- Stevia and monk fruit sweetener maker SweetLeaf is partnering with the American Diabetes Association to promote its natural, non-sugar sweetener as a healthier and diabetes-safe alternative.
- During the next 12 months, SweetLeaf will participate in ADA activities, including the Tour de Cure in SweetLeaf’s home state of Arizona. The company also will develop and promote recipes on the ADA's Diabetes Food Hub website, do online cooking demos with ADA-approved chefs and promote the ADA's online Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test.
- About 37.3 million people in the U.S. — about 11.3% of the population — have diabetes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These consumers and their families pay close attention to food and drink ingredients, especially included sweeteners.
While consumers across the board do pay attention to their sugar intake, it’s of vital importance for people with diabetes.
Stevia and monk fruit don’t behave like sugar. Researchers have found stevia can suppress glucose levels in plasma and increase glucose tolerance. Monk fruit also doesn’t impact blood sugar, making it a safer choice for diabetics.
By bringing the specific SweetLeaf brand before consumers, it builds brand recognition. People who are utilizing the ADA’s resources are likely diabetics themselves, or close to those who have the disorder. Cooking demonstrations and recipes using the sweetener make it more accessible to people who are specifically looking for diabetic-friendly foods.
This is not SweetLeaf’s first partnership of this kind. The brand, which is made by Wisdom Natural Brands, is also a supporter of the American Heart Association’s Healthy for Good movement. Through this partnership, SweetLeaf works with the organization to educate consumers on the prevalence and negative health impacts of added sugars and how to limit their intake of them.
Partnerships like these aren’t just key opportunities for SweetLeaf to get its brand in front of consumers with particular health issues. It also gives the company’s sweeteners credibility in the larger marketplace. A consumer who is interested in cutting sugar intake for general health reasons may be reassured by a sweetener company’s partnerships with entities such as the ADA and American Heart Association. Many sugar substitutes — especially those that are not natural — have as many health drawbacks as benefits.
It’s worthwhile for any sweetener brand to promote itself as a healthier alternative to sugar. According to the 2022 Food and Health Survey from the International Food Information Council, 73% of consumers are trying to limit or avoid sugar intake. Almost a quarter are consciously limiting and avoiding the sweetener to manage an existing health condition, while 35% are trying to prevent additional health conditions.