Gluten Free Moringa Recipes

The consumption of Moringa as a health food has become more widespread in recent years as its health benefits have become better known. Moringa Oleifera, or Moringa for short, is native to northwestern India at the base of the western Himalayan mountains. It thrives in drought conditions and is a fast grower.

Also known as “the drumstick tree,” the health benefits of Moringa are plentiful and powerful. Listed below are just a few of the purported medicinal uses of Moringa:

● Treatment of asthma
● Increasing breast milk production
● Easing stomach pain
● Treating headaches
● Lowering blood pressure
● Treating kidney stones

Moringa leaves, flowers and seed pods are not just used to treat medical problems. They also play a role in keeping the body healthy. Moringa is rich in essential nutrients as well has being a good source of protein. Moringa contains more vitamin A than carrots, four times as much calcium than milk, and more potassium than bananas. In fact, Moringa was recently discovered as the food with the highest concentration of antioxidants and is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

There are a wide variety of ways to cook Moringa. Many people will buy Moringa powder to put into shakes or smoothies, or as a way to add the power of Moringa to dishes that they regularly cook. If you are one of the many people with the inability to process gluten, there are still plenty of recipes you can use to add the benefits of Moringa into your diet.

Here is a compilation of gluten-free Moringa recipes:

1. Nugge Soppu Kara Rotti Spicy Moringa Leaf Pancakes: A nice twist on pancakes with a little kick to it. This recipe requires rice, red chile, asafetida, salt, coconut oil, banana leaves and, of course, fresh Moringa leaves.
2. Health Moringa Oatmeal Recipe (Gluten Free and Vegan): A delicious and healthy alternative to ordinary pancakes includes gluten free rolled oats, almond milk, agave syrup, vanilla, pistachios, dried mulberries, shredded coconut, chia seeds and Moringa powder.
3. Super Food Moringa Smoothie: An easy way to get a boost of nutrition in your day is this moringa smoothie, with coconut milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric, cardamom, half a banana and Moringa powder.
4. Vegetarian Moringa Jambalaya: Get some spice in your dinner along with the nutrients you need in this Vegetarian Moringa Jambalaya, It’s made with rice, onion, carrots, bell peppers, celery, tomatoes, green beans and Moringa.
5. Moringa Guacamole: Forget about boring guacamole. Moringa guacamole is delicious with an extra kick of nutrients. The recipe calls for avocadoes, red onion, cherry tomatoes, coriander, olive oil, and Moringa powder with various spices.
6. Mung Bean Stew: A unique, asian dish made with Moringa to give it that extra shot of nutrients. This recipe calls for vegetable oil, miso broth, onion, tomatoes, garlic and Moringa leaves.

In recipes that call for Moringa powder, it should be noted that adding the powder at the end of the cooking process retains the most nutrients. Adding Moringa powder when the food is too hot can deteriorate the nutrients inside. Moringa is a true superfood, and adding it to your diet can greatly benefit your health.

Photo credit: Mauricio Mercadante / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Dietary Staples of Athletes

athletes

The diet of an athlete does not vary much from the diet recommended for any healthy individual. Our bodies need the same nutrients to function properly as an athlete’s. However, an athlete needs these nutrients delivered in specific quantities at specific times in order to perform at a world class level. Often, they will also take specific supplements to gain the benefits of certain vitamins or minerals they are not getting enough of from their diet alone. What exactly an athlete should consume and when depends largely on the sport they participate in as well as their individual dietary needs. The following nutritional guidelines are a good start into better understanding the diet of an athlete but in no way are meant to be universal. If you are looking to make significant changes to your diet or training regimen, it is best to seek out guidance from an experienced specialist who can help tailor a plan that is unique to you.

Carbohydrates

Carbs are the lifeline of any athlete, and most would agree that an athlete benefits most from the amount of carbohydrates in the body. This is because in the early stages of moderate exercise carbs provide roughly half energy needed for the exercise. As the intensity increases the amount of energy used from carbohydrates increases as well, provided they are available. Athletes’ bodies who do not receive enough carbs prior to activity will need to use energy from other sources (fats and protein) to complete the activity. This depletion of protein can lead to unwanted physical results and decreased athletic results.

