Now a days it can be hard to keep up with all the "superfoods" out there.
It seems like there’s a new magic supplement on the market almost everyday, some you should stay far away from and others, like Maca, you should embrace wholeheartedly.
MACA ROOT SUPPLEMENTS
Maca (biological name: Lepidium Meyenii) is a root that grows in the highest altitudes of the Andes mountains of Peru. It is in the same plant family as watercress, broccoli, and radish. It’s been called "Peruvian ginseng" by some due to its natural stimulating qualities that are similar to the benefits found in commonly known ginseng-related herbs and despite being cultivated in that South American region for thousands of years, it has only been rediscovered recently as a supplement.
There are many myths about the health and nutritional benefits of the Peruvian Maca plant and about Maca root in particular. Known for their advanced knowledge of healing and the body’s connection with nature, the Incan civilization used the maca root in many of their natural remedies.
According to ancient Incan history, the Maca root was known to have special properties which were believed to enhance energy and stamina. It is also believed to increase the sexual desire and endurance. Some Maca root health benefits are backed up by scientific evidence, and some health benefits of Maca root still need to be proven by solid research results. But there are things that no one can deny – that this Maca herb contains many minerals and vitamins that can be used as supplements to anyone's daily diet.
So, if you are constantly tired and need to open your morning with energy boost; or you are a woman in menopausal stage and desperately need to relieve the symptoms; or if you feel that your sexual energies are low and you want to enhance your Libido - you might find that Maca root supplements are the perfect solution for you. Keep reading about all the amazing Maca health benefits mentioned above and many many others as well as some Maca side effects that you want to avoid by purchasing only the safest Maca prime products and by taking the right dosage of Maca, and decide for yourself if Maca is right for you!
Those who regularly use maca powder have said that it makes them feel more awake, energized, and driven, often relatively quickly after beginning to use it. A positive attribute of using maca for increased energy compared to using caffeine is that maca does not give most people “jitters” or a sense of shakiness like high levels of caffeine can.
Clinical trials have shown that maca has positive effects on energy, stamina, and mood. Maintaining positive energy levels is related to having lower levels of anxiety and depression, both of which maca has been shown to positively help achieve.
This superfood is an adaptogen meaning it normalizes the body and keeps things in homeostasis (at normal levels). Adaptogens allow the body to better respond to internal and external environmental factors such as anxiety and physical injuries.
Maca is also well known for its ability to regulate hormones, benefits that include regulating the hypothalamus and helping the pituitary gland to properly function, which is another key element in balancing focus and energy. An increase in focus, energy and mood enables people to concentrate better and therefore to improve memory and ability to complete tasks.
It does not contain hormones itself however, but encourages the body to produce or decrease its own hormones by nourishing the master glands of the body (hypothalamus and pituitary). Through its adaptogenic qualities maca is able to increase the production of a hormone that the body is low in.
Maca can have the opposite effect if the body is high in a hormone.Maca root acts as a natural antioxidant, and boosts levels of glutathione and SOD (superoxide dismutase).
These are two major disease fighters in the body. Results from recent studies demonstrate that maca root has the ability to help prevent the development of chronic human diseases that are characterized by high levels of “bad” cholesterol (LDL - low-density lipoprotein), high antioxidative states, and impaired glucose tolerance. And because maca root increases the glutathione levels in the body, it not only improves your immune system and disease resistance, but also helps balance proper levels of cholesterol in the body.
Plus, it significantly improves glucose tolerance by lowering levels of glucose in the bloodstream. This is especially important for those who need to worry about heart health and conditions like diabetes or metabolic syndrome.
Libido & Fertility:
Culturally, the ancient Peruvians ingested this powerful root to boost the potency of the male libido. Its natural properties help to create an aphrodisiac-like response in men who have suffered from impotence, low sex-drive, and fertility problems. The Maca root is known to improve the quality and quantity of sperm in men who have lower than normal sperm counts, which helps to increase the level of fertility.
One of the biggest effects reported by women taking proper dosages of Maca powder daily is a marked increase in sexual desire. Red Maca is the type of Maca that is highest in phytonutrients and, not surprisingly, is the Maca of choice to improve female libido and fertility.
