Health Benefits of Moringa

Moringa is a plant that is native to areas of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. It is also grown in the tropics. The leaves, bark, flowers, fruit, seeds, and root are used to make medicine.

Moringa is taken by mouth for “tired blood” (anemia), arthritis and other joint pain (rheumatism), asthma, cancer, constipation, diabetes, diarrhea, seizures, stomach pain, stomach and intestinal ulcers, intestinal spasms, headache, heart problems, high blood pressure, kidney stones, symptoms of menopause, thyroid disorders, and infections.

Moringa is also taken by mouth to reduce swelling, as an antioxidant, to prevent spasms, 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. It is also used as a “water pill” (diuretic).

Moringa is sometimes applied directly to the skin as a germ-killer or drying agent (astringent). It is also applied to the skin 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. Moringa may also help decrease inflammation and reduce pain.

Nutritional Value

Moringa contains many healthful compounds such as:

  • vitamin A
  • vitamin B1 (thiamine)
  • B2 (riboflavin)
  • B3 (niacin), B-6
  • folate and ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
  • calcium
  • potassium
  • iron
  • magnesium
  • phosphorus
  • zinc

It is also extremely low in fats and contains no harmful cholesterol.

Health Benefits

Moringa is believed to have many benefits and its uses range from health and beauty to helping prevent and cure diseases.

Moringa May Lower Blood Sugar Levels

Moringa leaves may lead to reduced blood sugar levels, but more research is needed before any solid recommendations can be made.

High blood sugar can be a serious health problem. In fact, it’s the main characteristic of diabetes.

Over time, high blood sugar levels raise the risk of many serious health problems, including heart disease. For this reason, it’s important to keep your blood sugar within healthy limits.

Interestingly, several studies have shown that Moringa oleifera may help lower blood sugar levels.

However, most of the evidence is based on animal studies. Only a few human-based studies exist, and they’re generally of low quality

One study in 30 women showed that taking 1.5 teaspoons (7 grams) of moringa leaf powder every day for three months reduced fasting blood sugar levels by 13.5%, on average (16).

Another small study in six people with diabetes found that adding 50 grams of moringa leaves to a meal reduced the rise in blood sugar by 21%.

Scientists believe these effects are caused by plant compounds such as isothiocyanates.

Protecting and nourishing skin and hair

Moringa seed oil is beneficial for protecting hair against free radicals and keeps it clean and healthy. Moringa also contains protein, which means it is helpful in protecting skin cells from damage. It also contains hydrating and detoxifying elements, which also boost the skin and hair.

It can be successful in curing skin infections and sores.

Treating edema

Edema is a painful condition where fluid builds up in specific tissues in the body. The anti-inflammatory properties of moringa may be effective in preventing edema from developing.

Treating stomach complaints

Moringa extracts might help treat some stomach disorders, such as constipation, gastritis, and ulcerative colitis. The antibiotic and antibacterial properties of moringa may help inhibit the growth of various pathogens, and its high vitamin B content helps with digestion.

Protecting the liver

Moringa appears to protect the liver against damage caused by anti-tubercular drugs and can quicken its repair process.

Preventing and treating cancer

Moringa extracts contain properties that might help prevent cancer developing. It also contains niazimicin, which is a compound that suppresses the development of cancer cells.

Fighting against bacterial diseases

Due to its antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties, moringa extracts might combat infections caused by Salmonella, Rhizopus, and E. coli.

Making bones healthier

Moringa also contains calcium and phosphorous, which help keep bones healthy and strong. Along with its anti-inflammatory properties moringa extract might help to treat conditions such as arthritis and may also heal damaged bones.

Protecting the cardiovascular system

The powerful antioxidants found in Moringa extract might help prevent cardiac damage and has also been shown to maintain a healthy heart.

Helping wounds to heal

Extract of moringa has been shown to help wounds close as well as reduce the appearance of scars.

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Treating asthma

Moringa may help reduce the severity of some asthma attacks and protect against bronchial constrictions. It has also been shown to assist with better lung function and breathing overall.

Protecting against kidney disorders

People may be less likely to develop stones in the kidneys, bladder or uterus if they ingest moringa extract. Moringa contains high levels of antioxidants that might aid toxicity levels in the kidneys.

Improving eye health

Moringa contains eyesight-improving properties thanks to its high antioxidant levels. Moringa may stop the dilation of retinal vessels, prevent the thickening of capillary membranes, and inhibit retinal dysfunction.

Treating anemia and sickle cell disease

Moringa might help a person’s body absorb more iron, therefore increasing their red blood cell count. It is thought the plant extract is very helpful in treating and preventing anemia and sickle cell disease.

Moringa products are available to purchase online.

Can it aid weight loss?

Evidence has shown that moringa extract can be effective in reducing and controlling weight gain in mice. Its high vitamin B content helps with smooth and efficient digestion and can assist the body when converting food into energy, as opposed to storing it as fat.

Moringa is thought to:

  • reduce weight gain
  • help to lower cholesterol and blood pressure
  • prevent inflammation
  • help the body convert fats into energy
  • reduce fatigue and improve energy levels

The Bottom Line

Moringa oleifera is an Indian tree that has been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years.

However, only a few of its many reputed health benefits have been studied scientifically.

To date, studies show that Moringa oleifera may lead to modest reductions in blood sugar and cholesterol. It may also have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and protect against arsenic toxicity.

Moringa leaves are also highly nutritious and should be beneficial for people who are lacking in essential nutrients.

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