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Maca or Lepidium meyenii or Lepidium peruvianum It is a tuber that belongs to the cruciferous family. This tuber known as Andean maca due to its place of origin, Los Andes, has been used as a natural remedy for generations. Although its use has occurred mainly in countries such as Peru or Bolivia, its properties have ended up making it another of the star natural products at an international level. This plant that is capable of growing to more than 4,000 meters in height will surprise you with its many properties and uses. In addition, there are currently varieties depending on the coloration of the root: red maca, black maca and even Peruvian or golden maca, which is the original and typical of this country.
Join us in this Green Ecologist article and discover everything you need to know to properly use this particular plant. Keep reading and discover the properties of maca, what it is for, its benefits and how to take it.
We will start by indicating the composition or active ingredients of maca, since it is thanks to them that it has great properties that provide us with many benefits.
- Amino acids.
- Vitamins: B1, B2, B3, B6 and C.
- Mineral salts: iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and potassium.
- Unsaturated fatty acids.
Thanks to this composition, the main properties of maca are:
- Nervous tonic.
What is maca for - benefits and uses
If you were wondering what is maca forAfter knowing its active principles and properties well, now we detail some of the main benefits of maca and its uses.
- One of its main benefits is that it works as energetic restorative thanks to the amount of vitamins mentioned above. You can use it to combat lack of energy, for example, such as that which can happen with diseases such as anima and even to improve physical and mental resistance, hence it is widely used by athletes. For this great effect, maca is usually compared to ginseng, very common in Asia and which is another plant with an adaptogenic effect widely used to combat cases of stress or fatigue.
- Maca is a very effective natural nerve tonic. Without being a strong relaxant or sedative in itself, it facilitates relaxation and helps reduce stress levels, so regulates the nerves.
- It is used as an invigorating or sexual stimulantSince it has been shown that maca is capable of releasing substances that directly affect the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland, stimulating the natural production of sex hormones (estrogens and testosterone). In fact, it improves sperm production, is good against impotence and also improves fertility male and female.
- It is also used for improve the ability to concentrate and retentive.
- In the same way, maca is also a medicinal plant that is used to alleviate different symptoms, such as hot flashes associated with menopause and premenstrual and menstrual pain, thanks to its emmenagogue and tonic effects.
- Maca is also used to prevent osteoporosis and the appearance of tumors, thanks to its high levels of calcium and its remineralizing and antioxidant effects.
- It is used to treat bacterial infections or prevent superinfections in disease processes.
- It is also taken to strengthen the body before a viral disease and it facilitates the acceleration of the virus cycle, helping to overcome this problem.
How to take maca - tips and dosage
You can find maca in any herbalist or herbalist or even in markets or supermarkets. Generally, it comes in maca flour or powder, which is nothing more than the ground and dehydrated tuber. It can also be found in a high concentration in capsule format. This is the best how to take maca and its doses:
- If you have chosen to take maca powder, keep in mind that they are usually taken between 1 and 5 g per day. Using maca powder is very simple, you just have to cook or soak it. You can use both water and milk, whatever you like the most, and you can even mix it with other drinks or use it to dress sauces or in soups.
- In case you prefer to take maca capsules the dose is between 8 and 15 capsules a day on average, but you must follow the instructions of the doctor or the container. In this case it is usually used as a complement or for some nutritional treatments.
- In any case, it is recommended not to exceed 10 g of pure maca per day.
In case of taking maca in capsules, make sure what the other ingredients are. Therefore, we recommend that you always use 100% natural maca powder and not products that combine many ingredients.
Does maca make you fat or lose weight?
Perhaps after reading all this and by comments you have heard or read, you wonder: Does maca make you fat or lose weight? The answer is depends on how it is used.
Keep in mind that it is a food like any other, so maca is not taken to lose weight or gain weight, it is simply used as a contribution to help our metabolism. By combining its properties with those of other foods, with adequate exercise for our objective and a healthy diet in general, it is possible to maintain an optimal weight, lose a few kilos or gain muscle mass by taking maca.
To finish, we clarify what are the contraindications of maca:
- It is very important that you always consult your GP if you have finally decided to use maca, as it can alter the results of some tests and some treatments. Therefore, if you already take any medication to enhance the properties that have been mentioned before, you should consult your doctor so as not to overdo it. The same happens if they are just opposite treatments.
- In the case of pregnant women and nursing mothers, the consumption of maca is not advisable.
- It is not recommended to give maca to children under 5 years of age.
Also, maca does not present toxicity, so if it is taken properly it does not present side effects. Thus, although clear side effects are not attributed to it, it is better not to abuse due to possible imbalances due to taking too much.
In this video below we talk more about Peruvian maca and we explain an easy and delicious recipe with maca. Do not miss it! In addition, in these other Green Ecologist articles you can discover more about the Types of aromatic and medicinal plants and about 60 medicinal plants of Peru and what they are for.
If you want to read more articles similar to Maca: properties, what it is for, benefits and how to take it, we recommend that you enter our category of natural remedies.
- Cebrián, J., (2012), Dictionary of medicinal plants, Barcelona, Spain, Integral RBA Libros.