What is Maca and why should I put it in my Smoothie?

Maca Root Powder - Andean SuperfoodSpend any time learning about how to get healthy, increase your stamina, boost your energy or strengthen your immune system, and you’re bound to come across thousands of rave reviews about “Maca”. Maca has been highly regarded for centuries as a miracle food so it’s no surprise it has become a recent addition to the “must have” nutrient list for smoothies.

Although it’s part of the broccoli, radish, and watercress family and even looks like a very robust radish, it has an earthy taste with a nutty flavor, making it a perfect complement to smoothies. Like the rest of the roots in the cruciferous family, it’s low in calories – one teaspoon of maca powder has only 10 calories.

Native to the Andes Mountains, maca is the superfood of one of the oldest, and once most advanced civilizations on earth – the Incas and Peruvians. Over the centuries maca has been called “magic, the food of the gods, a natural Viagra, and a miracle drug” for a reason. It works. For centuries people have been using it for everything from enhancing their fertility to boosting their immune system or libido, but most people simply love the non-caffeinated burst of energy they get from putting maca in their smoothies.

Most people report a subtle, but noticeable, non-jittery type energy boost within minutes to hours from adding just one teaspoon into their smoothie.

It’s not because it’s magical, but because of the root’s very real and very scientific makeup and how it affects everything from circulation to the endocrine system. To date there are no known toxic side effects from using maca. As a matter of fact, scientists say that repeated use of maca is like repeatedly exercising – the body not only adapts, but also gets stronger over time each time you use it.

Maca RootWhile maca does have side effects they aren’t toxic. High doses are considered to have a relaxing effect on the heart, rather than a tension creating effect like caffeine. High doses can also increase fertility in men and women and may disrupt some forms of birth control, although researchers aren’t sure about this. Maca can also cause more frequent menstruation in some women, although women report it’s also helped with the hot flashes and problems women who are menopausal or pre or post-menopausal experience.

If you do take high does it’s important to make sure you get plenty of water. While taking the recommended dose can increase your energy, high doses can sometimes cause fatigue due to dehydration and heightened potassium levels.

Because the benefits are noticeable immediately, and because they accumulate over time with regular use, maca helps re-enforce the benefits of a healthy smoothie habit. As powerful as the results of taking maca can be, it’s not a drug. It’s a plant. Maca contains over 55 beneficial and naturally occurring phyto-chemicals (plant chemicals). Those chemicals play critical roles in the hormonal health of our body, including affecting our thyroid gland, immune system, reproduction system and brain.

Health Benefits of Maca

Just one teaspoon in your smoothie once or twice a day can do amazing things. Here are just a few of the things you can expect maca in your smoothie to help with:

Energy: Most people feel their mood and energy level lift almost instantly. Users report their energy, stamina and endurance.

Sex Drive: Maca has been shown to increase not only the male sex drive, but the production of sperm as well.

Fertility: Maca increases fertility in both men and women.

Migraines: If you suffer from migraine headaches you might want to try maca. Because most migraines are related to an imbalance in hormone levels, or fluctuating hormone levels, maca works by leveling out those levels. Maca doesn’t create any hormones in the body – it just helps the body produce them more consistently and effectively. It helps balance the body’s production of estrogen and progesterone. Maca also helps restore balance to the hypothalamus and pituitary glands – the body’s master gland system.

Memory: Maca enhances memory as well as our ability to learn and process mentally. It makes us more alert and aware.

Wounds: Maca speeds wound healing and benefits the circulatory system as well.

Vitamin packed: Maca includes 55 phyto-chemicals, including vitamins B1, B2, B12, and Vitamin C, zinc. It has amino acids, calcium and phosphorus as well.

Immune Booster: Maca’s 22 fatty acids function both as a fungicide and as a local antiseptic. These actions, along with the natural Vitamin C and zinc are believed to help aid in overall immunity enhancement.

