Is Maca Truly Beneficial? The Truth Behind The Superfood
Natural herb treatment is an excellent way to make your body healthy. That said, have you decided which supplement to try? One of the popular herbs today is perhaps the maca root powder. Below are some of the purportedly benefits claimed by the general herbalist community and what we discovered about the supplement.
Main Benefits by Manufacturers
- Helps balance hormone level
- Improves and increases energy and stamina
- Supports the reproductive health for male and female
- Moreover, when you visit herbal communities or group pages, you will find discussions that talk about:
- Aphrodisiac effect of the plant for both sexes
- Improved mental health; helps provide relief for mild depression
- Helps calm and adapt the body against stressors
That said, are all those claims true or are they just myths? Below are some studies that we have unearthed and we hope would help our readers.
Maca as an Aphrodisiac.
A study that was published in PubMed discussed the effects of maca on the libido and serum testosterone of adult males. In the 12-week study, a group of men aged 21-56 were given 1500mg and 3000mg and placebo respectively. After the 12-week study, the conclusion was that men who were given maca reported an increase in their libido as opposed to those who were in the placebo group. All of the test subjects reported no change in their testosterone level.
Do take note that the dosage is within the recommended dosage. We found out that there were some other studies that have provided a lower than normal and higher than the recommended dosage to affect the study results.
Affects Reproductive Health for both sexes.
In another study, the researchers wanted to know the effects of the plant to the reproductive health of both sexes. The first study looked at the effects of the plant on the reproductive hormone level of men. They checked on the following:
- Luteinizing hormone
- 17-beta estradiol
- Follicle-stimulating hormone
- 17-alpha hydroxyprogesterone
The 12-week study showed no effects on the group’s hormone level, whether for the maca or placebo groups.
There were few reliable studies concerning its benefits in treating depression, energy and relaxation. A few studies were also conducted where rats served as test subjects to determine semen quantity and quality, which might not be that relevant for humans.
Does the maca powder really work?
Studies have proven that the maca helps increase libido and affects reproductive hormone levels and have no effect on testosterone level. Some of the health benefits that you might get when you take the supplement. There are other claims but we still need further studies to determine the effects especially the claims on its effects as anti-depressant.
That said, as the maca is a natural herb, it might be an excellent alternative that one can try rather than the synthetic ones that might cause harm. Some forums discuss the benefits of each supplement that you can check out, though you should be careful as some of the users combined several supplements, which can be hard for beginners. It is difficult to rely on the supplements to affect mood, energy and other factors as there are many stressors that can affect one’s health.