Stevia - The Sweet Herb
Stevia is an herbal shrub-like plant native to Paraguay. For over 1,500 years, peoples in South America have used fresh and dried stevia leaves to sweeten food, herbal medicines, and beverages (such as yerba mate). Today it is extracted to make a natural herbal sweetener.
The plant contains sweet compounds known as steviol glycosides. Steviol Glycosides, when extracted, is between 150-350 times sweeter than sugar. The scientific name for stevia is Stevia Rebaudiana L. Bertoni. It is a member of the family of plants called Asteraceae, which is better known as the “sunflower family”. There are currently 240 known species of stevia.