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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Maca: Super Food of the Week

Good morning everyone!
How many of you have heard of Maca?
If you never have, do not feel bad.  I recently discovered this herbal supplement after a conversation with my neighbor, who also happens to be a fitness enthusiast.  Somehow we got to talking about Protein Shakes and he mentioned Maca as a great alternative to them.  I was intrigued, decided to do my own research and picked up a packet at a nearby market.

Lepidium Meyenii, otherwise known as Maca and Peruvian Ginseng, is a plant root that can be consumed as a powder, liquid or pill.  Although there's no substantial medical evidence, some research has suggested that there are some  health benefits associated with Maca.  One of the more popular ones has to do with improved sexual function, which is how its mostly used in Peru.  Other health benefits include: Stamina, enhanced energy, improved strength and reducing anxiety and depression.  Maca is also rich in anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals.  Peruvians have used it as a caffeine alternative for centuries. 

After using Maca for about a month and a half now, I can say that I have seen some improvements regarding my energy level.  I whip up the following, which lasts about 4 days, and drink about 8 oz worth about an hour before heading to the gym.  I also have another 8 oz as a mid afternoon snack.  Maca powder is pretty grainy, which explains why not much of it is needed in the mixture.

In a blender, throw in:
32 oz. of Skim Milk or Almond Milk
1 cup of Oatmeal
2 tsp of Vanilla Extract
1 Tbsp of Cinnamon
4 Tbsp of Brown Sugar
2 Tbsp of Maca

This drink is de-li-cious!  But feel free to mix Maca in water, milk or juice to give yourself a nice energy drink any time you want.  Are any of you considering Maca? I'd love to hear from you.

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