Moringa, native to parts of Africa and Asia, is the sole genus in the flowering plant family Moringaceae. The name is derived from the word Drumstick ormurungai. It contains 13 species from tropical and subtropical climates that range in size from tiny herbs to massive trees.
The most widely cultivated species is Moringa oleifera, a multipurpose tree native to the foothills of the Himalayas in northwestern India and cultivatedthroughout the tropics. M. stenopetala, an African species, is also widely grown, but to a much lesser extent than M. oleifera.
Much of the plant is edible by humans or by farm animals. The leaves are rich in protein, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, and minerals. A 100-g portion of fresh moringa leaves has 9.3 g protein, 434 mg calcium, 404 mg potassium, 738 μg vitamin A, and 164 mg vitamin C.
Moringa’s value has long since been known to the ancients. This may explain why the Egyptians placed vases of Moringa oil in their tombs, for use in the afterlife. It’s potent antioxidant profile, which gives the oil its remarkable stability, is also the reason it’s included in some of the best skin moisturizers, anti-aging creams, and other skin health products around the world.
Moringa oil is a popular natural supplement to increase the health and strength of the hair and scalp. It can be massaged into the hair and scalp and allowed to remain there for several minutes, delivering rejuvenating vitamins and minerals to the follicles of the hair and tissue of the scalp. Regular massage with this oil can help reduce split ends and dandruff.
In similar fashion, Moringa oil–one of the most nutrient dense oils in the world–is a popular choice for many anti-aging and wrinkle reduction products. Although there are new and innovative scientific ways to reduce wrinkles and restore vitality to the skin, much of the secret to youthful skin simply lies in maintaining a healthy living environment for skin cells to live–and Moringa oil achieves this goal perfectly.
Much like wrinkles, acne is another skin condition that is well treated with a healthy environment for skin tissue. Indians have long since used Moringa oil as a means to treat acne, and now the West is discovering its uses as a natural combatant against face blemishes and skin problems.
Another interesting application of Moringa oil is in the production of expensive and natural perfumes and fragrances. Many commercially produced perfumes are created with scents that are synthesized using chemicals. However, a portion of the perfume market still employs more traditional and natural production practices to create their perfumes, using a technique known as “enflourage”. This procedure uses oils to capture the scents of natural plant materials, locking the scent molecules into the oil. Moringa oil’s high oleic level, combined with its enduring shelf life, make it a popular choice for traditional perfume production.