Nutrition 1 – Moringa oleifera

In Burkina, and much of the developing world, nutrition is both necessary and hard to come by.  Imagine the poverty line to be at somewhere around $1/day (this is already a bit out-dated).  Add that many Burkinabé live below that poverty line.  Frequently feeding a family on less than $1 a day.  Now imagine that the situation isn’t quite so bad since many of these people are farmers.  Subsistance farmers.  Oops.  Guess it is that bad.

Most people grow one main crop each season (corn, millet, sorghum, peanuts, beans, sesame, cotton).  Sometimes, but not always, these are inter-cropped with other produce (okra, peppers [habanero, green, chili, etc.], tomatoes, egg-plant, onions, etc.).  Factor in that the average farmer has never had the opportunity to go to High School.

With sufficient training, it might be possible to grow diverse crops, or trade, to get the produce necessary for a nutritious diet.  Might.  Though it should be kept in mind that we’re working with limited means.  Including access to good nurtition information.  We will explore this option more thoroughally in subsequent posts.  For now, just know that it’s not easy.

But it’s not all doom and gloom!  In fact, by some accounts, there’s even a magical cure.  Moringa !

And regardless if you believe in magic, Moringa is pretty impressive.  I wrote and illustrated much of the above book while I was working with the health center in a small village in Burkina.  My goal was to distill much of the information floating around about the tree into that which actually can be/has been tested.  Thus my sell focuses largely on the simple nutritional benefits of the tree’s leaves (some other sources are a bit more liberal with their promotional approach).

In other important news, there is a masked hero (or two) running around Burkina (to this day!) promoting the positive nutritional benefits of Moringa.

Cheers,

Rob

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About wagarob

doucement, je commence à apprendre le monde de cette technologie étrange ... doucement
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