Is stevioside a sugar reducer or a health killer?

Is stevioside a sugar reducer or a health killer?


1. Introduction

On July 2023, the World Health Organization (WHO) has classified the soda sweetener aspartame as a possible carcinogen, but said that aspartame is safe to consume within a daily limit of 40 milligrams per kilogram of a person’s body weight according to the latest assessment results regarding the impacts of the non-sugar sweetener aspartame upon the health. How about another sweetener stevioside? Is stevioside a sugar reducer or a health killer?

2. Current situation on stevioside

Stevioside (also termed stevia glycoside) has been regarded as “the third largest source of natural sugar across the world” by virtue of its low calorie, high sweetness, good stability and low price, which is widely used in medicine, daily chemicals, beverage, food, brewing and other industries. 

3. Regulatory application and control of stevioside

The aforementioned report of WHO on the possible carcinogenesis of soda sweetener aspartame is based on high intake. An adult weighing 70 kilograms or 154 pounds would have to drink more than 9 to 14 cans of aspartame-containing soda daily to exceed the limit and potentially face health risks. There is no need to be worry about the risk of carcinogenesis in the case of healthy intake. The same situation is applicable to another sweetener stevioside.

Stevioside is approved to be sweetener in food in countries like Mainland China, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, the USA and European Union. In China, there are detail specifications on the food additive stevioside (GB 2760-2014).

4. The therapeutic properties of stevioside

4.1 Antitumor effect

Stevioside can be applied as a valuable chemotherapy candidate to be further investigated for cancer therapy. The activity of the well-known tumor promoter, 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA), is successfully inhibited with stevioside in a murine skin-cancer model. In addition, stevioside can reduce mammary adenoma incidence in F344 rats.

4.2 Anti-hypertensive activity

The hypotensive effect observed in rats after chronic oral administration (30 days) of 2.67 g stevia leaves/day has been confirmed in spontaneously hypertensive rats. In that murine model, stevioside (100 mg/kg; i.v.) is able to reduce blood pressure with no change in serum epinephrine, norepinephrine, or dopamine levels.

4.3 Anti-diabetics

In diabetic rats, stevioside (0.2 g/kg; i.v. administration) decreases glucose blood levels, yet increases insulin responses and reactions to an intravenous glucose tolerance test (IVGT). Also, stevioside enhances insulin levels above basal during the IVGT, without altering blood glucose response, in normal rats, hinting its potential as a drug candidate for type 2 diabetes.

4.4 Inhibition of pathogenic bacteria

Stevioside has demonstrated antibacterial action on various foodborne pathogenic bacteria, including Escherichia coli, a wellknown etiologic agent of severe diarrhea. Regarding antiviral properties, stevioside seems to impede binding of rotavirus to host cells. Rotavirus is commonly associated with pediatric gastroenteritis.

4.5 Anti-inflammatory property

In lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated THP1 cells, stevioside (1mM) inhibits NF-κB. Moreover, stevioside prevents in vitro upregulation of genes involved in liver inflammation. In addition,  silico assays demonstrate its antagonistic action in two proinflammatory receptors: tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR)-1 and Toll-like receptor (TLR)-4-MD2. 

4.6 Antioxidant capability

The antioxidant effects of stevioside and rebaudioside A have been confirmed in a fish model, both of which effectively control lipoperoxidation and protein carbonylation. Furthermore, stevioside prevents oxidative DNA damage in the livers and kidneys of a type 2 diabetes murine model.

5 Conclusion

As long as the intake is properly controlled, stevioside can be very useful. Stevioside holds a great promise in the clinical treatment and daily health care.


Orellana-Paucar A. M. (2023). Steviosides from Stevia rebaudiana: An Updated Overview of Their Sweetening Activity, Pharmacological Properties, and Safety Aspects. Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), 28(3), 1258.

BONTAC Stevioside Reb-D product features and advantages

BONTAC possesses the international application and authorized patents on Stevioside Reb-D (US11312948B2 & ZL2018800019752), where the product quality (purity and stability) can be better ensured.


BONTAC shall hold no responsibility for any claims arising directly or indirectly from your reliance on the information and material on this website.


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