's a safe and healthy alternative. It has no known side effects, and requires you use less than refined sugar or artificial sweeteners.

Happy Holidays!

Q: I have read your newsletter, and you recommended "Organic Sucanat" for a sweetener. I wonder if you have any idea about stevia? Is this a safe product? According to Dr. Jan M.C. Geuns, this herb is suitable for diabetics, hypertension and PKU patients; amen that it is calorie free.

Do you have any knowledge?

Why do you not write any articles about stevia and its benefits?

A: Stevia is wonderful, and I find nothing negative to say about it. So many people inquire about its safety, I am dedicating January's newsletter to it. I have written extensively about stevia in both my books, Sweet Poison and Splenda: Is It Safe Or Not?. It is a very potent yet natural food additive, though, so use very little in comparison to sweeteners on the market, otherwise, it can appear bitter. Just make sure you buy a good form of stevia and don't buy from a company that has added any fillers for profit.

Stevia is used for diabetic therapy as well as for gum treatments in South America, Japan, Russia, and other European countries. The reason the benefits of stevia are not publicized more in the United States is due to the politics behind the sweetener industry, unfortunately.

Thanks for your continued support for my work. All the best to you!

Q: Hello, Dr. Hull.

I just want to let you know that I thoroughly enjoyed listening to your radio interview this afternoon concerning the affects of aspartame. (Unfortunately, I'm not aware of the station's name in the Washington DC area.) Earlier this year, to lose weight after the birth of my second child, I began the South Beach Diet. It has worked very well for me. However, I began adding something to my diet that I had cut out years ago, due to the very purposes you discussed. Diet sodas.

I'd never had to worry about my weight very much until last year, and with my love for an occasional soft drink, I thought more of the high-carb count and weight gain possibilities of a regular soda vs. the low-carb count of a diet drink. Subsequently, I failed to remember the fact that I did not like feeding my body artificial sweeteners! Needless to say, I m no longer adding aspartame to my body. (I never even touch saccharin.)

However, as I listened to you, I thought of stevia and my own personal concerns about it. Years ago, I had tried it and suffered mild headaches and returned to regular sugar.

Perhaps after reading your research about it here on your website, I will try it again in lesser amounts. Thank you again for your research and insight, and also thank you for getting me back to good ol' fashioned water. I drank my last soft drink today!

A: Thank you for your wonderful feedback. I am glad you benefited from the radio show. Regarding your experience with stevia, do you know what brand you were using? You might want to look back to see if the brand was mixed with aspartame or Splenda (sucralose).

If you want to try stevia once more, you can try the following brand:

http://store.yahoo.com/cgi-bin/clink?herbal-remedies-usa+TJbUuY+stevexwhitpo.html

If stevia doesn't work out for you, just try regular non-processed sugar such as raw brown sugar-in-the-raw, Sucanat, or even saccharin. Best of luck to you and your family!

Q: I have read with interest Dr. Hull`s position on artificial and natural sweeteners, in particular on the herb stevia. Could you please point me to the appropriate technical and official source of information as to be able to get copies of the toxicological studies carried out with stevia?

Thanks in advance for your prompt response

A: Yes, contact The Stevita Company, 1-888-783-8482, and ask for Oscar. He has some stories to share - especially when the FDA raided his company and burned all the books he had about cooking with stevia.

Stevia.net lists many of the research and safety studies performed on stevia. These aren't the actual studies, but abstracts.

Q: Dear Dr. Hull. I use stevia and like it very much. Could you let me know where I might order the best form of stevia. Can I buy it from a food store, and it is very expensive? Thanking you.

A: Thanks for contacting me about stevia. Try visiting the following link as this website has a lot stevia products:
http://store.yahoo.com/cgi-bin/clink?herbal-remedies usa+TJbUuY+stevexwhitpo.html

Posted January 2006 | Permanent Link

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