When you think of maple syrup, you are probably imagining the sugary goodness that you spread over your waffles and pancakes. The fact that it is so sugary may make you think that it’s your dentist’s worst nightmare, but it actually has a number of health benefits. Here, we’ll discuss why consuming maple syrup in moderation and in conjunction with proper preventive oral care is not entirely bad for your oral health.
How Maple Syrup Compares to Refined Sugar
Because pure maple syrup does not go through much processing, it’s much better for you than refined sugar which goes through a lot of processing in factories. Chemicals like phosphoric acid and lime can be used in the refining process, while the sugar is whitened with carbon. Because of the refinement process, sugar is also stripped of any vitamins and minerals, whereas pure maple syrup contains a number of beneficial minerals like calcium and potassium, among others. It is also lower on the glycemic index than refined sugar, thus affecting your blood sugar levels less. Too much sugar is always bad, but if you need to sweeten, it may be better to reach for a bottle of pure maple syrup than a spoonful of refined sugar.
As mentioned above, maple syrup contains helpful minerals such as magnesium, potassium, zinc, calcium, manganese, and iron, and vitamins such as riboflavin and B6. Vitamins and minerals like these assist with cell formation, producing healthy red blood cells, regulating muscle contractions, maintaining your immune system health, and strengthening bones and teeth. Further, manganese is an antioxidant that helps to perform a number of vital functions in the body, including processing protein, carbohydrates, and cholesterol. It’s also an essential nutrient for strengthening bones and teeth, and, as dentists, we love to hear about these kinds of benefits.
Other Health Benefits
Maple syrup fights inflammatory diseases with polyphenol antioxidants, improves your skin by lowering redness, inflammation, dryness, and blemishes, keeps digestion regular, and may even naturally enhance the effects of antibiotics.
Moderation + Preventive Oral Care
But since maple syrup is still a form of sugar, be sure to consume it only in moderation (as with all other kinds of sugar), drink plenty of water, maintain outstanding daily oral hygiene, and keep up with your biannual dental cleanings! Contact us if you have more questions about sugar and your oral health, and to schedule your next checkup.