03 March 2017 | Column | By Manjiri Chunekar
NutriValue started its journey eleven years ago, with a view to present to the consumer, healthy food options, which combine traditional Indian wisdom in Nutrition with modern scientific research.
Our aim was to pick out nutritionally beneficial products and present them in a format easily acceptable to the modern generation. It should be natural, locally grown, great taste, easy to cook and retain the nutritional value.
In our search we came across Moringa Olifera, being hailed in the US as superfood and found to be beneficial in a number of health issues. Moringa Olifera is the humble drum stick plant that grows in practically every back yard in India. It fits exactly in the profile of the products in the NutriValue product basket. We set out to understand more about it. First question was Is there a social relevance ?
The era of Nutraceuticals has just made a beginning in India in real sense. The need of Nutritional supplement for this generation lies in the fact that day by day nutrients are lowering down in the crops produced. US & UK government show a decline in trace minerals up to 76% in fruits & vegetables from 1940 to 1991. In 2003, New Canada reported that today’s fruits & vegetables contain far fewer nutrients than 50 years ago. Iron content in milk fallen by 62% & Magnesium was down by 21%. Average Indian consumption of cereals & millets is slowly reducing. So we need products to fill this nutritional gap.
We learnt that Moringa Olifera has been used by WHO in countering mal nutrition in African countries. In India mal nutrition is affecting both poor and the rich. Poor because they cannot afford to eat well and the rich are yet to learn the benefits of eating correctly. If we could get Moringa
Olifera to be a part of daily diet of an average Indian it will have great social value.
Most of us eat drum sticks as a vegetable or as an addition in daals.
Every part of the plant Moringa Olifera is useful ,but the leaves have the most concentration of nutrients. National Institute of Health (NIH) has recommended this plant as having highest concentration of many nutrients.
The leaves of this plant contain high levels of Calcium, Potassium, phosphorous,Magnesium, Sodium, Sulphur, Zinc, Copper, Mangenese,Iron ,selenium, 17 fatty acids and Vitamins B1, B2, B6, Vit E ,A, C and 19 amino acids. Each one gram of leaves have 4 times more Calcium than milk & 3 times potassium than in Banana . Moringa leaves contain Vitamin A ten more times than in carrots & Vitamin C seven times more than oranges.
Drying the leaves assists to concentrate the nutrients. The leaves are dried and powdered and packed for supply.The current studies on its nutrients & its health benefits can well justify why some call it a Miracle plant . It is an ideal dietary supplement because it supports balance between NEED & EXCESS. It provides the body with the nutrients it needs, while helping it to detoxify & get rid of unwanted elements.
Moringa has been studied extensively throughout the globe and found to be coping with and healing from a variety of conditions, diseases and illnesses. These include Cancer, Diabetes, HIV Aids, hormone conditions, skin conditions, even weight-loss (Moringa really feeds the body so it acts as a natural appetite suppressant).
Moringa is available in the western countries in the form of capsules which has
0.5 gms of moringa leaves powder in each. Our studies have shown us that 2 gms per person per day
will give ideal nutrient supply.. Our challenge was to find a way by which people will use Moringa in these quantities naturally.
Since ancient times, Indian spices are playing vital role in our diet. To name the few, Turmeric, Asafoetida & Cumin seeds play different medicinal roles. NutriValue dreams to make Moringa leaves powder , a part of the Indian masala box. Moringa leaves do not have its own taste or smell. So this can be added to any cuisine without changing the taste or flavour or smell of the food. It will however greatly increase the nutritional value.
At NutriValue we therefore decided to promote moringa leaves powder as a regular addition to our dal or soup or salad. This should be added at the end of the cooking to retain its nutrients to the maximum. It can also be just sprinkled on salad or paratha or sandwitches. It will tremendously increase the nutritional value of our meal without altering taste or flavour or aroma. In our continued endeavour to bring simple natural treasures within the reach of the masses, NutriValue packages this super food in affordable packs.