Annals of Clinical and Laboratory Research

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The potential of Moringa Oleifera and Stevia Rebaudiana in boosting the nutritional health and alleviating poverty of East African women through value addition

Aisha Nakasujja

Moringa Oleifera is the scientific name for a widely-cultivated medicinal crop more commonly known as the “drumstick tree.” Native to North India, it is sometimes referred to as a “miracle tree” because nearly all parts of the tree have medicinal applications. Moringa leaves, for example, are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals. The plant is a complete plant protein with all 9 essential amino acids. It packs more nutrients per serving than any other plant in its category.

On the other hand, Stevia Rebaudiana a sweet herb, has been used for treatment of diabetes in several countries for example Brazil, although a positive effect on antidiabetic, its complications have not been unequivocally demonstrated. This herb also has numerous therapeutic properties which have been proven safe and effective over hundreds of years. Streptozotocin is a potential source of oxidative stress that induces genotoxicity. The herb has been proven beneficial for controlling blood sugar and insulin levels, a possibility of lowering blood pressure, and a sweetener that’s actually good for teeth. Research on both these herbs has been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Uganda, as a country located in the equatorial region boasts of a number of factors including a great climate, fertile soils and favourable rainfall to support the cultivation of the two species; Moringa Oleifera and Stevia Rebaudiana. On the same note, the country is battling a frail health system that needs to be supported by the use of traditional medicine. There is a great possibility of successfully achieving this and also alleviating poverty through the supporting women out-growers in the region.

With this on-going research, we hope to find a pattern between the two herbs; Moringa Oleifera and Stevia Rebaudiana on the boosting of nutritional health and alleviation of poverty of East African women through value addition.