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Benefits Of Maca

Published 6/5/13

What Is Maca?

Maca, scientifically known as lepidium meyenii, is a kind of herbaceous biennial plant that is native to the high Andres in Peru, specifically near Lake Junin in Central Peru. Maca root is harvested as a type of root vegetable, medicinial herb, and as a traditional aphrodisiac. Maca is also referred to in Spanish as maca-maca and maino. 

Maca Nutrition

The nutritional value of maca root includes, but is not limited to, protein, dietary fiber, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin C, calcium, copper, iron, potassium, zinc and the amino acids lysine, aspartic acid, sarcosine, glycine, and arginine.

Benefits of Maca

The benefits of maca are traditional in belief as it has been passed down generationally for over 2,000 years. The Inca warriors consumed maca to help increase their strength and endurace. Overtime, people in the Peruvian region began to consume maca in order to boost energy lebvels, increase their sexual desire, and also to support fertility while boosting their immune system. For men, maca is believed to improve the quality of sperm. Maca root is still a key part of the Pervuvian peoples' diets and is also offered as a supplement around the world. 

How to Consume Maca

Maca root can be consumed whole, either dried or cooked, boiled and mashed into a fine liquid, or grounded up and consumed as a maca powder, maca tea, maca supplement, or maca extract. There is also a type of maca beer called KUKA Beer that has been produced by Andean breweing Company since 2010, although it is uncertain if the same benefits are available when maca is consumed as part of alcoholic beverage. 

Maca Side Effects

Overall, maca is very safe safe to consume. However, tt is important to know that maca can contain high levels of natual iodine, which consumed in large amounts over a long period of time can lead to thyroid problems. Maca that is darker in color (black, red, purple) contains more iodine than the lighter colored maca.  

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