Sweeten Your Tea with Stevia Extract
San Antonio, TX, Tea is the one of most commonly consumed beverage around the world, with black tea being the most popular choice. According to Dr. Cathy Kapica, from The Awegrin Institute and Former Chair of the Globa Stevia Institute Board of Advisors, tea is known to contain several compounds, known as polyphenols, which work as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents in the body. While both black and green teas have polyphenols, the specific kinds vary with each tea type.
According to some studies performed in Kenya, green teas have the highest levels of total polyphenols, and total and individual catechins, while black teas have high levels of total thearubigins, total theaflavins and theaflavin fractions. The study determined that antioxidant activity is higher in green teas though some of the black teas are as efficacious as the green teas. Tea polyphenols have been shown to have numerous health benefits, including reducing heart disease and kidney disease.
Black tea, in particular, is often consumed with milk and/or added sweeteners such as sugar, honey or stevia extract. To study if adding milk or sweeteners affected the health-promoting antioxidants of tea, the researchers in Kenya chose leaf samples from five tea cultivars. Teas were prepared with different levels of milk, sugar, honey or stevia extract; then the antioxidant activity of the teas was investigated and antioxidant levels were measured. The addition of milk, sugar and honey significantly decreased the antioxidant activity of tea. Addition of stevia extract showed no significant influence on the antioxidant activity of tea and therefore stevia extract can be recommended as a preferred sweetener for tea.
Moreover, Dr. Yaroslav Shevchenko from the Technische Universität Berlin said that adding a bit of stevia extract to your cup of green tea can sweeten it and will not only enhance its flavor, but also its antioxidant properties.
However, Dr. Kapika says that more research is needed to confirm these results in tea from other parts of the world.
- The Global Stevia Institute http://globalsteviainstitute.com/consumers/nutrition-health/stevia-in-everyday-health/
- Korir MW, et al. The fortification of tea with sweeteners and milk and its effect on in vitro antioxidant potential of tea product and glutathione levels in an animal model. Food Chemistry. 145:145-53, 2014.
- Shevchenko, Yaroslav: Influence of stevia additives on antioxidant properties of different green teas; article in Agro Food Industry Hi Tech, January 2013.
SVETIA® Calorie – Free Sweetener is made with cane sugar and stevia extract. One packet of SVETIA® contains only one gram of carbohydrates. People with diabetes are advised to check with their registered dietitian or physician.