Green Era Foods and Nutraceutics

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FAQs


Q.1. What is wheatgrass?
Ans.“Wheatgrass is young sprouted wheat of 1 to 2 weeks of age. Once wheatgrass reaches a height of 12 to 20cm it can be cut and then juiced. Due to its fibrous nature, wheatgrass is indigestible to humans, which is why it needs to be juiced and why cows need four stomachs to digest grass.

Q.2. Does Wheatgrass have historical references?
Ans. “The use of Wheatgrass for its therapeutic value is existent since ancient time. Hindus offer ‘Durva’ (green grass) to the elephant God Ganesha and grow Wheatgrass to worship for nine days during ‘Navratri’ (Laxmi festival) every year.

Q.3 What is the difference between Wheatgrass, Ordinary grass and Nutritional Foods?
Ans. “Wheatgrass is grown through a process called sprouting. Sprouts are ‘complete food’ as they contain all the essential dietary nutrients along with the enzymes to help assimilate them.

Dr.G.H.Earp-Thomas, celebrated American scientist and dietician, isolated over hundred elements from Wheatgrass and reached to the conclusion that Wheatgrass is the best of all grass and that it is a complete food in itself.

Compared to Wheatgrass, other green-leafy vegetables are less beneficial and palatable in natural form. Wheatgrass Powder is an innocent natural food, which works as a health enhancer due to its high nutritional value. It is naturally better than synthetic vitamins and supplements.

Q.4. Does the Wheatgrass Powder contain all the nutrition available in Fresh Wheatgrass?
Ans. “Consumption of Wheatgrass Powder is more convenient than fresh Wheatgrass juice. “Green Era” Wheatgrass Powder is obtained by special process (without using any mechanism) and then grinded into fine Powder. Utmost care is taken to avoid heating and friction, which may evaporate or reduce the important nutrients. Maximize nutrients including dietary fiber are thus retained in “Green Era” Wheatgrass Powder.

Q.5. Are there any side effects after taking Wheatgrass Powder?
Ans. “Consumption of “Green Era” Wheatgrass Powder has not shown any side effects, as it is natural, organic and innocent food. Some individuals may have nausea or irregular bowel movements during the first few days of use, which will subside by itself once the body gets accustomed to the Powder.

Q.6. How much Wheatgrass Powder should be taken daily and for how long?
Ans. “Consuming minimum 40 g fresh Wheatgrass daily for at least 0ne month has been recommended by researchers. About 3 g Powder is obtained from 40 g Wheatgrass. Consuming minimum 1 to 2 Tsp.(One Tsp. = approx.3 g) of Wheatgrass Powder is recommended to achieve satisfactory results. Healthy people can also take one spoon in the morning for a month for rejuvenation. This course should be repeated every six months in order to overcome nutrition deficiencies and help to maintain good health. Positive results are experienced within a week of starting the Wheatgrass Powder course.

Q.7. How to benefit more with Wheatgrass Powder?
Ans. “Highly rewarding results are observed when Wheatgrass Powder therapy is assisted with proper diet, exercises (yoga, pranayam etc.) and healthy environment.

Q.8. Can Wheatgrass Powder be given to children?
Ans. “Wheatgrass Powder is absolutely safe and beneficial to children above 2 years age. It should be given in small quantities (1/4 spoon) and slowly increased to 1 spoon daily. A little honey can be added for taste or it can be mixed with their food items but not with milk.

Q.9. Wheatgrass is available in juice, Powder and tablet form. What is the best?
Ans. “Traditionally, Wheatgrass is known to be taken in juice form. In today’s modern life most individuals are lacking time, space, manpower and know-how of growing Wheatgrass. It is difficult to transport fresh Wheatgrass economically everyday to far off places as it has very less shelf life.

