Maca is also referred to as “the aphrodisiac of the Andes”. Legend has it that Incan warriors took maca before entering into battle to make them strong…but were prohibited from using it once a city was conquered to protect the women from excessive sexual desires of the triumphant warriors (Wolfe, 2009). Today, Maca is known around the world as a superfood, which means that it has multiple unique properties that nourish us and enhance our health. So Maca not only enhances your battle strength and libido; it is also a powerful nutritive substance that counters adverse physical, chemical, and biological sources of stress and allows an organism to “adapt” and return to balance. Maca is known to stabilize almost every system in the body, including the glandular-hormonal system, the nervous system, and the endocrine system. Here is a list of the conditions Maca is known to improve (this is by no means complete):
Dried maca powder is the easiest to obtain and use, as it can usually be found at your local health food store or can be easily ordered online from a multitude of sources. The recommended dosage to notice health benefits is about 10 grams per day (1 tablespoon) and about 20 grams per day is the recommended maximum. However, be careful with the dosage of Maca if you are trying it for the first time, as we are all biologically unique. I have personally found that it is quite powerful at the low dose!
Note that if you buy raw maca root or powder, you should cook it (boil the powder with water, or roast the whole root) because this will release the medicinal qualities and prevent any potential adverse effects to the thyroid gland that cruciferous vegetables may trigger with the more sensitive population.
Did you know the energy of spring is literally the force of life? Spring is the time when the Earth awakens from the long, dormant winter. The ground breaks from the vigorous and thunderous force of seeds and dormant plant life springing into action to transform and grow into an evolved expression. Spring is the pioneer, the awakening, and spontaneity in action.
The feeling of spring is palpable, at least here in New England. Temperatures rise, the air feels and smells rich, leaf buds pop out, bulbs emerge, and we see more green around us. The vibration of life in action surrounds us, and we naturally awaken and want to take advantage of longer, lighter days.
So how can we align ourselves with this transformative, inspirational energy, and feel a greater sense of vitality? How can we have more passion, fire, vigor, and exuberance in of our lives? Let me tell you about Maca Root….
Maca is a radish-like cruciferous vegetable native to the harsh, dry climates of the high elevations in South America. This strong and hardy root has traditionally been used by Peruvians for 2,600 years as a medicine plant to enhance fertility in humans and animals, and as a traditional food used to provide the energy and nutrition required for maintaining strength and endurance at such high elevations with extreme temperature fluctuations.
Tracy Roth is an Integrative Nutrition Health and Fitness Coach (In Training)