Difference Between Tonic and Syrup

Syrup and tonic are two common words that are frequently used in various parts of the world in order to describe a wide range of medications and solutions. Most importantly, these terms are used to refer to medications that are properly dissolved in water to prepare a certain composition. Various varieties of syrups and tonics are prescribed by medical experts to be consumed in order to improve or overcome the symptoms of certain aliments and diseases.

Tonics and syrups are both clear solutions and therefore most of people think of them as interchangeable when preparing medicines or beverages. However, there are some major differences between them and these do influence how we should use each one.

Syrups are sweeter as compared to tonics, since the ratio of sugar in the former is higher than the latter.

Syrups are rich, thick and viscous in composition, whereas tonics are almost watery in consistency.

Both syrups and tonics are used in dealing with various ailments. Tonics are generally prescribed to adults as they are a bit strong in taste and composition. Syrups, on the other hand are recommended for children as they find them palatable to gulp.

Tonics are more recommended in different systems of medicine, whereas syrups are also used in allopathic medicines, homeopaths and proponents.


  • 1


    Syrup is a thick and gelatinous fluid. It is usually prepared by dissolving large amounts of sugar in boiling water. However, it shows a slight tendency to the deposit crystals. Syrup’s use is not only restricted to the medicinal world as it is also used in culinary activities and beverage industries to add flavour and taste to recipes. Pharmaceutical syrups (medicated and non-medicated syrups), culinary syrups and syrups of beverages (simple/flavoured and gomme syrups) are the well-known syrup varieties.

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  • 2


    It is a medicinal substance taken by millions of people worldwide for health, vitality and energy. Whenever patients complain to doctors about perceived declension of strength or weakness, they prescribe specific types of tonic in addition to the regular medications. It gives a feeling of heartiness or well-being. Best of all, it is the best remedy for various ailments. Tonic water is commonly used as a “cocktail mixer” for carbonated beverages, particularly those made with vodka or gin.

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