Known for its virtues in terms of libido, Maca has particular qualities on male impotence as well as female fertility.
But what about its dosage? What are the side effects of Maca on libido? Is natural necessarily synonymous with safe? We answer all these questions in today's article.
1 What is Maca?
2 The benefits of Maca on the libido
3 Side effects and contraindications of Maca on libido
4 Where to find Maca?
5 Guarantees of consumption without risk of toxicity
What is Maca?
Maca (Lepidium meyenii), also called Peruvian ginseng or natural viagra, is a tuber, part of the cruciferous family.
It is grown primarily for its nutritional value. Indeed, it is particularly rich in:
– Proteins and amino acids – Trace elements, including iron and zinc – Minerals with, in particular, calcium and potassium – Essential fatty acids, such as omega 3 and 6.
Very present in the staple diet of Peruvians, it is versatile and is consumed in cooked, dried form or even as a seasoning for dishes (source).
How is it grown?
Maca is a plant of South American origin and grows only at altitude in the Peruvian High Andes.
Indeed, it has the particularity of growing in extreme conditions at an altitude of 3,500 to 4,500 meters. As a result, attempts to cultivate in other regions seem to have been a real failure.
Scientific studies carried out on animals and humans
Although the results seem to be conclusive, the studies carried out could only be confirmed on mice and rats (source). Maca indeed shows an increase in the sexual performance of animals, their sex hormones (progesterone and testosterone) as well as the stimulation of the production of new spermatozoa and therefore of their fertility.
Few scientific studies have been conducted in humans to prove the real effectiveness of Maca as an aphrodisiac (source).
Indeed, some studies prove that Maca is a solution to increase libido, fertility and sexual performance. On the other hand, other studies show a decrease in the sexual function of pre-menopausal women. Others show an improvement in sperm renewal and an increase in the production of new sperm in humans, while another study has demonstrated the opposite in experiments on rats.
The benefits of Maca on the libido
It is mainly known for its benefits on libido and male impotence (source). Indeed, according to the National Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health Safety (ANSES), Maca is a real aphrodisiac. It would have several properties in favor of sexuality, and more particularly the libido.
– Beneficial effects on the production of new sperm. – Increased desire and sexual performance. – Important role in the treatment of sexual disorders. – Improved fertility in men.
In general, Maca has beneficial effects on physical and mental performance, sleep disorders or lack of concentration. (source)
Indeed, it is particularly effective in reducing the symptoms of menopause. It improves the mood, and would be particularly interesting in addition to a treatment against depression. Finally, Maca would also be very popular in the sports world thanks to its energizing properties (source).
How to consume Maca?
Maca is consumed in the form of flour, granules or even capsules, and must be stored in a dry place away from light.
If you opt for Maca in powder form, it is recommended to consume 500 mg to 1 g of Maca two to three times a day, or between 1 g and 1.5 g.
It is easily diluted in a hot drink, in its fruit juice or even in a smoothie.
If the tablet form is most suitable for you, be sure to follow the laboratory dosage indicated on the package. Generally, it is between 1 to 2 tablets three times a day depending on the level sought. Maca is found as an ingredient in many pills to promote erections, such as Go Viril.
After how long do we have effects on the libido?
The various studies carried out show effects after 6 to 8 weeks of treatment. The latest conducted to date was able to confirm the benefits of Maca on the sexual desire of 130 participants after use for at least six weeks. (source)
ANSES recommends a regular consumption of Maca from 1.5 to 3 g per day to begin to feel all the benefits.It is preferred in the form of a cure of 2 to 3 months to avoid habituation of the body. (source)
Side effects and contraindications of Maca on libido
If the risks associated with the consumption of Maca are not yet well defined, it is necessary to be careful and attentive to the effects felt.
Side effects of Maca
By its use for millennia, if side effects had been discovered, Maca would never have been so successful to date.
However, Peruvians recommend consuming Maca cooked and not raw. Indeed by its content of alkaloids, it can be potentially toxic if these substances are not broken during the preparation of Maca.
The interactions of Maca
No interaction with other plants or drugs is known to date. However, it is not without risk. No studies have demonstrated the toxicity of Maca, but few studies have been done on this subject.
It is therefore important to consult your doctor if you are undergoing medical treatment and want to integrate Maca into your routine to increase libido and your sexual performance.
The contraindications of Maca
Like Muira Puama, also known for its aphrodisiac properties, it is often not recommended for some people. For example, ANSES advises against their consumption in people with metabolic syndrome. Pregnant and nursing women as well as children are also required to avoid their uses.
Although no studies have been confirmed on this subject, it is also not recommended to use Maca in case of heart problems or high blood pressure.
Where to find Maca?
To date, there is no French manufacturer that has legally declared its products to the Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF). He cannot therefore sell a product which could involve the slightest risk for the consumer.
You will mainly find Maca on online stores, and only in the form of flour, granules or capsules. Indeed, the marketing of fresh Maca is prohibited by the Peruvian government. Cultivation, harvesting, processing and export are also tightly controlled by the Peruvian administration.
As with ginger or epimedium, choose organic Maca to avoid as much as possible the addition of products that are potentially dangerous to health.
Guarantees of consumption without risk of toxicity
In order to guarantee the total absence of risk of toxicity by the use of Maca in particular in the context of improving libido and sexual performance, ANSES has established a list of criteria to be respected by all manufacturers of Maca. food supplements based on Maca powder. (source)
– The harvest period – The powder manufacturing process and the standardization of this process – The characterization of the chemical composition of the Maca root powder used in the finished product – The concentration of the powder in the finished product – The elements of traceability of the botanical identification of the plant at all stages of production or presentation of the product.