This time of year most of us begin to feel a bit sluggish. Cold air slows down the circulation of fluids in our bodies, we move around less, and toxins build up. Many medicinal plants can be helpful for getting us going in the winter! And one, in particular, stands out for its wide range of actions. Moringa is a friend with many benefits. From detoxification to nourishment, Moringa is the superstar for you!
Moringa has been part of the Ayurvedic herbal medicine tradition for thousands of years. As a medicinal plant, moringa’s incredibly high nutrient content, and ability to assist the body in absorbing those nutrients, are probably the main underlying causes for its wide range of benefits. This plant contains considerably more protein and calcium than milk, more vitamin c than an orange, and is higher in iron than spinach. It also contains very high concentrations of potassium, vitamin A, and chlorophyll. Moringa also has all 9 “essential” amino acids, which aid the body in regenerating tissue, regulating the central nervous system, and modulating the immune system.
Moringa is used to prevent anemia (particularly in pregnant and nursing people), to support diabetic conditions, and to prevent malnourishment and infection. Studies backup traditional usage, showing potent anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects, high iron content, and constituents in moringa with an ability to regulate insulin levels.
The leaves of moringa are the most often utilized part of the plant, however, the seeds and roots may also be consumed for various medicinal purposes. The oil from the moringa seed is a great choice for cooking and has well-studied wound healing properties, making it helpful for acne, psoriasis, and eczema. And detoxification with Moringa is as easy as just taking a pill!
From an Ayurvedic perspective, moringa is considered warm, bitter, and pungent. All plants have specific energetic qualities. Some are cooling and some are warming, while others are drying and some are hydrating. What makes moringa especially helpful in the winter are its warming and moving qualities, which break up stagnation and cold in our internal landscapes. For these reasons, it is used to balance
the kapha dosha. Moringa may be too heating for pitta people, so should be balanced with more cooling herbs like nettle, hibiscus, or dandelion. Pair moringa with more moistening herbs such as oat straw, red clover, or linden if you are primarily a vata type.
What if you don’t know your predominant dosha, or you don’t know how to recognize stagnation and cold in your body? Stagnation and cold may look like bloating, dull aches and pains, fatigue after eating, swollen lymph nodes, constipation, lethargy, dark moods, and dark scanty blood in the menstrual cycle. If this picture of symptoms looks familiar, it might be worth developing a relationship with moringa. Matching the energetics of the plant to the patterns showing up in the body is an effective way to get more reliable results. This approach is also a great way to get to know a plant as a living being with a certain expression of energy, rather than as an inert substance to be consumed.