Scientifically known as Lepidium meyenii (and sometimes called Peruvian ginseng), Maca Root comes from a plant that grows at high altitude up in the Andes in central Peru. It has a nutty flavor and the supplement can be taken in powder, capsule or liquid extract form.
Maca Root – Weight Gain or Loss?
Maca Root has been linked to enhancing fertility and improving sex-drive, boosting energy levels and endurance and it has also been touted as a supplement that can help you lose weight. There has been some debate as to whether this is accurate and even some discussion suggesting Maca Root can encourage weight gain. Let’s explore the facts:
Maca Root and Weight Loss
Maca Root is a great source of nutrients including amino acids, unsaturated fats, carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins and minerals. Vitamins are essential in the manufacture of enzymes (in particular B6, B2 and B12) and enzymes encourage a high metabolism. A speedy metabolism can, in turn, help to promote weight loss.
Maca Root contains flavonoids which are believed to have psychological benefits -helping to improve your disposition and outlook. If you’re feeling upbeat, you are more likely to feel inclined to be active. Depression can be debilitating and low mood can leave you feeling lethargic and prone to comfort eating.
The supplement is also popular with those who regularly participate in sport – in particular athletes and bodybuilders. This could be due to the belief that Maca Root increases muscle, energy levels, strength, and even helps sport enthusiasts to perform better – enabling those taking it to work harder for longer.
Maca Root and Weight Gain
How can a supplement that is claimed to help you lose weight also be attributed to weight gain? Let’s begin by stating that Maca Root itself doesn’t make you put on the pounds (there are only around 12 calories in a teaspoon of it).
What Maca does do is help you to develop muscle (it is anabolic and therefore stimulates the growth muscles). More muscle will increase weight.
It is also believed that Maca Root can induce hunger and taking in more calories is not conducive when you are trying to diet. However, if you are trying to gain weight and change your shape, then you might be in luck. It is thought that Maca Root can increase the size of your boobs, hips and bum – so if you’re looking for added curves and a shapely hourglass figure, this could be the supplement for you.
It’s a tricky call on this one, it’s hard to comprehend that a supplement can help you to lose and gain weight, but it’s not about weight as such, this is about muscle, metabolism, appetite, and energy. To summarise, research suggests Maca Root:
- Contains lots of nutrients
- Speeds up metabolism
- Improves mood
- Improves stamina and athleticism
- Develops muscle
- Induces hunger
- Can enhance a curvy figure
It’s not a miracle cure for losing weight, but if Maca Root does make you feel chirpier and gets you moving more for longer, then this will help you on your quest. Maca Root can help you define your body regarding enhancing muscles or curves (but this may mean you gain weight to achieve your new body shape).
Maca Root can help you on your journey, but the only guaranteed way of changing the way you look or feel is to make positive modifications to the things you do – eat healthily, take exercise and look after yourself. You only have one body, look after it!
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