Maca – You May Really Need To Add This Vitamin To Your Diet

BFFs!! I have read a great deal about this vitamin, and when I went to buy it I really engaged in conversation with the professional who swore by it!  The main benefit that sticks out to me is the energy boost, as well as the hormonal balancing!  Since taking this product I truly feel like it does provide the energy and balance that I was looking for!

Here is the Wikipedia definition: “Lepidium meyenii (maca) is an herbaceous biennial plant of the crucifer family native to the high Andes of Peru. It was found at the Meseta of BomBom close to Junin Lake in the Andes.[1] It is grown for its fleshy hypocotyl (a fused hypocotyl and taproot), which is used as a root vegetable and a medicinal herb. Its Spanish and Quechua names include maca-maca, maino, ayak chichira, and ayak willku.”

HOW COOL IS THIS DEFINITION ?!?!?!  I MEAN: It was found at the Meseta of BomBom?! Other names for it include: maca-maca, maino, ayak….  Anyway not only is it an AMAZING plant and vitamin, it’s history is really neat!

You can choose to take Maca in capsule, pill, or powder form!  The powder (unlike many) doesn’t have a bad taste to it. Everyday I either put it in my salad dressing (I really can’t tell the difference), or I may put it in a cup of tea.  You can stir it in your yogurt or oatmeal… it really wont change the flavor that much, and the little it does is kind of pleasant.

Benefits Include:

I got this info from: https://authoritynutrition.com/benefits-of-maca-root/:

It’s Highly Nutritious

Maca root powder is very nutritious, and is a great source of several important vitamins and minerals (2).

One ounce (28 grams) of maca root powder contains:

  • Calories: 91
  • Carbs: 20 grams
  • Protein: 4 grams
  • Fiber: 2 grams
  • Fat: 1 gram
  • Vitamin C: 133% of the RDI
  • Copper: 85% of the RDI
  • Iron: 23% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 16% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 15% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 10% of the RDI

Maca root is a good source of carbs and protein, is low in fat and contains a fair amount of fiber. It’s also high in some essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, copper and iron.

Furthermore, it contains various plant compounds, including glucosinolates and polyphenols (1, 3, 4).

It Increases Libido in Men and Women

Maca Root Powder and a Wooden Scoop

Reduced sexual desire is a common problem among adults.

Consequently, interest in herbs and plants that naturally boost libido is great.

Maca has been heavily marketed as being effective at improving sexual desire, and this claim is backed by research (5).

A review from 2010 that included four randomized clinical studies with a total of 131 participants found evidence that maca improves sexual desire after at least six weeks of ingestion (6).

It May Help Relieve Symptoms of Menopause

Maca Powder in a Glass Bowl

Menopause is defined as the time in a woman’s life when her menstrual periods stop permanently.

The natural decline in estrogen that occurs during this time can cause a range of unpleasant symptoms.

These include hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mood swings, sleep problems and irritability.

One review of four studies in menopausal women found that maca helped alleviate menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes and interrupted sleep (10).

Additionally, animal studies suggest that maca can help protect bone health. Women have a higher risk of osteoporosis after menopause (11, 12, 13).

Maca Can Improve Your Mood

Several studies have shown that maca can enhance your mood.

It’s been associated with reduced anxiety and symptoms of depression, particularly in menopausal women (14, 15, 16).

Maca contains plant compounds called flavonoids, which have been suggested to be at least partly responsible for these psychological benefits (15).

** I am a pretty happy person in general… but this root just makes me feel good, and feeling good really helps your mental outlook!

It May Boost Sports Performance and Energy

Maca root powder is a popular supplement among bodybuilders and athletes.

It has been claimed to help you gain muscle, increase strength, boost energy and improve exercise performance.

Also, some animal studies indicate that it enhances endurance performance (17, 18, 19).

Moreover, one small study in eight male cyclists found that they improved the time it took them to complete a nearly 25-mile (40-km) bike ride after 14 days of supplementing with maca extract (20).

Currently, there is no scientific evidence to confirm any benefits for muscle mass or strength.

*** Even though this says “may” for me personally it has definitely increased my energy!

 

When Applied to the Skin, Maca May Help Protect It From the Sun

Scoop of Maca Powder

Ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun may burn and damage unprotected, exposed skin.

Over time, UV radiation can cause wrinkles and increase your risk of skin cancer (21).

There is some evidence that applying maca extract, a concentrated form of the plant, to your skin may help protect it from UV radiation (1, 22).

One study found that maca extract applied to the skin of five rats over a three-week period prevented skin damage from UV exposure (23).

The protective effect was attributed to the polyphenol antioxidants and glucosinolates found in maca (24).

Keep in mind that maca extract cannot replace a conventional sunscreen. Also, it only protects the skin when applied to the skin, not when eaten.

It May Improve Learning and Memory

Maca may improve brain function (25).

In fact, it has traditionally been used by natives in Peru to improve children’s performance in school (1, 26).

In animal studies, maca has improved learning and memory in rodents that have memory impairment (27, 28, 29, 30).

In this regard, black maca appears to be more effective than other varieties (29).

 

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