What is Maca and what is it for?

Andean Maca is said to improve the immune system, promote fertility, hormonal balance in women, and enhance sexual activity in men. It also counteracts stress and physical and mental exhaustion.

Andean Maca Powder
Rich in vitamins and minerals, maca increases strength and endurance, sports performance and general well-being.
Although maca has been used by Andean people for thousands of years, it is only recently that it has gained worldwide popularity and has experienced a great increase in demand due to the many properties attributed to it.

Maca is an herbaceous plant native to the Andes of Peru and Bolivia, where it is cultivated for both its nutritional qualities and its reputation for its roots to have properties that increase fertility and improve libido.

Clinical trials conducted on men have shown that Maca extract can increase sexual desire and improve sperm production, sperm motility and semen volume, has favorable effects on energy and mood, and can decrease anxiety.

Andean maca is very similar to a radish in shape, however, it is slightly larger in size. The root is three to six centimeters wide and 4.7 centimeters long.

It is grown at an altitude of 2700 to 4300 meters above sea level, and has been cultivated in the Peruvian Andes for almost 2600 years.

The health benefits of maca have been known since time immemorial, even before the arrival of the Spanish in Peru. The Indians used maca not only as an aphrodisiac, but also as a powerful herb to cure many diseases.

During the Spanish colonization of Peru, maca was used by the Incas to pay taxes.

Maca root has high nutritional value, it is rich in protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. The plant grows only at certain altitudes where conditions are very harsh and where other plants cannot survive.

Today we can find maca in many shops and herbalists, as well as buy it online.

It is sold as a powder in capsules in most cases, often in the form of flour. The effect is said to be better when ingested regularly. It can be added to foods such as soups, smoothies or baked goods.

Andean Maca properties

Maca, Lepidium meyenii.
Maca root has been traditionally used to improve fertility and sexual desire.
Andean maca has a nutritional profile similar to that of cereals: 60% carbohydrates, 10% protein, 8.5% fibre and 2.2% fat.

Maca powder has approximately 10 percent protein containing seven of the eight essential amino acids. Although not a complete protein, maca is an excellent source of amino acids.

The lipid content of Andean maca is about 2.2 percent, including linolenic acid, palmitic acid, and oleic acid.

Maca is also a good source of sterols, which have been shown to be very effective in stimulating the immune system.

It is also rich in bioavailable minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sulphur, sodium, iron, zinc, copper, selenium, iodine, bismuth, manganese, silicon and tin. It is ideal for remineralization.

Maca contains B vitamins, which are the energy vitamins, such as vitamin B1 and B2, vitamin C and vitamin E.

Frequent consumption of maca increases libido

Maca has always been marketed as an effective natural supplement to improve sexual desire in both men and women.

The reason why maca can increase libido is because it contains arginine, which is related to increased levels of testosterone, a hormone that promotes libido in both men and women.

How long does the supplement have to be taken to have an effect? It depends, mainly because biologically we are all very different. As a rule, it takes three to six weeks of continuous use to notice an effect. However, you can experience almost instantaneous results with maca if you combine it with other energizing superfoods such as pollen or cocoa.

Does Maca live up to its reputation? 🙂 Most of the information about its benefits in terms of increased libido and fertility has been passed down from generation to generation, but it is true that scientific evidence about its effectiveness is limited.

Does Maca promote fertility and pregnancy?

Much of the recent popularity of Maca consumption is no doubt due to claims that it can increase fertility and promote pregnancy. In fact, traditionally since ancient times, Andean shamans have used maca to increase fertility and pregnancy.

In fact, traditionally since ancient times, Andean shamans have used maca to increase fertility in animals and humans.

More recently, Dr. Gloria Chacon de Popovici published her study of the effect of maca on animal fertility in 1961, where it became clear that it increased fertility in rats, dogs, guinea pigs, rams, cows and humans. Dr. Chacon determined that by acting on the hypothalamus and pituitary and adrenal glands, maca increased libido, energy and vitality by improving levels of testosterone, progesterone and DHEA (the hormone of youth).