Water

While it is no secret your body needs to be adequately hydrated in order to compete, it is surprising how many people look to sports drinks or mixtures when training as opposed to water. Regardless of the athletic activity, athletes are as fully hydrated as possible, and the best results come from water. You will also want to continue to rehydrate at regular intervals during the athletic competition in order to remain at your peak physical performance levels. Chilled fluids are absorbed faster and are recommended to lower your body temperature during intense physical activity. Adults should be drinking 2-3 liters of water at a minimum each day, but if you are planning to compete you’ll want to increase your consumption a fair amount. Just remember to not force it: like anything else, too much water can be a bad thing.

Fats

While it seems counter productive for an athlete to need to consume fats in order to compete, it is recommended that 15% of their intake should consist of fats to maintain peak levels. Fats are used as an energy source and for activity lasting longer than one hour, the majority of energy needed will come from fat. For prolonged activity, fat can provide up to 75% of the energy and not having enough can hinder your progress as the body looks to other sources to make up for shortages.

Protein

When the body has exhausted all energy available from carbs and fats, it looks to protein to get to the finish line. For most Americans, their normal diet consists of more than the recommended levels 10-12 percent of calories taken in by protein. This does not mean that if you eat slightly more protein you will not see desired results but that protein supplements are generally not recommended. Extra protein will be stored as fat and make reaching your peak physical form difficult. Exercise usually will increase your need for protein after activity but don’t overdo it.

Vitamins & Minerals

Not to be overlooked, athletes need a diet that is rich in many vitamins and minerals because most of these cannot be produced by the body and must be consumed. A varied diet will provide the best way to take in necessary vitamins and minerals. Athletes will want to consume an appropriate amount of foods rich in iron, calcium, potassium, riboflavin, thiamin, and B vitamins. Supplements are not recommended unless dietary restrictions limit your ability to eat foods that are rich in specific vitamins and minerals needed to compete. Athletes looking to avoid traditional supplements to make up for dietary shortcomings should look to health supplements instead. Products that originate from all natural and organic materials should be selected over synthetic products. To learn more about foods/products rich in essential vitamins and minerals you should consult a physician or dietician in order to design a meal plan to reach your athletic goals.

CDC Guidelines for Fitness

If you want to improve your physical fitness but don’t know where to start, rest easy. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a set of guidelines meant to lay things out clearly and simply, giving you the chance to find a starting place. From there, you can increase your physical activity and create a plan that gets you healthy at a reasonable pace.

The website has a few different resources to help you on your journey to full body health. There is a very motivating list of the reasons why you should be more physically active. Some of those reasons include the more common ones, such as maintaining and losing weight, or stronger bones and muscles. These are the first reasons that come to mind when people consider beginning an exercise program.

Other reasons to exercise are because of benefits to your cardiovascular health, and because it also lowers your risk for type 2 diabetes. Physical exercise also reduces your risk of some cancers and increases your chances of living longer.

The CDC encourages people to look at physical exercise as a long term lifestyle change instead of a short term diet program. If you want to lose weight and maintain that weight loss, you have to change your eating habits and exercise. It’s as simple as calories; if you want to lose weight, you have to burn more than you eat.

In order to determine what exercise level you need, simply go to the CDC website and choose the category you fall under. There are three. Children (age 6-17), Adults (age 18-64) and Older Adults (65+). Here’s a brief overview of the guidelines of physical activity for each of the categories.

● Children: 60 minutes per day of exercise.
○ Aerobic activity: This type of activity should account for most of your child’s daily exercise. Both moderate (ie; brisk walking) and vigorous intensity (running or sports) aerobics are necessary to keep your child healthy. Three days a week at least should be vigorous intensity.
○ Muscle strengthening: At least three days per week should include some muscle strengthening activities, such as gymnastics, pushups or sit ups.
○ Bone strengthening: Skipping, hopping, running etc., will all strengthen your bones. Many of the activities you do to strengthen your muscles will also strengthen bones.
● Adults and Older Adults:,
○ Aerobic activity: Adults should have either 150 minutes of moderate intensity cardio activities every week, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity a week. If you want to go to the next level, do 300 minutes of moderate exercise or 150 minute of vigorous intensity. You can combine some of each intensity to provide variety to your workout.
○ Muscle strengthening: You should do exercises that work your major muscle groups at least two days per week.

