Adaptogen root vegetable from the Peruvian highlands.
Stimulates the endocrine system.
Traditionally used for energy, sexual functioning, menopause, elderly, convalescence.
Peruvian Maca was developed by a company dedicated to the distribution of medicinal herbs in partnership with South American native peoples who have been using these natural remedies for centuries.
Organic Peruvian Maca has been traditionally used by women for energy, for PMS, for menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes, vaginal dryness, the "blues", and for postmenopausal women to maintain healthy bones. Men use Peruvian to enhance libido, sexual potency and fertility, as well as for energy and stamina. In recent studies it has been discovered that men who used Peruvian Maca two to three times per week, while supplementing with zinc, have been found to experience less prostate problems. It is possible that Peruvian Maca could change the course of history in the realm of prostate disease in men of all ages.
There are no additives, coloring, flavoring, or excipients. No pesticides, chemical fertilizers, irradiation or chemical gassing is used on Maca herbs. High standards extend to the relationship with native and Maca growers and rainforest plant collectors and growers and our suppliers are fair traders who use part of the profits from sales of our Maca products to improve the conditions of life of the growers/collectors through education, agricultural loans, and technical assistance in producing organic herbs with high crop yields.
Offers Adrenal Balancing
Henry Campanile, M.D.
Maca root, in keeping with its mode of acting through the hypothalamus and pituitary, has a balancing Bud nourishing effect on the adrenal glands. Henry Campanile, MD, a 50-year old specialist in internal and family/complementary medicine practicing in St. Petersburg, Florida, relates: I happen to have been born with one adrenal gland just like my father. I started taking cortisone in my late twenties to relieve the fatigue which I was already feeling. Knowing the dangers of long term cortisone use, I looked around for an alternative, and this circumstance is what got me interested in complementary medicine. I started using Pregnenolone about 10 years ago and it has been fairly satisfactory. But one of my patients told me about Peruvian Maca, and I started taking it about a month ago. It is phenomenal! I haven't felt this good since I was 20 years old. I have so much energy and look so well, my patients have remarked on it and told me how rested I seem. I've got so much energy now have started an exercise program.
After trying it out on himself, Dr. Campanile began using Maca with his patients. My first patient to take the Maca capsules was experiencing hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms. She started feeling much better after using this herb for only four days. I'm also employing it with patients who have low adrenal function.
Another American doctor who has recently began to use Maca therapeutically for some patients is of New Rochelle, New York. Dr. Clark, who utilizes chelation therapy and ozone therapy in addition to herbs, vitamins and minerals in his practice stated, 'I'm amazed at how fast Maca worked on two patients that I have been concerned about for some time.' He described one patient as 55 year-old Mary T., a postmenopausal, woman. Mary T. was possessed of numerous health problems, including somewhat elevated blood sugar, hypertension, atrial fibrillation, and hypomagnesaemia. She had been acutely ill for two months with osteomyelitis and generalized sepsis. Unable to work, she was suffering from great fatigue and depression and feeling 'worse and worse' over the last five years.
Within just four days of taking the Maca capsules, Mary T went through an enormous turnaround,' said Dr. Clark. 'She has gone out to shop in the stores; she's cleaning her house; she feels strong and vigorous; and her depression is gone.
Early Menopause & Vaginal Dryness Avoided
One young West Coast woman, Susan F, has an interesting experience to tell. After giving birth to two children, the 31-year old mother decided to use contraceptive pills for the first time. Since a possible side effect of the method she chose was not having a period, Susan F didn't think anything of its nonoccurrence until six months later when she also began experiencing mood swings, hot flashes, and dry skin.
Her visit to an endocrinologist revealed that the woman's hormones were at 'menopause' levels. Then Susan's mother told her that early menopause runs in the family. Her grandmother, her mother, and her older sister all had early menopause. It had been a year since her last period, and by chance her husband brought home some Peruvian Maca for himself. He told his wife to try it, too, which she did.
Last June Susan F experienced resumption of menstruation once again. Her periods have been regular ever since taking the Maca. Susan F also comments that her skin is now soft and moist, the way it used to be.
