Maca root is a member of the radish family. Known as the ‘Peruvian Ginseng,’ (Lepidium peruvianum) it can be found in the Andes mountainous regions of Peru and its health benefits have long been known. Today, Maca is usually commercially available in its powder form, and it is a popular ingredient in many food and food supplement products. It’s in the Brassicaceae plant family.
There are no known serious side effects associated with the use of the herb, but just like other supplements, it must not be ingested in large amounts. It is an ideal ingredient in salads, smoothies, cooked dishes, and juices. Adding it to very hot dishes, however, may make it lose its benefits.
- 1 Health Benefits and Uses of Maca Root
- 2 Benefits of Lepidium Meyenii (Maca root)
- 3 How much maca root should I take?
- 4 What does Maca root taste like?
- 5 Maca Root Side Effects
Health Benefits and Uses of Maca Root
As a Sexual Function Booster
The raw maca root as well as extract powder supplement is widely used to boost sexual functions in men and women alike. It enhances libido and improves endurance in bed. It is also known to help maintain hormonal balance and promote fertility. Many men use it as a safe remedy for erectile dysfunction (ED) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
As a Source of Vitamins
Maca contains generous amounts of B vitamins as well as vitamins C and E. It is also a rich source of iron, zinc, amino acids, phosphorous, and magnesium.
For the Enhancement of Health and Mood in Women
Maca root is heaven-sent for women undergoing menopause and those suffering from menstrual issues because it helps alleviate body pains, cramps, hot flashes, mood swings, anxiety, and depression. It’s also a good substitute for synthetic hormones in the hormone replacement therapy (HRT) due to its hormone-balancing effects.
As a Source of Energy
Energy levels are expected in increase within days of using the supplement. Likewise, there will be noticeable improvements in stamina. This is why a lot of elite athletes take Maca supplements to achieve optimum athletic performance. People who easily get tired can try the supplement to find out if it will benefit them. Just a small dose could be enough to provide them with the energy boost they need.
To Help Improve Overall Health and Wellness
Maca provides help in this area in a number of ways. It provides the body’s iron requirements and helps in the restoration of red blood cells that are needed to ward off anemia and cardiovascular diseases. Maca also keeps the teeth and bones healthy and speeds up the healing of wounds. When combined with a good workout, a significant increase in muscle mass will be evident.
However, patients with hormone-related diseases such as ovarian and testicular disease are advised against the ingestion of the supplement. Those with high blood pressure or liver disorders, on the other hand, must first consult with a medical professional before taking Maca root supplements.
To Help Maintain Mood Balance
The supplement can help people deal with stress, anxiety, depression, and mood swings. Some people have even reported improvements in focus and mental energy which is why it’s gaining interest in the nootropic crowd. Much of the evidence regarding this area is anecdotal, though.
To Aid in the Treatment of Skin Disorders
Maca can help clear blemishes, acne and other skin diseases. Likewise, it can be used to lessen skin sensitivity to hot or cold weather as it enables the skin to endure extreme temperatures.
At present, Lepidium Meyenii is gaining in popularity, and more and more people are getting convinced of its health and medicinal benefits. It is also known as the ‘Andean Viagra’ due to its great effects on male sexuality, endurance and strength.
The Peruvian Ginseng herbal supplement is primarily used as food because of the nutritional value and the health benefits it brings such as more energy and improved fertility.
Benefits of Lepidium Meyenii (Maca root)
As a Dietary Supplement
The nutritional content of the herb from Peru is considered as excellent because it has complex carbohydrates, amino acids, vitamins B1, 2, and 12, vitamins C and E, and various types of minerals that are needed to meet the daily nutritional requirements.
As an Energizer
Part of the growing popularity of the Maca root herb worldwide can be attributed to its energizing properties that help the body’s production of stable energy that can be used for a long time. That is why many elite athletes today use the supplement to boost their endurance and stamina, eventually resulting to a better athletic performance.
As an Aid to Sexual Health
Lepidium Meyenii can help normalize the testosterone levels in the body and remedy sexual dysfunction. Testosterone is the primary sex hormone in men as well as in women. An ideal and normal testosterone level results to an enhanced and more pleasurable sexual life because the body is properly stimulated for sex.
Note: If you are looking for something to boost testosterone check out pine pollen.
As a Fertility Enhancer
The Maca root supplement has been used for many centuries as a powerful fertilizer not only for people, but for livestock as well. The aphrodisiac and fertility enhancement qualities of the herb have been widely known and used by natives in Peru.
Specific Benefits and Uses for Men and Women
For more Maca root benefits related to women read this article
Cure for Impotence
The Peruvian Ginseng supplement acts as an effective enhancer for male virility because it brings back the levels of testosterone, the male sex hormone, to normal levels. In addition, it is an all-natural aphrodisiac that can boost sexuality in men with no risks of harmful side effects, unlike synthetic drugs like blue pill and other similar products.
As a Relief for Menopausal Symptoms
The Maca root supplement can provide relief for many types of menopausal symptoms because it has the natural ability to bring balance to the female’s hormonal levels. This enables the body to manage and curb estrogen imbalance, which is the primary cause of most menopausal symptoms.
All these benefits are attributed to the fact that the herb stimulates the endocrine system; and this stimulation process results to hormonal balance. These are all proven in many studies and researches done by responsible medical professionals.
Uses Based on Practical Applications and Tradition
Today, there is an increasing demand for Lepidium Meyenii mainly because of its proven medicinal benefits. There are, however, other benefits that many people believe to be true, even in the absence of supporting scientific evidence. You can read these in reviews of maca root powder supplements. These include:
- Enhanced mental clarity
- Help for menstrual irregularities
- Improved memory
- Relief for chronic fatigue syndrome
- Immunostimulant effect for TB, anemia, and other diseases
- Improved overall body functions
How much maca root should I take?
I first started taking 650mg 4:1 extract powder capsules from Vitamin Shoppe and found I was taking so many to get a useful dose that it’d be worth it to buy the powder in bulk. I bought a bag of black maca powder from Lost Empire Herbs and now I take a heaping tablespoon in a protein shake daily. I estimate it at least a 3g dosage. I keep the extract powder in the refrigerator to keep it cool and dry. I have noticed that when I resume dosing the maca powder after cycling off for five days (I take no herbs for the first five days of every month) I notice a significant increase in sexual desire. So does my wife.
What does Maca root taste like?
I haven’t eaten the raw root, only the powder. The taste is certainly not pleasant. I’ve tried it just mixed with water and it was difficult to get down, which is why I mix it with my protein shake. The taste can best be described as sour. Oddly, I’ve found that the turmeric powder I also add to the protein shake does a lot to knock out the unpleasant flavor of the maca powder.
Maca Root Side Effects
Maca root is considered safe. Scientific studies have shown that short and long term use of maca root induces no toxicity. The most commonly reported side effects are irritability and sleep problems (take it in the morning). Pregnant or lactating women should refrain from taking the herbal supplement. If you have a health condition that might be made worse by exposure to estrogen, likewise avoid taking this supplement.