You’d be surprised what kind of activities you do on a daily basis that count as exercise. Playing a game of tag with your kids, going for a bike ride around the neighborhood or mowing the lawn are all forms of moderate aerobic exercise. Shoveling snow, planting trees or running are simple vigorous exercises.

As a rule of thumb, 1 minute of vigorous exercise is worth 2 minutes of moderate exercise. Check out the CDC’s guidelines for physical activity and get started on your health today!

Photo credit: Artur Potosi / Foter / CC BY

A Condensed List of Benefits Provided by Moringa Oleifera

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In the past, herbal medicine lacked the acceptance it now has today. Now, its use and potency has drawn the attention of both orthodox medicine and the general audience. There are a good number of alternative remedies, but not many have the qualities that Moringa Oleifera has.

As a supplement, it is said to be effective in treating many ailments and diseases, hence the reasons it is often called the “Miracle Tree”. Moringa has a rather impressive efficacy on specific health-based problems and general health challenges. This includes its medicinal use as a supplement as well as the fact that it doubles as a herb with high nutritional value and medicinal benefits.

Moringa contains an excellent range of essential minerals as well as being a good source of vitamins, proteins, amino acids that are important for the proper functions in the body. There are a good number of ways in which Moringa can be used.

Immune Boosting

The body needs a strong defense system against external and internal invasions of harmful microorganisms. Moringa helps to boost immunity by protecting the body against invasion by dangerous microorganisms while also fighting antibodies. Moringa is an all-natural, safe supplement that has little or no side effects and can be taken by anyone. 

Gets Rid of Free Radicals and Toxins

Moringa is said to contain about 46 antioxidants and 92 nutrients. Free radicals and toxins (built over time in the body) are a major cause of most deadly diseases like cancer and heart disease. The use of Moringa is said to help the body flush the system of such toxins and free radicals, thus helping the body stay in great shape and excellent health.

Combats Malnutrition

In most developing countries, Moringa is used as a defense against malnutrition. According to The National Geographic Society, The United Nations World Food Program and notable humanitarian outfits, Moringa is recognized as an amazing source of nutrition and dietary supplement. A teaspoonful of powdered Moringa daily augments your diet and supplies the necessary nutrients, minerals and vitamins that your body needs.

Peak Energy Levels

Moringa helps to increase vitality and energy especially when the body is fatigued or stressed. Many athletes all around the world employ the use of Moringa to keep their bodies in peak shape, this improving their performance on the tracks. It does this by increasing the mental and physical strength of athletic individuals. Athletes can also take some Moringa capsules or tea when they are tired as it has the potential for replenishment and refreshment.

Promotes Healthy Circulation and Digestion

Moringa aids general blood circulation and digestive processes. Also, it helps to promote a healthy internal environment by supporting and maintaining normal hormonal levels.

Treatment of Organic Dysfunction

Moringa pods have the potential of strengthening liver functions. If eaten raw, the pods are said to help to de-worm the system. It can also be used to treat spleen and liver problems as well as reduce joint pains.

Antibiotic and Anti-inflammatory Functions

The seed of Moringa may be used to treat inflammatory ailments such as arthritis, boils, STDs, and rheumatism. Also, the antibiotic properties of Moringa aids the healing process of bacterial or fungal infections. In a unique way, the seed oil of Moringa helps in keeping the kidneys in top shape.

Sexual and Reproductive Health

The medicinal benefit of Moringa leaves are immense. For instance, its seed drumsticks are used as sexual virility medications for men with erectile dysfunction and helps prolongs sexual activity for men and women.

Remedy for Cold

In villages and temperate environments, Moringa is said to help in the treatment of cough. When the flower is boiled, and the effusions used to make tea, Moringa warms up the system and directly fights cold. More, the flower of juice of Moringa aids to solve urinary and bladder problems. For lactating mothers, Moringa juice highly improves the production and “supply” of breast milk.

