While I’ll never give up my turmeric, the superfood Moringa has worked its way into my daily routine and for good reason!
In case you haven’t heard of it, Moringa oleifera is a tree that’s native to parts of the Middle East, India, South America and even parts of Africa. Though it’s a tree and most parts of the plant are edible, it’s typically the leaves that are consumed whole or as a powder. The leaves are the most nutritious part of the plant.
The Health Benefits Of Moringa
Moringa is rich in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. It contains compounds structurally similar to sulforaphane (another potent antioxidant) and appears to be protective when orally ingested. One study showed that women taking 1.5 tsp of the powder had elevated antioxidant levels in their blood after consumption.
Moringa is also touted for its ability to lower blood sugar levels. While the research is still in preliminary phases, a small study of diabetic patients who added 50g of moringa leaves to a meal reduced the rise in blood sugar by 21%.
Moringa can also be beneficial for heart health! From a cholesterol standpoint, research has shown that Moringa can lower cholesterol similar to oats.
The Nutrient Density Of Moringa
Moringa is considered a superfood for the high vitamin levels it contains. Fresh Moringa leaves contain 6.6-6.8mg/100g of beta-carotene, higher than carrots, pumpkin, and apricots. The leaves also contain approximately 200mg of Vitamin C per 100 g, more than oranges. Moringa leaves contain similar levels of Vitamin E to almonds and contain some of the B vitamins as well.
How To Use Moringa:
- Use the dried leaves and make a tea
- Blend the powder into a smoothie
- Add the powder into a salad dressing (it adds a more bitter herb like taste)
- Bake the powder into savoury muffins
Moringa is quite a strong ingredient, so you want to introduce it slowly, starting with 1/2 teaspoon and working your way up to 1-2 tsp/day. It’s not recommended that you take Moringa in early pregnancy.
Energy Boosting Moringa Smoothie Recipe (Serves 2):
- 1 frozen banana
- 2 handfuls spinach
- 1 tsp Moringa powder
- 2 scoops of your favourite plant-based protein powder
- 2 TBSP almond butter
- 1 TBSP flaxseed
- 5 cups unsweetened almond milk
Blend and enjoy!
Mandy King is a holistic nutritionist and the founder of HEAL, a wellness company that provides corporate wellness, 1:1 nutrition coaching and weekly meal planning. Mandy leads corporate workshops for Canada’s top companies, including Google, Facebook & PwC, and helps health-conscious clients looking to heal their digestion, boost their energy and shed excess weight through healthy, delicious food. A self-proclaimed gluten-free guru, all of Mandy’s recipes are gluten-free and Celiac friendly.