Moringa oleifera is commonly known as a drum stick tree is a tree full of medicinal value. All the parts of this tree from top to bottom are beneficial for health and are used as traditional medicine. Not only this but also the flowers and immature seed pods are consumed in many parts of the world. The plant is mainly grown in semi-arid, tropical and subtropical areas. Moringa tree can tolerate a huge range of soil and pH condition (1)
Moringa Flower botanical description
Flowers are 1.0–1.5 cm long and 2.0 cm in diameter, hermaphrodite, zygomorphic, pentamerous, and pinkish-white in color with white sepals (2). They are produced on slender, hairy stalks in clusters, which are 10–25 cm lengthy. Flowering appears after 6 months of planting. In cooler regions, flowering occurs once in April and June month while in some areas, having constant seasonal temperatures and rainfall; flowering occurs twice or even all year-round (3).
The main edible parts of the moringa plant are
Immature seedpods, leaves, flowers, drumstick, seed oil and mature seeds all are good in taste and can be consumed. Leaves of these plants are used in the preparation of soup especially popular during Ramzan, it is also eaten fried with tuna chips and onions. The flowers of these plants are consumed after deep or shallow fry, the sticks are not only rich in minerals and vitamins but also can be used in preparing delicious South Indian cuisine (4).
Health benefits of moringa flowers
Moringa flowers are rich in nutrients
The flowers of moringa are rich in various nutrients and minerals like calcium and potassium. Like moringa pods, flowers also contain a huge amount of proteins. Studies show that the percentage of amino acid is almost the same in the pods and flowers that are 30 and 31 % respectively (4).
Good for heart
Not only this the immature pods and flowers also show similar amounts of palmitic, linolenic, linoleic and oleic acid (4). Therefore good for the heart and reduce the cholesterol level.
Moringa flower tea lowers cholesterol
The flowers of moringa can be consumed in the form of tea due to its hypocholesterolemic properties. Moringa flowers are also great sources of nectar and therefore are used by beekeepers (5).
Anti-arthritic agents and hypocholesterolemic properties which can cure urinary diseases.
Side effects of Moringa flowers
Although consuming moringa flower is good for health. But also we should keep in mind that excessive intake of anything is not good for health.
Antinutrients in moringa flower
Antinutrients are those kinds of nutrient which hinder the normal metabolic activity of the body or interfere with the normal mineral and nutrient absorption. Moringa flowers also contain certain antinutrients like oxalate, cyanogenic glycosides, and tannins (6).