Diane S, a 52-year-old librarian from Rye, New York, would never consider taking estrogen because of the health risks she feared. Instead she opted for dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) as an anti-aging hormone. This very physically active woman noticed an upsurge in her energy from ingesting DHFA but intercourse was still painful for her due to the drying of her vagina. The gynecologist she consulted about the problem told her it was a 'natural part of aging that could only get worse with time.' He told Diane S that the only thing able to help would be taking estrogen. But, after three weeks of taking Peruvian Maca, Diane reported that her vaginal lubrication was good, and vaginal dryness was no longer troublesome.
Results from a Nurse/Practitioner & Her Patients
From her White Plains, New York, clinic, nurse-practitioner Stephanie Sulger-Smith, RN, MS, says that she read an article about postmenopausal health which discussed Peruvian Maca At her clinic she offers nutritional counseling for a variety of conditions.
I had been prescribing black cohosh, dong quai, oil of evening primrose, vitamin E and other natural remedies to women with per menopausal symptoms. But when I began using these remedies to help with my own hot flashes and other symptoms of approaching menopause, I didn't get the relief I needed. So I acquired a supply of Maca powder and took it as advised.
Almost immediately, my hot flashes disappeared and my energy level went up. My response to Maca was surprising to my gynecologist, who insisted that I undergo a series of laboratory studies, including estrogen levels, uterine monograms and others. They all turned out normal," says nurse Sulger-Smith. 'I haven't had a hot flash since the beginning of November 1997, and I feel fabulous. 'When I told my patients about Peruvian Maca they tried it and found freedom from their pre-menopausal and menopausal symptoms. One patient who has been taking Maca for over a year had a series of bone density studies done that showed increased density in the spine," says Nurse Sulger-Smith. 'Other case histories exhibit similar positive results from taking Maca. In fact, most of the women taking the root powder report that they feel less fatigue, greater energy, are less susceptible to stress, and do not experience hot flashes or night sweats.
One doctor advises that although the great majority of menopausal and postmenopausal women could benefit from Maca therapy, it is not necessarily the answer for every woman. First of all, she says, you have those women whose bodies are so well balanced through a combination of good nutrition, fitness, good genes and lifestyle that they are doing just great without adding any Peruvian Maca. It is best not to treat menopause as an illness and tell all women that they need Maca therapy. Each woman is a different biochemical entity and will react in a different way to this natural life event.
Then there is a whole group of women who have been on hormone replacement therapy for five, ten or 20 years. To a greater or lesser extent their ovaries have atrophied from receiving estrogen and other hormones supplied to them from outside for a long period of time. One physician treated a patient who was taking HRT for eight years, she said. He had her taper off over a two-week period while ingesting 2 capsules of Peruvian Maca per day. She's been completely off HRT for about a month now, while continuing with the Maca, and so far she hasn't experienced any recurrence of symptoms. But at this point, there is no consensus about the best approach.
And of course,
there are always a few individuals who will show an allergic reaction
or who fall into a group of women or men for whom a pituitary stimulator
such as Maca is contraindicated in the absence of studies that prove its
safety. These groups include men with a high PSA level or a history of
prostate cancer. Men using Maca on a regular basis should undergo periodic
PSA tests. Women with a history of breast cancer or other types of hormone-related
cancer also fall into this group.'
Maca, Anti-aging Herb for both Men & Women
The history and value of Maca agriculture in traditional Peruvian Society is becoming known through the efforts of both historians and anthropologists who have studied Peruvian culture. Garry P. Gordon, MD, former president of the American College for Advancement in Medicine, now Founder and President of the International College of advanced Longevity Medicine, located in Chicago, Illinois, bases his appreciation of Maca on his own experience with it. Speaking with me from Payson, Arizona, Dr. Gordon said, We all hear rumors about various products like Maca. But using this Peruvian root myself, I personally experienced a significant improvement in erectile tissue response. I call it 'nature's answer to Viagra.
What I see in Maca is a means of normalizing our steroid hormones like testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen. Therefore it has facility to forestall the hormonal changes of aging, Dr. Gordon believes. 'It acts on men to restore them to a healthy functional status in which they experience a more active libido. Lots of men and women who previously believed their sexual problems were psychological are now clearly going to look for something physiological to improve quality of life in the area of sexuality, says Dr. Gordon. Of course, as someone interested in longevity, I'm aware that mortality comes on much sooner for those individuals whose sexual activity is diminished or nonexistent. In other words, I believe that people who engage in sex twice a week or more live longer. I've found sexual activity to be a reliable marker for overall aging.
