Friday, 20 July 2018

Health Benefits of Moringa

Moringa oleifera is a plant that has been praised for its health benefits for almost 4,000 years. It is widely known as the drumstick tree, horseradish tree, miracle tree and the ben oil or benzoil tree. Although modern science is continuously proving the health benefits of moringa, it has been popular across various cultures for centuries.

Moringa is a fast-growing, drought-resistant tree, which was originally grown at the southern foothills of the Himalayas in northwestern India. It grows up to 2 metres tall and produces long, slender, brown capsules with rounded seeds. Today, it is widely cultivated in tropical and subtropical areas where its young seed pods and leaves are used as vegetables and many parts of the tree are used as herbal medicine.

Moringa oleifera offers a multitude of health benefits, however only a few of its many reputed health benefits have been studied scientifically and these are just a few:

Moringa is packed with nutrients

Moringa is a fairly large and very nutritious tree, hence its name "elixir tree." Moringa leaves specifically are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals. They are rich in protein, vitamin B6, vitamin C, iron, riboflavin, vitamin A and magnesium. The fresh leaves are usually eaten as a vegetable and the dried leaves are mostly sold as dietary supplements, either in powder or capsule form.

It is rich in antioxidants

High levels of free radicals may cause oxidative stress and serious health problems such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Antioxidants are compounds that act against them. Moringa leaves are rich in vitamin C, beta-carotene, quercetin, and chlorogenic acid which are all potent antioxidants. These antioxidants also help improve vision and provide protection against retinal damage.

May reduce inflammation

Inflammation is an essential protective mechanism of the body as it is a natural response to infection and injury. However, it may become a major health issue if it continues over a long period of time. If overlooked and not treated, it may lead to chronic health problems including heart disease and cancer.

Scientists believe that the main anti-inflammatory compounds found in moringa leaves, pods and seeds are isothiocyanates. Vitamin C, beta-carotene, polyphenols, quercetin, and chlorogenic acid are some more components that can be found in moringa leaves. These components combat oxidative stress and slow the progression of age-related disorders as well as reduce inflammation.

May prevent diabetes

A high blood sugar level is the main characteristic of diabetes which is considered a serious and escalating health problem in the UK. Diabetes carries complications that affect the heart, kidneys, eyes, liver and other organs of the body. It is important to keep your blood sugar within healthy limits. Moringa contains chlorogenic acid and isothiocyanates that allow cells to utilise glucose as required, helping to regulate blood glucose levels and fight type 2 diabetes with its hormonal balancing and glycemic controlling properties.

Maintain healthy cholesterol levels

High cholesterol levels increase the risk of heart disease but fortunately, many plant foods can effectively reduce cholesterol such as flaxseeds, oats, almonds and of course, moringa. Moringa maintains healthy cholesterol levels as well as blood pressure levels in the body and its bioactive components, including isothiocyanate and niaziminin, also prevent the thickening of arteries and reduce the development of pulmonary hypertension. In addition, moringa's hypocholesterolemic effects help in reducing a high-fat rise in the liver and kidney. 

Detox Trading is a family run business that was founded in 2007. We offer organic moringa leaf powder and a wide range of quality, versatile and affordable organic superfoods, green and herbal teas, detox products, supplements and much more.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

Surviving Summer - top tips for staying healthy inside and out during a heatwave!

Here in the UK we are not always blessed with long, hot, sweltering summers but we are becoming more accustomed to heatwaves, high pollen levels, strong sun rays and sweaty sleepless nights.

It's common however to get carried away by the short spells of warm weather and neglect our healthy habits in favour of binging on BBQ's, soaking up the sun, drinking gallons of G&T's and indulging in ice-creams. Of course you have to be able to treat yourself, but it's so important to take care of yourself when your body is vulnerable to the health hazards that summer presents. 

Here are some of our top tips for looking after yourself on the inside and outside during the summer months. 

Bee Pollen

A bi-product of honey, these sweet, flowery tasting pellets are a complete food with a comprehensive nutrient profile including an ideal balance of protein, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, lipids, bioflavonoids and antioxidants. 

