The PureCircle Stevia Institute’s sponsored stevia symposium on Saturday, April 22, 2017 was attended by about 250 attendees at the American Society for Nutrition’s (ASN) Scientific Sessions that took place at the annual Experimental Biology conference in Chicago.

To address the ongoing debate of low/no calorie sweeteners and weight management Dr. Rogers reviewed the most recent science including recent meta-analyses that clearly show that low-calorie sweeteners help reduce body weight and help reduce calorie intake. These data provide support for sweeteners like stevia, in helping to reduce calorie intake and help manage body weight.

In addition, Dr. Rogers presented new evidence that shows that low-calorie sweeteners do not increase the desire for sweetness and do not lead to an increased calorie consumption, which contradicts the suggestion that low-calorie sweeteners lead to an increased desire for sweetness. After which, Dr. Rowland reviewed the role and interaction of the gut microbiota related to the metabolism of stevia and also concluded with data to date that shows, no negative impact of stevia on the gut microbiome.

The symposium conclusion by Dr. Samuel addressed the sensory properties of stevia, demonstrating how unique combinations of steviol glycosides deliver superior taste versus a single steviol glycoside such as Reb A. Dr. Samuel also presented proprietary consumer insights research from PureCircle that showed stevia awareness and positive sentiment for this plant based sweetener has continued to grow since its introduction and approval in many countries around the world.

As part of a healthy lunch, attendees enjoyed tasting a 50% sugar-reduced chocolate mousse and a 50% sugar reduced iced tea-lemonade, with stevia. In addition, attendees were able to take home a package of Whole Earth Sweetener featuring PureCircle’s stevia thanks to a generous donation from the Merisant Company.

Consumer demand for a zero- calorie sweetener from a natural source continues to drive the growth of stevia. Since 2008, more than 12,000 products have launched with stevia around the globe.

To learn more about the symposium and the speakers please visit the PCSI Events page.