There's nothing super-looking about moringa. It’s skinny and sparse in foliage. Its fragile branches sprout puny white flowers and droop with long twisted pods knobby with seeds. But if plants were superheroes, then moringa would be Iron Man.
“If there were a top 10 list of plants that are going to help feed the world over the next hundred years, I would say moringa should be on that list,” Every part of the plant is edible — leaves, pods, seeds, flowers, even its root. The feathery leaves alone pack a powerful protein punch — nearly 30 percent by dry weight. Legumes don’t even have that much protein, nor all the essential amino acids. The leaves are high in vitamins A and C, calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium and potassium. They contain phytochemicals and antioxidants that have been shown in some research studies to reduce chronic inflammation. The plant even has the potential to simultaneously treat both malnutrition and obesity.
Moringa stenopetala is often referred to as the African Moringa Tree because it is native only to Ethiopia and northern Kenya. Though it does grow in many other parts of the old- and new-world tropics, it is not as widely known as its close relative, Moringa oleifera. There are nine different Moringa tree species in Southern Africa, Northeastern Africa, Madagascar, and India. However, the only endemic Southern African Moringa species is the Moringa ovalifolia. This tree naturally grows in Namibia. No matter what you call Moringa oleifera — also known as “drumstick tree,” “tree of life,” and “miracle tree” — it's one of the most nutritious plants in the world.