Is Maca for Menopause Symptoms? You’ve Come a Long Way Baby!
“You’ve come a long way” slogan might be familiar to you. It is directed to all baby boomers and all the women of this generation, as they approach the new journey called menopause. But, the slogan does not end here, rather it continues: “but you’ve got such a long way to go!”
Which is true. All you need to do is to approach this new journey with ease and take control of your menopause.
While some women sail through the menopause without any problems, to other women the menopause can be a real dread. When women enter the period of menopause certain adjustments are happening in the body.
Ovarian functions are slowing down, the uterus is preparing for changes and as a result, hormonal imbalance occurs with a noticeable imbalance in estrogen and progesterone levels. The brain is also trying to understand and get used to not getting desired response from ovaries, the body gets confused and out of balance.
During this transitional period, women may experience one or more menopausal symptoms: Hot flushes, Loss of Libido, Mood swings, Night sweats, Vaginal dryness, Insomnia, Irritability, Irregular periods, Memory loss, Fatigue etc.
There are also physical changes quite often women will experience such as Headaches, Gum problems, Achy muscles, Dry skin (most likely dry skin occurs due to lack of collagen which keeps the skin moisturized), Weight gain, or Digestive problems. The list of the physical, mental, and emotional changes related to menopause is simply too long and it varies from person to person.
Why is maca good for the menopause?
Even though the well-known Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) has been prescribed as a remedy to relieve symptoms associated with menopause, there are quite many significant sets of risks associated with the hormone therapy. As a result, women have been looking for alternative ways of alleviating menopause symptoms using herbs and natural products.
Maca & menopause
The maca root is known through the history as a true women liberator when it comes to a treatment for menopause symptoms. Historically, Peruvians used maca both as food and as medicine. As a medicine this root has been used among others, to balance hormones, and to treat menopause.
To find out whether these claims are true a research in 14 postmenopausal women was carried out in order to examine the estrogenic and androgenic activity of Maca and its effect on the hormonal profile and symptoms.
Each woman received 3.5 g/day of powdered maca for 6 weeks. “Findings showed that maca reduces psychological symptoms, including anxiety and depression, and lowers measures of sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women independent of estrogenic and androgenic activity”.
In a different study, women in the early phase of their menopause were given to consume maca for up to eight months. Here, results showed that maca helped to lover follicle-stimulating hormone (to have higher levels of follicle-stimulating hormones means there is a low estrogen production from ovaries) and increase in luteinizing hormone which is necessary to stimulate ovulation. All these resulted in increase in both estrogen levels and progesterone levels.
According to studies, a reason for an increase in estrogen and progesterone levels has to do with natural sterols present in maca. Where, sterols in maca help the body to produce its own natural hormones (rather than adding hormones to the system), thus stimulate the production of estrogen and progesterone, according to individuals needs.
How does maca help with hormone replacement therapy (HRT)?
Unlike other HRT remedy, maca does not supply the body with hormones (it does not supply plant hormones like phytoestrogens) and it does not cause ovaries to atrophy. Rather, maca acts on the hypothalamus-pituitary gland and stimulates (acts in a regulatory manner) the body to produce its own hormones.
Whether your body is producing too much or too little of a particular hormone, maca includes everything you need. By using maca your system will safely get back into balanced state and symptoms of menopause such as night sweats, hot flushes, vaginal dryness, sleeplessness will be significantly reduced. Maca adapts to the body’s needs and balances menopausal health.
PS Remember: “You’ve come a long way, but you’ve got such a long way to go!” Enjoy the journey!!!