Stress: For people with adrenal stress from work, disease, exercise or PTSD, maca can reduce the effects of cortisol on the adrenal glands and other organs so impacted by a “Type A”, high pressure lifestyle or job. Athletes, executives and anyone with an active life will appreciate how maca helps address the destructive actions of mental, emotional and physical stress on the body. Maca can help lower high blood pressure and how the body burns and utilizes food.

Thyroid: The Thyroid gland controls the rate at which the body produces energy from nutrients. Maca contains an alkaloid extract which activates the body’s natural calcitonine hormones, which regulate the metabolism of calcium (Ca) and phosphorus (P) in the blood. The hormone is secreted by the thyroid and the parathyroid. It acts in the intestines, bones, and kidneys to increase the (Ca2+) in the plasma. It also aids in wound healing through blood clotting. (Dr. Chacon — Peru)

Pancreas: Maca also boosts the work your pancreas does in keeping your blood sugar levels even. The pancreas is a vital part of the digestive process. If the duct from the pancreas become blocked for some reason the digestive fluids of the pancreas may digest the pancreas itself, or lead to pancreatitis, or pancreatic cancer.

Thymus: Your thymus is the organ responsible for the health of your immune system. It produces the T-cells that fight off infection and disease, especially important if you are getting treatment for HIV, AIDS or cancer. Maca contains vitamin C as well as trace elements of zinc. Researchers found out years ago that C and zinc, when taken together, help boost the immune system function of the thymus gland. Part of maca’s adaptogenic value may be its ability to enhance the thymus’ cell mediated immunity.


You’ll often hear various terms, such as “phyto-chemical”, or “adaptogen” used when describing Maca. Here is a list of the most common terms and what they mean:

Phyto-chemical – Phyto means “plant,” and “phyto-genisis” is the study of plants and “phyto-chemical” is the study of the chemical compounds that occur naturally in plants. For instance, the substance that gives blueberries their dark blue color is a phyto-chemical. Scientists generally use the term to refer to those plant chemicals that may have a biological significance, but are not yet established as essential nutrients.

Adaptogen – An adaptogen is a new class of metabolic regulators (such as maca) which increase the ability of an organism (people or animals) to adapt to environmental factors (stress, diet, toxins, disease etc) and to avoid damage from such factors without causing any side effects from its use. Ginseng, a very popular root herb around the world, is another example of an adaptogen. The concept and name is accepted and used among mainstream researchers as well as many medical professionals.


No one blog post or website can answer every conceivable question about maca, but here are some of the most frequently asked questions people have about maca:

How long will it last?
Maca will keep up to a year if kept in a cool, dry, dark place, but like most supplements and herbs, fresher is better and more potent. Use it within a few months of ordering if you’re using it at home. If you’re adding it to smoothies at a smoothie bar, chances are it’s very fresh since it’s something most smoothie bars go through quickly since it’s in high demand.

Is it a liquid, powder, tablet, gelatin or capsule and which is best to use?
Maca comes as all of the above, and it’s recommended that you use whatever form best suits you and your life style and preferences. Powder or liquid forms are best if using it in a smoothie. If you use a preferred method (liquid for instance) over a recommended method (powder) you’re more likely to take it consistently. It only works when you take it, so use a form you’re most likely to be comfortable with taking over time. Consider things like taste and how you plan to take it. Many people like to put it in a smoothie; others prefer to dissolve it in water, while others like to take it in pill or capsule form. People react to different forms differently. Some people feel no difference on the liquid and respond well to the powder. It’s up to the individual. The price may vary as well – with powders being less expensive than liquid for instance.

What is the difference between cooked, raw, and gelatinized maca?
In Peru, maca root is traditionally cooked before it is used. Peruvians roast maca roots or boil and mash them like potatoes. One benefit to using cooked maca is that it is easier to digest than the raw root. If you try raw maca and find it upsets your stomach, you can find a supplement or powder that comes from cooked maca. Another option if raw maca irritates your stomach is the gelatinized form. The process of gelatinizing maca uses low heat and pressure to separate out the fibrous parts of the root. This makes the maca more digestible.

