Maca root is a South American vegetable in the same family as the common radish. The curative properties of the plant have been valued for centuries, and today its benefits are being noticed in North America and Western Europe. Maca root comes in a range of colors including gold, blue, and green, and is usually found on health store shelves as a powder.
Vital Vitamins and Minerals
Maca root is high in vitamin B1 and provides valuable B6 and B2 as well. It is also a welcome source of vitamins C and E. Furthermore, one ounce of maca contains four grams of protein and can top up the body’s stores of zinc, iron, and magnesium. It can help relieve fatigue and reenergize the body.
Could Increase Fertility
In the Andes region, maca root is reputed to increase fertility. This is one major reason behind the plant’s lasting popularity. Some studies confirm the belief that maca can improve both male and female fertility by altering hormone balances. However, it is important to note that in addition to speaking to a doctor first, women should stop taking the supplement after they become pregnant.
Eases Menopause Symptoms
Only a woman can appreciate the emotional and physical challenges that menopause brings. Some menopausal women find that adding maca root to the diet reduces chronic fatigue, anxiety, and other common menopause symptoms. This could be welcome news for people concerned about their mental health and introducing pharmaceutical medications, but anyone experiencing problems during menopause should always speak to a doctor before self-medicating, even with a natural product.
The energizing benefits of maca root do not only affect women going through menopause. Frequent users report a rise in energy levels within a few days after beginning to incorporate the supplement. This quality makes maca root a logical choice for athletes. Most natural health practitioners recommend starting with just a teaspoon dose and gradually increasing the dosage if necessary.
Improves Mental Acuity
In addition to improving physical energy, some people who use maca root find it also enhances their cognitive ability, including reasoning and memory. Students could benefit from taking a teaspoon of maca each day around exam season if their doctor agrees it is safe. Some preliminary evidence suggests maca could also delay the onset of mental degeneration diseases, although there is not yet scientific research to support this.
General Health Benefits
The nutrient profile of maca root makes it a good choice for a general health boost. Iron lowers the risk of anemia, while vitamin C can increase protection against colds and the flu. Some claims suggest maca lowers the risk of prostate disease, though scientific proof is lacking. Though moderate doses of maca root in healthy individuals will not cause much in the way of side effects, people with high blood pressure or liver issues should speak to a doctor before trying this supplement.
May Relieve Symptoms of Depression
The successful employment of maca root to treat menopause stress is just one of many examples where it could supplement antidepressant drugs. The powdered root causes this effect by raising energy levels and initiating hormonal changes that produce a more positive mental state. Regular doses of maca might help relieve symptoms of clinical depression. Nevertheless, nobody who is currently taking antidepressants should stop taking them and replace them with maca without talking to a doctor.
Improves Bone Health
The presence of calcium is one of the main reasons maca root can aid in bone health. The mineral helps strengthen bones by increasing bone density. Some people believe daily use of maca root can help prevent the onset of osteoporosis. While there is no scientific research supporting such statements, there is considerable anecdotal evidence. Except for people undergoing treatment for serious health issues, most are safe to begin taking small daily doses of maca root powder.
Reduces the Effects of Environmental Contaminants
Poor quality foods and exposure to city pollutants such as car fumes are just a few of the ways the environment affects the body. Glucosinates and other antioxidants found in a dose of maca root powder strengthen resistance to free radical damage. While avoiding these environmental contaminants would be the best option, most people cannot take such dramatic steps and as such, maca could help alleviate their effects in conjunction with a nutritious diet.
The gains from applying maca to the skin do not receive as much attention as the benefits of ingestion, but many people use the powder in this way. Some of the plant’s properties protect against sun damage, making skin care a viable benefit. Using the powder as a mask seems to reduce acne and other skin damage in some individuals. Others apply it to protect the skin against extreme temperatures, hot or cold.