At this junction, making the availability of Wheatgrass in Powder form has proven to be very convenient and effective. It has all the advantages as follows :

  • Powder is easy to transport, convenient to carry and has good shelf life
  • Powder retains all the important nutrients of fresh Wheatgrass
  • Powder is higher in dietary fiber as compared to juice. Fiber is strained out while extracting juice
  • Powder is more palatable than fresh juice by all age groups
  • Powder equals therapeutic efficacy as fresh Wheatgrass
Wheatgrass Powder has more advantages than tablet form as follows :
  • Powder is natural whereas tablet manufacturing involves more process
  • Dosage of 3 g powder (40 g fresh grass) a day recommended for good results. One Tsp. Powder weights about 3 g whereas 6 tablets (0.5 g each) at a time are required.
  • Powder taken in water mixes well with saliva and is digested better
  • Powder can be mixed in juices and foods for children
  • Paste of Powder with milk can be applied on skin


Q.10. How does Wheatgrass Powder help in weight management?
Ans. “Wheatgrass Powder is a natural, safe and extremely potent aid in weight loss. It works by suppressing appetite, stimulating metabolism, circulation and helps lose weight in inches and kgs. Diet has to be reduced to achieve weight loss and it may cause nutrition deficiencies. Many people experience fatigue and craving to eat more at this stage. Wheatgrass Powder helps overcome nutrition deficiency and to avoid any side effects. For weight gain, Wheatgrass Powder helps by improving digestion, activating body cells, increasing appetite, improves skin and muscle tone and as an energy booster.

In case of weight loss / weight gain, the intake of Wheatgrass Powder is the same but the accompanying diet is different as follows:

Weight loss: Diet should contain more of vegetables, soups, sprouts, green salads, fruits, juices, dry fruits, etc. Items such as milk, sweets, ghee, butter, rice, non-veg, alcohol, etc. to be avoided.

Weight gain: Diet should contain more of vegetables, fruits, juices, honey, milk, dry fruits, ghee, kheer, salads, brown rice, soups, jaggery-sweetened milk at night, etc.,

Q.11. How does Wheatgrass Powder help combat so many diseases?
Ans. “Our body has the inbuilt capacity to heal itself if provided with proper nutrition, exercise & environment. Wheatgrass contains more than 111 beneficial substances in naturally balanced form. Artificially formulated nutrition products may contain some nutrients in excess & some insufficient. Amino acids & Enzymes are required to assimilate the food & help the cells absorb the nutrients. Their deficiency makes the nutrients go waste. Wheatgrass contains 19 of the known Amino acids including 9 EAA (essential amino acids), which our body cannot make from our foods. Proteins are made up of amino acids. The balanced nutrients contained in Wheatgrass thus help combat various health problems by overcoming nutrition deficiencies. In fact, we have observed that when Wheatgrass Powder is taken to help combat a particular health problem, it has helped overcome other co-related problems.

Q.12. What is the importance of Organic Certification?
Ans. “Organic certification by a Govt. recognized authority is an assurance that the essential elements constituting an ‘Organic’ product have been met from the farm to the market.

The term ‘Organic Food’ means that the food product has been produced without the use of artificial fertilizers, synthetic pesticides & growth promoters. Such products are devoid of heavy metals, pesticides and preservatives. Scientific studies have revealed that the exposure of heavy metals, pesticides & chemical residues through our food have adverse effect on the immune, respiratory, digestion, nervous & reproductive systems. Organic foods taste better, provide more nutrition, have better keeping quality & are safe against any harmful effects.

Q.13. Does the taste of Wheatgrass Powder vary over time and what is expiry?
Ans. “Green Era” Wheatgrass Powder is an Organic product obtained from naturally grown Wheatgrass. No artificial flavor or preservative is added. The taste and color may vary slightly as per season even though the Wheatgrass is grown in poly houses. Generally, winter batches are sweeter in taste than rainy season batches. The natural growth process cannot be tampered with and this does not affect the quality of the product.

Fresh batch Wheatgrass Powder is seal packed in food grade plastic bottles and given to distributors. Powder manufacturing is done daily in quantities as per market projections. Over stocking is avoided. The Powder is best before 8 months from date of packaging. We recommend it to be consumed within 6 weeks after the packing seal is removed.



Q. 14. How much Stevia is used around the world?
Ans. As an indication, Japanese consumers used the equivalent of 700 metric tonnes of Stevia leaves in 1987 alone. This number does not include other major consuming countries such as Brazil and the whole of South America; South Korea, China and the whole of the Pacific Rim; as well as Europe, Australia and North America. I would also assume that the Japanese figure has increased since 1987.