Is there a difference between raw and organic?
Yes, depending on the supplier there is a difference, notably in the way it is handled. Organic doesn’t necessarily mean raw. Some manufacturers lightly heat their maca, and cooking, even slightly, means the maca is not raw. If raw is important to you, ask your supplier or smoothie bar owner about their maca. Lightly heating it makes it easier for some people to digest, but does not impact the potency of the root.

What does it taste like?
Different people say different things about the taste, and raw maca tastes different than dried but in general, maca has an earthy taste that is mildly nutty with a hint of butterscotch. It’s easily blended into superfood smoothies, various milks, chocolates, or mixed into flour for dessert recipes and doesn’t have a strong taste when combined with other foods or liquids. Although people in Peru and some restaurants do cook with maca bread, soups etc. Maca is used as a tea, as a spice, in yogurt, chocolate bars and as a supplement.

How often should I take it?
Just as with any exercise, herb, supplement or product, it’s wise to cycle, or take some time off from time to time so your body doesn’t become so used to it that the benefits lapse. Typical schedules vary. You may want to take it for a week then take a week off. Or you can do a month on, a month off and so on. Listen to your body and follow a schedule that works best for you! If you’re asking if you can have a couple of smoothies a day, the answer is probably, depending on how much you put in the smoothie and how your body responds to it. If you find yourself staying awake, unable to sleep, or feeling very alert, you might want to cut back.

Maca Smoothie Recipes

It’s been my experience that maca goes well is just about every smoothie imaginable. Many of the smoothie recipes posted on this site recommend using maca as an add-on for all the benefits listed above.

As with any new smoothie ingredient, vitamin, or supplement, start out with a smaller dose and work your way up. One teaspoon of maca is a good starting point, but you can easily work your way up to 2 tablespoons per smoothie.

For a smoothie where maca is the main ingredient, check out this Maca Superfood Smoothie Recipe.

For all of my smoothies featuring maca, click here.

I’d love to know if you use maca in your smoothies and what health benefits you have experienced – please divulge in the comments below.

Where to buy Maca

Your local health food store is sure to carry maca. Ask someone working there for their take on this superfood. If you’d rather purchase maca online, hop on over to Mountain Rose Herbs for the best price and quality around.

Sources for this blog post include:


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111 Responses to What is Maca and why should I put it in my Smoothie?

  1. Nick #

    Hi, thank you for the post! I just started taking Maca for libido issues – I am confused though: My Holland & Barrett organic powder says take 10-15g a day, yet most web sources are saying 1.5-3 a day..what are your thoughts?

    Have a great day


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Nick,

      Great question. It’s my opinion that most people don’t take enough maca to really experience all the benefits. Maca is more of a food than a herb, therefore you can consume large quantities like the people of South America have been for centuries.

      However, as with anything this potent that you’re new to it’s a good idea to start out with small dosages and work your way up. I started with 1/2 teaspoon in a smoothie and now routinely add 2 heaping tablespoons. Also of note, maca is a good one to cycle, or take for 3 weeks straight, then take a week off. This cycling will further enhance the benefits.

      Grams are a measure of weight, whereas teaspoon and tablespoon are measures of volume. I’m not sure of the exact conversion from grams to teaspoons or tablespoons. I suggest starting out with smaller amounts and working your way up.



      • Julie #

        For someone that has had gastric sleeve surgery, is this product okay to take in small amounts, Is it a thickening agent in smoothies, because I would not want to stretch my stomach, and does it help you move your bowels?

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hi Julie,

          You should consult a medical professional regarding maca and gastric sleeve surgery. However, it is not a thickening agent nor does it help you move your bowels.


  2. john #

    Hello there,
    Thanks for your help. My question is what’s the difference between one maca company from the other? And I have seen a huge price difference, which one do you recommend? And why?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi John,

      From my personal experience, Mountain Rose Herbs has the highest quality maca at the best price point. Why, because I’ve used it and myriad other products from their company for years with great success.