Athletically speaking, the main ingredients and naturally occurring substances in Maca are becoming widely used by today’s amateur and professional athletes alike. The main action of this powerful superfood is to strengthen endurance and energy levels, which gives the athlete a natural advantage. Testosterone also seems to be increased as well.
Over time, other uses for maca have also shown promising benefits to health such as relief of fatigue and the reduction of menopausal symptoms in women. One of the most troublesome symptoms of menopause is hot flashes. The active ingredients in the Maca root appear to lessen the severity and frequency of hot flashes that occur due to hormonal changes in a woman’s body as they reach middle age. Maca root helps to bring back into balance the body’s natural hormone levels without the use of synthetic hormone replacements that are typical treatments for menopausal symptoms.
Menstrual problems that often plague women of childbearing age such as cramping, heavy or irregular periods, as well as PMS, have found that the maca root alleviates many of the uncomfortable symptoms.
For both men and women alike, skin problems such as acne have been drastically improved with the use of Maca.
Another essential benefit of the Maca root is its known ability to relieve mild depression. There is an increase in the body’s levels of serotonin in individuals using Maca. Maca has none of the side effects that are found in pharmaceutical antidepressants such as weight gain, fatigue, and dulled senses. In fact, the active ingredients in the Maca root boost energy and lift depression naturally.
The benefits of the ancient Peruvian Maca root continue through the present day as a leading superfood health enhancer. For those who have benefited from its health properties, Maca comes highly recommended as a time-tested source of health.
If being eaten as a food rather than capsules or powder, Maca really needs to be cooked first as it is very strong on the stomach lining otherwise and can cause severe digestive upset. Maca generally comes in capsule or powder form. The strength of the active ingredients in Maca varies, yet the typical dosage is 500mg twice daily. The powdered Maca preparation is usually taken as one tablespoon per day.
Maca Root Active Ingredients:
Peruvian Maca root has a unique nutrient profile, which provides optimal levels of nutritious elements that the body needs including vitamins, minerals and essential amino acids. It's composed of around 60% carbohydrates, 10.2% protein, 8.5% dietary fiber and 2.2% fats. Maca root is a great source of Amino acids, containing around 20 Amino acids, 7 of which are essential amino acids. Maca root is rich with minerals such as magnesium, iron, copper, sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, manganese. It contains Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin D3 and Vitamin B1, B2, B12. Minerals (mg per 100g): Magnesium → 100-130 mg, Calcium → 350-500 mg, Phosphorus → 300-350 mg, Potassium → 1500-2000 mg, Sodium → 20-40 mg.
Many consider Maca Root as a Superfood because of all those nutritional properties of the maca plant. Chemical analysis of the Maca root reveals an amazing profile of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, sterols, fatty acids and glucosinolates.
Nutritional Properties of Maca Root:
B1 is important for converting carbohydrates into body energy. It is also needed for the functioning of vital organs such as the heart and muscles. Vitamin B2 works together with other B vitamins. It is essential for production of red blood cells, and helps to release energy from large molecules called carbohydrates. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is an essential nutrient for people. Beings that don't synthesize ascorbic acid (like humans) need this in their diet.
Iron: Vital component of hemoglobin and certain respiratory enzymes. Low levels of Iron might lead to poor growth, anemia or problems with pregnancies.
Copper: Takes part in the formation of hemoglobin. Low levels of copper can decrease the amount of important enzymes for the organism.
Magnesium: Important for the proper synthesis of protein, and muscles activity. Lack of magnesium can cause changes in heart and muscles.
Calcium: Maca root has higher calcium levels than in milk; vital for the nerves and circulatory system and the formation of bones and heart.
Phosphorus: Phosphate compounds store the body's chemical energy.
Fructose: Found in some root vegetables, is very important for the production of semen and is absorbed into the bloodstream when the fructose source is digested.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT PRODUCT:
Black maca root is the rarest maca, and it's great for men's libido and fertility as well as an effective muscle and endurance builder. It can also enhance your mental focus. Black Maca root is harvested from the root of dark colored maca and is considered the strongest in energy and stamina-promoting properties, being both sweet and slightly bitter in taste.
Just like the red and yellow Maca varieties, Black Maca is also believed to offer great help in boosting fertility and enhancing sex drive. In a 2009 study at the a Peruvian University, Black Maca was seen to be the best of all varieties for increasing sperm production motility and volume as well as for increasing libido. In 2011, two different studies, one from China and one from Peru found that Black Maca helped laboratory mice improve their memory and concentration skills.