Q. 15. How has Stevia been used in food applications and FDS’s Position on Stevia?
Ans. Minutes of the Tenth Meeting of Food Authority held on 20th September, 2012 at 1100 hrs at FDA Bhavan, New Delhi .Approval of use of Steviol Glycoside as an artificial sweetener in various food. The Food Authority - FSSAI in India has noted the recommendations of the Scientific Panel on food additives, flavourings, processing aids and materials in contact with food & Scientific Committee and approved the:

Use of Steviol Glycoside as an non-nutritive sweetener in 11 food items based
  • Dairy Based drinks flavoured
  • Dairy based desserts (ice cream,frozen desserts, cream toppings)
  • Yoghurt
  • Fruit nectars
  • Non carbonated water based beverages (non-alcoholic)
  • Ice Lollies / Edible Ice
  • Jams, jellies, marmalades
  • Ready to eat cereals
  • Carbonated water
  • Soft Drink Concentrate
  • Chewing gum

Q. 16. Is Stevia safe?
Ans. In general, Stevia is an all-natural herbal product with centuries of safe usage by native Indians in Paraguay. It has been thoroughly tested in dozens of tests around the world and found to be completely non-toxic. It has also been consumed safely in massive quantities (Thousands of tonnes annually) for the past twenty years.

For decades, high purity stevia extracts have been approved for use in foods and beverages in Japan. Positive safety opinions from global food safety authorities, including the World Health Organization/Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives, the European Food Safety Authority, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, are opening markets for this new and exciting sweetener.

There are more than 200 studies attesting to the safety of stevia for subjects of all ages. Additionally, all major global regulatory organizations including the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), have determined that there are no safety concerns with stevia.

Is stevia safe for pregnant women and children?
Yes. After reviewing numerous studies, the Food and Drug Administration, World Health

Organization and European Food Safety Authority have determined that stevia is safe for pregnant women and children when consumed within the recommended levels.

No part of JECFA or FDA approval suggests that the children (age 2+) or pregnant women have to be exempted from determined ADI

Moreover JECFA evaluation contains specific dietary estimates for children (both diabetic and non- diabetic) in Addendum Table 7 and Table 8 concluding that in normal dietary exposure estimate children consumption of Steviol Glycosides will be below ADI(pg 31).

Overall it can be concluded that there's no evidence limiting stevia use for pregnant women and children.

Source : Safety Evaluation on Certain Food Additives

Q. 17. Can Stevia replace sugar in the diet?
Ans. Yes. Refined sugar is virtually devoid of nutritional benefits and, at best, represents empty calories in the diet. At worst, it has been implicated in numerous degenerative diseases. Stevia is much sweeter than sugar and has none of sugar's unhealthy drawbacks.

Q. 18. How sweet is Stevia?
Ans.The crude Stevia leaves and herbal powder (green) are reported to be 30-40 times sweeter than table sugar. The refined extracts of Stevia called steviosides (a white powder, 85-95% Steviosides) claim to be 200-300 times sweeter than table sugar. My experience is that the herbal powder is very sweet while the refined extract is incredibly sweet and needs to be diluted to be properly used. Both products have a slight bitter aftertaste, also characteristic of licorice.

Q. 19. Can Stevia replace artificial sweeteners in the diet?
Ans. Yes, we do not believe that humans should consume anything artificial in their diets. Stevia offers a safe, all-natural, alternative to these "toxic time-bombs." And industrial usage in Japan proves that this substitution is both practical and economical.

Q. 20. How many calories are in Stevia?
Ans. Virtually none. And the refined Stevia extracts are considered to be non-caloric.

Q. 21. Will Stevia raise my blood sugar levels?
Ans. Not at all. In fact, according to some research, it may actually lower blood sugar levels. Stevia is safe for adults and children with diabetes. Stevia contributes no carbohydrate or glycemic load (a measure of carbohydrate’s effect on blood sugar) and can thereby help a diabetic to moderate their postprandial blood glucose and insulin levels. However, this research has yet to be confirmed and contradictory results make any conclusions premature.

