Mothers day is an opportunity to honor motherhood and all the mothers who have shaped our lives. While motherhood brings many joys, there are often many challenges faced by mothers raising infants, as they seek to ensure that both they and their baby are as healthy as they can be at the early stages of their journey.
Given its properties and reputation as a nutrient packed superfood, studies have been conducted to investigate the health benefits that moringa can provide to both mother and baby, from the pregnancy to the postpartum stages. In its many forms, the moringa plant has exhibited a plethora of beneficial properties, from its oil which has been used in soothing baby massages, to the nutrients in the powder that can aid in the growth of premature babies through breast milk.
Breastfeeding is highly recommended as the baby’s sole source of nutrition for the first 6 months of their life, as it carries the hormones, cells and antibodies that support the baby’s development, strengthen the immune system, and lower the risk of contracting infections. While it is very key to child development, unfortunately, milk supply ranks highly amongst the concerns and issues faced by breastfeeding mothers.
Moringa has been studied for decades as a natural galactagogue (a substance that promotes lactation), from South East Asia, to Sub-Saharan Africa. In a randomized study conducted in the Philippines, moringa has been proven to increase prolactin hormones and breast milk production.
As the most nutrient packed superfood, gram per gram, 100 grams of fresh moringa leaves are considered to contain 17x the calcium in dairy milk, 10x the vitamin A in carrots, 3/4 of the iron in spinach, and 15 times the potassium in bananas. Therefore, not only does moringa increase milk volume, but in the study it has also been observed to increase a baby’s weight gain which is considered one of the signs of a well-nourishment.
In addition to increasing lactation, moringa also carries benefits that are also necessary for a nursing mother. As it contains high levels of vitamin K and iron, moringa is great for its blood coagulating properties, and for fighting fatigue as a result of sleep deprivation, often faced by parents of infants. Moringa is also rich in minerals zinc and copper, which support the body’s functions and fuel vital organs, both of which are necessary to replenish after a feeding. Finally, the high rates of calcium are beneficial for healthy hair growth which often declines following the return of normal hormones levels during the post-partum period.
While it may seem like a heavy intake of moringa is required to gain the benefits from this superfood, it can actually be ingested in many different ways, that are most convenient for one’s lifestyle, from drinking it as a tea , a smoothie , or to incorporating it in a great recipe .
Should you wish to pursue using moringa as a nutritional supplement for yourself and your baby, we kindly advice that you contact a healthcare professional for personalised advice.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mother’s out there!