  3. This is awesome, thanks!


  4. Carmen Cornejo #


    Thank you for this article. My husband and I are from Peru and we start using this great food from Peru. i did not use in the past for bias information of side effects.. I will comment later of the results. Your article encourage me to take it..



    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey Carmen,

      As is the case with any food, some people might experience side effects, but most people really benefit from maca, myself included :) Looking forward to hearing how you do on maca.



  5. Jet #

    Is it safe to take both raw Maca and Mega Food for women’s at the same time? please help.


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Jet,

      That’s a good question. I don’t see why there would be an issue. I take most of my vitamins while gulping down smoothies containing all kinds of stuff including maca. Although a maca supplement (pill) is a little different. I would ask Mega Food to be on the safe side.


  6. Jet #

    Thank you so much for responding me.

  7. Brenda #

    tI recently bought raw organic maca. I started with 1 tablespoon…is that too much? Also, I have read articles that state maca can either make you lose weight or gain it. I certainly wouldn’t want to gain weight.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Brenda,

      1 tablespoon of maca is not too much. Maca powder is a whole food; so you can use it liberally. I often use 2 heaping tablespoons in my smoothies.

      I don’t think of maca as directly impacting weight loss or gain. However, it does give you a nice energy boost. With that extra energy you could move more to lose weight, or workout (lift weights) longer to gain weight.


  8. Janis #

    thank you for all the information on maca answered all my questions about it.I have a recipe that has this in now I am interested in ordering it and trying in cooking and in smoothies very helpfull thanks again

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Janis,

      My pleasure. Glad I could help with one of my favorite superfoods, maca.


  9. Marlena #

    Im 8 mnths pregnant and suffer from bad headaches and was wondering is it safe for me?and what about while breastfeeding?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Marlena,

      This is a question for your doctor or a licensed medical professional. Maca doesn’t agree with everyone; so I wouldn’t try it while pregnant.


  10. sandeep #

    I recently purchased Lyva Organic Maca powder from http://www.goindiaorganic.com, i tried 1 tablespoon of maca powder late evening in my shake. I could not sleep that night. Is it because of the energy that i got from Maca Powder ?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Sandeep,

      You definitely don’t want to consume maca in the evening because of its energizing effects, which can certainly make it tough to get to sleep. I personally consume it in my morning smoothies only.


      • George Blumenthal #

        Took 1500 mg (3 capsules) at night once and never got to sleep all night. Taught me to respect it. Now I start my day with it.

  11. kathryn #

    I have a terrible time sleeping. Sometimes I can’t get to sleep, but even if I do I’m wide awake 2 hours later. Someone thought it might be Adrenal gland related. Do you know if getting a good night’s sleep is one of the side benefits of maca? Or do you have another recommendation. Thanks for your help.

  12. Sherill Edwards #

    Hi Ryan!
    Can Maca make you crazy sleepy? I noticed that it seemed to be putting me to sleep recently.I felt energized when I first started taking it and I like Maca :) but it was seriously putting me to sleep. Could it be that I need to increase the amount I take? I was following the packaging on Navitas raw powder, which is only 1 teaspoon. I need the energy boost not a nap! Although naps are good…smile! I have love iron. Thanks!

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Sherill,

      It may be that you really need some sleep :) Maca is typically energizing and people often have trouble falling asleep when taking it, especially when ingested later in the day. It’s possible that you’re experiencing the opposite effects of maca, or maybe the herb is trying to tell you sleep is in your best interest. Are you sure it’s not something else you’re consuming? 1 teaspoon isn’t much, you can easily take 2-3 tablespoons.


  13. I have experienced the benefits of maca especially in the areas of increased energy and libido. My issue is as soon as I open the bag my gag reflex starts and in continues while I’m mixing and after I drink. I normally mix in about 4 oz of water w/ cocoa and vitex. Any suggestions on continuing usage without the gag?


