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How Can the SUPerfood, Moringa, Enhance Your SUP Performance?

Photo courtesy: Thurso Surf / @b.kolaczsowski Photo courtesy: Thurso Surf / @b.kolaczsowski

Chia seeds, golden flaxseed, and cacao powder are some of the top-selling superfoods in the world, but more potent provisions are constantly arriving on the shelves of our health food store, many presenting impressive findings from the scientific community. Not all superfoods are alike, and the blend of those that make their way into your daily smoothie or salad should depend on your goals. SUP athletes are usually keen on honing their endurance, strength, and ability to battle stress. Did you know that the superfood, moringa, can help you achieve these aims?

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How is Moringa Taken?

Moringa is currently sold in various ways, including powder, capsule, and leaf forms. If you start your day out with a superfood smoothie, the powder format is arguably the easiest. However, if you are already taking other shakes and drinks, and you prefer to keep it simple, you can take a shortcut by opting for supplements. Before rushing to buy moringa or indeed any superfood products, ensure that you are consuming health products made by trusted brands. As is the case with many trending superfoods and vitamins, online brands can pop up and promise documented benefits, without delivering a concentrated, power-packed, pesticide-free product. Check out online reviews; ensure the moringa you buy is vibrantly hued or dark green; avoid cheap products; and opt exclusively for certified organic, raw, vegan moringa products.

moringa sup superfood 3Photo courtesy: Aqua Marina

Moringa Power

Moringa is known as the world’s most useful tree because in addition to its health effects, it is also being used to purify water in a cheap, healthy, natural way. Found mainly in Asia and Africa, it has numerous bioactive components, including vitamins, flavonoids, phenolic acids, tannins, saponins, and isothiocyanates. Numerous studies have shown that moringa leaves are beneficial for a wide array of chronic diseases—including high blood pressure, insulin resistance, and inflammation.

moringa sup superfood 4Photo Copyright Supconnect

Strengthening Your Immunity

‘How can moringa help SUPers enjoy their favorite sport?’ you may ask. Its potent concoction of nutrients make it an excellent immunity booster, which can help ensure you enjoy many days out of the water, free of illness. Studies have shown that moringa fights inflammation and reduces levels of inflammatory cytokines and reduces stress in the endoplasmic reticulum (the part of the cell responsible for protein synthesis and the metabolism of fats). Its high antioxidant content, meanwhile, reduces exercise-induced oxidative damage and helps your body recover after a workout.

moringa sup superfood 2Photo courtesy: iRocker

Post-SUP Recovery

Moringa’s high mineral content makes it an exceptional choice for electrolyte replenishment. While there are low-sugar electrolyte drinks out there, typical eight-ounce drinks have around 14 grams of sugar. Those wishing to avoid unnecessary sugar intake can always opt for zero or low-calorie options. However, these can be expensive for an SUPer who spends various hours on the water and who may need frequent replenishment. Instead of buying an electrolyte drink, replace it with homemade, cold moringa tea sweetened with coconut sugar, Stevia, or Xylitol.

moringa sup superfood 1Photo courtesy: Pau Hana Surf Supply

Maintaining Your Energy Levels

Research conducted on swimming performance indicates that moringa extracts boost blood hemoglobin and glycogen reserves during exercise. They also reduce lactic acid, urea, and triglycerides. This makes this leaf a good ally when it comes to helping you feel more energetic and reducing lactic acid build-up after a tough day out at sea. Moringa can also help boost your endurance owing to its high Magnesium content. One of the key roles played by Magnesium in human health is by converting glucose from food into energy. By keeping your levels steady, you can help keep tiredness at bay, both in and out of the water. Finally, Moringa contains iron, which is extremely important for sports people. Iron deficiencies are common among athletes, especially those taking part in endurance sports. Iron has several key roles to play in the body, two of the most important of which are transferring and delivering oxygen, and producing energy at the mitochondrial level. When you lack iron, you can feel weak, short of breath, and fatigued.

Moringa is packed with vitamins and nutrients that make it a key superfood for SUPers to embrace. It helps keep your immunity in check, keeps inflammation at bay, and is an excellent source of electrolytes. It can also help you avoid iron deficiency and tiredness— two issues which unfortunately affect many endurance athletes.

For more SUP Nutrition articles, click HERE.

Last modified onTuesday, 28 June 2022 16:24
Jennifer Dawson

Jennifer Dawson is an experience freelance writer who specializes in food and nutrition. Working in fitness marketing previously gave her a good feel for the industry and since going freelance she has been able to explore her preferred topic areas such as diet, nutrition and food. Outside of work, Jen enjoys traveling, swimming and spending time with her young family.

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