Maple syrup and antibiotics could make a good team
It seems possible that maple syrup could help humans fight infection. Researchers recently discovered maple syrup has properties that make antibiotics more effective and could help protect us from the threat of superbugs that have become resistant to antibiotics.
The finding that comes from researchers at McGill University could mean decreased use of antibiotics. Investigators for the study found maple syrup and antibiotics make a good team because the syrup helps suppress genes in bacteria that make them untreatable.
Maple syrup weakens bacteria to help fight infection
When the researchers tested maple syrup in the lab they found it had mild antibacterial properties against two common causes of urinary tract infection - E. coli and Proteus mirabilis.
When the researchers combined the syrup with antibiotics they found maple syrup acted in harmony with antibiotic drugs to destroy biofilm that bacteria form when to resist antibiotics.
Maple syrup is known to be a rich source of phenolic compounds that are found in plants and herbs.. Polyphenols act as antioxidants in the body.
Prof. Nathalie Tufenkji's research team in McGill's Department of Chemical Engineering used a concentrated phenol rich extract of that they prepared from maple syrup purchased in local markets in Montreal. The extract was kept frozen until it was used in the experiments.
What the finding means
Tufenkji said in a press release: "We would have to do in vivo tests, and eventually clinical trials, before we can say what the effect would be in humans."
She adds that the finding could potentially lead to a simple and inexpensive way to reduce antibiotic usage by adding maple syrup to antibiotic capsules, for instance.
Should you take maple syrup with your antibiotics? Not just yet, but if you enjoy the taste it couldn't hurt. Maple syrup is loaded with health benefits, some of which have been discovered in the last few years.