Can You Take Stevia While Fasting? Does Stevia Break a Fast?

Can You Take Stevia While Fasting? Does Stevia Break a Fast?
Dr. Mario Ost

Dr. Mario Ost | Author

Dr. Mario Ost is a renowned nutrition scientist, researcher and lecturer, deeply invested in enhancing our basic understanding on mitochondrial fitness, muscle health, and endocrine organ crosstalk in sports, aging and metabolic diseases. He's a founder of a young athlete health academy and serves as a scientific advisor at Fastic, focusing on personalized nutrition concepts, fasting-mimicking food-components (autophagy-inducers) and benefits of exercise for metabolic homeostasis and healthy aging. As a devoted father and pioneer, Dr. Ost is shaping a future where elite athletes achieve peak performance and obese patients regain their metabolic and muscle health through an evidence-based approach on personalized training and nutrient timing.

Stevia, the low-calorie natural sweetener obtained from a plant, may not break your fast as it has no calories. You can use it to sweeten zero-calorie drinks to consume during your fast. But watch out for any additives in stevia products that may activate an insulin response and bring you out of your fasted state during intermittent fasting. 

Stevia, the Low-Calorie Sweetener

Stevia comes from a plant called stevia rebaudiana, which is native to South America. This plant is 200 to 300 times sweeter than regular sugar. But here’s the real kick– unlike regular sugar obtained from sugarcane, stevia doesn’t have any calories. 

The human body can’t really absorb stevia, or more precisely, its glycosides, which give the sweetness. So it’s expelled out of the body, but not without giving your tastebuds the sweet sensation they often crave. 

This is why it’s incredibly popular as an alternative to sugar. People add it to their coffee, tea, drinks, and desserts. It’s also used in zero or low-calorie soda. For those trying to lose weight, stevia can be a viable alternative, as it doesn’t spike insulin response and has no calories. 

Stevia, as a sugar alternative combined with intermittent fasting, can help you lose weight. You can monitor your progress with intermittent fasting with the help of the Fastic app and see meaningful changes in your body and lifestyle.  

Stevia May Not Break Your Fast 

As stevia doesn’t stimulate insulin release, it doesn’t technically break a fast. Stevia’s impact on blood sugar levels and insulin has been studied in several studies.

One study published in Current Developments in Nutrition focused on healthy adults and found that stevia doesn’t impact glycemia (glucose in the blood). In other words, it doesn’t increase blood sugar levels.  

Another study focusing on type II diabetic patients found stevia to be effective for weight loss and management. It showed no effect on fasting blood sugar levels. 

Moreover, a recent study even demonstrated that Stevia glycosides stimulate the appetite-suppressing gut hormone GLP-1 (glucagon-like-peptide-1) by activating bitter cell receptors. 

So, it’s safe to say that stevia can be consumed while fasting. However, it’s worth mentioning that not all stevia products are the same. So, it’s best to pay attention to the labels and nutrition charts. 

Manufacturers often use additives to make stevia taste better. That’s because while it’s sweet, it can also be bitter. If you don’t want to risk breaking your fast, only use pure stevia extract with no additives. 

does stevia break a fast

How Much Stevia Can You Consume in a Day?

Just because stevia is calorie-free doesn’t mean you can consume a lot of it. Keep in mind that stevia products are highly concentrated. And too much of anything is never good. 

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), an adult should consume no more than 1.8 mg per pound of their body weight. 

Stevia comes in various forms, including liquid, powder, and dissolvable tablets. The concentration of stevia in different sweeteners can vary. Before buying and using a stevia product, read how much stevia is in a typical serving. 

Is Stevia Bad?

Stevia is generally regarded as a safe alternative to sugar. It’s a natural sweetener, compared to artificial ones like aspartame and sucralose, which are controversial. Over 200 different studies have shown that stevia is safe for consumption. 

However, experts recommend sticking to the daily limitation, as consuming high amounts of stevia may lead to side effects, such as gastrointestinal issues. 

You can track your food intake, especially sugary foods that contain stevia, with the help of the Fastic app. It’s a complete intermittent fasting guide and a partner to help you achieve results. 

What to Look for in Stevia Brands

If you walk into an aisle with sugar alternatives like stevia, you’ll be surprised by the endless variety. And obviously, not all brands or products are the same. 

These products can be divided into bulk-free sweeteners (pure or concentrated stevia) or bulk sweeteners (with additives). 

The latter are typically used for cooking and baking purposes. These may contain other sweeteners for a better taste and other additives for texture. 

If you’re intermittent fasting, it’s best to use bulk-free sweeteners with stevia or, in other words, pure stevia. But these are quite concentrated, and just a couple of drops may be equivalent to a tablespoon of sugar. So be careful with the amount. 

Use Stevia to Sweeten Your Fast

If you’re using organic stevia with little to no additives, you can consume it while intermittent fasting. You can use it to sweeten tea or coffee (zero-calorie ones) during your fasting window. It won’t break your fast and keep you in a ketosis state where your body burns fat. 

Disclaimer: It’s advised to speak with a health professional before beginning intermittent fasting or a diet program. There may be side effects for people with certain medical conditions. 

With Fastic, millions of people have achieved their desired weight, overcome disease and regained their quality of life.

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