Moringa: 13 Health Benefits & How to Take It

Clinical review: Manuel Reis
Registered Nurse

Moringa is a medicinal plant that contains a high quantity of vitamins and minerals, like iron, carotenoids, quercetin, and Vitamin C. It has many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. 

This plan can be used to complement the treatment of some respiratory diseases, decrease anxiety, help with weight loss and manage glucose levels in diabetics. There are little studies that prove all of these benefits, however, or that support adequate therapeutic dosing for safe use in humans. 

This plant is scientifically known as Moringa oleifera, and when used in its natural form, the leaves are often the main ingredient. However, this can be purchased as a supplement, in capsule or powder form. 

Imagem ilustrativa número 1

Possible health benefits

According to some scientific studies, moringa may be beneficial for: 

1. Increasing respiratory capacity

Some studies show that this plant is able to relieve symptoms associated with chronic respiratory diseases, like asthma. It helps to increase hemoglobin levels and, consequently, the amount of oxygen circulating in the blood.

2. Preventing diabetes

Moringa contains antioxidant properties that can help to regulate oxidative stress in the body. This reduces blood sugar levels and protects tissue from damage on a cellular level.

3. Protecting the heart

Because it is rich in fiber, this plant can help to decrease the absorption of cholesterol in the intestines, as well as the formation of fatty plaques in the arteries. These actions can help reduce overall risk for cardiovascular disease. 

In addition, due to its antioxidant effects, moringa can also prevent or decrease system inflammation, which will contribute to overall heart health. 

4. Managing blood pressure 

Moringa contains tocopherols, polyphenols and flavonoids, which all help to regulate blood pressure. These substances are natural vasodilators, which help to relax blood vessels and improve blood circulation. 

5. Helping with weight loss

Moringa is a plan that is rich in fiber and protein. It helps to keep you full, which may reduce the amount of high-calorie foods eaten. Therefore, it is a great complement to a weight loss plan. 

In addition, some studies in animals have shown that moringa can help to burn accumulated fat. 

6. Preventing and treating anemia

Moringa leaves contain a high quantity of iron (105 mg for each 100 g of leaves), which can help to increase red blood cell production and increase levels in the blood. This can help to treat anemia, especially anemia that is caused by iron deficiency. 

7. Increasing immunity 

Moringa contains vitamin C, polyphenols, and betacarotenes, which are substances that help to strengthen the immune system and increase the body’s natural defense capabilities. 

8. Analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects 

This plant contains isothyocyanates, quercetin and chlorogenic acid, which are substances that reduce the inflammatory process. Therefore, moringa can be used to treat symptoms associated with inflammatory diseases, like rheumatism and prostate swelling, for example.

9. Protecting and hydrating the skin

Due to its high levels of B-complex vitamins and vitamins C, E and A, moringa can stimulate the formation of collagen, and promote healing and skin hydration.  

10. Improving digestion 

Consuming moringa may help to complement the treatment of stomach ulcers. It may also help with constipation, due to its high fiber content. 

Because of its vasodilator action, moringa can also be used to complement the treatment of hemorrhoids, as it helps to promote circulation. 

11. Preventing cancer

Some studies appear to indicate that moringa contains an anti-carcinogenic effect. It seems to stimulate the destruction of malignant cells, mainly in the breasts and intestines. 

12. Improving vision

Moringa is rich in beta-carotenes, which a precursor to vitamin A production. Beta-carotenes are also important for the production of pigmentation in the eyes that help to maintain eye health and function.

13. Decreasing menopause symptoms 

Inflammation and oxidative stress levels tend to be high during menopause, which makes moringa a great supplement to use during this time. It additionally helps to manage hormone levels during menopause, leading to decreased intensity of symptoms experienced. 

Moringa properties

Moringa may contain antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-diabetic, vasodilator, anticholinergic, anti-rheumatic, antihypertensive, antimicrobial, hepatoprotective and healing properties. 

However, it is important to keep in mind that formal studies completed on this plant remain inconclusive. 

Ways to consume it

Medicinal plant specialists state that moringa tea should not be consumed in high amounts. You should limit your intake to two cups per day (or 500 ml total), as these quantities do not appear to have any negative health effects.  

In addition to tea, moringa can also be found in capsule, seed and powder form. 

Side effects and contraindications

Some common side effects of morinha are nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. You should avoid consuming moringa root or its extracts without guidance from a health care professional, as it may contain toxic substances that can cause paralysis or death if consumed in high doses.

