Moringa Boosts Breast Milk and Lowers Inflammation
Moringa: A Top Wellness Trend of 2018 and Way to Crank Up Breast Milk
+ A list of benefits and recipes for this superfood!
Happy New Year! It’s time for a new year, new you. The time to focus on health and wellness is now. 2018 is for preventing disease and healing the body with wholesome nutrition. Eating well is a form of self-respect and 2018 should be all about respecting your body to live your happiest, healthiest, most vibrant life.
Along those lines, Well and Good magazine released their annual prediction list of the top wellness trends of the New Year (https://www.wellandgood.com/fitness-wellness-trends/). Coming in at spot #1 for 2018? Moringa. The new superfood slated to take over turmeric’s coveted spot of health-promoting benefits. In fact, they propose that 2018 will be all about moringa, one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet. We’ll see it incorporated into food products, juices, chips, supplements and even beauty oil.
Moringa oleifera is a tree that grows in the foothills of the Himalayas in India. It is widely cultivated in tropical and subtropical areas. Its seed pods and leaves are grown so that they can be consumed as vegetables and utilized in herbal medicine. It has been widely used in Asia and Africa for years due to its medicinal properties. While India, Caribbean and South American countries have long known the powerful effects of this herbal plant and refer to it as the “Miracle Tree” for a variety of health ailments (Abdul et al., 2014), it is relatively unknown on this side of the equator. The majority of the moringa plant is edible with various countries consuming various plant parts like the flowers, seed pods, mature seeds, leaves, and the oil from the seeds. Interestingly, studies have revealed that each part of the plant (seeds, leaves or flowers) has demonstrated significant, nutritional benefits (Abdul et al., 2014).
Nutritionally, research points to the leaves of the plants as being the most nutritious. The leaves have significant levels of essential vitamins like pro-vitamin A (beta carotene), the B vitamin complex, vitamin C and vitamin K. They also have significant levels of minerals like calcium, magnesium and iron. The leaves also have a considerable amount of protein for a green, leafy vegetable. The leaves can be cooked like spinach or utilized in dried, powder forms for cooking. In fact, the Moringa trees have been used historically to combat malnutrition in underdeveloped regions of the world in both infants and mothers (Kumar, 2004).
A book called the Miracle Tree: The Multiple Attributes of Moringa revealed some interesting nutritional facts about this plant (Fuglie, 1999). It stated that 100 grams of the dry moringa leaf has ten times more vitamin A than carrots, 25 times more iron than spinach, 15 times more potassium than bananas and 12 times more vitamin C than oranges (Fuglie, 1999). A review of the scientific literature concluded that the moringa plant has a wide range of remedial and nutritionally therapeutic properties due to its unique bioactive compounds and nutrients and it should be used extensively within the medicinal fields (Abdul et al., 2014)
Continue reading below for a list of the top scientific benefits of consuming Moringa:
- Moringa has antioxidant action
- Evidence has pointed to the moringa leaf extract as having strong anti-oxidant capabilities because it can fight harmful free radicals (Sreelatha et al., 2009)
- The moringa plant has a large amount of polyphenolic compounds that are able to play a role in antioxidant scavenging of free radicals and thus decrease oxidative damage (Sreelatha et al., 2009)
- Specifically, the leaves have the greatest antioxidant ability against free radicals and can help to prevent unwanted oxidative damage (Sreelatha et al., 2009)
- Moringa is anti-inflammatory
- In a study, moringa had a greater reduction in the expression of pro-inflammatory proteins (markers of inflammation) than curcumin (turmeric) (Graf et al 2017)
- This study actually concludes that moringa has more anti-inflammatory activity than turmeric (Graf et al 2017)
- Moringa is anti-fibrotic
- A study concluded that moringa is cardioprotective as it is anti-fibrotic and anti-hypertrophic in spontaneous hypertensive rats (SHR) (Randriamboavonjy et al., 2016)
- Another study found that moringa seed extract had significant anti-fibrotic effects on rats with liver fibrosis (Hamza, 2010). Treatment with moringa exhibited protective effects on the liver due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory capabilities (Hamza, 2010)
- Moringa is anti-cancer and anti-tumor
- A study found that boiled moringa, when administered in a dose-dependent manner, had chemopreventive effects and could significantly reduce the incidence of tumors (Budda et al., 2011)
- The seeds of moringa were investigated for their anti-tumor promoting properties. The study found that niazimicin (a phenolic glycoside found in plants and spices) is a potent compound found within the plant to be a chemopreventive agent in preventing chemical carcinogenesis (Guevara et al., 1999)
- Moringa is anti-hyperglycemic
- moringa has been found to significantly reduce blood glucose levels, elucidating its hypoglycemic properties and its ability to aid in the treatment of diabetes mellitus (Jaiswal et al., 2009)
- A novel study concluded that both aqueous and ethanolic moringa leaf extracts had significant blood glucose lowering effects on diabetic rats (Tende et al., 2011). It also proposed that this herbal remedy should be used as a medicinal treatment for diabetes (Tende et al., 2011).
- Moringa is anti-microbial
- A study published in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine demonstrated that moringa leaf extracts had significant anti-bacterial effects and they have the potential to be used as a successful alternative treatment for bacterial infections due to their inherent antimicrobial compounds (Peixoto et al., 2011)
- The study also concluded that moringa had a greater anti-microbial effect on gram-positive microorganisms (Peixoto et al., 2011)
Moringa stimulates breast-milk production according to a recent review of the medical literature.
So say hello to the new kid on the block, moringa. Be sure to try out this top wellness superfood of 2018! You can buy the brand we recommend here.
The Moringa tree is a “Miracle Tree” so add it to your wellness routine. Below are a few recipes to help you kick-start this year’s healthy eating plan.
Recipe #1: Supercharged Moringa Latte https://blog.paleohacks.com/moringa-latte-recipe/
Recipe #2: Moringa and Corn Soup https://mytwistedrecipes.blogspot.com/2012/03/greens-bloghop-moringa-and-corn-soup.html
Recipe #3: Moringa Guacamole https://gardencollage.com/nourish/farm-to-table/stop-everything-make-moringa-guacamole/
Recipe #4: Cacao + Matcha Moringaroons http://www.breakfastcriminals.com/magical-cacao-matcha-moringaroons/
Note: As always, please be sure to use organic ingredients in each recipe!
Click here for another post on moringa.
Abdul et al., 2014: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25374169
Budda et al., 2011: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22471457
Fuglie, 1999: The Miracle Tree: Moringa oleifera: Natural
Nutrition for the Tropics. Church World Service, Dakar. pp.
68; revised in 2001 and published as The Miracle Tree: The
Multiple Attributes of Moringa, pp. 172
Graf et al., 2017: http://www.fasebj.org/content/31/1_Supplement/972.22.short
Guevara et al., 1999: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10209341
Jaiswal et al., 2009: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874109001925?via%3Dihub
Peixoto et al., 2011: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1995764511600692?via%3Dihub
Randriamboavonjy et al., 2016: https://academic.oup.com/ajh/article/29/7/873/2622403
Sreelatha et al., 2009: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19904611
Tende et al., 2011: http://journal.waocp.org/article_29959_144683da90d0087df5c7b5ec76da5b57.pdf