Moringa oleifera, or simply moringa, is known for its nutritional and medicinal values worldwide. Many have used it whether as an added ingredient to their food, crushed into powder, turned into a capsule, or extracted as an oil product. But how does this superfood actually benefit your body? Below let’s take a look at moringa’s nutritional value and the five ways it improves your health.
Moringa’s nutritional value
From the leaves, pods, and flowers down to the bark and roots, every part of moringa is rich in healthful compounds. Moringa is a great source of vitamins and minerals, including:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine)
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
- Vitamin B3 (niacin)
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin C (folate and ascorbic acid)
5 Health Benefits of Moringa
Aside from its nutritional value, moringa also contains protective properties that help fight diseases and improve your health. Here’s how the miracle tree helps you in various ways.
1. Lowers cholesterol
Based on several studies involving both animals and humans, moringa has similar cholesterol-lowering effects as many plant foods, including almonds, oats, and flaxseeds. High cholesterol increases the risk of heart disease.
2. Lowers blood sugar levels
Moringa leaves may also help reduce blood sugar levels in the body according to several studies conducted in both animals and humans. In fact, one study in women suggests that consuming moringa leaf powder reduced fasting blood sugar levels by 13.5%. The participants took 1.5 teaspoons of moringa leaf powder daily for three months.
3. Fights free radicals
Moringa is rich in antioxidants such as quercetin and chlorogenic. These antioxidants help fight free radicals that are caused by harmful toxins and exposure to the sun. These free radicals may cause oxidative stress that results in premature aging. High levels of free radicals are also associated with type 2 diabetes and heart diseases. In the same study in women mentioned above, it found out that 1.5 teaspoons of moringa leaf powder also increased antioxidant levels in the blood.
4. Reduces inflammation
Experts believe that the isothiocyanates in moringa act as the anti-inflammation agent in the superfood. Animal and test-tube studies have shown to reduce inflammation that is linked to many chronic health problems such as cancer and heart disease. However, studies on human are yet to be conducted.
5. Protects and nourishes skin and hair
The anti-oxidant and protein in moringa also help nourish your hair and protect the skin cells from damage. Its hydrating and detoxifying properties also boost the skin and hair. You may also use moringa oil for hair loss since the nutrients found in this superfood are key factors in stimulating the scalp, promoting hair growth.
Moringa isn’t called the “miracle tree” for nothing. Over the years, it has helped many people reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties also proved helpful in maintaining overall health, as well as caring for your body not only from the inside but on the outside as well. Moringa sure is packed with nutritional value that is beneficial for you. Whatever its form—plant, powdered, or oil—you should find good use of this superfood.