Maca Herbal Information
TRADITIONAL HERBAL USES AND MEDICINAL PROPERTIES
Maca is a root vegetable, when it is powdered and taken as a nutritional supplement it has some wonderful health giving properties. Maca is known to nourish the Endocrine system, so it can help with balancing hormones. It is indicated as useful for women in helping deal with symptoms of PMT and menopause. It is used as a natural alternative to HRT, and can regulate and normalize the menstrual cycle. Maca is also a stimulant to fertility in men and women, and it enhances libido.
Maca increases energy, stamina and endurance and as an adaptogen it is good for busting stress. An adaptogen can calm and regulate the nervous system and bring balance to the cycle of stress. It is also good for relieving depression and chronic fatigue.
There is a stunning profile of minerals, vitamins, enzymes and essential amino acids including 4 particular alkaloids that have a nourishing action to the Endocrine system. It supports ovaries, testes, adrenals, pancreas, thymus, thyroid, pituitary and pineal glands.
Red Maca is from the red and purple Maca root vegetables. Red Maca has a subtler taste than Maca, the coloured veg is sorted from the crop and Red Maca is known to have some unique qualities. The Red Maca is thought to be the most nutritionally rich of all the Maca types.
FOLKLORE AND HISTORY
According to folklore, ancient Incan warriors took Maca before going off to battle to make them physically strong. However, they were later prohibited from taking it, in order to protect conquered women from their heightened libidos. Maca is a popular integral part of the Peruvian way of life, it is a root vegetable that looks a bit like a turnip and it is put into soups, cakes, breads and drinks in Peru. It is grown high in the Andes at 14,000 ft in very rich soils, so its mineral content is especially high.
Amino acids, Alanine, Arginine, Asparagine, Aspartic acid, Glycine, Hydroxyproline, isoleucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, praline, serine, threonine, tyrosine, valine, calcium, copper, iron, potassium, zinc.
TYPICAL PREPARATIONS AND DOSAGE
1 -2 teaspoons per day is recommended. Can be mixed into smoothies, milk, fruit juice, or sprinkled on porridge, cereals, or soups.
Glucosinolates can cause goiter (swollen thyroid gland with decreased activity) if taken in excess combined with a low-iodine diet. Though this is documented to occur with other glucosinolate-rich foods, it is not known if maca causes goiter. No other known side effects or contraindications have been documented.