Maca for Stress and Anxiety
One of the ways maca root can support overall wellness is by helping reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. In over 20 years of working with this amazing superfood, we’ve heard from a large number of customers who’ve had this positive outcome when adding maca to their diets. In this article we’ll have a deeper look at how maca works to lower stressful and anxious feelings, what others have said about it and which maca is best to take for this purpose.
Life today can certainly be stressful. A recent Gallup poll (2017) found that 79% of people feel some amount of stress daily. Of those who replied, 44% reported experiencing stress frequently and only 4% reported never having stress. Worries over job pressures, money, health and relationships are the top stressors according to the American Psychological Association.
Not surprisingly, the amount of people reporting stress in their lives has increased since then. And the consequences of stress read like a laundry list of potential negative health conditions:
- Muscle tension
- Teeth grinding
- Lower sex drive
- Lack of energy
- Lowered immune system
These are, no doubt, things we all want to avoid. The good news is that we certainly can learn to overcome most if not all of them by learning how to release stress.
The American Institute of Stress offers a long list of effective ways to manage stress. These include spending time in nature, meditating, exercising, practicing yoga, gardening, sewing, deep breathing and proper nutrition. It is this last tool, proper nutrition, that we want to look more deeply at in this article.
One of the lesser known causes of stress is lack of proper nutrition. A poor diet, with too many processed foods, sugary drinks and alcoholic beverages can lead to an increase in the free radicals in our bodies. These, in turn, can damage cells, weaken our immune systems and create a condition of oxidative stress in our bodies.
Luckily, the body is resilient and can start to overcome this type of condition when we change our nutrition. That’s where maca comes in. Many people have the question: “is maca good for anxiety and stress?” The simple answer is “Yes, it certainly can help. As a nutrient dense superfood that also supports optimal hormone health, maca is a natural way to increase feelings of well-being and lower factors of stress.
One note before continuing: Maca is indeed a food and not a medicine. This article is for informational purposes only and not meant to treat or diagnose any health condition. If you have any questions about adding maca to your life, please consult with a competent health care practitioner.
Maca root works in the body in several ways that can lead to positive health outcomes including the reduction of the feelings and symptoms of stress. These include:
- Providing a broad spectrum of essential nutrients. Maca is considered a “superfood.” One of the main reasons for that is that it packs a powerful nutrient punch. Maca is rich in amino acids, containing over 90% of both essential amino acids and free fatty acids. It also has significant amounts of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium. Maca, especially Red Maca, is also a good source of antioxidants, which help combat oxidative stress within the body. All of these nutrients can support the body to function well, thereby reducing stress and anxiety.
- Providing two unique nutrients. Maca also contains two unique types of nutrients called macaenes and macamides. These are thought to be responsible for maca’s ability to help the body balance its hormones. Since hormone health is key to a relaxed and peaceful attitude, it follows that these nutrients may be tied to reports of lowered stress levels from people using maca.
- Working as and adaptogen. Maca is one of a few types of foods that is considered to be an adaptogen. Adaptogens are thought to raise the overall life force energy of those who consume them. (Ginseng is another well known example). This makes good sense, especially when you consider where and how maca grows. The maca plant and its wonderful, life affirming root grows in some of the most inhospitable conditions in the world. It does best in the rocky soils of the high Andes (above 14,000 feet). Here, maca is exposed to all sorts of environmental stressors including high winds, intense sunlight, extreme swings in temperature and revolving periods of drought and heavy rains. Through all of this, maca has adapted to not only survive but to thrive in conditions unfit for almost all other crops. When we eat maca, perhaps the root shares some of its ability to diffuse stressful situations thereby helping us to adapt better to our conditions.
- Boosting Energy Levels. Interestingly, one of the big indicators of stress is a lowered energy level, even fatigue. We just feel wiped out—and that makes it harder for us to do the healthy things we need to deal with stress, like exercise (even take a little walk!), make a healthy meal, or dig in your garden. Maca again, has a natural ability to increase your energy levels. Unlike coffee or other stimulants, maca is not a quick boost of energy followed by a crash. Instead, maca provides sustained energy. Taken regularly, maca can reduce that sluggish feeling and keep you going so you can get off that couch and on to healthy stress management tools like exercise and healthy food.
