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Hallelujah! Scientists Have Found Medicinal Properties In Maple Syrup

But don't start chugging it, k?

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In addition to being the most delicious topping to spill forth from Canada's majestic forests, maple syrup may be harbouring some medicinal properties.

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Researchers at at Quebec City’s Université Laval have been studying quebecol, a molecule that can only be found in maple syrup. Discovered in 2011, quebecol is created at some point during the process that turns maple sap into sweet, sweet pancake-enhancing goodness.

After synthesizing quebecol, bio-organic chemist Normand Voyer and a colleague in the Faculty of Dentistry found the molecule has anti-inflammatory properties.

"The interesting thing is that since maple syrup has been demonstatred to have some sort of anti-inflammatory properties, but no one knew what compounds in maple syrup have that property," Voyer told BuzzFeed Canada.

Now, they do. The research is still in its early stages, but in the future quebecol could be used in things like yogurt or toothpaste. Anti-inflammatories reduce things like swelling and pain caused by injury or disease.

But don't go chugging maple syrup in hopes of finding a miracle cure. Voyer said that even downing two litres of pure maple syrup wouldn't be enough to get a sufficient amount of quebecol to do anything.

via giphy / Via giphy.com

"Unfortunately the concentration of quebcol within maple syrup is way too low that you wouldn’t be able to get any bioactivity by drinking it," he said.

Although this study might make the maple syrup industry happy, it was an independent project. Voyer is just a Quebec man who really, really loves maple syrup. He calls it "scientific patriotism."

Courtesy of Normand Voyer

"I think it’s important that we try to help, using science, the development of Canada in general," he said.

"If you can provide a scientific basis of something that is in the cultural tradition in Canada, why not do it."

Lauren Strapagiel is Managing Editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto, Canada.

Contact Lauren Strapagiel at lauren.strapagiel@buzzfeed.com.

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