Maca Root (Lepidium meyenii) is a native to the high Andes of Peru and Bolivia. It’s also now cultivated in some parts of Brazil. It is grown for its fleshy taproot which is used as a root vegetable and a medicinal herb. Its Spanish and Quechua names include Maca-Maca, Maino, Ayak Chichira, and Ayak Willku
It is related and part of the same family of plants as radish and the turnip and is considered by the fashionable and those that follow current trends as a Superfood.
Maca has been harvested and used by humans in the Andean Mountains for centuries. Contrary to frequent claims that Maca’s cultivation was common in what is today Peru, it has been shown that until the late 1980s, Maca has only been cultivated in a limited area around Lake Junin, in Central Peru. Historically, Maca was often traded for lowland tropical food staples, such as corn, rice, manioc (tapioca roots), quinoa and papaya.
Traditional Uses & Constituents for Maca Root:-
Small-scale clinical trials performed in men have shown that Maca extracts can heighten libido and improve semen quality. A small double-blind, randomized, parallel group dose-finding pilot study has shown that Maca root may alleviate SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction. A 12-week randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study in 56 subjects found that Maca has no effect on sex hormone levels in men, including LH, FSH, prolactin, 17-OH progesterone, testosterone or estradiol. In addition, Maca has been shown to increase mating behavior in male mice and rats. A recent review states “Randomized clinical trials have shown that Maca has favourable effects on energy and mood, may decrease anxiety and improve sexual desire. Maca has also been shown to improve sperm production, sperm motility, and semen volume.
it contains significant amounts of natural iodine, a 10-gram serving of dried maca generally containing 52 µg of iodine. Though this is common in other foods with high levels of glucosinolate, it is uncertain if Maca consumption can cause or worsen a goiter. Maca has been shown to reduce enlarged prostate glands in rats.