The Peruvian plant Maca is raised in the Andes. Shruti Beharry states that maca is a plant that some populations in Peru have used for thousands of years as food and medicine. In fact, Jillian Kubala of Healthline claims that maca has been grown by Andean people for more than 2,000 years. It is one of the few edible plants in the Peruvian Andes that can withstand severe weather conditions over 4,000 meters (13,123 feet). The use of maca as a natural treatment for ailments including infertility and poor sex drive has increased over the past few decades. According to Aaron Kandola of Medical News Today, it is a cruciferous vegetable, which means it is linked to broccoli, cabbage, and kale. Peruvian cuisine frequently uses maca, which lends meals an earthy flavor. You can make maca root powder and add it to dishes or smoothies.
According to Aaron Kandola, the most well-known advantage of maca root is its capacity to raise libido. This assertion is supported by some scientific data. For instance, a 2002 study indicated that males who took 1.5 or 3 grams (g) of maca per day had higher libido levels than those who took a placebo. According to a 2015 study, maca root may aid postmenopausal women who are on antidepressants with their sexual dysfunction. Additionally, taking maca supplements was thought to enhance some aspects of fertility in those with sperm. For example, studies have shown that taking maca may help improve sperm concentration or the number of sperm per milliliter of semen. Sperm concentration is intimately linked to male fertility. Although the results are encouraging, Jillian Kubala stated that there hasn't been much research done yet. Research on the impact of maca supplements on semen quality and other facets of male fertility is required.
Women normally experience menopause. Various symptoms, some of which people may find unpleasant, can be brought on by the normal fall in estrogen that takes place throughout this time. Hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mood swings, sleep issues, and irritability are a few of them. Limited research suggests that maca may help lessen some menopausal symptoms. However, according to Jillian Kubala, there isn't enough data to say whether maca is secure or useful for treating menopause symptoms in all people. It's probable that maca root can lower blood pressure as well. The same 2015 study also discovered that Chinese postmenopausal women's blood pressure decreased when they consumed 3.3g of maca daily for 12 weeks. An earlier study using an animal model discovered that maca may aid in UV ray protection for the skin. In 2011, a different animal study discovered that maca leaf extracts may help reduce the development of sunburn cells. Additionally, glutathione and superoxide dismutase are two natural antioxidants that are supported by maca root use. Antioxidants aid in the battle against free radicals, which can harm the body's cells. Antioxidants, according to some, may help prevent certain diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.
According to studies, using maca is generally risk-free and has no unfavorable side effects. Additionally, traditional maca consumption practices like boiling it before eating or drinking it have not been associated with any negative consequences. Because it is currently unknown if maca is safe to take while pregnant or nursing, persons who are in these situations should consult their medical team before taking maca. Although there hasn't been much research on the possible health benefits of maca, there is some indication that it may improve certain elements of sexual and reproductive health, as well as mood and menopause symptoms in some individuals. Before maca is suggested for the treatment of any ailment or symptom, however, more research is required. A healthcare expert should be consulted before taking maca. They can assist you in deciding whether maca is the best option for your medical requirements.
ZDS DMO II Marie-Claire Gaas, RND
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