Treatment of Headaches and Fever

When ground to a pulp, Moringa leaves can be rubbed on the temple or forehead to relieve headaches. It can also be used to treat fever, malaria, eye and ear infections, bronchitis and inflammation of the mucus membrane.

World Market for Anti-Aging Products

Looking and feeling young is a major trend in America, but it isn’t limited to the land of the free and the home of the brave. The worldwide anti-aging market is growing rapidly. In 2013, the global anti-aging market was worth an estimated $122.3 billion.

The projected growth in the next six years is astronomical, with the expectation for 2019 being $191.7 billion, for a jump in growth from 2013 of 7.8%. When adults start noticing that the biochemical process of aging is taking a noticeable effect on their health, fitness and appearance, they start to look for resources to slow it down. Baby boomers are the ones that are noticing this aging process and this partially explains the jump in demand for anti-aging projects.

While there has been some concern about skepticism playing a role in slowing down the sales of anti-aging products, scientific studies are supplying the concrete evidence that scrutinizing customers may require. There are also increasingly strict regulations on anti-aging products making it less likely that ineffective or gimmicky products will make it onto the market.

There is an extremely wide range of anti-aging products out there today, but there are some that are rapidly proving their worth. These products are surfacing as leaders in the anti-aging market.

● Retinoids (vitamin A)
○ Applied topically, Retinoids assist your skin in manufacturing collagen, as well as strengthening collagen and inhibiting collagen deterioration. When you have a healthy amount of collagen the appearance of wrinkles diminishes.

● Sunscreen
○ Sunscreens that protect against UVB (the rays that burn you) and the lesser known UVA rays. UVA rays are the ones that damage your collagen and elastin. Applying a sunscreen that blocks UVA rays will protect your skin from the aging effects of the sun.

● Peptides
○ Peptides also stimulate the production of collagen, but they also inhibit the formation of wrinkles. They also help speed up skin cell turnover, a trait that younger skin possesses naturally.

● Antioxidants
○ Antioxidants fight free radicals, which break down cells. If applied topically, antioxidants will protect your skin, but they aren’t limited to skin health. Antioxidants can help keep your entire body young, and are becoming more readily available in supplements and specialized foods.

● Anti-wrinkle injections
○ Anti-wrinkle injections sculpt your face and make you appear younger. There are several safe and proven injections on the market that can give you a more youthful appearance without the permanence or artificial look of plastic surgery.

With products like these, it’s no wonder that scores of baby boomers are scrambling to get their piece of youth provided by ever developing technology. As the science gets more and more solid and the options continue to grow, it’s no surprise that the projected increase in only 6 years is 7.8%. While the majority of anti-aging products focus on the appearance of aging, there are many drugs and projects in development that can produce similar results in the body. The future has much more to hold when it comes to the natural progression of aging.

Fad Diets Vs. Good Nutrition

In a world where there is always a new diet being lauded on infomercials and in magazines, it can be difficult to determine what is simply a fad with no long term potential, or something that puts you on the path to full body health with complete nutrition. In order to keep your body healthy, it’s important to steer clear of radical diets that sacrifice long term health for short term, rapid weight loss goals.

If you see a diet that appeals to you, there are some things you can look for that indicate if it is a healthy diet or not.

● Promises of extremely fast weight loss
● Drastically different before and after photos
● Indications that exercise is unnecessary for weight loss with the program
● Significantly limited food choices on the diet
● “Too good to be true” promises or celebrity endorsements
● The plan requires you to spend lots of money on prepackaged meals, “supplements” or seminars

If you’re already following a diet, and have suspicions about its authenticity, here are some physical warning signs that the diet you are on is not nutritionally sound:

● Frequent dizziness
● Constant hunger pains
● Painful muscle cramps
● Fainting spells
● Irregular bowel movements (frequent constipation OR diarrhea)
● Fluctuating moods
● Dehydration

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms while on a diet, you need to change your weight loss plan. Poor nutrition and extreme diets may show progress on the scale, but typically do not last. Many people who follow these unreliable fad diets will find that all the weight they have lost will come back.