Black Maca is also believed to possess the abilities to strengthen the immune system against common infections such as flu and cold and researches have also shown that Black Maca helps enhance sleep qualities and reduce aches and pains.
Red maca root is the sweetest Maca, and it's great for women's health. Red Maca can help balance hormones, fertility, and help with bone and prostate health. It is the rarest of all varieties of Maca and is sometimes called pink or purple Maca, but is most generally referred to as “Red Maca.”
Red maca is becoming very popular as it contains the highest amount of amino acids which are the building blocks of protein in the body. Red Maca is recognized for its malty taste and it has been found to be very helpful in handling stress, and depression. Red Maca root almost looks like a beet crossed with purple cabbage, and it provides a large range and supply of antioxidants much as those two popular vegetables do.
Red maca has been shown, under phytonutrient analysis, to be higher in certain compounds that support the body in antioxidant and anti-tumoral activity. It has also been shown that all types of Maca contain somewhat higher levels of other phytonutrients including alkaloids, tannins, saponins and steroids.
In 2010 researchers from the Universidad Peruana, Lima published a study on the effects of Maca on bone structure in rats that had their ovaries removed. The conclusion was that both “Red and Black Maca have protective effects on bone architecture in OVX rats without showing estrogenic effects on uterine weight.”
Yellow (or cream) Maca root is the most common Maca type. Great for boosting energy, balancing hormones, and helping you concentrate.
They are the most widely grown and are favored in Peru for their enhanced sweetness and size. Yellow Maca is often referred to as a natural Viagra because of its instant effect on the body in creating a long lasting libido. Yellow Maca can be consumed in its vegetable form or the powder can be used as salad dressings, or consumed with fruit smoothie. Yellow Maca comes with a tangy taste.
This type of Maca is most prominent for its ability to enhance fertility and enhance the mood of both males and females who consume it regularly. Research has also discovered that Yellow Maca is very helpful in dealing with symptoms associated with menopause such as hot flashes and it is also helpful in balancing hormonal levels in the body.
Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Gelatinized Maca Powder
Viva Naturals Organic Maca Powder
Anthony's Organic Maca Root Powder
Kiva Organic Maca Powder
Organic Gelatinized Black Maca Root Powder
MACA ROOT SIDE EFFECTS AND DANGERS
Who Shouldn't Use Maca Root and What Maca Side Effects You Should Pay Special Attention to.
Although there aren't serious maca root side effects known till now and Maca root seems to be tolerable by most people, in some cases there should be some precautions in Maca root usage. Individuals with a known sensitivity or allergies to Maca should avoid taking any form of Maca Root. Most of available studies that have been performed on humans were on male subjects and no Maca side effects were found and it was considered safe. Maca hasn't been studied for side effects enough on women. Maca root isn't recommended in women who are breastfeeding or pregnant only because there aren't enough studies on this group of subjects, so it's recommended to avoid taking Maca if you're in any of these states.In clinical study, those who had taken a large quantity of Maca every day showed a slight rise in blood pressure. It is important to take this into account if you have problems with blood pressure and consult your doctor before taking any Maca treatment.
With all the buzz about the amazing maca root, it’s easy to see why so many are enjoying benefits starting from nutrition and ending with a large number of health conditions that maca might have positive effects on. And for even more interesting data about maca, you can read well known and well reputed medical magazine WebMD. The people of Peru and Bolivia have been using this amazing maca root for thousands of years in their daily diet to improve their quality of life in many areas. Now science is catching up with them and starting to reveal to the world all the wonders of maca to improve all of our lives. The only possible thing for us to do at this point, if we decide to include maca in our daily diet, is to use only the best maca root products, which we'll try to recommend for you. Maca is a superfood that can positively affect your life in a multitude of ways. From boosting energy and focus, to helping prevent chronic diseases related to high levels of cholesterol and significantly improving your immune system and glucose tolerance. Finding the right maca for your specific needs is important so be sure to take a good look at these “Top 5 Maca Products” and start putting this truly amazing Peruvian superfood to work for your health! We hope to see you out there living the healthiest lifestyle you can, and look forward to providing you with the information, products and supplements to help you take control of your personal health and future!