Health & Lifestyle

Maple Syrup: Properties and Nutritional Values

For several years, researchers have discovered interesting virtues in maple syrup. In this article we will talk about its properties and nutritional values.

Production

Maple tree is a plant that belongs to the Aceraceae family that has 128 species. Maple syrup is mainly produced in Canada where the annual syrup production amounts to approximately five million gallons. It is a natural sweetener containing no additives or dyes and is obtained as a result of the concentration of the sap from some varieties of the maple. It takes about 40 litres of sap to produce 1 litre of syrup. On the average, the sap consists of 98 percent pure water and 2 percent sugar.

Nutritional values

Many research have been carried to know how beneficial the maple syrup is for our health. It is estimated that it contains some 50 health benefits that would make it a super food with anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. It is known that it is a natural product, unrefined and has a very good taste. Maple syrup is 68 percent carbohydrate out of which 80 percent is sucrose. Other sugars found in this product are glucose and fructose.

Maple syrup is also one of the least caloric sweeteners. From a nutritional point of view, granulated sugar contains only sucrose and does not provide any nutrients. Maple syrup provides several essential minerals (manganese, calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, magnesium) compared to honey that contains only a small amount of potassium. Maple syrup is an excellent source of energy, but should be consumed in moderation; 1 tablespoon (15 ml) is equivalent to 53 calories. It should be noted, however, that 15 ml of maple syrup contain fewer calories than the same portion of honey or corn syrup.

Usage

It is good, sweet, natural and has not undergone any transformation other than boiling. Consider replacing refined sugar with maple syrup in your best recipes bearing in mind that its flavor is much more pronounced. Simply replace 1 cup (250 ml) of white sugar with 1 ¼ cup (310 ml) of maple syrup. Then, halve the liquids in the recipe and add ¼ tsp (1.2 ml) of baking soda.

Various delicious recipes can be created with maple syrup when used with squash or glazed carrots. It can give a twist to winter fruit salads, popcorn, Canadian cookies with pecans or glazed salmon with roasted brussels sprouts.

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