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Jeanette,

      Nice to hear you’re experiencing those health benefits. Unfortunately, I don’t have much advice on dealing with an aversion to maca. I think it actually tastes kind of good – has a nutty flavor. You could opt for consuming it in capsule form.


  14. Kimberley McCacken #

    Hi Ryan

    I am menopausal,I tried a whole array of herbal remedies that did not work for my extreme symptoms {everything from heart jitters, hot flashes that come so strongly from the inside they felt like heart attack,electric shock name it I get it} I finally had to go on Premarin.I am on a very low dose 0.3 mg I have recently started eating healthier doing yoga etc. I bought a nutibullet(love it) some recipes call for Maca powder, and I am just wondering if its alright to use this while on Premarin?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey Kimberley,

      Sorry to hear about your symptoms. Whether or not maca is safe to take while on Premarin is a question for your doctor or a qualified medical professional. However, I ran a Google search and it appears some women are taking both without an issue. If you do try maca I would opt for the gelatinized over regular raw maca.


    • Kim I had heart jitters also and I was told I lacked potassium and maganesium. Once I started taking the supplement they suggested for me that went away. I would be careful about taking premarin. Any drug to me is not good. What are the side effects?

      Also you build toxins in your body when you take drugs and it also depletes your body of nutrients.

  15. My question is I have been taking Maca powder for a couple weeks now. Only doing 4 days a week. The is what David Wolfe recommends. I noticed the other day after I had my smoothie with that and cacao powder I had terrible gas and bloating. I have had diarrhea and my stomach just has not felt right for a couple days. Is it possible I took too much. This is the first time I have experienced this.

    I was just wondering if it detoxifies?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Linda,

      Maca isn’t known for being a detoxifier. I would first suspect cacao as the culprit, there are a fair amount of people who simply don’t do well on raw cacao and have to avoid it completely.

      I like David’s recommendations (was introduced to maca by David several years ago) of taking 4 times a week. I personally like to cycle it, about 3 weeks on, 1 week off. Maca could very well be causing your stomach issues. There’s been a lot of buzz lately about raw verse gelatinized or cooked maca. Indigenous people rarely consume maca raw. I would look into get a gelatinized maca if your symptoms persist.


      • Ryan:

        Thanks for the reply. I put both maca and cocao in the shake with goji berries. So maybe I put too much in and all the combinations might have done it. Maybe what I will do is use one or the other in my shake and try smaller amounts to see what happens.

        It definitely detoxified. Not a bad thing. But the tummy was not feeling good. When your stomach doesn’t feel good it is hard to do anything.

        I don’t believe it is raw. It is in powder form and organic. As I said I didn’t seem to be having any problem til the other day and I combined both maca and cocao.

        It says that the Mac is sin-dried and low-temperature processed into a fine powder. So I don’t think that is considered ray.

        Thanks again.

  16. Vivi #

    I am menopuse,i am taking vitex and black cohosh for the hot flash.is it safe if i take maca powder as well.??

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Vivi,

      I’m not familiar with vitex or black cohosh, but even if I was, that’s really a question for your doctor or a qualified medical professional.


  17. monica #

    Hi Ryan
    Can Maca interfere with my blood pressure and get me and increase of blood pressure.my blood pressure is under control 120/80 .

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Monica,

      If you’re asking if maca will increase your blood pressure, no, it’s not known to do that. Actually just the opposite – maca can help lower high blood pressure.


      • Sindy #

        Hi Ryan,

        Thanks for this information. I just started taking Maca today and already I feel better.

        I am commenting here to say that from what I’ve read, Maca most definitely can raise blood pressure. So, people who have high blood pressure need to monitor that.

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hi Sindy,

          Maca has been known to act fast :)

          Could provide a source(s) for where you read that maca can raise blood pressure? I’d like to read it and possibly update this article. Wasn’t something I encountered when researching.


