Moringa is a superfood with numerous health benefits. It was consumed in ancient times for enhanced longevity and strength. All the benefits can be found inside. Moringa is a superfood with numerous health benefits. It was consumed in ancient times for enhanced longevity and strength. All the benefits can be found inside.
Note to readers: The series called “Ancient Wisdom” consists of guides that provide time-honored wellness solutions to common fitness problems, health issues, and stress management, among other things. Our goal with this series is to offer traditional insights into contemporary health concerns so that you can benefit from the wisdom that has helped people for generations.
Moringa, also known as drumstick, is a superfood gaining popularity in the West due to its amazing health benefits. This powerful plant has history that dates back 7000 years and is mentioned in various ancient texts. According to Ayurveda, it can cure more than 300 diseases and has been a part of over 160 Ayurvedic combinations. Different parts of the Moringa plant have diverse benefits, from leaves and stems to flowers. Moringa leaves, and powder can easily be incorporated into tea and other culinary delights, while the lower part of the plant can be prepared as drumstick curry. Maurya warriors consumed Moringa in ancient India to challenge King Alexander’s armies. Agasthya Rishi once mentioned that those who consumed this herb would remain strong and healthy even in their 90s.
Benefits of Moringa
Moringa is a highly nutritious plant that boasts an impressive nutrient profile. According to government research, it contains seven times more Vitamin C than oranges, ten times more Vitamin A than carrots, 17 times more calcium than milk, nine times more protein than yogurt, 15 times more potassium than bananas, and 25 times more iron than spinach. Moringa leaves are recommended for consumption by children and pregnant and nursing women. Today, many countries worldwide trust Moringa for its incredible healing properties.
“Moringa is a remarkable plant that offers various applications. While its leaves are the most commonly used part, other components such as flowers, fruits, and pods have different purposes. Apart from its nutritional richness, Moringa is employed to combat malnutrition and can even purify water. Interestingly, it contains more protein than eggs, more iron than spinach, more vitamin A than carrots, and more calcium than milk, making it a nutritional powerhouse with diverse benefits,” says Swagatika Das, an Ayurveda expert and Co-Founder of Nat Habit.
Moringa leaves and powder are beneficial for improving children’s immunity, strength, and brain growth. You can use Moringa leaf soup as a healthy option for young children, and the powder can be added to the roti and dosa mix. This herb is very effective in reducing fatigue and increasing energy levels.
“Moringa is a highly nutritious plant that offers numerous benefits for overall well-being. It contains powerful antioxidants such as quercetin and chlorogenic acid, which help to reduce oxidative stress and promote cell longevity, preventing aging. Moringa is also rich in vitamin C, which is particularly beneficial for promoting healthy and radiant skin. It provides essential proteins, vitamins B-complex and C, iron, and magnesium, making it an affordable and accessible nutrition source in various countries. Apart from its nutritional value, Moringa is also a potent anti-inflammatory agent, thanks to its isothiocyanates, which can help prevent chronic health issues, dermal problems, and scalp issues. Moringa also acts as a natural detoxifier, reversing liver damage, boosting immunity, and enhancing energy levels,” says Swagatika Das.
How Moringa was used in ancient times
Moringa has gained recognition in two ancient medicinal practices – Ayurveda and Sidha. In the ancient book of Bhava Prakash, Moringa was praised for its detoxifying properties and was referred to as ‘Sigru.’ The book described it as an herb that moves like an arrow while deeply penetrating tissues and providing a thorough cleansing.
In ancient times, the Sage Agasthya recommended Moringa for gaining strength. He wrote that the person who consumed Moringa would become strong and wouldn’t need any walking stick or support even after reaching 90 years of age. Moringa was used in various forms for different purposes, such as a decoction in herbal teas, as a paste to treat skin ailments, as oil for abhyanga (oil massage), as a medicinal plaster, and as a juice for both nutritional enhancement and detoxification. Das says that the versatility of Moringa made it a valuable resource in traditional practices for promoting health and well-being.
How to add Moringa to the diet
Incorporating Moringa into your diet is easy and versatile, says Das, as she suggested different ways to add Moringa to your plate.
- Enhance your morning routine by adding a sprinkle of moringa powder to your smoothie for a powerful nutritional boost.
- Alternatively, Moringa juice leaves for a dose of nutrition and antioxidants, or indulge in the detoxifying benefits of Moringa tea.
- For a tasty twist, go the East Indian way – consider preparing a dish using Moringa leaves like you would make a ‘palak or methi saag’ dish.
- Add moringa fruit or drumsticks to sambar or veggie days, or make a delicious mustard-based curry.
- Moringa leaves can improve breast milk production and increase its quantity and quality.
Who shouldn’t have Moringa?
“Moringa should be avoided by individuals taking anti-diabetic medication due to its hypoglycemic effects. It may also cause hypotension and should be avoided by those with low blood pressure. Patients with thyroid disorders should exercise caution before consuming Moringa. Additionally, pregnant women should consult their physician before incorporating Moringa into their diet,” advises Das.