Difference Between Honey and Maple Syrup

Honey and maple syrup both are very flexible forms of flavoring agents that are used in salad dressing, smoothies, beverages, etc. The nutritional values, texture, taste, etc. of honey and maple syrup vary greatly because of their different source and process of manufacturing. Honey also has many medicinal values and contains less fat than maple syrup.

Honey vs Maple Syrup

The main difference between honey and maple syrup is that honey is produced mainly by the bees after they consume nectar and turn it into honey inside their stomach. On the other hand, maple syrup is processed from the sap of the maple trees and further boiled and processed into the final product.

Honey vs Maple Syrup

Honey is manufactured by bees and stored in the honeycombs in wax structures. The enzymes present in the stomach of the bees help in converting the nectar into honey. Later, the honey is regurgitated and the war is evaporated from it through air circulation (with the help of the bee’s wings).

Maple syrup is also a very popular sweetener and a better replacement for normal sugar. It is also becoming very famous nowadays among vegan people. Maple syrup is rich in various types of minerals and it is also known to contain a high number of antioxidants.

Comparison Table Between Honey vs Maple Syrup

Parameters of ComparisonHoneyMaple Syrup
HistoryHumans have encountered honey more than 10,000 years ago and it was also used as a form of currency.Native Americans are the early discoverers of maple syrup.
Manufacturing ProcessThe liquid nectar changes its texture inside a bee’s stomach and the circulation of air inside the honeycomb evaporates the water making the honey dense.Black maple or red maple trees are the sources of maple syrup. The sap is collected from the trees followed by processing it.
FlavorsDepending on the source of nectar, the favor of the honey may vary.The caramel flavor in maple syrup is very common.
Shelf LifeStored honey can be edible for years after years.An opened bottle of maple syrup can be edible for a year if refrigerated properly.
AntioxidantsAntioxidants in honey prevent blood clots and improve blood flow.Antioxidants in maple syrup prevent are anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer.
CaloriesHoney contains comparatively more calories than maple syrup.Maple syrup is a part of a low-calorie diet.
VitaminsHoney contains more varieties of vitamins than maple syrup.Maple syrup doesn’t contain many vitamins.
MineralsRich in iron, phosphorus, and copper.Rich in calcium, magnesium, zinc, and potassium.
ProductionChina is the largest producer of honey.Canada is the largest producer of maple syrup.

What is Honey?

Honey is a yellow-colored liquid with a very thick consistency. Production of honey on a commercial scale is a very lucrative business and countries like China and Turkey are leading producers of the same. Bees are responsible for withdrawing the nectar from various types of fruits and vegetable plants and then store in their honeycomb after processing it. During the 11th century AD, people used honey as currency and also paid their lords with it. The main use of honey is as a sweetener and it is a very healthy alternative to sugar. Honey is also used as a home remedy for cough and cold.

The taste and smell of the honey vary greatly depending on the main flower from which the nectar was collected in the first place. Some of the common varieties of honey are lavender, clover, acacia, chestnut, sage, etc. Honey is extremely sticky and viscous and one of the best characteristics of honey is it doesn’t have an expiration date.

Speaking of health benefits, prolonged consumption of honey has proven to reduce cardiovascular risks and also reduce the level of cholesterol. Honey is not appropriate for infants who are below one year of age as it may contain a certain type of bacteria that causes infant botulism.

What is Maple Syrup?

Maple syrup, currently consumed across the entire world was once native to North America. The native Americans are the ones that discovered maple syrup and they have been consuming it for several centuries. The leading producers of maple syrup in the world are Canada and the United States. Maple syrup is the perfect replacement for sugar for people who follows a low-carb diet. The fat amount in maple syrup is a bit higher than that in honey.

The process of maple syrup production is not very complicated. First, a hole is made in the maple tree and a container is placed right below it such that the sap is collected. After the sap is collected, it is boiled to concentrate the sugary syrup. Maple syrups, that are available in the market come in various flavors like vanilla and caramel. There are various grades of maple syrup with different shades. The darkest shade of the maple syrup is collected very late during the harvest season.

Maple syrup contains vitamin B1 and vitamin B2 and it is also a mineral-rich sweetener. Various companies sell maple syrups but all of them have an expiration date of one year. Maple syrup, once opened should be refrigerated properly otherwise mold will form very quickly.

Main Differences Between Honey and Maple Syrup

  1. Honey was discovered many years ahead of maple syrup and the former was also used as currency whereas the latter wasn’t.
  2. Bees play a very crucial role in the formation of honey whereas no insects or animals are involved in the manufacturing process of maple syrup.
  3. The flavor of honey depends on the source of nectar whereas artificial flavoring agents are very common in maple syrups.
  4. The shelf life of honey is much more than maple syrup.
  5. Honey is very good for preventing blood clots whereas maple syrup is good as an anti-cancer agent.
  6. Honey contains relatively more calories than maple syrup.
  7. Honey is very rich in vitamins as compared to maple syrup.

Conclusion

Honey and maple syrups both can be consumed as a sweetener and they are better alternatives to sugar. Since they are sweeteners, diabetic patients should be very cautious about the amount of honey or maple syrup they are consuming every day. As compared to vegetables and fruits, the nutritional value of these sweeteners is low, but they don’t cause any harmful reactions in our bodies. Some people might be allergic to certain types of honey and it only depends on the type of pollen from which the nectar is extracted. Both honey and maple syrup can be consumed regularly but in fewer amounts.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0260877417300596
  2. https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/ed084p1647
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