The ingestion of moringa is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women. In addition, people with thyroid disease should also avoid consuming this plant.

Nutritional information 

The following table indicates the nutritional information of 100 g of powdered moringa 

Components100 g of moringa
Energy500 cals
Protein33.33 g
Carbohydates66.67 g
Fiber33.3 g
Sodium233 mg
Calcium2667 mg
Iron6 mg
Vitamin C40 mg
Vitamin A2 mg

Was this information helpful?

Edited by Tua Saude editing team in March 2022. Clinical review completed by Manuel Reis - Registered Nurse in March 2022.

References

  • MUN'IM Abdul et al. Anti-anemia Effect of Standardized Extract of Moringa Oleifera Lamk. Leaves on Aniline Induced Rats. Pharmacognosy Journal. 8. 3; 255-258, 2016
  • ALI Atif et al. Enhancement of human skin facial revitalization by moringa leaf extract cream. Advances in Dermatology and Allergology. 2. 71-76, 2014
Show more references
  • AL-ASARO Abdulrahman et al. Moringa oleifera as an Anti-Cancer Agent against Breast and Colorectal Cancer Cell Lines. PLOS ONE. 1-14, 2015
  • NHAR Shamsun et al. Antiobesity activity of Moringa oleifera leaves against high fat diet-induced obesity in rats. International Journal of Basic & Clinical Pharmacology. 5. 4; 1263-1268, 2016
  • SAI Kumar et al. Effect of Moringa oliefera leaves on blood pressure in hypertensive patients . Indian Journal of Clinical Anatomy and Physiology. 5. 3; 350-352, 2018
  • TANGNEY Christy et al. Polyphenols, Inflammation, and Cardiovascular Disease. Current Atherosclerosis Reports. 15. 5; 1-16, 2013
  • JAISWAL Dolly et al. Role of Moringa oleifera in regulation of diabetes-induced oxidative stress. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine. 426-432, 2013
  • U.S DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. Moringa Powder. Available on: <https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/589814/nutrients>. Access in 09 Jul 2020
  • TANGESTANI Masoumeh, ARULSELVAM Palanisamy et al. Bioactive Extract from Moringa oleifera Inhibits the Pro-inflammatory Mediators in Lipopolysaccharide Stimulated Macrophages. Pharmacognosy Magazine. 11. 4; 556-563, 2015
  • KUMAR Vikas, VERMA Amita et al . Fostered antiarthritic upshot of Moringa Oleifera Lam. Stem Bark extract in diversely induced arthritis in wistar rats with plausible mechanism. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. 4. 10; 3894-3901, 2013
  • LEONE Alessandro, SPADA Alberto et al. Moringa oleifera Seeds and Oil: Characteristics and Uses for Human Health. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 17. 1-14, 2016
  • EXAMINE. Moringa oleifera. Available on: <https://examine.com/supplements/moringa-oleifera/research/#safety-and-toxicology>. Access in 22 Jan 2020
  • ANVISA. Nota técnica nº 29/2019/SEI/GIALI/GGFIS/DIRE4/ANVISA. 2019. Available on: <http://portal.anvisa.gov.br/documents/2857848/5519746/SEI_ANVISA+-+0638545+-+Nota+T%C3%A9cnica+moringa.pdf/01505697-1ae6-4767-8164-d8484158f33d>. Access in 25 Nov 2019
  • AGRAWAL, B.; MEHTA, A. Antiasthmatic activity of Moringa oleifera Lam: A clinical study.. Indian J Pharmacol. Vol. 40(1). 28-31, 2008
  • GUILLERMO, Doménech A. et al. Moringa oleifera: a review of food applications. Arch. latinoam. nutr. Vol.67(2). 86-97, 2017
  • DE ALMEIDA, Marta Sofia Marques. Moringa oleifera Lam., seus benefícios medicinais, nutricionais e avaliação de toxicidade. Dissertação do upgrade ao Mestrado Integrado em Ciências Farmacêuticas, 2018. Faculdade de Farmácia da Universidade de Coimbra.
  • MIRANDA, Vanessa Karla Santos. Propriedades terapêuticas da Moringa oleífera L. na prevenção e no tratamento do câncer: uma revisão de literatura. II Congresso Brasileiro de Ciências da Saúde. 2017
Clinical review:
Manuel Reis
Registered Nurse
Manuel graduated in 2013 and is licensed to practice under the Ordem dos Enfermeiros de Portugal, with license #79026. He specializes in Advanced Clinical Phytotherapy.