Maple syrup is a classic Canadian treat, but is it good for you?

It is a game-changer on pancakes, and it glistens on fresh fruit. But are we doing ourselves a disservice by consuming it? Is this classic Canadian treat, or liquid gold, as we call it, actually healthy? The Weather Network's Rachel Schoutsen asked the experts.

The month of March holds a special significance for maple syrup lovers and producers alike, as it marks the start of the maple syrup harvesting season in many regions. But, is this sweet delight actually good for you?

Let’s start with the positives.

Antioxidants. There are 67 antioxidants found in pure maple syrup, and nine of them are unique to maple syrup, says nutritionist Rachel Caven. 

Including antioxidants in your diet is important because they help fight free radicals in your body, which can build up and cause cell damage.

Another benefit of brown liquid gold is that it's a great source of healthy minerals.

"Maple syrup contains great minerals like iron, which helps with red blood cells, [and] manganese, which is amazing for our joints," explains another holistic nutritionist, Diane Murphy. "Maple syrup also contains minerals that have synergy, which means they work well together, like sodium and potassium, which help to regulate fluid in our cells; and calcium and magnesium, which work really well to help contract and relax our muscles, and that includes the heart."

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And lastly, it’s simply a better option when your sweet tooth kicks in.

"Another reason maple syrup is healthy is because, compared to other refined sugars such as corn syrup, it has a lower glycemic index," says family physician Dr. Stephanie Liu. "What that means is it's less likely to spike your blood sugars."

But that's where the fun stops.

To find out what the potential downsides to maple syrup are, watch the video that leads this article.

(Thumbnail credit: Roman Odintsov/Pexels)