Burton Goldberg, President of Alternative Medicine Publishing in Anburon, California, whose latest book is An Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide to Cancer is another enthusiast of Maca. He says that when he tried Maca he was very pleased with the results and began taking it regularly. I'm a 72 year old man and this Maca has taken 25 years off my aging sex life, declares Burton Goldberg. That's pretty important to me!
Dr. Garry Gordon is concerned about reproductive problems in today's world. Society faces a huge problem of dropping sperm counts and sex hormone difficulties. But Maca promises a nontoxic solution with no downside effects. It's a therapy that appears to offer men and women the chance for hormonal rejuvenation, concludes Dr. Gordon. We currently live in an era in which almost everyone will be doing something to deal with the hormonal consequences of aging. And Peruvian Maca is now readily available.
The New Maca Species: Lepidium Peruvianum Chacón
The scientist responsible for most of the current knowledge of the Maca plant is Gloria Chacon de Popivici, PhD, a Peruvian biologist trained at the University of San Marcos, in Lima, Peru. Dr. Chacon wrote her dissertation in the early 1960's on the Maca root, and did groundbreaking work on the plant by discovering a new species. By analyzing its chemical actives, she pinpointed their hormonal effects, Dr. Chacon also authored a book describing the root's nourishing micronutrients: La importancia de Lepidium peruvianum Chacon (Maca) en la Alimentacion y Salud del ser Humano y Animal 2,000 Ados Antes y Despues de Cristo y en el Siglo. Published in Lima, in 1997, the book is a definitive study on Maca and discusses its use from 8000 BC to the present and into the 21st century.
Having become interested in the almost extinct Maca back in 1960 as an undergraduate biology student at the University of Lima, Dr Chacon went on to do extensive research. During a botanical field trip to the Central Highlands of her native Peru, she encountered an amazing and little-known plant whose root, she learned from the local population, had powerful energizing and fertility effects.
A search of botanical
literature revealed that a plant closely resembling Maca had been identified
in 1843 by the German botanist, Walpers. He called it Lepidium meyenii
Walpers, but the plant he described was a perennial without the same medicinal
effects as Peruvian Maca. It grows in parts of Bolivia and Chile. The
young student was excited to realize that she had located and identified
a new species, which she called Lepidium peruvianum Chacon. It is a classification
accepted by major herbariums in the United States and Europe as a true
new species. Curiously, in Peru it is still called by the erroneous name,
Lepidium meynii Walper.
This biologist/author has done the most important scientific work to date on the Maca plant. In particular, Dr. Chacon isolated four alkaloids from the Maca root and carried out animal studies with male and female rats given either powdered Maca root or alkaloids isolated from the roots. In comparison with the animal control groups, those receiving either root powder or alkaloids showed multiple egg follicle maturation in females and, in males, significantly higher sperm production and motility rates than control groups.
Dr. Chacon established that it was the alkaloids in the Maca root, not its plant hormones that produced fertility effects on the ovaries and testes of the rats. These effects are measurable within 72 hours of dosing the animals,' she offered in a recent telephone interview from Lima, Peru. Through the experiments, she deduced that the alkaloids were acting on the hypothalamus-pituitary gland, which explains why both male and female rats were afflicted in a gender-appropriate manner. This also explains why the effects in humans are not limited to ovaries and testes, but also act on the adrenals, giving a feeling of greater energy and vitality, and on the pancreas and thyroid as well.
Implications of Dr. Chacon's discovery of the pituitary stimulating effects of Maca are enormous, Dr. Muller said when I spoke to her recently. What it appears to mean is that hormone replacement therapy, even the natural varieties, will no longer be the gold standard for optimizing a holistic point of view.
