One major Native American contribution to the American economy, especially in the Northeast, is maple syrup and sugar.

Native Americans of the Northeast tapped maple trees each spring. Collecting the sap in birch-bark buckets and boiling it into syrup. Colonists, who learned to tap trees by observing natives, quickly incorporated the sweetener into their diet. And now it is a staple of the U.S. and Canadian economies.

Maple syrup could help fight bacterial infections, Canadian scientists find

Maple syrup is once again making headlines for being the rockstar condiment that every Canadian knows it is, but it’s not the culinary world that’s buzzing this time — it’s the medical world.

Newly released research from McGill University in Montreal suggests that concentrated maple syrup extract may actually help fight bacterial infections, potentially reducing the need for antibiotics around the world.

“Combining maple syrup extract with common antibiotics could increase the microbes’ susceptibility, leading to lower antibiotic usage,” reads a press release issued by the university Friday. “Overuse of antibiotics fuels the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria, which has become a major public-health concern worldwide.”

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