Moringa Oleifera is the technical name for the ‘drumstick tree’. This tree is found in the foothills of the Himalayas, as well as throughout Africa and Central and South America. Moringa has quite a reputation in these areas as a health aid and is now beginning to gain some recognition in the West too. Studies looking at its numerous health benefits have led to it earning the nicknames ‘Elixir of Long Life’ and ‘Miracle Tree’.
But is it really a miracle, or just another expensive health fad?
Moringa Oleifera is filled with antioxidants. Specifically, it contains 46 different antioxidants. These include 22% of your vitamin C RDI and 272% of your vitamin A. A combination of so many different antioxidants should be enough to provide some extra protection for the cells against natural ageing and damage from free radicals.
There’s also a lot of other important nutrition in moringa. One serving will get you 61% of your magnesium RDI and 125% of your calcium. Calcium and magnesium have synergistic properties that are useful for strengthening the bones and protecting against osteoporosis.
Moringa also contains 50 times more vitamin B3 than peanuts, lots of iodine, lutein, zinc, selenium and beta-carotene and a good amount of fiber.
Amino Acid Profile
Moringa also has a particularly rich amino acid profile. It contains 18 amino acids, 8 of which are essential amino acids. This makes the plant especially useful for vegetarians who struggle to get all of their amino acids from a plant-only diet.
Amino acids are also important for the diet general and are key in a number of crucial bodily processes, including the formation of neurotransmitters (key for brain health), the healing of wounds, energy maintenance and muscle growth.
Moringa can also be enjoyed in a variety of other forms where it provides additional benefits. It can be used to create an oil called ‘ben oil’ for example, which is similar to olive oil in terms of its nutritional benefits. Likewise, it can also be used in a dried, powdered form to nourish the skin. Moringa is a common ingredient in creams and lotions for this reason.