Testimonies from Medical Doctors & Research Scientists
Hugo Malaspina, MD. Works with Maca
Now practicing complementary medicine with an emphasis on the use of medicinal herbs, one of the earliest modern pioneers in the therapeutic use of this ancient herb for an urban population is Hugo Malaspina, MD, a respected cardiologist in Lima. Dr. Malaspina has been using the Maca root in his practice for a decade and makes the following observations. 'There are different medicinal plants that work on the ovaries by stimulating them. With Maca, though, we should say that it 'regulates' the ovarian function.' Dr. Malaspina, who uses Maca therapy for both his male and female patients, recalls that he first heard about this extraordinary herb through a group of elderly gentlemen who, while well along in years were still lively and interested in enjoying sexual activities. 'One of these groups (they were all over 70) started taking main and found he was able to perform satisfactorily in a sexual relationship with a lady friend. Soon everyone in the group began drinking the powered Maca as a beverage and enjoying the boost that the root was giving their hormonal functions. I have several of these men as patients, and their improvement prompted me to find out more about maca and begin recommending it to my other patients,' Dr. Malaspina stated.
What makes Maca so effective,
according to Dr. Malaspina, is that rather than introducing hormones from
outside the body, Maca encourages the ovaries and other glands to produce
the needed hormones. The cardiologist-turned-holistic physician said,
Maca regulates the organs of internal secretion, such as the pituitary,
the adrenal glands, the pancreas, etc. I have had perhaps 200 female patients
whose perimenopausal and postmenopausal symptoms are alleviated by taking
Dr. Malaspina has even found Maca to be effective for women with hysterectomies. He discussed a 49-year old woman who had a hysterectomy eight years ago, although she still retained her ovaries. 'The woman was beginning to get menopausal symptoms - hot flashes, cold feet, depression, tachycardia, some constipation and some bone loss. Because she had breast implants, usual hormone replacement therapy was not an option for her,' explained Dr. Malaspina. 'I started her on Maca and within three months the depression, constipation, and hot flashes cleared up. Based on my experience with some other patients, I expect that her bone density will improve as will, but that will take longer.
He has also dispensed Maca to women who have undergone complete hysterectomies. One patient who had her ovaries removed was on HRT. 'But she didn't feel well taking the HRT so she stopped.
When I examined her the blood serum estradiol level was 15 which are very low and she was experiencing hot flashes. Two months after she began taking Maca I retested her and the woman had a level of 75. Anything above 60 is probably an adequate postmenopausal level. Maca enabled the adrenals to make sufficient hormones to avoid symptoms,' he said.
Dr. Malaspina adamantly prefers Maca therapy to HRT. 'Me presence of the outside hormone circulating in the system sends a message to the pituitary and the hypothalmus that there is a sufficient quantity of hormones in the body, and so they stop producing them. When menopause arrives, then, the ovaries are atrophied and do not produce the estrogen and progesterone which the body requires minimally to function. For this reason, I encourage women to start with Maca before menopause. It seems to help the endocrine system to stay in balance.'
Another Peruvian pioneer
in the therapeutic application of Maca integrated into a modem medical
practice is Jorge Aguila Calderon, MD. An internist, Dr. Aguila Calderon
is former Chief of the Department of Biological Sciences and Dean of the
Faculty of Human Medicine at the National University of Federico Villarreal
in Lima. Like Dr. Malaspina, he prescribes Maca for a wide variety of
conditions, including osteoporosis and the healing of bone fractures in
the very elderly. 'Maca has a lot of easily absorbable calcium in it,
plus magnesium, and a fair amount of allies which we are finding very
useful in treating the decalcification of bones in children and adults.'
Physicians in the United States believe this herb has the potential of a balanced answer to the effects of aging on the endocrine system. Many, who have tried phytoestrogens and/or precursor hormones such as DHEA or pregnenolone, or even natural hormone replacement therapy and have been dissatisfied, are getting excellent results from their use of Maca root.
Gabriel Cousens, MD, practicing internal medicine in Patagonia, Arizona, says, Whenever possible, I prefer to use Maca therapy rather than hormone replacement therapy because HRT actually ages the body diminishing the hormone producing capability of the glands. Maca has proven to be very effective with menopausal patients in eliminating hot flashes and depression and in increasing energy levels. They find the right dosage level; sometimes I have started the patient on Maca treatment with a half a teaspoon of powder or three capsules a day. In some cases I have raised the dosage to a teaspoon or six capsules a day for full effectiveness.'
Healthy Life Harvest
Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, nor is this information meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Results may vary.
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