  18. dee #

    Hi Ryan, I took 3 tbsp of maca and got a migraine and acne breakouts should I just stick to 2 tbsp for 6 days and 1 day off?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Dee,

      Did you work your way up to 3 tablespoons? I recommend starting with 1 teaspoon and working up to 2-3 tablespoons. Absolutely reduce the amount you’re consuming if you experience an adverse reaction. I cycle maca by consuming 5-6 days a week for 3 weeks then take a week off.


  19. tili #

    I started Royal Green Maca Superfood yesterday. Can i drink alcohol while I’m taking Maca?

    What is the effect of Maca on a person who has high sugar in his blood (will it aggravate or reduce)?


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Tili,

      I would advise against drinking alcohol when taking maca, at least at the same time. Maca is an energizer and alcohol has a sedating effect. Are there actual side effects of doing this, I’m not sure.

      Maca has been shown to boost the work your pancreas does in keeping your blood sugar levels even.


  20. JJ #

    The first day I took Maca, one 500 mg in morning and one 500 mg in afternoon, I could not sleep all night. Even I had swan 3000 m in that day. I don’t feel tired that night at all.

    I think it gives me too much energy. Not sure if I should take it or not. Thanks for the information.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey JJ,

      I think most people would consider too much energy a good problem to have :) You might reduce the amount of maca you take and only consume in the morning.


      • JJ #

        Thanks Ryan, your are great. Have a happy Holiday ~~~~

      • Gary #

        I started taking maca system restoration 500mg capsule Herb Pharms 2 days ago. I wanted to try it for libido issues. I been taking mega men vitality pack also . Mixing them together would cause a problem taking both supplements.

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hi Gary,

          If you’re asking if taking both supplements is an issue, I really don’t know. You’d have to contact the manufacturer’s and get their take.


  21. Have been using maca for 8 month now (with small breaks every month), feeling great after being constantly tired and depressed. Now my daily mood is great and the energies I have, I didn’t experience even when I was young.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Jane,

      Thanks for sharing that nice testimonial of what maca can do for your health.


  22. hazel #

    Hi, I am going to buy some maca today. Is it okay to use both maca and chia seeds daily?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Hazel,

      Yes, it’s perfectly fine and safe to consume both maca and chia seeds daily.


  23. Lorie #

    Hi Ryan,

    I just started maca powder yesterday. I’m taking 1 tablespoon a day in my smoothie. I do feel more energy but that’s not why I bought it. I’m having hot flashes every hour all night. So I’m really hoping it helps me with this problem. I guess I need to give it a few weeks to see if it is going to help me, right?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Lorie,

      Yes, it typically takes a couple of weeks for an herb or superfood like maca to make a difference with something like hot flashes.


  24. Lavanya #

    I have never seen people reviewing that they had seen increase in breast/butt size by intake of raw maca powder. Positive results are obtained only with gelatinized maca. Why is that? I wonder! Have seen several reviews on Amazon maca powder & gelatinized pills.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey Lavanya,

      There’s been a lot of buzz about gelatinized maca lately. Apparently, a fair amount of people have a hard time digesting raw maca. Gelatinized maca (cooked at low temps) seems to work well for these people.


  25. ruby #


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Ruby,

      I don’t have any personal experience with that maca product and therefore can’t recommend or endorse it.


  26. Dammy #

    Hi Ryan,

    I tend to workout in the evenings during the week, usually around 7/8pm. I understand it’s best to use Maca first thing in the morning. My questions are ..

    1. Will the primary effect of Maca .i.e. increased energy levels still be active at that time of the day?

    2. Not time related question, is it safe to use with Spirulina?

    3. Outside of consuming Maca as part of a smoothie, which other ways is it advisable to be consumed?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Dammy,

      I usually workout in the evening myself.

      1) You might experience some lingering energizing affects. It really depends on your body. You could trying consuming maca as late as the early afternoon and see if you’re able unwind and fall asleep at your normal time.

      2) Yes, maca and spirulina go well together.

      3) You can mix the powder into soups and stews or simply dissolve in water. Taking capsules is also an option.


