Alternatives to sugar have come a long way in the last five years. From the days of artificial sweeteners at comparatively high cost, natural alternatives now provide another option for those looking to reduce their refined sugar consumption.
Sam Tew co-founded one such product, Natvia, in 2009. Motivated to seek a natural sugar replacement after his wife was diagnosed with gestational diabetes, he came up with his own alternative.
Describe your life currently: work, family, health and wellbeing
Managing a fast growing business and having a young family is always a challenge. To ensure that I invest the same amount of attention in each aspect, I prioritise and ensure that the key things I value most get the attention first. My family and my health are on the top of the list. And to keep my mind sharp and focused, I engage in boxing training at least twice a week.
What things in life are you passionate about?
I guess you can say health. To enjoy the most out of life, you have to be healthy. Whether it is excelling in the business or being a great dad and husband, it all comes down to healthy living. When I say ‘healthy living’, I’m not just focusing on the physical side – you need to incorporate the mind as well. It’s important to have a holistic view on wellbeing.
How did Natvia come about?
It came about from simply asking ‘why’ – why are there no natural sweeteners that ticks all the boxes? When we launched Natvia, there were only sugars and artificial sweeteners available on the market.
In 2008, my wife developed gestational diabetes when pregnant with our second baby. I started researching everything about diabetes and when I sought to find a healthier, safer and more natural alternative to sugar for her, there was nothing. In addition, most of the sweetener options available were not only extremely pricey, but hard to find. I strongly believe that healthy products should be accessible to everyone. The concern about the lack of healthy, sugar-free choices for the everyday consumer and especially those with diabetes, led to the creation of Natvia.