Stevia rebaudiana, called stevia is one plant of the Stevia family. There is said to be about 150 plants in the family, however, Stevia rebaudiana is most sought after due to its comparatively higher level of sweetness.
While the focus is on using stevia as a sweetener, it was, and still is also used by local people (in areas where it grows naturally) as a medicinal plant. The table below is a summary of some of those uses.
Ethnomedicinal uses of stevia in different countries
|Brazil||Usually used for cavities, depression, diabetes, fatigue, heart support, hypertension, hyperglycemia, infections, obesity, sweet cravings, tonic, urinary insufficiency, wounds|
|South America||Diabetes, hypertension, infections, obesity|
|United States||Candida, diabetes, hypertension, hyperglycemia, infections, and as a vasodilator|
Nutritional and therapeutic values of Stevia rebaudiana: A reviewEna Gupta, Shalini Purwar, Shanthy Sundaram and G. K. Rai