Superfoods seem to be more plentiful today than they’ve ever been. One of the best, but lesser known, is an ancient root vegetable called maca, belonging to the same cruciferous family as kale and cauliflower. However, maca is most closely associated with mustard, turnip, cabbage, garden cress and watercress. Grown in the Peruvian mountains, maca’s history is long and distinguished, as it was used even earlier than the Incans for both food and traditional medicine. Its most notable use was to proliferate fertility in both men and women and increase sexual desire.

Today, maca is taking on new life with clinically proven and remarkable health benefits, both as a food and supplement. Studies show it to improve mood and memory, lower stress levels, treat osteoporosis, protect against UV radiation, help balance hormones and perform a dozen other functions.

Maca is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, 20 different amino acids, and antioxidants. Maca root helps balance our hormones and due to an over abundance of environmental estrogens, most people’s hormones are a bit out of whack. Maca stimulates and nourishes the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, which are the “master glands” of the body. These glands actually regulate the other glands, so when in balance they can bring balance to the adrenal, thyroid, pancreas, ovarian and testicular glands. Maca root has been shown to be beneficial for all sorts of hormonal problems including PMS, menopause, and hot flashes. It is also a fertility enhancer and is best known for improving libido and sexual function, especially in men.

Maca tends to have an earthy, slightly nutty taste with a hint of butterscotch that works especially well when added to oatmeal or cereal. The flavor can also vary based on the type of maca, with black maca being a bit more bitter and cream-colored roots having an even sweeter taste. Maca powder can be easily added to smoothies and drinks or mixed into recipes. Coupled with a nutritious diet and healthy lifestyle, adding one to two tablespoons of maca into your diet may help give your health an upgrade.

Please visit our website for more information on this and other great health topics. Remember this article is for information only. Do not make any changes in your diet or lifestyle without first consulting with your preventive health care provider. We always pray for your prosperity and health, 3 John 2, blessings, Donna.

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