The moringa tree, colloquially called saijan, grows naturally and prolifically in the country of Guyana. The plant thrives in hot, tropical climatic conditions. As hardy as wild bush, it requires little care and grows well on poor, hard soil. In a previous article, I referred to the saijan tree as “riches in the midst of poverty” because Guyanese, considering the readily available leaves a “poor man’s food” didn’t actually know they were consuming a million dollar product.
The moringa tree became the subject of a scientific research a few decades ago after a US Peace Corp volunteer in Africa ate it and recovered from general body weakness. It was then that the nutrient contents of the saijan tree was unearthed and it was classified as a “superfood.” Today, the leaves are ground into power and sold in supermarkets and pharmacies worldwide. The seeds too are packaged and sold. They give an energy boost and other health benefits according to herbalists. The young plant is also in great demand all around the world as capitalists look to cash in on this recently discovered gold mine.
The moringa product, or what Guyanese had long referred to as “saijan bhajee” is now being marketed in various forms such as power, oil, capsules, and tea bags. Click here to see some of the moringa products being marketed on Amazon.com.
Due to the growing demand of the moringa health product, various presentations of the leaves are being marketed on Amazon and all around the world. Here are some of the known health benefits of moringa:
- Moringa is rich in antioxidants: Antioxidants are substances that protect cells from damage and boost the body’s immune system. It also lowers blood pressure and reduces fat in the blood and body.
- Moringa is rich in vitamins and minerals. Per serving size, it has the same amount of potassium as bananas and the same amount of Vitamin C as oranges.
- Moringa promotes healing and muscle building. Due to its rich protein, calcium, iron, and amino acids, moringa aids muscle building and can also help your body heal from injuries faster than usual.
- Moringa has been used to treat diabetes. Insulin-like proteins found in moringa help to lower blood sugar. Further, chemicals in the leaves may help the body process sugar better while supporting insulin release.
And those are just to name a few. Guyana, and the Guyanese people, would do well to capitalize on the booming moringa health industry. Here’s my advice: if you have a piece of land that’s not doing anything, plant it full of moringa trees. The moringa tree is practically self sustaining and requires little care. In the future, industries can be set up to produce moringa power and other health products. The moringa tree, if planted abundantly across Guyana, can add a new layer to Guyana’s wealth and help to boost food security in Guyana and regionally.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only, and is not medical or financial advice. Neither the author, nor the publisher will be held responsible for any loss or damages resulting from the use or misuse of the information contained in this article.
This article was reproduced in the Guyana, South America Weekly Newsletter for week ending 3rd of February, 2024.