A often searched term in todays overly connected world. Now might it be that men especially are in need for nature’s support somehow. Or it is more about the Moringa? What is it actually? Moringa Oilifera. A tree from India that grows in tropics, is one of those plants that people employ from roots to leaves. You can cook the leaves and eat them like spinach, while dried and crushed into a powder add to in soups and sauces. Dried moringa leaf powder is also used as soap and oil extraction waste for water purification.
Eat, heat, treat
The immature seed pods, called “drumsticks” are parboiled and cooked in a curry. You can also eat mature seeds like peas or roasted like nuts and power your home power plant – it’s a biofuel. The shredded roots of Moringa tree served as a condiment.
And virtually all of the above parts of the plants utilized in traditional medicine. No wonder Moringa is called “a miracle tree.” The drumstick or benzolive tree is much less romantic.
One of the products of Moringa is the oil extracted from its seeds. It’s called ben oil, and it is almost as versatile as the plant itself. Like olive oil (ben-z-olive, get it?), it’s high in protein and good, monosaturated fat. You can cook with ben oil. You can apply it to your hair and skin as a cleanser and moisturizer.
Even better, moringa oil contains several bioactive compounds with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These include tocopherols, catechins, quercetin, ferulic acid, and zeatin. These components may make moringa oil beneficial for acne breakouts.
Not limiting it’s promised miracles to curing acne, extract of Moringa allegedly helps to close wounds as well as reduce the appearance of scars.
No wonder that amazon has a glut of moringa products for sale, including plain and simple – or organic – leaf powder, capsules of leaf powder, and Moringa tea. The sellers recommend moringa oil not only on hair and body but as a massage oil as well.
The high street drugstores are moving on the Moringa as well. The Bodyshop that positions itself as “from an organic farm to your high street” provides it in a body butter form. It’s only a matter of time before Goop starts selling ben oil for $100 for 1 ml.
I should also mention that Moringa is proposed to treat ● diabetes, ● cancer, ● kidney disorders, ● asthma, ● reduce blood pressure, ● improve eye health… but this is getting ridiculous.
The big MAY
You might have noticed “may” around many of Moringa uses.
There were no clinical trials for all its proposed benefits for any of the miracles performed for hair and skin. Likewise, no trials for any part of the drumstick tree or ben oil in particular.
People who gush about “the miracle tree” and bother citing any sources (they are a minority) cite a review of Indian authors in the journal “Food science and human wellness.” The authors are starry-eyed about Moringa. But if you look at their sources, the experiments were done on human cell cultures. Which again rarely translates into the drugs that work on the whole organism.
So there may be no apparent adverse effects from slathering yourself in Moringa-derived topical products. Hopefully, the enormous number of people routinely using Moringa across the continents would have noticed it. However, it looks like the benefits of Moringa in cosmetics are overhyped. And about moringa benefits for men? Well, if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.