14 Health Benefits of Maca & 6 Recipes
Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is a root grown high in the Andes Mountains. Although well known for its libido effects, its virtues seem almost limitless. Maca’s adaptogenic qualities balances hormones. It also helps to nourish the adrenals, which helps the body deal with stress that can often trigger cluster headaches and migraines.
Maca is grown for its root, which looks similar to a radish. The color of the root can range from off white, yellow to purple. Maca, is a nutritionally dense superfood that contains high amounts of enzymes, minerals, vitamins and also contains all of the essential amino acids. One of the greatest benefits of maca may be its overall nutritive effect. Its high mineral content, protein, B vitamins, fatty acids and plant sterols give it the ability to rebuild and nourish the body
14 Benefits of Maca
- Increased energy and endurance
- Increased stamina
- Alleviated chronic exhaustion (fatigue) syndrome
- Improved sexual function and libido in both men and women
- Enhanced fertility in people and animals
- Reduced hormonal dysfunction during menopause & andropause
- Balanced hormonal irregularities
- Alleviated depression
- Reduced anxiety and stress
- Improved circulation leading to reduced anemia and faster wound healing
- Enhanced memory, learning, and mental ability
- Improved and more youthful skin appearance
- Healthy teeth and bones
- An adaptogen which helps the body “adapt” to stress and illness
Maca is available online and in health food stores in powdered form as well as liquid extracts, capsules and tablets.
Adding maca to your diet
Maca powder can be substituted for regular flour in recipes for cakes, puddings, cookies or other baked goods. Don’t use more than 40 percent maca for the flour or it won’t stick together well. The best formula is ¼ of the flour as maca powder, with the remaining ¾ as your regular flour.
Maca powder can also be added to homemade ice cream, smoothies or yogurts.
Maca can be sprinkled on cereals, added to hot oatmeal, or muesli.
Stir a half-to one full teaspoon, in a bowl of homemade vegetable soup before serving.
Season your organic popcorn with salt, coconut oil and maca.
Add a teaspoon to your herbal tea or herbal coffee.
Chocolate Maca Bites-Makes about 18-20 bites
1/2 C. almonds
½ C. almond, cashew or tahini butter
½ C. Medjool dates, pitted and quartered
¼ C. maca powder
2 T. cacao or cocoa powder
2 t. vanilla extract
½ c. unsweetened, shredded coconut
2-3 T. maple syrup
Place the almonds in a food processor and process until finely ground.
Add the remaining ingredients and process until the mixture starts holding together. If it doesn’t do so after a minute or two of processing add just a little water, not more than a tablespoon at a time.
Roll into 1-inch balls. Put a small amount of extra coconut on a plate. Roll the balls in the coconut to coat. Place in a container or plate refrigerate for about an hour, then enjoy!