The Peruvian powerhouse Maca Root has become one of the most highly sought-after “new” superfoods on the market because of the many benefits it offers.
But what most people don’t realize is that there are various different types of Maca Root that provide their own specific benefits for different body parts and functions.
Three of the most popular types of Maca Root come in the colors of red, yellow and black. The brand ‘The Maca Team’ currently sells raw organic Red, Black and Yellow varieties separately on Amazon.com, which can be viewed here.
What can each of them do for you and why is it important to mix them up? Read on.
Health Benefits of Red Maca Include Prostate Protection, Bone Support
Red Maca is considered to be the most rare type of the popular high-altitude root, and it provides many of the same benefits as the more popular yellow/brown type that is often sold in health food stores and online.
But like most of nature’s incredibly varied species and colors of beneficial plants, it also offers its own unique twist and benefits on top of those.
Red Maca Root almost looks like a beet crossed with purple cabbage, and it provides a large range and supply of antioxidants much as those two popular vegetables do.
Other top benefits of Red Maca Root include:
-Increased Protection from Prostate Cancer
-A Strong Protective Effect on Bone Structure and Density
Two studies in particular back these results up, as pointed out by an article on the website raworganicmaca.info.
The first study was published by the Journal Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology 2005, 3:5. It found that Red Maca root significantly reduced ventral prostate size in rats, a result that could not be duplicated by the yellow/brown and/or black varieties of Maca.
The second study showing the benefits of Red Maca Root found that it, as well as Black Maca, had protective effects on bone architecture in rats without showing any estrogenic effects on uterine weight. This one came from the Uniersidad Peruana (Lima, Peru), and found that the yellow/brown types did not do the same.
The most important study done on red maca was published in the Journal Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology 2005; 3:5. In it 8 medical researchers report that over the course of 42 days: “Red Maca but neither Yellow/Cream nor Black Maca reduced significantly ventral prostate size in rats.” The study also goes on to report that in under pyhtochemical analysis for 7 functional nutrient groups, “Highest peak values were observed for Red Maca, intermediate values for Yellow/Cream Maca and low values for Black Maca.”
It is worth noting that Red Maca does not significantly increase the volume of sperm in men, which is a benefit exclusive to the Yellow and especially Black Maca types.
Health Benefits of Black Maca
As mentioned earlier, this other lesser-known type of Maca Root has one particularly unique benefit to it: the ability to increase sperm counts in men, as well as sperm mobility.
With so many couples unable to conceive and the overall hormone balancing effects of Maca that have been well-documented, it makes sense that people should give Black Maca a try if they’re having these issues.
In addition to the sperm count benefits, Black Maca:
-Helps Protect Against Stress Better than Other Varieties
-Is the Best of All Maca Types Against Fatigue and Adrenal Stress In Studies on Mice
-Increases Memory in Mice
-Is Also a Natural Anti-Depressant
Further information on these studies can be found on the website www.cyerperu.com.
Yellow Maca Health Benefits
Yellow Maca, which often looks like a light brown in powder form, is the most popular and common kind you’ll find in health food stores. It is particularly helpful for female fertility, as mice receiving Yellow Maca saw that benefit.
Many women on fertility forums have reported promising results supplementing with Yellow Maca and other supporting natural fertility herbs such as Suma Root. Of course, it is best to consult a doctor before making any serious changes to your diet.
It’s well worth noting that Maca in general helps with hormones and fertility as it is an adaptogen, however, meaning it is able to work with your body to provide the results it needs regardless of its current state.
Other benefits of Maca in general include the ability to control blood glucose levels, increased stamina, plenty of protein and amino acids for muscle building, a high overall level of mineral content, and much more.
Tips on Using Maca
In my experience, Maca Root is best when “cycled” on and off for about a month at a time. It has quite strong effects at first and it is best not to let your body get to used to, or dependent on it for long periods.
Starting slow is usually best before working your way up to larger doses.
If you’d like to experience the benefits of each specific type of Maca Root, there are many places to purchase it online.
Personally, I would never purchase non-organic maca because the products are being diluted and cheapened now that more and more people are discovering its health benefits. If you’re looking for red maca, you can try this certified organic variety in a powder that you can mix into smoothies from the company ‘The Maca Team’ by clicking here.
The same kind is also available in capsules, which are great for when you want to get maca into your diet throughout the day to balance your hormones and provide other benefits. You can view the black maca version of the capsules here.