The Moringa Oleifera tree was named Botanical of the year in 2007, 2011 and 2012 by the National Institutes of Health. This native of Northern India is thought to be the most nutrient dense botanical on earth, containing 46 antioxidants, 36 anti inflammatory chemicals, numerous vitamins and minerals as well as huge quantities of omega oils and amino acids. The benefits of the Moringa tree have been enjoyed by indigenous people for many centuries. The tree has many unique names such as drumstick tree, clarifier tree and horseradish tree. It is a fast growing, drought resistant, deciduous tree shrub that grows well in tropical and subtropical areas as well as arid and semi arid areas. The tree produces drumstick shaped pods that hold nutritious seeds that are used for a number of purposes. The Moringa tree is becoming increasingly popular for its health benefits and is now grown widely for its nutrient rich green leaves, flower buds and fruit pods. An extremely versatile tree, all the parts of the Moringa Oleifera can be utilized for health and nutritional purposes.
History of Moringa
The Moringa Oleifera is indigenous to Northern India. As far back as 2000 B.C, Moringa leaves were being prescribed for medicinal use. Ayurvedic medicine declared that Moringa could cure more than 300 diseases and could be incorporated into people’s lifestyles to help them remain healthy and combat illnesses. Seeds from the Moringa Oleifera tree were a source of valuable oil that was used in making perfume and skin care products by the Roman, Greek and Egyptian civilizations. Maurian warriors in ancient India consumed Moringa leaf extract for its reputed stamina and strength increasing properties. Since its discovery and through the 19th Century, the Moringa tree was widely exported around the world to places like Jamaica, West Africa and other parts of the Indian Subcontinent where it was used as a source of food as well as for medicinal purposes.
The Moringa Oleifera tree offers multiple, beneficial uses to people around the world. All parts of the tree can be utilized for advantageous purposes.
- Water Purification: Moringa has been known to clear polluted water and kill 95% of harmful microorganisms in as little as one hour turning dirty water into clean drinking water at very little cost.
- Medical Purposes: Moringa has been used for centuries to combat diseases and health conditions. In more recent times, Moringa has been proven to reduce blood pressure, help in managing diabetes, reduce inflammation and control nervous disorders.
- Food and agricultural purposes: Moringa oil is used for making soaps and cosmetics as well as for cooking and as fuel in lamps. Moringa powder and seeds are used as livestock feed and food for humans and composted Moringa material is used as a source of fertilizer.
The Moringa tree is a wonderful multi use tree that offers many benefits to end users. Medical advantages, food utility, cosmetic use as well as being a source of fuel are some of the reasons to consider making use of this versatile tree.