Moringa is a fast-growing tree native to the sub-Himalayan areas of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. It is also grown in the tropics. The leaves, bark, flowers, fruit, seeds, and root are used as part of traditional medicine for centuries, and the Ayurveda medicine claims that this plant can successfully cure more than 300 diseases.
Moringa, sometimes described as the “miracle tree,” “drumstick tree,” or “horseradish tree,” has small, rounded leaves that are packed with an incredible amount of nutrition: protein, calcium, beta carotene, vitamin C, potassium… you name it, moringa’s got it. No wonder it’s been used medicinally (and as a food source) for at least 4,000 years.
Moringa is used for “tired blood” (anemia); arthritis and other joint pain (rheumatism); asthma; cancer; constipation; diabetes; diarrhea; epilepsy; stomach pain; stomach and intestinal ulcers; intestinal spasms; headache; heart problems; high blood pressure; kidney stones; fluid retention; thyroid disorders; and bacterial, fungal, viral, and parasitic infections.
Moringa is also used to reduce swelling, increase sex drive (as an aphrodisiac), prevent pregnancy, boost the immune system, and increase breast milk production. Some people use it as a nutritional supplement or tonic.
The moringa plant is great for the digestive system as it is full of fibers that clean the excess waste from the intestines. It also contains isothiocyanates that possess anti-bacterial properties that can eliminate the H. Pylori bacteria, which is the main cause of ulcers, gastritis and gastric ulcers.
Moringa is sometimes applied directly to the skin as a germ-killer or drying agent (astringent). It is also used topically for treating pockets of infection (abscesses), athlete’s foot, dandruff, gum disease (gingivitis), snakebites, warts, and wounds.
Oil from moringa seeds is used in foods, perfume, and hair care products, and as a machine lubricant.
Moringa is an important food source in some parts of the world. Because it can be grown cheaply and easily, and the leaves retain lots of vitamins and minerals when dried, moringa is used in India and Africa in feeding programs to fight malnutrition. The immature green pods (drumsticks) are prepared similarly to green beans, while the seeds are removed from more mature pods and cooked like peas or roasted like nuts. The leaves are cooked and used like spinach, and they are also dried and powdered for use as a condiment.
The seed cake remaining after oil extraction is used as a fertilizer and also to purify well water and to remove salt from seawater.
How does it work?
Moringa contains proteins, vitamins, and minerals. As an antioxidant, it seems to help protect cells from damage.
Only 100 gr. of the moringa leaves contain:
- 12 times more vitamin C than oranges;
- 17 times more calcium than milk;
- 10 times more vitamin A than carrots;
- 25 times more iron than spinach;
- 15 more potassium than bananas;
- 9 times more protein than yogurt
A recent study has shown that if you consume 7 gr. of moringa leaf powder for 3 months can reduce the blood sugar levels by 13.5%.
The plant possesses anti-tumor and anti-cancer properties thanks to the activities of niaziminin, a compound found in the moringa leaves.
The contents of the plant can regulate the thyroid function, even if the thyroid is hyperactive.
Moringa oleifera has been present on the market in the last decade, but it has been known to traditional medicine for a longer time. The plant is cultivated mostly in Africa, Central America and the Caribbean, but it is native to India. It probably is the main reason why people in India have an 84% lower death rate of pancreatic cancer than the people of the USA.