Q. 22. Will Stevia harm my teeth?
Ans. Apparently not. Two tests conducted by Purdue University's Dental Science Research Group have concluded that Stevioside is both fluo-ride compatible and "significantly" inhibits the development of plaque, thus Stevia may actually help to prevent cavities.

Q. 23. Can Stevia be used in cooking and baking?
Ans. Absolutely! Industrial research in Japan has shown that Stevia and Stevioside extracts are extremely heat stable in a variety of everyday cooking and baking situations.

Q. 24. Does Stevia contain vitamins and minerals?
Ans. Raw herbal Stevia contains nearly one hundred identified phytonutrients and volatile oils, including trace amounts of Rutin (from the Callus) and B-Sitosterol (from the leaves). However, in the quantities typically consumed, the nutritive benefits will be negligible. The extracts of Stevia, being more refined, will contain far fewer of these phytonutrients and volatile oils.

Q. 25. Will Stevia change the color of my food?
Ans. The green herbal powder may impart a slight amount of color to your food, depending on how much you use in your recipe. If you are concerned about color, I would suggest that you use the white powdered extract or a similar "clear" liquid extract of Stevia.

How much stevia can someone safely consume?
The Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFhas evaluated the safety of stevia and determined an Acceptable Daily Intake of 4mg/kg/day, which is the amount of stevia that is considered safe for an individual to consume daily over the course of a lifetime.

According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSScientific opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive:

Studies in humans have demonstrated that daily doses of the steviol glycosides up to 1000 mg/person/day, equivalent to 16.6 mg/kg bw/day for a 60 kg person (corresponding to approximately 330 mg steviol equivalents/person/day or to 5.5 mg steviol equivalents/kg bw/day) were well- tolerated by individuals with normal glucose metabolism or type-2 diabetes mellitus.

The Panel establishes an ADI for steviol glycosides, expressed as steviol equivalents, of 4 mg/kg bw/day based on application of a 100-fold uncertainty factor to the NOAEL for stevioside of 2.5% in the diet, equal to 967 mg stevioside/kg bw/day (approximately 388 mg steviol equivalents/kg bw/day), from a 2-year carcinogenicity study in the rat.

Conservative estimates of steviol glycoside exposure both in adults and in children suggest that it is not likely that the ADI would be exceeded at the maximum proposed use levels.

Source :
  • Scientific Opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive
  • EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS)
  • European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy, 2010. (pg 47)

How does the body metabolize stevia?
Through a series of digestive processes, the body breaks down steviol glycosides (the form of stevia we eat) into steviol glucuronide. The steviol glucuronide is then removed from the body in the urine.

According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSScientific opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive:

Metabolic studies with steviol glycosides in animals and humans demonstrated that intact steviol glycosides are poorly absorbed after oral exposure but that they are hydrolysed by the microflora in the colon to steviol. A large amount of steviol is absorbed; the rest is excreted in the feces. In the liver, steviol undergoes conjugation with glucuronic acid to form steviol glucuronide. The only interspecies difference is that the glucuronide is excreted primarily via the urine in humans and via the bile in rats. No accumulation of steviol glycoside derivatives occurs in the body. Besides steviol glucuronide, no other derivatives could be detected in the urine of humans exposed orally to steviol glycosides.

Source :
  • Scientific Opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive1
  • EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS)
  • European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy, 2010

3. Biological and toxicological data (pg 20)
3.1. Absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion (pg 20)
3.1.1.In vitrostudies (pg 20)
3.1.2.In vivostudies (pg 20)

How long has stevia been approved for use in foods and beverages?
Stevia has been consumed for centuries by the indigenous people of Paraguay. It was also approved decades ago (1970) and commercially available as an alternative sweetener in foods and beverages.

In December 2008, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDissued "no objection" letters that Rebaudioside A purified from S. rebaudiana Bertoni stevia leaf is generally recognized as safe (GRAS).

In 2008, 2009 and again in 2010, the Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization's Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA), a global panel of food ingredient safety experts, published specifications for steviol glycosides to be used as a sweetener.