The best way to lose weight and keep it off is the slow and steady way. Don’t sacrifice the health of your body for a number on the scale. Here are a few simple tips you can use to lose weight without sacrificing good nutrition.

● Check your BMI to determine how much weight you need to lose in order to be a healthy size. You should see your doctor in order to confirm the number of pounds you need to lose and create a reasonable plan.
● Calculate the number of calories you need per day via the USDA Adult Energy Needs calculator. To lose one pound per week, subtract 500 from that number. To lose two pounds per week, subtract 1000.
● Maintain good nutrition by eating fresh fruits and vegetables and steering clear of unhealthy fats and refined sugar.
● Don’t underestimate physical exercise. Maintaining a regular exercise program will assist you in losing weight and being healthy.
● Remember that even losing a small amount of weight can have huge health benefits.
● Eat regular meals in order to prevent extreme hunger that may result in unhealthy food choices or overeating.
● Put your plan on paper in order to make it easier to follow through with your goals.

Don’t fell prey to unhealthy fads that don’t have long term benefits. Use a sound, nutritionally sufficient diet that enables you to lose weight at a slow and steady pace. Exercise in addition to your new diet and before you know it, you’ll see results that will last. Establish new healthy habits and your body will thank you.

Photo credit: Alan Cleaver / Foter / CC BY

Nutrition, Diet and Mental Health

It’s no secret that mental health and physical health go hand in hand. The ever-growing number of Americans suffering from a mental illness could see significant improvement in their condition, if they examine and alter their diet.

While some may suffer from depression or other mental illnesses as a primary disease, many experience mental illness as a result of a preexisting chronic illness or disability. By eating food that contains nutrients that are key to treating the illness, mental health may also improve.

The most common mental illnesses in America are anxiety and depression. By increasing your intake of these foods, you may see an improvement in your symptoms.

1. Leafy Greens:
a. Spinach, kale, mustard greens and various lettuces are abundant in folate, a B vitamin that is crucial to the battle against depression, fatigue and insomnia.
2. Whole Grains:
a. Carbohydrates release glucose very quickly, producing a high followed by a crash. When you get your carbs through whole grains, the glucose release is slower, giving you a steady amount of energy without the crash and its accompanying bad mood.
3. Lean Protein:
a. Lean meat such as fish, turkey, chicken, eggs and beans, contain the amino acid tryptophan, one of building blocks of protein. Tryptophan produces serotonin, the chemical a healthy brain produces to regulate mood.
4. Fatty Fish:
a. Omega-3 fatty acids are vital to the brain’s production of dopamine and serotonin. Eating salmon, herring, or mackerel, will reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and various other mental disorders.
5. Yogurt:
a. Yogurt with active cultures boost the amount of healthy bacteria in the gut, which reduces anxiety and stress hormones. In addition to yogurt, try kefir, kimchi or tempeh.

While making sure your diet includes foods containing the nutrients necessary for a healthy brain is important, it is not a substitute for medical care. Depression is a disease, and as such it requires the help of a licensed physician to ensure that all routes are explored for the management of your symptoms.

It’s possible that medication will be needed to control more severe symptoms, however, maintaining a healthy, nutritious diet will give you a boost and make your journey to wellness smoother. If your body is healthy, your brain’s health will also improve.

Though good food is essential for good mental health, it’s not the only thing you need to think about when you examine your diet for weaknesses. Quantity and frequency of meals are also extremely important.

When a person suffers from anxiety or depression, they may experience a loss of appetite. When a body is chronically hungry (though the person suffering from mental illness may not feel it) moods can be thrown even further out of balance. If suffering from depression or anxiety, it’s crucial to maintain the proper caloric intake in order to help your brain produce the neurotransmitters needed for good mental health.

One thing to avoid when suffering from depression and anxiety is alcohol. Not only is alcohol incompatible with most antidepressants, but it can interfere with sleep patterns, making depression even more difficult to control. Refined sugar is also something to avoid when suffering from depression as it creates energy crashes and mood swings.

