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» » Maca Root: Miraculous for Many Reasons! Energy, Libido, Skin, Stress, and Hormones

Maca Root: Miraculous for Many Reasons! Energy, Libido, Skin, Stress, and Hormones

Maca is a root vegetable that was originally found in Peru. According to Maca Spirit, Peruvian farmers began to take notice that the livestock that grazed in areas where maca root was located were more likely to be stronger, healthier and more likely to copulate than their counterparts. The maca root is full of many minerals and health-promoting vitamins and is used by naturopathic practitioners to treat a variety of conditions.

So, what is maca?

​Maca is an important root vegetable in the mustard family. The root is about the size of a radish. It originates in the Peruvian Andes mountains and grows at altitudes of 11,000 feet (3500 m) and above. ​Maca root has been treasured for thousands of years due to its ability to increase energy, stamina, and fertility for all people (men and women) and animals who eat it.

Maca is a true nutritional powerhouse. Dried maca root contains 13-16% protein, 8.5% fiber, 19 amino acids, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C, and D, the minerals iron, magnesium, copper, zinc, sodium, potassium, calcium, several glucosinolates, 20 free fatty acids, iodine, and unique compounds called macaenes and macamides.

Beyond nutrition, maca is one of only a handful of foods considered to be an "adaptogen," or a food that raises overall life force energy. Adaptogens are substances that raise the physical body’s state of resistance to diseases through both physiological health and emotional health improvements. This makes maca a broad based food that in many cases is able to support and rejuvenate overwhelmed, tired adrenal glands and other aspects of the hormonal system.

Maca Root Benefits

1. Rich in Antioxidants

Maca root acts as a natural antioxidant, boosting levels of antioxidants like glutathione and superoxide dismutase in the body. Antioxidants help neutralize harmful free radicals, fighting off chronic disease and preventing damage to cells.

2. Enhances Energy, Mood and Memory

Maca has maintained a reputation for boosting energy for 1000's of years. What’s interesting though, as compared with coffee and tea, maca does not stress the adrenals. The energy boost felt from maca is both even and sustained. It has also shown positive results for reducing the effects of chronic fatigue syndrome.
Those who regularly use maca powder report that it makes them feel more awake, energized and driven, often relatively quickly after beginning to use it. Plus, maca can help increase energy without giving you the “jitters” or a sense of shakiness like high level of caffeine can.

Clinical trials have shown that maca may positively impact energy and stamina. Maintaining positive energy levels can also help improve mood, and some early studies have even found that maca may reduce symptoms of depression.

3. Improves Sexual Health

Maca has been very successful in increasing the libido of both men and women.
Taking maca regularly can balance hormones within both men and women. Black maca in particular has shown to increase sperm count and volume in men. Red maca has been shown to help with hormone balance and ovulation cycles in women. Maca does not contain hormones, but the building blocks from which the body can create them.

4. Balances Estrogen Levels

Estrogen is the primary female sex hormone responsible for regulating the reproductive system. An imbalance in this vital hormone can cause a slew of symptoms ranging from bloating to irregular menstrual periods and mood swings. Estrogen levels that are too high or low can also make it difficult for a woman to ovulate and become pregnant.

Maca root can help balance hormone levels and control the amount of estrogen in the body. One study published in the International Journal of Biomedical Science gave 34 early post-menopausal women a tablet containing either maca or a placebo twice daily for four months. Not only did maca help balance hormone levels, but it also relieved symptoms of menopause, such as night sweats and hot flashes, and even increased bone density.

5. Skin tone improves when taking maca regularly. This is most likely due to the strong nutrient content and hormone balancing effects of maca.

6. Maca has been shown to stimulate thyroid function, most likely due to its hormone balancing properties. Maca does contain iodine which can affect thyroid function.


Maca is safe for most people and can be consumed with minimal risk of maca side effects. That being said, there are some people who may want to moderate their intake.

If you have any thyroid problems, you should keep maca intake in moderation and avoid consuming it raw. This is because it contains goitrogens, which are substances that can impair thyroid function, especially in those with thyroid issues. Check with your doctor before taking maca if you have hypothyroidism or a history of thyroid problems.

Because of maca’s effects on hormone levels, physicians believe that maca should not be consumed by people who rely on hormone-altering medications for the treatment of illnesses like breast cancer or prostate cancer, for example, or for other serious conditions. People who have high blood pressure are also advised to not consume maca to avoid adverse maca root side effects.

Finally, there is limited research on the safety of maca for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Until it is confirmed to be safe, it’s best for these women to avoid maca.
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