Maca and Blood Pressure
If you're thinking about adding maca to your diet and wondering if maca can support healthy blood pressure, if maca is safe to use with medicines designed to lower hypertension, which maca is best to use for this purpose and how to effectively use it, you're in the right place. In this article we'll answer these questions and more.
What Research Says About Maca and High Blood Pressure
What People Say About Using Maca to Help Normalize Blood pressure
Is Maca Safe To Use When Taking Blood Pressure Medication?
How Much Maca To Take For High Blood Pressure?
Which Maca Root Is Best for Blood Pressure?
Conclusion – Can Maca Lower Blood Pressure?
Maintaining healthy blood pressure is one of the most important things we can do to support optimal well-being. People with healthy B.P. levels live longer and suffer less disease. It makes sense, then, to do as much as we can to avoid either high or low blood pressure.
While low blood pressure can occur, especially in older people, it is typically much less common and less dangerous than high blood pressure (hypertension).
High blood pressure, on the other hand, is more common than we might think. The World Health Organization estimates that nearly 1.3 billion people worldwide experience the condition. And in the United States, about 30% of adults have hypertension, with many more at risk of developing it. The dangers of elevated blood pressure numbers are well documented. The condition can lead to increased risk of other diseases including vision problems, heart attack, stroke and kidney failure.
The good news is that high blood pressure is largely treatable and in a variety of ways. First, there are a number lifestyle changes we can make to lower our risk of high blood pressure. These as some simple changes that can support healthy blood pressure:
- Stop smoking
- Drink alcohol in moderation
- Exercise more
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Eat a diet with lots of fruit, vegetables and fiber
- Reduce stress
- Deep breathing and breath work in general
Second, there are pharmaceutical drugs that doctors regularly prescribe that can help lower blood pressure. Some herbs and supplements, such as cinnamon, garlic and grape seed extract, also show promise in lowering hypertension.
Beyond these more commonly known treatments, a simple food from Peru, Maca root, has also been associated with lowering blood pressure. In this article we’ll have a deeper look at how and why this may be.
Before continuing we want to point out that this article is for informational purposes only. It is not meant as any type of medical advice. If you have any questions about adding maca to your diet please consult with a competent medical professional.
Maca root has been used as a vital food source by people indigenous to Peru for 1000s of years. In particular it has been a main source of nutrients for people living at higher elevations (above 9000 ft. / 2750 m). Over the past 30-40 years it has been increasingly used outside of Peru for a variety of reasons. Millions of people from all over the world have reported a wide range of benefits when adding Maca root to their diets. These reports have caught the interest of medical researchers and since the middle 2000s, research on this root vegetable has been ongoing.
In terms of research on maca specifically dedicated to blood pressure there have been a few important studies.
- A study from 2006 followed perimenopausal women for 4 months. Those who took maca were observed both to lose weight and to have lower blood pressure measurements.
- In 2010 GF Gonzalez published a study of people indigenous to the areas where maca grows. In that study he found that people who consume maca regularly have lower blood pressure than those who don’t.
- A 2014 study of postmenopausal women in China found that the addition of maca “appeared to reduce symptoms of depression and improve diastolic blood pressure…”
- Another study from 2013 measured serum levels of interleukin 6 (IL-6) of people living at very high elevations in Peru. IL-6 is an immune protein that is activated when inflammation is present in the body. The study found that maca consumers exhibited lower IL-6 levels and better health status scores, including lower blood pressure and low chronic mountain sickness scores.
- Beyond these human based studies, several studies have been performed on rats in laboratory settings. In these maca has been seen to lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure numbers when administered to healthy rats over the course of 12 weeks or more.
In addition to studies like those cited above, we have received feedback from several customers regarding the efficacy of Maca for hypertension. Here are a few of those.
"I am 82 years old and have been on high blood pressure medication for 5 years. Since I started using red maca my blood pressure has become normal and stabilized. I am now off medication. I also am less fatigued and have more energy and my problems with balance are history. Thank you for offering these products. I add it to my morning smoothie that I have been doing for years." - Carol Castellow
"After comparing your product with what is available at my favorite herb shop I found there's no comparison. I recently was in a serious bicycle accident and spent days in the hospital having pins put into my femur. My blood pressure numbers had significantly improved from just six months ago after using your product for only two weeks. On the very first day I felt more vitality throughout my body. Even gained better visual acuity as seen in my recent target shooting results. I bought the red and got male enhancement gains as well so it is no surprise that I highly recommend this product which I put in my coffee as a creamer. Don't want to shout this too loud as I want to make sure there's plenty for me in my upcoming order." - J.D.
"With red maca I am no longer on high blood pressure medication, which I had taken for years. My energy has improved and I over all feel better. Thanks for being there." – Candice Jane
"Love the stuff. It has helped me to get off of blood pressure pills. The pharmaceutical business and doctors are in kahoots together and want to keep you sick and coming back for more. There is always a NATURAL AND HEALTHY WAY." - Richard McBroom
This is one of the questions that we most frequently receive from people with hypertension and it’s an important one. The first thing to understand is that maca is a food and not a drug or even a supplement. Therefore, it simply has no known contraindications. That said, as we’ve already seen in this article, maca can indeed support healthy blood pressure levels. And for anyone taking maca for the first time we recommend to monitor your blood pressure very closely and with the help of a competent medical professional. After observation, it may be that you need to reduce your consumption of maca and/or the prescription you have. Again, do this only with supervision from your doctor.
The exact serving size of maca you should take depends on a variety of factors including age, weight and activity level. In general terms, starting with 3g (1 tsp) to 6g (2 tsp) daily is the appropriate amount for most people. For a more specific recommendation visit our maca dosage page. Beyond the amount of maca you take, it’s also important to stay consistent with it. We recommend that you add it to your diet daily for at least one month in order to give it time to support your body’s health and wellness.
We typically recommend one of our Red Maca products for people who are new to maca. In particular our gelantized red maca would be our top recommendation. We sell that in both powder and capsule form.
If you’d like to get a more specific recommendation for your particular age, activity level, etc., please use our Maca Finder tool.
Taken consistently at the correct serving size, maca root powder can support healthy blood pressure levels. Combined with a healthful diet composed of lots of fresh fruits and vegetables along with a healthy level of exercise maca works even better for this purpose.
Thanks for reading and if you have any questions let us know.