Moringa oleifera, often referred to as the “drumstick tree”, is a small tree native to India, Pakistan, and Nepal. Nowadays the tree can also be found throughout Asia, South Africa, and Africa. Although it is relatively new to modern health science study, moringa has been used for thousands of years to attend to a multitude of health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and several skin disorders.
Within the last few years, moringa has become an increasingly popular “superfood” supplement for many health-conscious people. The supplement is typically found in powder form and is touted for its numerous health benefits and medicinal properties. In addition, it is extremely nutritious and provides the body with a multitude of essential nutrients.
While moringa supplements are typically derived from the leaves of the tree, the pods, bark, flowers, roots, seeds, and fruits are also edible. Compiled below are seven of the most incredible health benefits of this amazing plant.
1. It’s packed with nutrients.
Moringa is full of essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It is rich in vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium. Moringa is also high in protein and fiber. In fact, moringa is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet.
2. It has antioxidant properties.
One of the main health benefits of moringa is that it contains many antioxidants including flavonoids and polyphenols. This means that it works to neutralize free radicals in the body. Free radicals cause oxidative stress, which leads to cell damage and inflammation.
3. It boosts brain health.
Due to its antioxidant properties, moringa is known to support and boost brain health and function. The antioxidants work to fight oxidative stress, which can lead to neuron degeneration. In fact, preliminary studies have shown promising evidence that moringa may be successful in treating Alzheimer’s Disease.
In addition, moringa has shown the ability to normalize functioning of various neurotransmitters, including serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline. These neurotransmitters apparently play key roles in memory, mood, and organ function. Plus, they are an important part of good mental health, as most mental health disorders seem to be caused by an imbalance of the aforementioned compounds. Individuals with mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD may benefit from adding moringa to their treatment regimen.
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4. It protects the liver.
Because moringa is rich in polyphenols, it is incredibly helpful in protecting the liver from oxidative stress, toxicity, and degeneration. Studies have shown that moringa may be able to significantly reduce liver damage and fibrosis, as well as reverse oxidation. In addition, moringa can help restore liver enzymes to normal levels. This also helps to reduce oxidative stress, as well as increase protein content in the liver. If the liver is not functioning properly, numerous health problems can occur.
5. It has anti-inflammatory properties.
Inflammation is one of the leading precursors of many diseases, including cardiovascular disease, arthritis, and diabetes. Moringa works to reduce inflammation by suppressing inflammatory enzymes. This can help to alleviate many common symptoms of inflammation, such as soreness, swollen joints, and body aches.
6. It can speed up the wound healing process.
The leaves, roots, and seeds of the moringa tree have blood-clotting properties. This can speed up wound healing as well as reduce clotting time. This can be incredibly helpful to reduce the time it takes for scratches, cuts, and other wounds to stop bleeding.
7. It contains antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.
Moringa has long been used to treat numerous health conditions, including various bacterial and fungal infections. Studies have shown it to be effective against various types of bacteria and fungi, including those which cause skin infections, blood infections, urinary tract infections, and digestive problems.
How to Use It
Most people opt to add their moringa to a smoothie or tea. It can also be dissolved in water as well. The taste of moringa can be described as mildly earthy, so tea and smoothies made with moringa tend to have the same flavor.
In large dosages, moringa can have a mildly laxative effect. In addition, seed extracts have been found to exhibit a variable level of toxicity in immune cells. Generally speaking, a dosage of around one teaspoon is thought to be the optimum amount to consume.
Moringa is a popular “superfood” supplement, and is used for its numerous health benefits and medicinal properties. There are apparently minimal side effects when used correctly, making it a popular alternative therapy to traditional Western medicine.