  27. jazelle #

    I have been taking maca for a month now. I recently just purchased cleanse smart to detox. Is it okay to take maca during my detox? The herbs included in the detox are: bupleurum, burdock, celandine leaf, chlorella, dandelion, hawthorn, milk thistle, red clover leaf, slippery elm, marshmallow root, and triphala.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Jazelle,

      I’m not qualified to answer that question. I would contact the makers of cleanse smart to see if there’s a possible conflict. All the herbs in that formula look great!


  28. Lyatta #

    I bought my maca root from amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00FW4AFF4/ref=redir_mdp_mobile?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_details_o02_s00_i00….it’s organic is it safe to use in smoothies…I wanted to know before I try it.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Lyatta,

      I haven’t tried that particular brand, but it looks like a good one to me. It wasn’t $500, was it? That’s ridiculously expensive. Maca is typically $10-15 a pound.


      • Lyatta #

        No mine was 39.97 …that price is wayyyy too much for maca root powder and coaco nibs the 500 just got put there. Nobody is gonna pay that..

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Just making sure :)

  29. TrisaB #

    Hi Ryan..

    May I suggest for those that are having trouble with Maca, that they try the Black Maca as opposed to the Yellow.. The Black can actually help with digestion.. and might be a better choice for some..

    Also.. I just want to take this opportunity to add.. how much You are appreciated Ryan for all your work in helping people to live a healthier life.. You always show how much you care in your timely and excellent responses.. Thank-You..

    As Always… Keep up the good work..

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi TrisaB,

      Thanks for the insightful and helpful comment. I’ve never actually tried black maca – will have to soon. Have you found the black easier to digest?

      That’s very kind of you to say. It really means a lot. I thoroughly enjoy sharing what I’ve learned so that others can improve their health and ultimately lead happier lives. This is my contribution to the betterment of our world :)


      • TrisaB #

        Ryan, personally no, I don’t seem to have any problem with Maca, and enjoy the benefits.. I only use Maca in smoothies tho.. and I always add a little rejuvelac in place of water to my smoothies.. so that may help with the digestion..

        But as you know, Smoothies are a very personal evolution.. what works for some doesn’t always work for everyone.. So it is important to listen to your body (it’s amazing how so many are not attuned to their own bodies reactions).. But with concentrated attention.. awareness will increase.. Nothing is more important..

        Through trial and error, they can be making smoothies that energize, invigorate and nourish their bodies.. It can change their lives… It did for me and my loved ones.. I can’t remember when I last had a cold or any other sickness and I am 73 yrs old..

        That’s why Ryan your work is sooo important.. Everyone you reach can help others to not rely on processed chemically treated food as much.. just by the simple addition of a healthy smoothie to their diet..

        Didn’t mean to ramble on..
        As Always Ryan.. Keep up the Good Work..

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hey Trisa,

          I’ve never had any issues with maca either. Using fermented beverages like rejuvelac, kombucha, and kefir in your smoothies is good for digestion and adds nutrition.

          It’s nice to hear someone who “gets it”. We are all unique individuals with unique nutritional needs. One smoothie does not fit all. Experimentation and listening to your body are integral to creating smoothies that truly nourish you. Listen to your body at all times, it has so much to say.

          Smoothies changed my life and it’s great to hear they’ve had a positive impact on you too, Trisa. You sound like a spring chicken at 73.

          Your rambling is always welcome :)


  30. Gaynor #

    Hi There Ryan
    I think I read somewhere not to take maca if you have cancer or I think more specifically hormonal cancer. Do you know of this. I don’t have either, just really wary

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Gaynor,

      I’ve never read of heard to avoid maca if you have cancer of any kind. A quick Google search didn’t turn up much either. If anything I would think maca would support your body in overcoming cancer.


      • TrisaB #

        Hello again Ryan..

        There seem to be varying opinions about Maca and Cancer.. So it is difficult to give an answer to Gaynor.

