Brad had crippling arthritis pain. His doctor prescribed a monthly shot of Simponi, at a cost of $2,500 per injection. Brad’s wife said this treatment did give her husband some pain relief – but not 100 percent. Brad continued the physician-recommended therapy for four years. (That works out to a cost of $30,000 a year for a total expense of $120,000, billed through his health insurance company.)
Simponi (golimumab) is a medication prescribed to relieve pain, stiffness, and swelling of rheumatoid arthritis (RA, a long-term autoimmune disorder that primarily affects joints), psoriasis (pSa, a long-lasting autoimmune disease characterized by patches of abnormal skin), and ankylosing spondylitis (AS, a type of spinal arthritis). One of its side effects is lowering the body’s ability to fight infections.
Another downside of using Simponi is that it can kill the patient:
“There are reports of serious infections caused by bacteria, fungi, or viruses that have spread throughout the body, including tuberculosis (TB) and histoplasmosis [a fungal lung infection].”
With about 80 percent of the pain eased from his monthly shots of Simponi, Brad was able to work as a church praise and worship director where he played guitar and needed the nimble use of his fingers.
Then, Brad’s insurance company changed its coverage rules and would no longer pay for the Simponi injections. Left untreated, within a couple of weeks, according to his wife:
“He couldn’t raise his arms to put his t-shirt on.”
The couple went into panic mode. Fortunately, a friendly viewer of their YouTube channel Big Family Homestead advised them to check out a plant called Moringa oleifera that grows in the very hot regions of the world.
The moringa tree is drought-resistant and typically grows 32–40 feet high. Native to North India and throughout the tropical and subtropical regions of South Asia, most parts of the tree have been used medicinally for thousands of years.
The fragrant flowers are hermaphroditic (both-sexed) and are surrounded by five unequal, yellowish-white petals with thin veins.
Missionaries were using this plant to cure everything from inflammations to blindness. Brad was understandably skeptical about these far-reaching claims. But he was so desperate he tried it.
The couple began researching moringa and found health benefits that Brad said “blew me away” from taking a single serving about this singular plant. Key among them were:
- 7 times more vitamin C compared to oranges
- 4 times more vitamin A than carrots
- 4 times more calcium than milk
- 7 times more potassium than bananas
- 2 times more protein than yogurt
- 25 times more iron than spinach
- 3 times more vitamin E than almonds
- 50 times more vitamin B3 than peanuts
Unlike any other known plant, moringa contains all nine essential amino acids that humans need.
After harvesting, the fresh plant leaves are dried and crushed into a powder. Brad’s wife used an ingenious capsule machine to fill gel capsules quickly and easily for her husband to take by mouth.
Brad said the reason he didn’t simply dump the powdered moringa leaf into a blender smoothie was that it “tastes like grass.” Ew.
The couple said they feed moringa leaf to their daughter who needs a feeding tube that passes nutrients directly into her abdomen. The moringa powder is mixed with a thick home-made yogurt before being diluted and thinned with milk so it can pass through the G-tube (gastrostomy tube).
Four years after Brad stopped taking Simponi shots, he takes moringa leaf every day. His hands, wrists, and fingers became completely flexible and pain-free.
Other people who tried moringa leaf emailed the Big Family Homestead hosts news that their arthritis pain and stiffness had been relieved, too. Someone who hadn’t been able to get up was able to go to the mall. Another was able to cut vegetables and make dinner again for the family. Many people talked about the joy of playing with their grandchildren pain-free.
Scientists are confirming the health benefits of powdered moringa leaves, including:
- Lowers blood sugar
- Improves heart health
- Reduces inflammation
By the numbers, one cup of fresh, chopped moringa leaves contains:
- Protein: 2 grams
- Vitamin B6: 19% of the RDA
- Vitamin C: 12% of the RDA
- Iron: 11% of the RDA
- Riboflavin (B2): 11% of the RDA
- Vitamin A (from beta-carotene): 9% of the RDA
- Magnesium: 8% of the RDA
Gardeners who live in hot climates such as the southern U.S. states can grow their own moringa plants. Just be advised that the seeds, available for purchase online, have a very low germination rate. This means to buy a lot of seeds and expect relatively few of them to sprout.
The seeds can be pressed to yield a super-healing oil to treat eczema and other skin conditions.
Even the seed pods are useful. Dried and crushed, they make a good water filter.