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A spoonful of maca powder

History of Maca Root:

This butterscotch scented plant, Maca, is scientifically known as Lepidium Meyenii and is also sometimes known as Peruvian ginseng. It has its roots back to the Brassicaceae family of plants that, in the late 1980s, were found close to Lake Junin at the Meseta de Bombon plateau.

Appearance-wise it looks like a concoction of a potato and a white radish. It was acknowledged for its potent health benefits in 1953 when the Spanish sailed to Peru and shortly recognized the significance of Maca roots. Maca was so popular at that time that the Spanish even used it as a payment of tax to the kings of Spain. They used it as tax, fed it to their horses, used themselves to enhance libido and fertility, and even women used it to achieve healthy skin and heightened cognitive functioning. Another miracle of Maca was that when the first baby was born in Highland after 50 years, it was theorized that this conception was accomplished by using the famous Lepidium Meyenii, also known as Maca. 

Maca roots survived and bloomed at even 12000 feet (3.66km), but unfortunately, some political revolts and changes in diet patterns brought Maca close to extinction by the late 1970s. Yet, the native people lend their hands in protecting it from extinction by vigilant seed harvesting.

People living in the proximities of Lake Junin are credited for their dedication towards the preservation of this mind-blowing and healthy crop. Today, Maca root is planted across 10,000 acres annually. It is now eaten up to 3 times a day by Peruvians, from athletes to children and even the elderly.

Let’s dive deep into the mesmerizing and breath-taking health benefits of Maca root.

Nutritious Values:

You guessed it right! Paired up with a fantastic history, Maca is also a wholesome plant, loaded with nutrition; it is a low-calorie superfood with high nutritional qualities and is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. 

One ounce Maca root powder contains 91 calories with almost 4 grams (9 to 13%) of protein, about 20 grams (65 to 75%) of carbohydrates, and 2 grams (4 to 8%) of fiber mainly cellulose and lignin. It has 85% of RDI value for copper, 23% of iron, 16% for potassium, 15% for vitamin B6 and 10% of manganese (RDI stands for reference daily intake. It is the daily level of intake that is required to meet the needs of 97-98% individuals) 

It also contains glucosinolates, and the primary bioactive substance present in this plant is said to be Macaridine (an alkaloid).

Benefits for Men and Women:

Increased libido

With the increasing consumption of unhealthy foods and the development of harmful habits, many people are prone to health concerns like reduced sexual desire. Maca is commonly known as the “Libido Booster” because it is well-known to work on those who suffer the consequences of decreased sexual desire. Research has proved that Maca helps to augment sexual desire and increase libido in both men and women. Another study concludes that Maca shows its effects in promoting sexual desire after 6 to 12 weeks of using it.

Increased fertility in men

If you are not ready to bear the burden of being a father, then it’s not a problem at all. But do you want to get into the hands of those ugly health problems as obesity or hypertension only because of low sperm count? 

Obviously not! Sperm count is not only essential in conceiving, but it also plays a critical purpose in maintaining your health. Low sperm count or low sperm quality can lead to a number of disorders like hypertension and obesity. And if you are running away from both, then get your hands on Maca as it is a perfect deal for you. 

Every single type of Maca helps achieve this goal, but research showed that Maca with Black Hypocotyl has a greater chance of increasing fertility in men. Another study revealed that Maca helps improve the quality of semen in both healthy and infertile men. When nine healthy men were given Maca for four months, researchers detected increased sperm motility, volume, and sperm count.

Although Maca promises as a beneficial supplement for men but does it help women, too? Let’s have a look at the next benefit this root delivers.

Relieve menopausal symptoms

Menopause is the final stage of the menstrual cycle in which a woman hasn’t had her periods for over 9-12 months. We’re well aware of the undesirable symptoms women face like sleeplessness, irritation, hot flashes, and those terrible mood swings. Good news that you’ve got the perfect plant, i.e., Maca, to tackle all the maddening signs of menopause. Along with relieving menopausal symptoms, it also aids in maintaining bone health. Isn’t it great?

Improves mood

Are you tired of those terrible mood swings and anxiety?

If you’ve answered yes, then this miraculous root also helps in reducing depression and anxiety. The presence of plant compounds (flavonoids) is also considered as helpful for psychological benefits.  It has proved to improve diastolic blood pressure and relieves the symptoms of depression in postmenopausal women.

Benefits for Health and Skin:

Previously, we have discussed the gains that are mostly gender-specific. But, now we will list down those ravishing advantages of Maca that are for all!

Boosts energy:

Low levels of energy is one of the prevailing problems faced by millions of people around the globe.

Laying on the bed, turning sides and just struggling badly to get out the bed.

Yes, that’s what happens with most of the people each morning. But, it’s time when something has to be done to curb out the laziness and revive yourself with the Energy booster Maca!

Athletes and bodybuilders also use Maca as a supplement because it upsurges the energy levels and gives strength to their bodies. It helps gain weight in the form of muscles rather than fat and improves your performance in daily life activities.

If you’re working hard on getting those gains, then use Maca along with your regular workout routine. In a recent study, eight male cyclists were given Maca for 14 days. The result showed that it improved the time they took to complete a 40km bike ride.

Benefits for skin:

Maca root is highly trusted for enhancing skin texture and protecting the skin from the harmful rays of the Sun. This root is widely used as an active ingredient in hair and skin care products.

The presence of polyphenol antioxidant protects your skin from harmful UV rays, so you can shine throughout the day without worrying about damaging your skin to the core. Evidence shows that applying Maca may reduce the risk of ultraviolet radiation damage. 

Improve brain function:

During the early years of life, the most crucial thing is sharpened cognitive functioning and intelligence development. The Natives in Peru used Maca as Black Maca as it is considered more effective for better learning and memory.  They used it to give it as a supplement or in the diet of their children to make their brains sharp from a young age.

Red Maca reduces prostate size:

Along with a bucket full of benefits, one of the main advantages of this plant is that it decreases the prostate size in aging men. Studies show that Red Maca reduces prostate size in rodents. Maca is a plant of the brassica family, and it is highly suggested to use brassica vegetables to reduce the risk of prostate cancer. The high amount of glucosinolates in this plant may also reduce the risk of prostate cancer. 

How to Use Maca in Diet:

We won’t leave you hanging merely with the benefits. We are here to help you upsurge your experience with Maca by giving you some fantastic ideas to add it up into your diet!

Maca is a very easy ingredient that can be used in powdered form to complement your smoothiescookies, and energy bars.

Maca is in each and every product from Natural Noah. Because the benefits are very clear we put this Superfood very high on our list!

You can also take Maca supplements that you can order online or find in any pharmacy near you. Yellow Maca is used more often; however, Red and Black Maca may also be utilized due to their different biological properties and health benefits.

Side Effects and Safety:

A 3 grams dose of Maca is commonly considered safe to consume. However, there is no authentic information about its safety for pregnant and lactating women. Maca extracts may act like estrogen, so if you have any condition that worsens with estrogen exposure, we recommend avoiding it.

We hope that you enjoy your ride with Maca!

Links:

https://www.britannica.com/plant/Brassicaceae

https://www.verywellfit.com/what-are-glucosinolates-and-why-are-they-good-for-me-2505908

https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Macaridine

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12472620/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2928177/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3184420/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27621241/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24931003/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21781063/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18477205/

https://www.blissfulbasil.com/almond-butter-maca-madness-smoothie/

https://www.thisrawsomeveganlife.com/2013/12/almond-cacao-cookies-with-salted-maca.html

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27548190/

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