All About Maca - BodyMind Institute

All About Maca

By Nicole English | Nutrition

May 19

Average Reading Time: 4 minutes and 30 seconds

Superfood type: Root

Superfood Maca is native to the mountains of Peru and is cultivated as high as 4300 meters above sea level. It has been used for over 3500 years and legend claims that during the peak of the Incan empire, the warriors consumed maca before going into battle to ensure super strength and stamina.

On return from battle however, Incan soldiers were prohibited from using maca in order to protect the women from their insatiable sexual desires. Maca is renowned for providing strength, endurance and enhanced libido.

So what is it?

​A member of the cruciferous tribe such as kale and cabbage, maca is abundant in potassium, magnesium, calcium, sulfur, iron, sodium and phosphorous and also contains trace minerals which includes iodine, zinc, selenium, bismuth, copper, magnese, tin and silicon. It is also rich in vitamins B1, B2, C and E.

Maca has the ability to stabilize and balance the body’s glandular – hormonal system, nervous system, cardiovascular system and musculature. This makes it great for managing hormones, stress, thyroid and your mood in general.

According to David Wolfe, it is great if you suffer from:

1. Anaemia

2. Chronic fatigue

3. Depression

4. Infertility and sterility

5. Lack of libido

6. Malnutrition

7. Menopausal symptoms

8. Menstrual discomfort and disorders

9. Poor memory

10. Stomach cancer

11. Stress tension

12. Tuberculosis

How to use it and where to get it?

Seeing as maca is a super food it can be used in greater quantities than other medicinal herbs. It has also found to be safe to use long-term. You can purchase it online or at most health food stores in dried, raw, organic food. Look for the real deal and only buying from the root, not other parts of the plant.

Use a tablespoon in smoothies, juices, nut milks, tea or coffee, or add to your raw chocolate treats.

David Wolfe also claims that maca has a special relationship with cacao so use them together regularly to experience the culinary sensation.

Reference: Wolfe, D. (2009). Superfoods: The Food and Medicine of the Future.

Here’s a recipe to get you started:

Maca and Chocolate Smoothie with Strawberries (Serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of cashew milk (or ½ cup of soaked cashew nuts and 1 cup of water)
  • 1 T of chia seeds
  • 1 t of maca root powder
  • 2 T of raw cacao powder
  • 1 cup of fresh strawberries
  • 2 small frozen bananas (broken into chunks)
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 2 t of cacao nibs.

Method

  • Blend the cashew milk, chia seeds, maca root powder, cacao powder.
  • Cut open the vanilla pod and scrape the contents into the blender.
  • Add the strawberries and frozen banana and blend until smooth and creamy.
  • Pour into 2 glasses and sprinkle with cacao nibs.

By Nicole English, Guest Blogger for the BodyMind Institute

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