Aside from its dense nutrient content, bee pollen is also a powerhouse against allergies and in particular, hay fever. Bee pollen actively reduces the production of histamine, the compound your body releases in reaction to the immune response caused by pollen (which causes itchy eyes, runny nose, etc). Essentially it works as an natural, nutrient rich alternative to over the counter anti-histamines. 

Camu Camu

Camu camu is the worlds richest source of vitamin C, in fact this small Amazonian berry carries up to 60 x more vitamin C that an orange! Available in dried, powder form, this nutritional supplement is a fantastic immune system booster than can help ward off summer colds. 

Camu camu has a tangy, tart taste and is best taken in an organic juice, smoothie or mixed in your breakfast. One teaspoon a day will boost your energy levels, provide a good amount of antioxidants and boost your immune system. 

Stay hydrated

An increase in sunshine and hot weather naturally increases the amount we sweat as our hypothalamus does the incredible work of regulating our body temperatures. But it's important to remember that you need to compensate for this by increasing your water intake. We always recommend drinking 2 litres of water a day to maintain good health, but try to add another 1/2 - 1 litre to this during a heatwave, especially if you are also exercising. 

Nutritious summer foods

Easting seasonally is never easier than in summer, during this time we have an abundance of salad veggies, summer fruits and fresh produce. Our bodies also don't require the warmth of winter foods and slow release carbs to keep our energy levels up in the cold, meaning we can fill our tums with nutritious, raw and vibrant ingredients. 

My favourite salad in summer is made up of organic: lettuce (home-grown by Amida), tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, broccoli sprouts, raw kale, courgette and peppers, some slightly more exotic mango, with lightly cooked green beans or asparagus, and if you're a cheese lover (and not vegan), a smidgen of grilled halloumi or crumbled feta on top. 

Stay smelling sweet with natural deodorant 

It's perhaps not necessary to elaborate too much here, we all know what hot days plus increased sweat means... But perhaps you're not aware that conventional deodorants contain ingredients like aluminium and parabans that can be damaging to our health. 

By swapping to a chemical free deodorant you can be safe in the knowledge that you will not only smell good, but avoid toxins that absorb straight in to your skin. We stock the Clay Cure range of natural, coconut oil based deodorants with aromas including lavender, water lily, white rose, mint and vetiver, lemon and tea tree, and ylang yang. They're so clean you could even eat them :)

 Coconutty after-sun

Coconut oil not only contains its own naturally occurring SPF, it also acts as a wonderfully soothing moisturiser after sun exposure. It helps to hydrate, nourish and replenish damaged skin and contains absolutely no artificial nasties.  

Mix coconut oil with Vitamin E oil for even better results! 

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

The health benefits of sea buckthorn

With its protein-building amino acids and high mineral content, sea buckthorn is a complete food containing over 60 antioxidants as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, C, E and K. It also contains folic acid. It has wonderful healing properties and helps to fuel and heal the body on both the inside and out. There are so many health benefits of sea buckthorn - i.e. as a moisturiser, an anti-ageing supplement and even to help improve psoriasis. But some of the main health benefits are obtained from the fatty acids.

As a superfood, it is packed full of vital nutrients and the berries are high in those all-important fatty acids - omega 3, 6 and 9, as well as the illusive omega 7.
Omega 7 palmitoleic acid, which is rare in plant sources, and even rarer in animal sources, is prized for it's gastrointestinal health benefits, as well as for hair, skin and nails. Omega 7 can also help to reduce feelings of hunger. 

Omega-3 fatty acids, once part of the commonly know 'essential fatty acids' are obtained through diet and are an integral part of the body’s cell membranes. They impact cell receptors, regulate blood clotting, the contraction and relaxation of your artery walls and even play a role in genetic function. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to play a significant role in the prevention of heart disease.

Omega-3 could also aid the control of rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, and it may even help to lower cholesterol levels. Research indicates that it can ease gastrointestinal disorders, improve vision, and contributes to the correct function of the nervous system and brain. It also works as an active anti-inflammatory agent.

Sea buckthorn is not new, in fact, as a superfood, it has been used for over 12 centuries in China and has an illustrious history. It is often referred to as the holy fruit by those who live in the Himalayan Mountains. If you wish to improve your health and wellbeing, buy it online here and have it delivered directly to you.