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Learn About Maca in 5 Minutes

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What is maca?

Lepidium meyenii, also known as Peruvian ginseng or maca, is a rare root vegetable that is native to only one small region in the Andes mountains. Long used in traditional medicine by native Peruvians, this root is considered to be potentially useful for sexual health, mental health, immunity, cognition, and a variety of other purposes. Recent scientific studies have begun confirming the potential beneficial properties of maca root. The maca powder we use is organic and sustainably sourced.

Is organic maca powder water-soluble or fat-soluble?

Maca powder is highly soluble in water, so it absorbs into your body’s tissues rapidly and with high bioavailability.

Where can maca be found naturally? Common sources of maca:

The root of the Lepidium meyenii plant is the only natural source of the beneficial compounds in maca.

What is the recommended daily value for maca?

There is no nutrient reference value (NRV) for maca since this substance has not been recognised as an essential nutrient. Doses up to 5g per day are commonly used in clinical studies.

Can you absorb enough maca from food?

Maca root is not naturally present in any foods or drinks. Therefore, it’s best to consume maca as a supplement in powdered form.

Why is maca necessary for your body?

Maca root powder is a complex substance that contains many different active compounds, some of which appear to exert antioxidant properties. Primarily, the medley of compounds in maca appear to dramatically improve both sexual performance and fertility, and this cocktail of natural substances also appears to improve overall mood, memory, and energy levels.

Functions of maca

  • Potential sexual health benefits: Research indicates that maca may improve libido in both men and women, and this natural substance may also improve male fertility.
  • Potential menopause benefits: Studies show that maca may reduce the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, mood swings, and sleep disturbances.
  • Potential immune benefits: Lab studies indicate that maca may improve overall immunity. Recent research suggests that maca may achieve these effects by increasing white blood cell count.
  • Potential energy benefits: Preliminary research indicates that maca may improve endurance, strength, energy, and other key indicators of athletic performance.
  • Potential mood benefits: Perhaps due to its high flavonoid content, maca appears to improve the symptoms of anxiety and depression—especially in post-menopausal women.
  • Potential cognitive benefits: Peruvian natives commonly use maca to improve cognitive function, and these potential benefits are backed up by contemporary laboratory research.

When should you take maca?

If you are experiencing issues with fertility or sexual health, maca root powder may be one of the most useful natural tools at your disposal. According to available research, maca could be especially useful for women who are going through menopause. Since this simple root extract may also help with immunity and neurological health, maca could be useful regardless of your current health status.

How long do you need to take organic maca powder to start experiencing its benefits?

Since maca root powder is highly soluble in water, this substance will rapidly absorb into your body’s tissues. You may need to take maca root powder regularly over the course of several days, however, to note this substance’s complete unique benefits.

How long does it take for your body to digest/absorb maca?

Like most water-soluble substances, maca root powder usually fully absorbs into your body’s tissues within around 24 hours.

How long does maca stay in your body after you take it?

Some of the compounds in maca may accumulate in your tissues, but the majority of the active components in this root powder pass through your system within 2-3 days.

Is maca an antioxidant?

Research indicates that some of the compounds present in maca powder may exert antioxidant properties.

Can you overdose on maca? What are the effects?

Maca does not appear to be toxic, and there are no known cases of fatal maca overdose. If you take too much of this substance, however, you may feel slightly jittery.

Does maca dissolve, flush out, or build up in the body?

Most of the compounds in maca flush out of your body rapidly, but some of this root powder’s active ingredients may accumulate in fatty tissues like your liver.

Can you take maca during a diet?

There is no indication that maca powder will either make you gain or lose weight. This natural root powder is vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free, so it is safe to take maca even if you have specific dietary restrictions.

Are there synthetic forms of maca?

Though maca is only found naturally in Peru, Chinese companies have recently started growing this root in the Yunnan region. Chinese maca is inferior in quality. Additionally, there are reports that companies in China may be introducing synthetic forms of maca into the consumer market.

Absorption rate of synthetic maca

Since the absorption rate of natural maca is already very high, there’s no reason to believe that synthetic maca could provide increased bioavailability.

Why might natural forms of maca be better?

All indications suggest that both natural Chinese maca and synthetic forms of maca made by Chinese companies are dramatically inferior to genuine, Peruvian maca.

How to take maca

While it’s possible to consume maca root raw, this root is usually dried, powdered, and consumed orally in capsules or as an additive to food.

Maca trends in medicine

In 2020, a new scientific review investigating the potential benefits of maca determined that this substance shows promise for the regulation of sexual dysfunction and that it may exert neuroprotective and antioxidant effects. Also in 2020, a Chinese lab study showed that maca may prevent organ atrophy caused by an underactive immune system by bolstering the body’s concentration of white blood cells.

Sources

1. Maca (L. Meyenii) for Improving Sexual Function: A Systematic Review

2. The Use of Maca (Lepidium Meyenii) to Improve Semen Quality: A Systematic Review

3. Maca (Lepidium Meyenii) for Treatment of Menopausal Symptoms: A Systematic Review

4. Improvement of mice immune function with compounds of powdered Maca(Lepidium meyenii) and ginsenosides

5. A Pilot Investigation Into the Effect of Maca Supplementation on Physical Activity and Sexual Desire in Sportsmen

6. Maca Reduces Blood Pressure and Depression, in a Pilot Study in Postmenopausal Women

7. Preservation of Cognitive Function by Lepidium Meyenii (Maca) Is Associated With Improvement of Mitochondrial Activity and Upregulation of Autophagy-Related Proteins in Middle-Aged Mouse Cortex

8. Medicinal effects of Peruvian maca (Lepidium meyenii): a review

9. The effects of aqueous extract of Maca on energy metabolism and immunoregulation

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WeAreFeel Nutrition Team - All content provided on our blog is created exclusively for our readers by our research and nutrition team. We try to provide as much scientific backing as possible with references to support any claims made.
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