"I have suffered from anxiety for the past two years, recently went back to school and the stress and anxiety became drastically worse. I was ready to get on prescription medicine but decided to go the natural way. Within a couple of days of taking two teaspoonfuls a day, I felt so much better and the anxious feelings and knots in my stomach have disappeared. I feel more relaxed, clear headed and with improved energy. I have been using this dose for three weeks and might switch to three teaspoons and hope to get other benefits of this product. I would recommend this to anyone suffering with anxiety and constant stress before taking any prescription drugs." -Deborah D.
"I have been using this product for almost 3 months and have seen a huge help with anxiety and depression. I am so glad to have found a natural product to help with these issues. When the doctor only wants to give a prescription, it is great to find something to get to the real problem and that it is helped with something natural! Thanks for the high standards of this product." – Karen
"I have to say I feel much better, more happy and emotionally stable. I think it really helps me fight anxiety too. I am absolutely satisfied and i have yet more to discover:) By the way, I simply whisk it into my water in the morning. It has a very pleasant nutty flavor. Very very satisfied. Thank you!" - S.P.
'I fight anxiety daily and I also work out in the gym. I choose the raw premium maca for those reasons, I really do feel calm and relaxed, more able to talk to people—and I lift stronger too! Thank you for your service!" – E.H.
“Because of the RED MACA, I was able to come off of my anxiety medicine… and feel so much better now!! MACA was a missing key for me. Thank you for sharing this with everyone. I tell EVERYONE I can about the success I’ve had with MACA, so much so that I’ve had several people from my church start ordering too! YAY! Bless you and your business! Sincerely," – John Jacob
"Out of several maca products I have tried, this one provides the most noticeable boost to energy, focus, sexual performance and muscle building. My anxiety is also noticeably reduced." – Peter
"I have been dealing with anxiety and panic attacks, on and off, for the past 15 years. They started after the birth of my daughter. I have been on several meds; zoloft, xanax, and buspirone, on and off for those 15 years. I have been dealing with perimenopause for about 3-4 years now ('m 49 years old), and the anxiety has been horrible! The doctor would switch me from one med to the other when it wasn't working, the hot flashes, mood swings, and night sweats were becoming intolerable! The hormones were affecting the anxiety and vice versa! I was getting desperate and would try anything that would help! I was directed to your product and your website, did the maca finder and red raw was suggested, and WOW!! Within 3 days, ALL symptoms started to alleviate! It has been almost 2 months since I started taking the maca, and I have had NO anxiety or panic attacks, hot flashes, mood swings, and night sweats are gone!! I feel like I have my sanity back! I can not thank your company and your product enough for the help you've given me!!" - Donna
"A friend recommend red maca powder for my hormonal changes due to menopause. After reading about the origins of maca and the benefits and lack of side effects I thought "why not?" I'm now on my fourth month of using maca powder and it works wonderfully. Hot flashes are nearly non-existent and my "mood" is much better. I was using Lexapro as an anti-anxiety med. I discontinued this and found that maca powder does nearly as well. I also feel very confident in buying from The Maca Team. I believe they are concerned with the quality of the product and are diligent in processing it. I'm recommending to everyone with similar issues/symptoms!" - Susan Ri
You’ll see from the comments above, that many people are using our Red Maca products for this purpose. If you’re new to maca we highly recommend starting with a gelatinized (pre-cooked) red maca powder or capsules. You may also add in a few droppersful of red maca extract throughout the day as an extra boost. If you any question please let us know.
You also may enjoy to take our “Maca Finder” quiz to get a more specific product recommendation.
As we now know, stress isn’t just an anxious feeling in your mind. It also causes fatigue, as well as oxidative stress in your cells throughout your body—which can result in all kinds of health problems. Maca with its ability to provide high levels of nutrition, its adaptogenic properties, and its ability to increase energy, helps you reduce those feelings of anxiety and stress.
For a complete mind and body stress support, turn to the benefits of maca to help you through your day—no matter what that day brings.
Enjoy the day!