Moringa: Benefits, How to Cook


What is Moringa?

Moringa oleifera is a tree native to India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. It is also grown in Central America and some parts of Africa. It is also known as the wand tree due to the shape of its trees long pods. Moringa trees grow quickly and don't need much water, making them easy to grow.

Every part of this super food is edible: leaves, roots, immature pods, flowers and seeds. The oil obtained by pressing the seeds It can be used in the kitchen and in the cosmetic field in skin and hair care products. Once the oil has been extracted, the seed shells can be used for a water purification process called flocculation. Some edible parts of the tree can be harvested within the first year of planting a cutting.

Beneficial properties

Moringa does not owe its fame to the presence of nutrients alone, but also to the various beneficial properties attributed to it for the body. Going into more detail, Moringa and its extracts are attributed to:

  • Anti-inflammatory properties, thanks to the presence of flavonols and phenolic acids;
  • Antimicrobial properties, especially against bacteria such as S. aureus, E. faecalis, E. coli e P. aeruginosa;
  • Antioxidant properties, thanks to the polyphenols contained in the plant;
  • Anti-hyperglycemic properties, due to the presence of terpenoids in the plant;
  • Chemo-preventive and anti-tumor properties (the compounds responsible for such an activity would appear to be glucosinolates).

Use in the kitchen

Of Moringa, leaves, pods, seeds, flowers and roots are consumed as part of the normal diet in countries where it is widely cultivated. TO nutritional levelMoringa boasts an interesting amino acid profile, as well as containing vitamins and mineral salts useful for the body. According to many studies, the concentrations of these nutrients are so high as to make Moringa a real superfood capable of having extremely beneficial effects on health.

Moringa leaves: properties and uses

The Moringa leaves contain several essential amino acids, vitamin A, group B vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and B9) and vitamin C, to which are added a modest content of minerals, such as calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and zinc.

The leaves are considered the most nutritious part of the plant and are consumed cooked or they come dried and chopped or powdered and then enrich sauces or soups with nutrients. The dried and chopped leaves, in fact, are also used for the preparation of land e infusion. This latter use, among other things, has already spread widely in Italy, as the most common way of consuming Moringa. Another way to use it in the kitchen is to treat it as if it were spinach, then add it to omelettes, salads, fillings or sandwiches.

Moringa pods: properties and uses

Also immature pods of the plant are used in normal nutrition, in particular, in southern Asia. They generally come cooked by boiling and are modestly rich in fibre, magnesium, manganese and potassium.

Moringa pods are more palatable when they are green and young. Although their texture is similar to that of green beans, the flavor is more similar to that of asparagus. In cooking they are used in soups, vegetable or fish curries, as a side dish. An exotic and well-balanced recipe involves adding Moringa pods to prawn curry and brown rice.

Moringa oil, seeds and roots

Every part of Moringa is used. Thus, the seeds are consumed boiled or toasted and appear to contain interesting concentrations of vitamin C (which however could be reduced during cooking), group B vitamins and mineral salts. A. is also extracted from the seeds edible oil with a typical sweetish flavour, resistant to rancidity and rich in oleic acid (65-75%) and di behenic acid o bless you. The oil obtained from Moringa seeds is also known as Ben oil o Behen oil.

Even the roots of Moringa are edible, they are chopped and used above all as flavoring. It should be noted that excessive consumption, however, can lead to the appearance of some side effects typical of food poisoning such as: nausea, vomit e dizziness. Furthermore, the roots of the plant contain a particular alkaloid – spiroquine – which it would interfere with nerve transmission leading to unwanted effects.

Contraindications

Moringa consumption is strictly contraindicated during pregnancy. Pregnant women should not take parts of Moringa or its derivatives or extracts without first seeking the advice of their doctor, due to the abortifacient effects of this plant. Use during breastfeeding is also not recommended.

In the presence of disorders, diseases or pharmacological therapies of any kind, before taking Moringa-based food supplements or consuming parts of this plant, it is best to contact your doctor.


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