A lot of what's sold as syrup in grocery stores is actually maple-flavored syrup. It's mostly corn syrup with some maple flavoring. While this version of syrup is cheap, that's really its only advantage. If you can afford to pay a little bit more for grade-A Vermont maple syrup — in other words, real maple syrup — you should. Here are a few good reasons to make the switch.
Real maple syrup has a lower glycemic index.
The glycemic index of a food specifies how quickly its sugar is absorbed into your bloodstream. It is better for a food to have a low glycemic index, which means it absorbs into your bloodstream slowly and is less likely to cause your blood sugar to spike. Maple syrup has a lower glycemic index than corn syrup–based maple syrup. This makes it healthier for you overall, especially if you are pre-diabetic or trying to lose weight.
Real maple syrup contains antioxidants.
Real maple syrup is made from one ingredient: maple sap. This is a real food product made by the tree, not by a lab. Like most plant products, it contains antioxidants like benzoic acid and catechins. These antioxidants help your cells resist damage caused by free radicals, which can slow aging and help prevent disease. "Fake" maple syrup is mostly devoid of antioxidants since it is so processed.
Real maple syrup has a better flavor.
"Fake" maple syrup is mostly sweet with a little maple flavoring. Many people find that they have to use a lot in order to really enjoy it. Real maple syrup has more flavor, so you can get away with using less of it. It is also runnier than "fake" syrup, which means not as much will stick to your pancakes or waffles. Even though maple syrup is healthier than the imitation product, it is still sugary, so eating a bit less is a good thing.
Real maple syrup comes from small farms and providers.
When you buy processed, "fake" syrup, you are typically buying it from a big food company. These companies do not always have the best ethics. When you buy real maple syrup, you are typically buying from a farmer or small company. Supporting small, local businesses is good for everyone.
The next time you need syrup, think seriously about buying real maple syrup from Vermont rather than imitation syrup. The difference is huge!
To learn more, contact a supplier that carries grade-A Vermont maple syrup.