On holiday in Mauritius in December, I fell in love with the amazing abundance of greenery on the island, especially all the amazing edible plants, the numerous varieties “brede” (Creole – Mauritian native language) or “bhaji” (Bhojpuri – Indian dialect) as we call general dark green leafy veggies and herbs… But the one I really connected with is moringa!
I was truly initiated to this amazing plant through its calling out to me and working with it for the last 2 years. I have been aware of the plant for many years – my grandfather used to make an elixir form the flowers and cure eye conditions back home in Mauritius. When I went back in December 2016 I knew I must commune, play and experiment with this beautiful and powerful plant.
Straight away I knew that its bitter green properties would make it an excellent herb for assisting digestion and the liver. So I juiced it, brewed it and ate it for dinner. As a juice its ridiculously potent – in fact I’d made a few juices in my experimentation phase with way too much moringa and it made everyone feel really nauseous! However it did help my sister and I go keep regular toilet visits and keep out intestines nice and clean. It helped us combat the effects of a holiday on the liver too as my moon cycle bleed wasn’t challenging that month (that’s always a sign for me of liver congestion – when I get PMS).
So now, having returned back to the UK with a load of dried moringa in tow and wanting to integrate this herb somehow into my naturopathy and energy work, I’ve embarked on a little study into it. And what I’ve found has really surprised me…. Read below to find out more… First here’s a little on where the moringa is from and how it’s been prepared…
What you need to know about moringa…
Moringa is a known as potent miracle plant that can adapt and grow in challenging terrains as it is hardy and has a strong determination to survive and thrive. The plant bears flowers, fruits and leaves all of which are highly medicinal. The seeds found within the fruit are also incredible… for example they can purify water as they contain cationionic proteins and when crushed and added to raw water, they attract the predominantly negatively charged dirt particles! Find out more about this and other uses on this hand pdf.
This moringa is grown on fertile volcanic land rich with nutrients on the Island of Mauritius, a south eastern island of Africa. The plant was harvested from wild jungle land away from roads that has not been treated with pesticides or other chemicals and then hand picked lovingly by Natasha’s and her family members. The whole leaves and branches were slow dried at 28 degrees celcius over 4 – 5 days retaining all the delicate nutrients. The leaves naturally dropped off the branches and we bagged them up to being to the UK! This plant has been used for hundreds of years by the ancestors of Mauritius as one of the main means to support their health and wellbeing in a variety of ways.
The University of Mauritius has been doing research into moringa oleifera. This is what they have found…
“The leaves are rich in vitamins B,C, A and E which are very good antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acid, amino acids, minerals such as potassium, magnesium iron and also selenium. The leaves are also rich in protein. 100 g of leaves gives us twice as much protein and calcium as a cup of milk; twice as much vitamin C as an orange and as much potassium than banana for example. Nowadays, moringa is very present in cosmetology and pharmacology. The seeds and flowers also have several benefits”, lecturer and researcher Dr Vidushi Neergheen-Bhunjun said.”
This SUPERFOOD plant is an excellent antioxidant, has anti-inflammatory properties working on many pathways, supports pancreatic health, reduces blood sugar levels, supports respiratory conditions and lung function, protects and rejuvenates skin, detoxifies the liver and kidneys, supports gastrointestinal health, digestion, absorption and cleansing, and detoxification – to name a few of which will be discussed below...
There are so many incredible potential benefits to moringa, but there are also some dangerous aspects to it as well – read below. Therapeutic use of moringa for a specific purpose MUST be put past a naturopath with knowledge or herbalist first.
Its pretty widely known among people who regularly use food and herbs to optimise their health and wellbeing, that moringa is a wonder herb and miracle plant – and it is. However, more awareness needs to be raised as to its other side, so that people understand why its important to consult trained professionals on some commonly used foods and herbs. We’re here for a reason and its for your protection and safety.
So that point being made – lets get into it! Most of the information below I pulled together from an excellent website I found – examine.com
So as my initiation into moringa continues, Im now brewing a tea to have everyday for the next week to feel the impacts on gastric juice secretion. So far so good! It’s particularly gut cleansing. I’ve got a little recipe for you at the end…
Benefits of moringa:
- Is a potent antioxidant
- Has anti-inflammatory effects
- Increases pancreatic function as it reduces blood glucose concentrations so good for diabetes and diabetic kidney and eye related issues
- It’s protease enzymatic abilities help digest food proteins
- Being a bitter herb it supports digestive juice secretions like stomach acid, digestive enzymes and bile
- It’s beneficial to enhancing digestion as its a clear liquid and more easily absorbed
- It is anti-bacterial
- It may prevent eye health deterioration (retinopathy) associated with diabetes
- It has an antihistamine and anti-asthmatic properties and supportive to the lungs
- It supports seratonin production in the gut enterochromaffin cells
- It’s protective against asprin, drug and alcohol induced ulcers
- May soothe intestinal spasms
- May prevent colitis of the intestines and also reduce inflammation from colitis
- May protect the kidneys against oxidative damage
- Preserves important nutrients the liver needs like glutathione and fights oxidative stress in the liver
- Seems to be protective for certain types of cancer like melanoma, cervical, pancreatic and colon cancer
- It increases lactation to support breastfeeding post birth
- Can be used in natural abortions with a trained herbalist
- Has wound healing properties
For dosage – see below
If you have an issue with bleeding, have ulcers in your digestive system, are on blood thinners or pregnant – do not take large quantities of morninga (read on to see what this is) – and definitely consult a GP, naturopath or herbalist for guidance.
Supplementation of moringa may also suppress thyroid activity – particularly T4 hormone conversion to T3.
This is because moringa is anti-coagulant – so it thins blood when eaten in larger doses, and it can also be an abortifacient (abortion inducing).
It appears that 3-4 times the recommended dosages of moringa are damaging to DNA and anti-coagulant.
See recommended dosage below…
Recommended dosage for the dried leaf:
1.2 grams – 1.6 grams for 100lb/45kg person
1.6 grams – 2.2 grams for 150lb/68kg person
2.1 grams – 2.9 grams for 200lb/91 kg person
2.7 grams – 3.6 grams for 250lb/113kg person
If you are drinking the tea rather than eating the recommended dose – the effects are less potent – so safe.
If you’d like to use moringa therapeutically and be initiated into this incredible plant, you must see a qualified naturopath or herbalist in order for a trained professional to be able to look at the science and properly assess your needs and food state that would be most beneficial to you as well as your recommended dosage.
For example, seed oils tend to be good for some things like the liver, but the roots could be more useful for intestinal colitis.
If you’d like to be initiated with moringa, please contact me for any guidance! firstname.lastname@example.org
https://examine.com/supplements/moringa-oleifera/ which has an extensive list of references I have referred to
Moringa Chai Recipe
As Im 48 kg – I’m using a dose of 1.6 grams of dried moringa leaf
as much ginger as you like – pummeled
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 cardamon seeds split open and crushed a bit
1-2 inches turmeric root – pummeled (or less if its too strong/bitter
4 cloves – – pummeled a bit
Brew in a teapot for a couple cups at 60 degrees Celsius for 5 – 10 minutes – anything above this may kill the delicate nutrients.