The pods and leaves of Moringa trees are used for food in numerous cultures throughout the world. First cultivated in Northern India, it was incorporated into a number of religious and cultural observances, some of which continue to this day. Oil derived from the seeds of the Moringa was used as food and in unguents by the ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians and were part of the Ayurvedic health diet in India. The tree’s hardy nature and multitude of uses has led to its cultivation in many areas including the West Indies, where it is a valuable source of food and oil products. The leaves, flowers and seed pods of the tree are highly nutritional and provide a number of necessary nutrients, including protein, beta carotene, calcium and Vitamin C. Because the Moringa tree can be grown in a wide range of climates and requires little water in order to produce leaves, pods and flowers, it is well suited to provide nutrition in areas of the world where food is scarce, including Asia and Africa. Every part of the tree can be consumed or used by either humans or animals, making it even more useful for combating malnutrition in these areas of the world. This is especially important for young children, pregnant women and lactating mothers who require additional nutritional support during these critical formative stages. The calcium and other nutrients available in the plant products offer solid food value at a minimal cost for these high-risk individuals. A number of organizations also recommend the plant as a food source for AIDS patients, who may require additional vitamin and mineral supplements to remain relatively healthy due to their weakened immune systems.