Making sure that your body gets proper nutrition is vital for good mental health and controlling the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Eat regular meals, avoid alcohol and sugar, and keep leafy greens, lean protein, yogurt with probiotics, whole grains, and fatty fish in your diet. By doing everything you can to heal your mind nutritionally, you give yourself the best chance at defeating depression.

Photo credit: KellyB. / Foter / CC BY

Moringa Oil for your Skin

Even though its resources have been used for hundreds of years, the Moringa tree has only recently gained worldwide popularity. The Moringa tree, also called the drumstick tree, is native to India, though it’s now being grown in Thailand, the Philippines, and Africa.

The Moringa tree has been used for both medicinal, health and cosmetic purposes. It contains good fatty acids such as oleic and linoleic, as well as vitamins A, E and C. It’s been used for ages to soften and protect skin, even by ancient Egyptians.

Moringa oil is one of the most absorbent oils in the world. It makes a great carrier oil for essential oils, as well as being a very good massage oil. It’s been used in countless beauty products such as lip balm, lotion, hair care products, soaps, body washes, perfume and deodorants.

Moringa oil is greatly desired for those seeking anti-aging remedies. Since Moringa oil contains a high amount of vitamin A, C, and E, it can help build collagen in your skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and reduce puffiness and inflammation. It also contains antioxidants that combat free radicals in your skin that might cause tissue damage or wrinkles.

The Moringa tree’s oil also contains plant hormones called cytokinins, which can speed up the cell renewal process in your skin and protect it from damage. Oil from the Moringa tree can also clear up pimples or acne, as well as blackheads or age spots (hyperpigmentation). In addition, Moringa oil can also improve circulation in your skin, giving you a healthy-looking glow.

If you suffer from dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis, Moringa oil can treat those conditions as well. Because it is rich in vitamins and absorbs into skin very efficiently, it can be a great help to those suffering from chronic skin conditions.

When it comes to hair care, Moringa oil is a star. It is a great scalp moisturizer, strengthens hair, clears up dandruff and reduces split ends. There are many hair care products that contain Moringa oil, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find when you’re looking for the best way to take your haircare to the next level.

You may want to reserve a spot in your first aid kit for the multi-purpose Moringa oil. Because of its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, it’s a great remedy for cuts, skin infections, bug bites, rashes, bruises and burns.

Moringa oil is an ancient, natural treatment for an array of skin problems. It’s also an excellent way to promote skin health and reduce the onset of aging, like dark spots and wrinkles. If you end up with an itchy bug bite, cut, scrape or bruise, Moringa oil can also help heal your skin.

If you suffer from chronic skin conditions, or simply want to have healthier, youthful looking skin, consider the oil of the Moringa tree as a great way to heal your skin and keep your skin looking and feeling young.

Top Fitness Trackers

If your goal for 2015 is to get healthy and fit, you may be considering the purchase of a mobile fitness tracker. There are several different fitness trackers on the market now, making it difficult to choose the right one amidst all the different styles, brands and options. We’ve compiled a list of the top 6 fitness trackers to make your decision easier.

Here they are, in no particular order:

1. Fitbit Charge HR:
The Fitbit Charge HR continuously monitors your heart rate. The Fitbit Charge HR also takes extremely accurate measurements of your activity and the calories you burn. It also keeps track of the minutes that you are active, the steps you take, and even monitors your sleep. The OLED screen can show you the daily statistics it collects, and even caller ID for your phone.

2. Runtastic Orbit:
Like most fitness trackers, the Runtastic Orbit monitors the steps you take, your sleep, and the calories you’ve burned in your activities. However, the Runtastic Orbit is connected to the Runtastic Orbit app, and will display the information from your run right on your wrist. The Orbit is also waterproof up to 300 feet.

3. Basis Peak:
The Basis Peak monitors the usual calories you burn, sleep quality and steps you take, but it also displays your heart rate right on your wrist as you exercise. The Basis Peak also has automated Bluetooth syncing and a Gorilla Glass screen that features gesture recognition.

4. Jawbone UP Move:
At only $49.99, the Jawbone UP Move fitness tracker is the most budget friendly, while still delivering on the features. The touch of a button will put the Jawbone UP Move into its tracking mode. Through the Jawbone app, you can assign an exercise (Zumba, running, yoga, etc.) to the activity it’s monitored, giving a good overview of the exercises you are doing and the calories you’re burning.

