Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Malunggay (Moringga): A tree of life


In the Philippines, Malunggay or Moringga tree is common and can be seen almost everywhere. Used as fence or planted for the purpose of its leaves which widely used by Filipinos for soup. Sad to say, even if the tree is known and common, thousands if not millions of people often unnoticed this tree as a source of Vitamins and minerals that can help prevent malnutrition. I was inspired to write this blog because I saw a street where Malunggay is very abundant and I noticed that nobody cares to pick a single leaf or pod for vegetable or medicinal purposes.

Here are the reasons why we should eat Malunggay:

Nutrition rich compared to other fruits and vegetables:
  • Vitamin A - contains 6.8 mg compared to carrots which contains 1.8 mg.
  • Calcium - contains 440 mg than milk with 120 mg only.
  • Potassium - contains 259 mg compared to banana which contains 88 mg.
  • Protein - 6.7 g compared to 3.1 g in yogurt
  • Vitamin C - 220 mg compared to 30 mg in orange.
  • Contains 3x more iron than spinach
The best part of Malunggay are the leaves because its Nutritional Value. Can be dried and used as healthy tea.

Moringa oleifera leaf, raw 
Carbohydrates 8.28 g
-Dietary fiber 2.0 g
Fat 1.40 g
Protein 9.40 g
Water 78.66 g
Vitamin A equiv. 378 μg (47%)
Thiamine (vit. B1) 0.257 mg (22%)
Riboflavin (vit. B2) 0.660 mg (55%)
Niacin (vit. B3) 2.220 mg (15%)
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.125 mg (3%)
Vitamin B6 1.200 mg (92%)
Folate (vit. B9) 40 μg (10%)
Vitamin C 51.7 mg (62%)
Calcium 185 mg (19%)
Iron 4.00 mg (31%)
Magnesium 147 mg (41%)
Manganese 0.36 mg (17%)
Phosphorus 112 mg (16%)
Potassium 337 mg (7%)
Sodium 9 mg (1%)
Zinc 0.6 mg (6%)
 Percentages are relative to
US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database


The mature seed pods also known as "drumstick" are commonly cooked and eaten. It is high in Vitamin C. The seeds from mature pods can be eaten roasted or like peas. In the Philippines mature seeds are used as medication to lower high blood pressure.

Moringa oleifera pods, raw
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 37 kcal (150 kJ)
Carbohydrates 8.53 g
- Dietary fiber 3.2 g
Fat 0.20 g
Protein 2.10 g
Water 88.20 g
Vitamin A equiv. 4 μg (1%)
Thiamine (vit. B1) 0.0530 mg (5%)
Riboflavin (vit. B2) 0.074 mg (6%)
Niacin (vit. B3) 0.620 mg (4%)
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.794 mg (16%)
Vitamin B6 0.120 mg (9%)
Folate (vit. B9) 44 μg (11%)
Vitamin C 141.0 mg (170%)
Calcium 30 mg (3%)
Iron 0.36 mg (3%)
Magnesium 45 mg (13%)
Manganese 0.259 mg (12%)
Phosphorus 50 mg (7%)
Potassium 461 mg (10%)
Sodium 42 mg (3%)
Zinc 0.45 mg (5%)
Percentages are relative to
US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
.
 More benefits from Malunggay:

  • helps maintain cholesterol balance in the body.
  • said to stimulate more milk for lactating mothers.
  • known to balance sugar level in the body, making it more healthy to diabetic person and may help to prevent others to prevent diabetes.
  • helps boost immune system of the body and very powerful in fighting malnutrition.
  • helps prevent blindness because of high beta-carotene content.
  • promotes healthy digestive system.
  • believed to increase semen count.
  • loaded with pythochemicals  to help you fight against cancer.
  • aide to lower blood pressure.
Because it can effectively boost the immune-system of a person, it can help strengthen the health of HIV infected person and may slows down in developing AIDS. 


10 comments:

  1. Thank you for your valuable information. I found out about it from a friend in the Philippines. I was surprised to see how good it was for so many different things. I have to see if it's available in the United States. Mike, Minnesota

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Mike. I don't know if this can thrive in the cold environment and yes, Malunggay is common in the Philippines. Good news though, Malunggay is already available in capsule form and in tea. So I hope you'll find one soon. :)

      Delete


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    ReplyDelete
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