The findings of this research indicate that Maca is a superfood capable of increasing fertility and may be extremely useful for those trying to conceive a child. Maca may also help women produce more milk after pregnancy.

Benefits of Andean maca
Among the health benefits of Andean maca are

  • Increases strength and libido, stamina, sports performance, and general well-being. Maca is an adaptogen, it helps our body adapt to stressful situations, increases the body’s ability to defend against physical and mental decline.
  • It regulates and increases the function of the endocrine system, the glands that produce the hormones necessary for essential body and metabolic functions such as fertility, sexual function, digestion, brain and nervous system physiology, and energy levels. Hormones regulate many things, including mood, growth, sexual development, and tissue function. Hormones also play a role in many diseases, such as cancer and depression.

In order to achieve the best results it is advisable to consume between 1 and 3 tablespoons of maca powder a day. If you take it daily, it is best to take one day off each week. You can consume it either alone with water or by mixing it with vegetables, soups or broths.

  • It supports the adrenal glands, maintaining the body’s overall health in stressful situations.

It has an analgesic effect thanks to the terpenoids and saponins that give it the power to relieve pain and act as an expectorant and sedative.

  • Women have found that it helps relieve the symptoms of PMS and menopause
  • Men have used it to increase fertility and sexual function. That’s why it’s earned the nickname “nature’s Viagra.”
  • Deeper Sleep
  • Improves memory and brain function
  • Slows down the aging process
  • Reverses vaginal dryness

Peruvians have always eaten cooked maca, but they have prepared it in different ways. Also fermented as beer. It can also be roasted, boiled and mixed with milk as a cereal, or mashed and dried as flour.

Maca increases sports performance
Maca is popular as a supplement among bodybuilders and athletes for helping to gain muscle, increase strength, energy and improve exercise performance.

Being rich in vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and protein naturally increases energy, reduces fatigue, and assists in building muscle.

Maca powder can be added to shakes before training to help with the energy load, and later for faster recovery.

Maca can have some side effects
As long as it is not abused, as will happen with any other food, maca is a staple in Peru and there are no known severe contraindications. However, from time to time some people experience adverse effects when they start taking maca, and these symptoms may actually be symptoms of detoxification. If this happens, you may feel bad, but it usually lasts a few days.

Known for providing energy, one of the possible side effects is insomnia. This could be avoided by not using it in the afternoon or evening.

Also due to its fibre content (8.5%), maca has some influence on the digestive system. When consumed in excess, the fibre speeds up the rate of digestion leading to gas and sometimes diarrhoea, which could lead to dehydration.

During pregnancy and breastfeeding, maca supplements may not be recommended because they may contain an ingredient or contaminant that can affect the baby and the mother negatively. If you decide to take them, always do so under the supervision of a qualified physician.

Maca is well tolerated by most people, but it is always advisable to take precautions and consult a doctor in certain cases, such as pregnant and breastfeeding women, and if you have a thyroid condition.

If you have any of these side effects, either reduce the dose or don’t take it: nervousness and insomnia, altered thyroid function, or hormonal changes.

What is the best maca? Which supplement to buy?
Maca can be found online, in pharmacies, herbalists and health food stores. It is available in powder, liquid, or capsule form, and is very easy to incorporate into your diet.

There are three types of maca: red, yellow and black, each with its own individual properties. Yellow maca is very common and the most economical, because it is the most harvested maca.

Maca root has a nutty flavor and can be included in many recipes, smoothies, or mixed with hot drinks.

When buying, if the product offers guarantees of being ecological and of ethical consumption, so much the better. Make sure the brand is known or has positive references.

Superfood available on Amazon:

Maca Root Capsules 2500mg | 180 Capsules (6 Month’s Supply), Maca Root Supplement

Organic Maca Powder by TheHealthyTree Company for Vegan Smoothies, Oats and Baking – High in Vitamin B2, Fibre, Iron and Calcium – Peruvian Raw Maca Root (250g)

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