There are many reasons maca root is rapidly gaining in popularity among athletes and muscle-builders. Men and women living active lifestyles know how important it is to “recharge” after intense exercise, not just in order to catch your breath, but also to allow your body time to recover from exertion.
You’re probably heard about maca’s energy-boosting and fatigue-cutting qualities, but did you know that maca root can also help your muscles recover from intense activity? Maca can have a very real impact on your body, and used correctly it can play a key role in helping you maintain and build your strength.
Maca and Muscle Health
We’ve talked about the use of maca root by bodybuilders in the past. You may know by now that as a superfood, maca is a good source of quality protein and that its anabolic properties help the body put on muscle.
Research performed in 2023 also found that regularly supplementing their diets with black maca helped athletes not only build muscle, but it actually worked to reduce inflammation and increased antioxidant activity in the body, cutting back on fatigue and on the time required to regain strength from high exertion.
A 2019 study on rats in a laboratory environment found that adding a preparation of macamide extract to their diets helped reduce physical fatigue by cutting back the effects of muscle damage resulting from strenuous activity. Macamides are one of two bioactive marker compounds (along with macaenes) found almost exclusively in maca, which help do things like combat cancer and enhance sex drive.
Maca compounds have further played a role in “regulating fatigue occurrence in exercising and gut microbiota balance,” inhibiting oxidative stress or inflammatory injury resulting from physical exercise. As a 2022 study outlines, addressing overall gut health can be considered of use as a therapeutic strategy for fatigue management.
Maca and Your Heart
Did you know that your heart is a muscle?
Did you know that the current leading cause of death worldwide is cardiovascular disease?
As we discussed in our Maca Powder for Heart Healthy February, one of the key benefits of maca powderfor heart health is its high content of antioxidants. Antioxidants help to protect our cells from damage caused by free radicals, which can lead to chronic inflammation and contribute to the development of heart disease. Maca is also a good source of fiber, which can help to lower cholesterol levels and improve heart health.
Research performed in 2021 identified maca as a potential cardioprotective, finding that treatment with maca was preventative of cardiac ischemic dysfunction.
It’s easy to think that exercise with effects you can see is all that really matters. Many people seem to believe that simply losing weight or putting on more muscle is enough to achieve that amorphous goal of “health.” But the muscles that stand out when you pose or flex are only part of a complex system that must operate in harmony in order to function at peak capacity. Luckily, maca is an adaptogen and contributes toward balancing that system, supporting hormonal health, bone health, and even emotional and mental health.
Which Maca is Right for My Muscles?
In general terms we recommend black maca products for muscle building and recovery. Recently, though, we've also introduced "Maca Blue" which is a combination of maca powder and blue spirulina. That also does and amazing job for recovery in particular.
As we’ve stated before, there’s no “right” or “wrong” way to take maca. Our Maca Finder product selection tool allows you to input some information about yourself and your goals before offering a suggestion.
Finally, if you’re looking to make serious lifestyle changes to your diet or exercise routine, we recommend consulting with a licensed medical professional. Every body and its needs are unique, and serving size can vary significantly based on a number of factors. We recommend starting small and building up over time.
Have any questions about how to get the most of your maca? We’d love to hear them! Don’t hesitate to Contact Us using our web form, or call us toll-free at 888-919-8616.
Enjoy the Day!