5. Garmin Vivosmart:
The Vivosmart is a sleek combination of a smartwatch and a fitness tracker. It will vibrate when you have notifications such as email or phones calls. It will also display steps, calories, distance and time of day. It even has an inactivity alert that will let you know if you’ve been still for too long.

6. Sony Smartband Talk:
The Sony Smartband has a unique E-ink feature, making it easier on the eyes and less taxing on the battery life than a typical screen would. It will also measure how far you go, as well as how high you may go, if your sport or exercise includes climbing. If you are a visual person, the visual goal tracker graphic gives you a clear idea of where you stand in your progress.

A fitness tracker that keeps track of activity, calories and sleep patterns can be a tremendous help to anyone on a fitness journey, whether you are just starting out or perfecting your game. Consider choosing a fitness tracker from the list we’ve compiled, it might just give you the extra boost you need to improve your overall health and fitness.

Photo credit: Drongowski / Foter / CC BY

Recipe Ideas using Moringa Oleifera

Moringa Oleifera, also known as the “miracle tree”, produces leaves and seeds that provide a multitude of uses. In addition to its use in medicine, Moringa Oleifera can be incorporated into a number of recipes that offer a tremendous amount of nutritional value. Here are some of our favorite recipes that we’ve collected from across the internet which include Moringa Oleifera and take advantage of this superfood’s versatility.

Pizza with Moringa Oleifera

Ingredients: wholegrain crust or wholegrain flat tortilla, organic or other spaghetti sauce, chopped onions and chopped spinach, freshly picked Moringa Oleifera leaves, lots of cheese – queso cheese, mozzarella cheese or a melting cheese of your choice, several minced fresh garlic cloves or garlic salt, olive oil drizzled over all of it

Preparation: Bake, in preheated 400 degree Fahrenheit oven, until cheese melts and crust is light brown.  There are not any specific quantities of Moringa Oleifera to use for your pizza -it depends on your personal taste. Cover the flatbread with sauce, to within 1/4 – 1/2 inch from the edge. Enjoy your pizza!

Egg Omelette with Moringa Oleifera

Ingredients: eggs (as many as you’d like to include with your omelette) , a substantial amount of freshly picked Moringa Oleifera leaves, if you prefer, add these extras: sautéed onions and mushrooms, diced tomatoes, olive oil and/or butter, several minced fresh garlic cloves or garlic salt, sea salt and/or whatever spices you like

Preparation: Add the fresh Moringa leaves right before you serve. Enjoy your omelette!

Moringa Dill Quiche

Ingredients: six eggs, fresh dill (chopped into sections), chopped or thinly sliced onions, fresh cream and some olive oil or butter, freshly picked Moringa Oleifera leaves, cheese of your choice, perhaps queso, several minced fresh garlic cloves or garlic salt, an uncooked pastry shell (or make one from scratch)

Preparation: Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit, mix all of your ingredients together in a mixing bowl, pour them into the pastry shell. Bake for thirty five minutes, or until light brown on top. Enjoy your quiche!

Vegetarian Moringa Jambalaya

Ingredients: one cup rice, 1/2 cup winged bean, blanched, one chopped onion, one carrot, thinly sliced, three Tblsp. oil, one thinly sliced green pepper, 1/2 cup freshly picked Moringa Oleifera leaves, 1/2 cup pigeon or Congo pea seeds, one Tblsp. finely chopped celery, 3/4 cup chopped tomatoes, three cups of water

Preparation: Wash rice and soak in a small bowl for one hour, then drain. Fry onion in cooking oil until tender, but not brown. Set aside. Add tomatoes. When boiling, stir in rice slowly on low heat. When rice is half cooked, add in the other ingredients. Cover tightly and cook slowly. Serve hot with sliced papaya. The recipe should serve six. Enjoy your jambalaya!

As you can see, Moringa Oleifera is a very versatile ingredient! Experiment and get creative using Moringa Oleifera with some of your own recipes. Not only is it delicious but your health will also benefit from having this super nutritious plant in your diet.