Moringa: The super food that can prevent cancer and more
Moringa, better known as drumstick, is known since ancient times for its medicinal properties as well as various health benefits. A native to India, this tree is today found extensively across Asia. It is also grown in some places of Africa and South America. Its leaves are a rich source of vitamins, minerals and plant-based proteins. Some of the vitamins and minerals found in this plant extract are vitamin A, B vitamins like thiamine, riboflavin and niacin, vitamin C, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc. This plant is known for its anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-depressant as well as anti-inflammatory properties. It has a low fat content and is the perfect food for weight watchers.
TRADITIONAL USE OF MORINGA LEAVES
This has been used for a long time as a natural treatment for diabetes, joint pain and chronic inflammation. Even now, in rural areas of India, it is used to treat bacterial, viral as well as fungal infections. Moringa is also known as a traditional remedy for heart diseases and some cancers.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF MORINGA LEAVES
Moringa leaves are a powerhouse of essential vitamins and minerals. Just the leaves alone contain almost 8 times more vitamin C than some citrus fruits like oranges. It also 15 times more potassium than bananas. It is also a rich source of antioxidants, calcium, iron, protein, and amino acids. Research is going on to verify its beneficial effects on cholesterol, arthritis, asthma, hypertension, liver disorders, stomach ulcers, ulcerative colitis, anaemia and weight loss among others. But, moringa is useful in the treatment of some other health disorders. Let us see what they are.
It is good for skin and hair
Moringa can protect your hair against the damage caused by free radicals. Oil extract from moringa leaves can strengthen hair roots and rejuvenate hair follicles. It gives it a shine and makes it look healthy. Moringa is rich in protein that protects skin cells. It detoxifies and hydrates skin and may be beneficial as a natural remedy for various skin ailments. This extract also acts as a natural moisturizer and protects the skin from the effects of pollution. Moreover, it protects, repairs and prevents cell damage and minimizes the ageing process of the skin in the long run.
Moringa can make your bones strong
Moringa is packed with calcium, vitamin K and phosphorous. This offers protection to your bones and keeps them strong and healthy. Its powerful anti-inflammatory properties is beneficial for arthritis. It may also be able to heal damaged or injured bones. Moringa leaf extract is also said to prevent swelling caused by water retention. It can also help reduce the intensity of joint pain.
Moringa boosts eye health
Moringa is a powerhouse of antioxidants. It can prevent dilation of retinal vessels, reverse thickening of capillary membranes and can also inhibit retinal dysfunction. This is a rich source of vitamin A, which is an essential nutrient for eye health.
It can help lower your blood sugar
Moringa can reduce lipid and glucose levels and regulate oxidative stress. Its antioxidant properties can lower fasting glucose levels. It also reduces weight gain and insulin resistance. Hence, it can help people with diabetes. But, if you are diabetic, please consult your doctor before adding this to your diet. If you are on diabetes medication, taking this may bring your blood sugar down to undesirable levels and it may lead to unwanted complications.
It may help in cancer treatment
Moringa is rich in antioxidants and offer protection against cell damage caused by free radicals. These free radicals contribute to the development of cancer too. Moreover, essential amino acids in moringa leaves boost the immune system. Cancer treatments like chemotherapy can weaken the immune system. Moringa leaves can help deal with this.
Moringa can rejuvenate your digestive system
This is a fiber rich supplement that aids digestion. It is a natural antibiotic and anti-bacterial and can prevent the growth of pathogens that can harm your digestive tract. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help you get relief from colitis.
A WORD OF CAUTION
Moringa leaves and leaf extract as well as young seed pods are safe for consumption. But do not eat the bark or pulp of this tree as it contains chemical that can be bad for health. It can lead to contraction of the uterus and miscarriage in pregnant women. It may sometimes, react with medications that you may be on. So, it is better to consult a doctor before adding this to your diet. Pregnant and breastfeeding women must be especially careful.