In April 2010, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSPanel on Food Additive and Nutrient Sources (ANS) published a positive scientific opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides as a food additive. A positive opinion by EFSA and ANS signals a significant step towards European Union- wide approval of stevia for use in food in the near future.

In July 2011, the European Union Standing Committee on Food Chain and Animal Health gave a positive vote recommending the approval of high purity stevia for use as an ingredient throughout the EU.

Is stevia safe for pregnant women and children?
Yes. After reviewing numerous studies, the Food and Drug Administration, World Health Organization and European Food Safety Authority have determined that stevia is safe for pregnant women and children when consumed within the recommended levels.

No part of JECFA or FDA approval suggests that the children (age 2+) or pregnant women have to be exempted from determined ADI.

Moreover JECFA evaluation contains specific dietary estimates for children (both diabetic and non- diabetic) in Addendum Table 7 and Table 8 concluding that in normal dietary exposure estimate children consumption of Steviol Glycosides will be below ADI(pg 31).

Overall it can be concluded that there's no evidence limiting stevia use for pregnant women and children.

Source :
  • Safety Evaluation on Certain Food Additives
  • Prepared by the 69 th Meeting of the Joint FAO / WHO
  • Expert Committee on Foo d Additives (JECFA)
  • 2.2.5 Reproductive toxicity

Does stevia have any side effects?
There are no known side effects from the use of high purity stevia extracts used in foods and beverages.

Source :
  • Scientific Opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive1
  • EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS)
  • European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy, 2010
  • 3.2.8. Allergenicity of steviol glycosides (pg 39)

Are there any known allergies to stevia?
There are no known allergies from the use of high purity stevia extracts used in foods and beverages.

Source :
  • Scientific Opinion on the safety of steviol glycosides for the proposed uses as a food additive1EFSA
  • Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS)
  • European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy, 2010
  • 3.2.8. Allergenicity of steviol glycosides (pg 39)

What are the benefits of stevia?
Stevia benefits include:
  • Natural
  • No calories
  • Zero glycemic load, safe for diabetics
  • High solubility, ideal for diverse food applications
  • Heat stable, suitable for cooking/baking
  • Tooth friendly
  • pH stable
  • Excellent shelf life
  • Non-fermenting
  • Photo stable

How can stevia help manage calories and added sugars in one’s diet?
Consuming all-natural, no-calorie stevia to reduce the added sugar content is an easy way to lower total caloric intake without sacrificing taste. For example, if you chose an orange juice with a blend of sugar and stevia instead of full-sugar orange juice, you could eliminate 420 calories a week (assumption: 8 ounce servings per day, 7 days a week).

What are the advantages of stevia for diabetics?
Managing diabetes is all about controlling blood sugar. One of the simplest ways to control blood sugar is to limit refined sugar from the diet. However, deprivation of any foods completely from a diet is not a great strategy for health or success. Stevia doesn’t contain any calories or carbohydrates nor does it affect blood sugar level.

What types of products contain stevia?
Stevia can be found in hundreds of food products from around the world, including teas, soft drinks, juices, yogurt, soymilk, baked goods, cereals, salad dressings, confections and as a tabletop sweetener.

How is stevia referenced on an ingredient line?
Globally there is no single accepted common name for stevia and this is evident in the variety of terms currently used within the marketplace: Reb A, rebiana, stevia, stevia extract, stevia leaf extract, steviol glycosides.

However, in some markets, regulatory boards have established specific terminology to use for stevia and dictate what food and beverage manufacturers use in ingredient statements.

Can stevia help with satiety?
Yes. A study published in the March 2010 issue of Appetite looked at the effects of stevia, aspartame and sucrose (table sugar) on food intake and satiety. Participants reported similar levels of hunger and satiety regardless of the sweetener used. Despite fewer calories provided with stevia compared to table sugar, the participants did not compensate by eating more. In addition, the study showed that the consumption of stevia significantly reduced the amount of insulin produced in the body after the meal as well as glucose levels when compared with aspartame and sucrose.

Effects of stevia. aspartame, and sucrose on food intake, safety, and postprandial glucose andinsulin levels

Appetite, March 9, 2010