Maca Side Effects - Pros & Cons
Before we attempt to discover Maca Side Effects, let's find out a little about Maca. Maca is a plant that is mainly grown in the Andes, Peru, Bolivia and other high altitude countries in South America.
It goes by the scientific name Lepidium Meyenii and is grown for its fleshy root. It closely resembles a turnip or radish and is valued for its numerous nutritional and therapeutic qualities.
Various researches indicate that the plant can reduce the size of inflamed prostate glands, increase libido and improve semen quality. It is used widely as a treatment for erectile dysfunction in the form of pills, ground powder or liquid extract. It is recommended as a natural aphrodisiac and widely consumed as such.
Maca side effects are quite few and insignificant compared to its benefits. It has also been used to treat other ailments such as infertility, toning down the effects of menopause in women and in some cases it is taken to increase female fertility.
Unconfirmed reports even claim its ability to heal Aids and cancer. Its use has been found to be especially effective for patients undergoing post depression treatment.
In most cases such patients suffer from erectile dysfunction and low libido as a side effect of the drugs used to treat them. Maca products help them restore their sexual performance effectively.
In post menopausal women it is known to help ease anxiety and depression. It is also used as an energy booster and a cure for stress, lethargy and fatigue.
However, it is important to note that there is an insufficiency of scientific research supporting these claims and as a result, the use of this plant has not been approved by most of the relevant health authorities worldwide.
It has several confirmed side effects including hyperactivity and insomnia when taken in large doses.
It is known to stimulate the thyroid gland which may lead to a condition known as hyperthyroidism where the thyroid gland becomes inflamed and produces excess thyroxin. This leads to diarrhea, loss of libido, nausea, vomiting and feminization.
Most of these side effects are a result of its potency and high nutritional values. However, it is not known to have any toxic side effects on the body.
The plant is very rich in iron and over consumption can lead to serious heart and liver problems. It may be necessary to avoid Maca especially if one is suffering from Hepatitis-C or any other iron related disease.
The extract may also cause stomach cramps in women resembling those experienced by women who suffer from painful menstrual periods. This is because it stimulates the Graffian follicles as is the case during ovulation.
Its components are known to speed up the ovulation cycle in women and is there not recommended in the early stages of pregnancy as it may interfere with the fetus.
It may also counter the effects of birth control pills and it is therefore not advisable to be taken in combination with emergency pills.
When taken in large doses the side effects include sluggishness as a result of dehydration and a rise in potassium levels.
When combined with caffeine product such as coffee or tea it may make people feel hyperactive or talkative due to increase in energy levels and stimulation.
It may also lead to mood swings and lack of sleep due to the high energy levels it promotes. When using this herb it is important to try small doses first and watch out for any negative effects.
By some understanding and awareness of the characteristics of this potent super food, packed with a power house of nutrients one could totally bypass the minor possible drawbacks.
In summary there are no known toxic or fatal Maca side effects and the benefits by far outweigh the negative effects.