Stevia is considered to be safe and harmless compared to artificial sweeteners. Experimental studies have been carried out for a long time to investigate its health outcomes on humans.
Toxicologists at University of California carried out work to investigate the development of cancer due to genetic mutation caused by the intake of steviosides.
In Japan, artificial sugars are completely banned and they started using stevia as a natural sweetener. Also, they performed several experiments and affirmed that the use of stevia is safe.
The Food and Drug Administration of U.S (FDA) approved the use of Rebaudioside.A (extracted from stevia leaves) as safe for use by humans. However, it has not approved the use of whole stevia as it is found to cause certain health issues.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has approved the use of steviol glycosides for human utilization with an Advised Daily Intake (ADI) of 4 mg/kg. Later in 2010, the European Union confirmed that it is safe to use steviol glycosides as food additives.
The Joint Expert Committee for Food Additives (JECFA) revised the safety of steviol glycosides in 2000, 2005, 2006, 2007, and in 2009 and fixed the safety margin for daily intake level as 4 mg/kg. The research panelists considered the use of steviol glycosides that fulfill the conditions of JEFCA to be non-carcinogenic and non-genotoxic.
Further studies are required for clarifying the role of stevia in humans in weight management and energy reduction.