Studies have not found that stevia causes any adverse effects on health, claims Authority Nutrition. As of 2015, research shows that stevioside, a compound derived from stevia, may lower blood pressure and improve insulin function.
Stevioside is one of the compounds that make stevia sweet, explains Authority Nutrition. The leaves of the stevia plant are refined, and the compounds isolated to make stevia liquid or powder. Extensive research on potential risks and benefits of the unrefined plant does not exist, as of 2015. Studies of stevioside test a higher amount than is found in the stevia sold in stores. Some brands of sweetener, such as Truvia, contain a mix of stevia extract and other compounds.