The Benefits of Maca and Cacao

Maca

Here are a few reasons why I use raw maca root powder every day!

Lepidium meyenii (maca) is a Peruvian plant of the Brassicaceae family cultivated for more than 2000 years, which grows exclusively in the central Andes between 4000 and 4500 m altitude. Maca is used as a food supplement and also for its medicinal properties described traditionally.

Experimental scientific evidence showed that Maca has nutritional, energizer, and fertility-enhancer properties, and it acts on sexual dysfunctions, osteoporosis, benign prostatic hyperplasia, memory and learning, and protects skin against ultraviolet radiation.

Clinical trials showed efficacy of Maca on sexual dysfunctions as well as increasing sperm count and motility. Maca is a plant with great potential as an adaptogen and appears to be promising as a nutraceutical in the prevention of several diseases.

It contains over 20 amino acids, including 8 essential amino acids, vitamins B1, B2, C and E, calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, selenium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, and manganese.

Maca has been shown to be effective at increasing fertility and libido in both men and women, decreasing levels of anxiety, mood swings, stress, and depression, regulating estrogen levels in the body, and improving energy, stamina, and overall mood. Maca has also been shown to improve glucose tolerance (aka insulin sensitivity), which is especially important for diabetics and/or those with metabolic syndrome.

Maca is no joke. Many people who regularly use maca report increased energy, stamina, and endurance levels within the first few days of its use. This may be why many athletes use maca for optimal performance. Supplementing our regular workout regime with maca may preserve our muscle mass.

 These benefits help to explain why maca has appropriately earned its status as a superfood and adaptogen.

Cacao

Cacao is “The Amazonian Antioxidant King.” So what exactly happens when you regularly use raw cacao?

You take in 40 time the antioxidants of blueberries. With an ORAC score of 98 000 per 100 g (vs. 2 400 per 100 g of blueberries), raw cacao powder is impressive. ORAC scores measure the ability of antioxidants to absorb free radicals, which are unstable molecules that wreak havoc on our bodies.

You take in more calcium than if you were drinking cow’s milk. 160 mg of calcium per 100 g of cacao (vs. 125 mg per 100 g cow’s milk)!

You take in one of the highest plant-based sources of magnesium, which is one of the most deficient minerals in North America. VERY important for energy production, brain health, and healthy heart

You take in a great plant-based source of iron (molasses may be the best source), which is incredibly important for the health of our red blood cells and allows proper carrying of oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. Cacao contains 7.3 mg of iron per 100 g while beef and lamb contain only 2.5 mg per 100 g. The important thing here is that plant sources of iron are Non-Heme iron, meaning they should be combined with a source of vitamin C for better absorption (oranges, kiwi, dark leafy greens, bell peppers, broccoli, and berries, among others).

You get your blood pressure in check. Cacao is rich in flavonoids and its antioxidants stimulate nitric oxide production, which aid in lowering blood pressure and improve blood vessel elasticity.

The most important thing though? No negative side effects.  It’s a powerful food, so throw some in your coffee and/or smoothie….right now!

Related Posts

on The Benefits of Maca and Cacao

POST A COMMENT