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Last Updated on November 22, 2020 by Ed Joven
Learn the Health Benefits of Malunggay
Top 10 Health Benefits of Malunggay (Moringa) – When parents tell their children to eat their vegetables, it tends to be met with moans and groans around the dinner table. Sure, there are those children who somehow like eating their vegetables, but a great majority of them do throw fits when faced with a bowl of greens they have to finish. But that struggle happens with good reason—those greens really are very good for one’s health.
One of the vegetables that seem to not get enough attention is the humble malunggay. It’s not exactly the most popular of vegetables out there, but there’s no denying just how nutritious it can really be. The term “superfood” seems to get thrown around these days, especially for stuff like acai and goji berries, but it can be argued that it describes the malunggay quite nicely.
If you’re still wondering why eating malunggay leaves is so good for you, here are 10 reasons why it’s such an amazing vegetable that you must have in your diet. One cup of fresh, chopped leaves (21 grams) contains:
- Protein: 2 grams
- Vitamin B6: 19% of the RDA
- Vitamin C: 12% of the RDA
- Iron: 11% of the RDA
- Riboflavin (B2): 11% of the RDA
- Vitamin A (from beta-carotene): 9% of the RDA
- Magnesium: 8% of the RDA
Here are the Top 10 Health Benefits of Malunggay (Moringa):
1] Malunggay leaves are a lot more nutritious than most other foods.
- Locked away in the green leaves of the malunggay is a cornucopia of vitamins and minerals that make it such a powerful vegetable. Its leaves contain twice more protein than milk, thrice more potassium than bananas, four times more Vitamin A than carrots, and seven times more Vitamin C than oranges. It’s also very high in calcium, making it a must-eat for nursing mothers so they can give their babies more nutritious breastmilk.
2] Malunggay has medicinal properties for Headache and Diabetes.
There’s the whole cliche these days about alternative medicine and food being medicine, but it really is true when it comes to malunggay. It’s not just about it being a nutritious vegetable, but also having medicinal properties that can help alleviate a variety of maladies. It can help relieve headaches and migraines and heal ulcers, making it a better alternative to your usual painkillers. It can also normalize blood sugar, thus helping in the prevention of diabetes.
3] Malunggay tea can help fortify eyesight, heal inflammation in joints and tendons.
While they may be that good yet for cooking applications, young malunggay leaves can be steeped and made into tea, which has tons of goodness in it. Malunggay tea can help fortify eyesight, heal inflammation in joints and tendons, and prevent intestinal worms. It can also be helpful in treating fever and asthma, as well as calm the senses and promote healthy natural sleep.
4] Malunggay has lots of antioxidants.
Antioxidants are essential to the prevention of cancer, perhaps one of the most dreaded killers among diseases. It turns out that malunggay has loads of them, making it great for keeping cancer away. Coupled with a healthy lifestyle and regular exercise, you won’t have to worry about cancer at all throughout your life.
5] Malunggay has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
The malunggay had been found to have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties back in the late 1940s. It has a compound called pterygospermin, which is present in several species of moringa (the genus where malunggay belongs in). This is good news for those who may be wary of most antibiotic drugs that may not be that good for long-term health.
6] Malunggay can help stimulate metabolism.
If you happen to be on a weight loss campaign, you should definitely have malunggay in your diet. Not only is it nutritious, but it can actually jumpstart your metabolism and help you burn off that unsightly fat. When combined with other foods that do the same and regular exercise, you’ll shed pounds in no time. It also helps that malunggay itself is low in fat and calories, so having a diet consisting of malunggay should be alright.
7] Malunggay can aid in digestion.
- Aside from speeding up your metabolism, malunggay can also help you with your digestive problems. It can help with hyperacidity and even help ease ulcers. It’s also high in fiber, so it’s good for making you more regular. It seems to be common sense to eat foods that are good for the stomach and the digestive tract, and that’s exactly one of the things that malunggay is good at.
8] Malunggay is good for reproductive health.
- It does sound a bit strange that a vegetable would be directly beneficial to sexual health, but malunggay does have that. This veggie happens to have some aphrodisiac properties that increases libido and enhances performance. Malunggay leaves can also increase sperm count in the long run, thus making it great for couples who are looking to have a child.
9] When turned into paste, malunggay leaves can be used for skin care.
- It turns out that malunggay isn’t just for eating, but can be quite effective for topical applications as well. If you happen to spend a whole lot of money on skin care products, you may want to replace them with malunggay. Just grind it up into a paste and lather it on your face for surprising results. After regular use, you’ll find your skin glowing as if you used those expensive creams and moisturizers, but it’s actually just malunggay.
10] Malunggay leaves can be dried and turned into powder, then used as a dietary supplement.
- Multivitamins can be rather costly and they happen to not be that effective since all they really do is sit in your stomach and dissolve slowly while not contributing as much vitamins and minerals as promised on the bottle. Perhaps you may think that it’s not necessary if you’re already eating malunggay anyway, but at least you can be more consistent with malunggay if you take it this way everyday.
Malunggay is a versatile plant that can serve many purposes, either as food, medicine, dietary supplement, or so on. Learning how to cook malunggay leaves well and having it at your dinner table is doing you and your family a favor. Malunggay is a magnificent vegetable that should get a lot more attention than it’s getting now, and you can help get more of that much-needed attention by cooking delicious meals with it.
- In vitro and in vivo antioxidant properties of different fractions of Moringa oleifera leaves Author links open overlay panel Arti R.Verma M.Vijayakumar Chandra S.MathelaChandana V.Rao
- Antioxidant activity and total phenolic content of Moringa oleifera leaves in two stages of maturity. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2009 Dec;64(4):303-11. doi: 10.1007/s11130-009-0141-0.
- The in vitro and ex vivo antioxidant properties, hypolipidaemic and antiatherosclerotic activities of water extract of Moringa oleifera Lam. leaves. J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Mar 28;116(3):439-46. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2007.12.010. Epub 2007 Dec 23.
- Involvement of oxidative stress in the pathogenesis of diabetes. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2007 Mar;9(3):355-66.
- The role of oxidative stress in the pathophysiology of hypertension. Hypertens Res. 2011 Apr;34(4):431-40. doi: 10.1038/hr.2010.264. Epub 2011 Jan 13.
- Evaluation of nutritional quality of moringa (Moringa oleifera Lam.) leaves as an alternative protein source for Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus L.) Nahid Richter Perumal Siddhuraju Klaus Becker
- Chemical characteristics and fractionation of proteins from Moringa oleifera Lam. leaves. Food Chem. 2014 Mar 15;147:51-4. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2013.09.135. Epub 2013 Oct 3.
- Chlorogenic acid differentially affects postprandial glucose and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide response in rats. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2011 Oct;36(5):650-9. doi: 10.1139/h11-072. Epub 2011 Oct 6.
Here are some Malunggay Recipes:
Get the Recipe here: Tinolang Manok with Malunggay
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