12 Reasons Why You Must Include Moringa In Your Diet

Moringa, a plant native to India, is increasingly gaining traction in the West as a superfood

Shubhangi Shah
Written by: Shubhangi ShahPublished at: Jan 15, 2022Updated at: Jan 15, 2022
12 Reasons Why You Must Include Moringa In Your Diet

Although it is native to the Indian subcontinent, chances are you might not have heard of a plant named ‘Moringa’. And why not? It’s more commonly known as the drumstick tree. Moringa goes by the botanical name Moringa oleifera, but locally, it is known as sahjan, munaga, murungai, nugge mara, nugge kai, munagaku, etc. Packed with exceptional medicinal and nutritional properties, the plant is widely used for its amazing health benefits. Used locally for years, it’s also gaining traction in the West as one of the superfoods. So, what are these health benefits of Moringa that make it so useful? And, what are the ways to use it? To get an answer to these questions, Onlymyhealth spoke to Sreemathy Venkatraman, a gut health practitioner & wellness nutritionist and the founder of ‘Mitha Aahara-Eat to Live’.

What Is Moringa?

“Just like neem is considered therapeutic in many aspects, the moringa as leaves, stem, drumstick, bark is widely used in Indian cuisine,” Sreemathy said. It’s used in home remedies for a wide range of ailments, such as hypertension, anorexia, gastric disturbances, and colitis. Moringa is also used in face packs and in pregnancy and lactation-related issues. 

Health Benefits Of Moringa

Moringa has many health benefits

(Photo Credit: Pixabay)

You can use the drumstick, its leaves, stem, bark, seeds, and dried leaves for several medicinal and therapeutic properties. Here’s why you must include moringa in your diet:

  1. Moringa is rich in essential amino acids as well as fiber, iron, phosphorus, and potassium.
  2. It’s also high in beta carotene and is excellent for vision.
  3. Moringa can be dried into a powder, which is an excellent source of protein, zinc, and phosphorus.
  4. It’s also used in Ayurveda in ‘panchakarma’, which is a method of cleansing the body. It’s also included in ‘kashayama’, which is a water decoction or extract of a herb or a group of herbs. Moringa is also added to ‘kadhas’.
  5. Moringa is also consumed to treat worm infestation and to increase appetite.
  6. It aids digestion and can treat hemorrhoids.
  7. Fresh Moringa leaves when boiled and decocted works well as a blood purifier.
  8. It can also help you with pimples, blackheads, and irregular periods.
  9. The drumstick pods when consumed as soup not just tastes fantastic, it strengthens bones and joints. 
  10. Not just that, it’s an aphrodisiac, increases sperm count and motility.
  11. Moringa when used as powder or oil can treat headache
  12. You can use it three to four times a week if you suffer from hypertension, lethargy, tiredness, and sexual health issues.

How To Include Moringa In Your Diet

Moringa is drumstick tree

(Photo Credit: Pixabay)

There are myriad ways to consume moringa, such as:

  • Add a handful of fresh Moringa leaves in smoothies, or as gravy and dry curry with fresh coconut.
  • You can eat it with chapattis as saag.
  • Use drumstick pods in soups, sambhar, avial, and kootu. 
  • Many children suffer from a lack of appetite and worm infestation. Hence, you can add some drumstick pods to their food, such as in daal khichdi and rice, to deal with the two issues.
  • Adults can have the same for its high iron, vitamin, and mineral content.
  • Post-COVID effects include a lack of taste and smell as well as appetite. Those suffering from the same can consume fresh Moringa leaves or flowers by boiling them with salt and pepper. You can also consume it with other herbs and spices for a tasty dish.

How Much Moringa You Should Consume

Moringa has several health benefits and so are the ways to use them. The thing with this plant is that you can use its multiple parts, from leaves and bark to stems and flowers to reap its benefits. However, do not overdo it. Consuming it three or four times a week is generally recommended. Always remember, when it comes to food, moderation is the KEY.

(With inputs from Sreemathy Venkatraman, a gut health practitioner & wellness nutritionist and the founder of ‘Mitha Aahara-Eat to Live’)

Photo Credit: Pixabay

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