Moringa is also known as Moringa oleifera, the miracle, and drumstick tree. It is a tree that is highly valued by all for its nutritious leaves and purported medicinal properties it possesses. Nearly all parts of this miracle tree has long been used as a herbal medicine to treat more than 300 conditions.
That aside, most of the moringa benefits are limited to studies conducted in test-tubes and on animals so some of them might not translate to humans. Nonetheless, some of the health benefits observed from this medicinal plant are specific to men. This article contains 4 potential benefits of moringa for men.
1. Moringa Helps Promote Prostate Health
The seeds and leaves of moringa are rich in sulfur-containing compounds called glucosinolates, which may have anticancer properties. Studies conducted with test-tubes have demonstrated that the glucosinolates from the seeds of moringa may inhibit the growth of human prostate cancer cells. In addition, it is speculated that benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) could be prevented by the use of moringa. As men age, this condition typically becomes more common and it is usually characterized by the enlargement of the prostate, thereby making the process of urination difficult.
In one of the animal studies conducted, mice were given moringa leaf extract before it was administered testosterone daily for 4 weeks to induce benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). It was observed that the moringa leaf extract significantly reduced the prostate weight. What’s more, the levels of prostate-specific antigen, a protein produced by the prostate gland was also reduced by the moringa leaf extract. A sure sign of prostate cancer is high levels of the prostate-specific antigen. Lastly, the study conducted on the mice also demonstrated that the treated mice's testosterone levels were decreased by the moringa leaf extract. In humans, when the testosterone levels are low, it can lead to reduced sex drive and erectile function, loss of lean muscle mass, and depression.
This testosterone-lowering effect caused by the moringa leaf extract can as well interfere with the therapy of the testosterone-replacement effectiveness in men with low testosterone. Ultimately, studies need to be carried out on humans so as to determine whether the effect moringa possess also has beneficial effects on prostate health or helps in lowering the testosterone in men.
2. May Alleviate Erectile Dysfunction
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability to get or keep an erection that is firm enough for sex. This condition often occurs when there is a problem with blood flow, that may be as a result of high blood pressure, high levels of fat in the blood, or maybe certain conditions like diabetes.
Moringa leaves contain a beneficial plant compound called polyphenols. Polyphenols help in enhancing the flow of blood thereby increasing the production of nitric oxide and also decreasing blood pressure.
What’s more, some studies that were conducted in rats have shown that extract from the leaves and seeds of this plant inhibit key enzymes that are somewhat linked to erectile dysfunction (ED) that increase blood pressure and decrease the production of nitric oxide.
In one other study conducted on healthy rats, it was also demonstrated and observed that when a moringa seed extract was given to the healthy rats, it helped relax the smooth muscle in the penis of healthy rats, thereby allowing for more blood flow to the area. The moringa seed extract also helped alleviate erectile dysfunction (ED) in rats that have diabetes.
However, no study related to the benefits of moringa leaves and seed extract to alleviating erectile dysfunction (ED) has been conducted in humans to date. Therefore, it is still unknown if the beneficial effects of morning on erectile dysfunction (ED) in animals translate to humans.
3. May Improve Fertility
It is estimated that men cause or contribute to the problems associated with infertility in about 40% of cases, with reduced production of sperm and problems with the motility of sperm being among the most common causes.
Moringa leaves and seeds are excellent sources of antioxidants, which may help combat oxidative damage that are capable of interfering with the production of sperm or damaging the sperm DNA.
In one of the studies conducted in rabbits, it was shown that the leaf powder from the moringa plant significantly improved the volume of the semen, as well as sperm count and motility.
In another study, one conducted in rats, it was further demonstrated that in cases of induced undescended testicles, the antioxidant properties that the moringa leaf extract possess, helped to significantly increase sperm count.
What’s more, the studies that were conducted in rats and rabbits have shown that this moringa leaf extract may help in preventing the loss of sperm that was caused by excessive heat, chemotherapy, or electromagnetic rays emitted from cell phones.
While all of these results may seem rather promising, one can not come to conclusion if no studies are conducted in humans to ascertain its effectiveness of moringa for improving male fertility.
4. May Improve Blood Sugar Control
Type 2 diabetes is a condition that occurs when enough insulin is not produced in your body or when your body cannot efficiently use the insulin produced by the body. Insulin is a hormone produced by your pancreas that lowers blood sugar levels after eating. This condition (type 2 diabetes) is more prevalent in men than in women. The reason for this might be because men tend to store more harmful fat (also known as visceral fat) around their abdominal region than women do. The harmful fat (or visceral fat) tends to decrease the effectiveness of insulin, thereby increasing the risk of diabetes.
Several studies pertaining to this benefit have been conducted in mice and rats with diabetes. The studies conducted have shown that extracts from the leaves and seeds of moringa may lower the levels of blood sugar by either increasing the level of insulin production or the uptake of sugar into cells.
In a study that was conducted in humans, 10 healthy adults were used as case study. The 10 healthy adults demonstrated that consuming 4 grams of moringa leaf powder increases the secretion of insulin but it did not significantly affect the levels of blood sugar.
In another study for the benefits of moringa seeds and leaves, 10 healthy adults and 17 adults with type 2 diabetes were used as a case study. The 10 healthy adults and 17 adults were given 20 grams of the moringa leaf powder with a meal. The researchers discovered that the moringa supplements helped in reducing in people the increase in post-meal blood sugar in those with diabetes but not in those without the condition. One of the observations reported by the researchers was that this dosage resulted in poor taste in the case studies and this may have affected the consistency of intake.
While the results from the researches conducted might seem promising, additional long-term, high quality studies involving more people are required before any firm conclusions can be made on moringa's efficacy for managing type 2 diabetes.
Moringa is a tree that is native to Northwestern India. According to the studies conducted on test-tubes and animals, the leaves and seeds of moringa helps protect against prostate cancer, alleviate erectile dysfunction (ED), and it also improves fertility and blood sugar control.
However, before all these moringa benefits in men can be strongly or firmly accepted as effective benefits of moringa for men, more studies are needed to be conducted in humans. However, moringa leaves are highly nutritious and can be consumed in any way you please — as a powder, pill, extract, or tea.