        So I would first suggest that cancer sufferers should seek out an Naturopathic – Holistic Doctor before taking any supplements..
        Note: Naturopathic, meaning a doctor that is well trained in Nutrition.
        Holistic, meaning a doctor that treats the body as a whole rather than just the symptoms… (unlike the average doctor who has no training whatsoever in Nutriton and treats only the symptoms with drugs).

        Actually a good recommendation for all of us.. ;>)

        Having said that.. for the rest of us..
        If some are confused about what amount they should take..
        The recommended dosages are:
        10.9-24g of the maca for a 150lb person
        14.5-32g of the maca for a 200lb person
        18.1-40g of the maca for a 250lb person

        That’s approximately
        2 tsps. to 4 3/4 tsps. for a 150lb person
        3 tsps. to 6 1/2 tsps. for a 200lb person
        3 1/2 tsps. to 8 tsps. for a 250lb person

        As you can see for each weight the amount varies, which shows that what you take is very individual, so if you pay attention, your body will tell you what is ideal for you..

        IMHO if someone is just starting out using Maca.. They should start with just a teaspoon (it has been known to cause a little gassiness in some people until they become used to it), then slowly increase to within the range of recommended amounts.

        I would also suggest to someone just starting.. To buy the easier to digest Organic rather than the Raw Maca..

        Hope this was helpful…
        As Always Ryan.. Keep up the good work…

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hi Trisa,

          Thanks for the insightful and thoughtful comment. Your advice for Gaynor is spot on. I don’t always have time to thoroughly reply to every comment, but looking back should have provided more info to Gaynor. Thanks for filling in the gap :)

          Where did you obtain those recommended dosages?

          I concur: starting with just a teaspoon and gradually increasing the amount while paying close attention to your body is the best approach for those getting started with maca.

          The gelatinized or cooked maca tends to be easier for some to digest as well.


  31. Iris #

    Hi Nick, Thank you for sharing yor knowledge and experience. How can I follow your blog? Are you on Facebook?

  32. Stanley #

    Hi Ryan and Trisa I’m about to start taking Maca and want to thank you for all the great comments. And as an 80 year you have explained exactly what I need to know. keep up your much appreciated help….Thank you both!!!

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey Stanley,

      It’s my pleasure, and while I can’t speak for Trisa, probably her’s too :)

      Good luck with the maca!


      • TrisaB #

        Hi Ryan and Stanley..

        Yes, it is definitely nice to learn that your words have helped someone in their quest to improve their health.

        Isn’t it fortunate that we have someone like Ryan, who provides us, with his caring generous nature, a place where searchers can find information…
        and can hear from others their experiences and questions. And then takes the time to respond.. Thank-you Ryan..

        I do hope that Stanley will let us know how the maca works out for him..

        As Always Ryan, keep up the Good Work…

  33. Mike & Patsy #

    My wife and I both take generic Rx for Hypothyroidism. Are the cautions given for use of Maca for hypo hyper or both?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hey Mike,

      Maca is often recommend for hypothyroidism and not hyperthyroidism. However, you should consult your doctor either way.


      • doctors arnt sure if i have hypo or hyper thyroidism but all i know is i cant gain weight easily i tested for hyper i think. so will this help me gain a good amount of weight im really skinny need to gain bout 10 pounds.

  34. roberta #

    Can you mix organic maca gold with super collagen? I work graveyard so if I drink this in the morning I would have trouble sleeping. Actually I did use these two products and in the morning had problems falling asleep. This was about two months ago.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Roberta,

      I’m not familiar with super collagen. If you’ve consumed it with maca before it sounds like it’s not a problem. If you work graveyard and sleep during the day, then yes, don’t consume it in the morning, but rather after you wake up, or before your shift.


  35. Diana #

    Is it better to consume maca before or after workouts? I work out in the mornings.


    • Ryan Carmody #

      It’s better to consume before working out, Diana.

  36. GCChica #

    My friend suggested I try Maca for hormonal balance. I am really open minded about it, although I am not sure about the ideal dosage.
    I am concerned it will make me put on weight as I am one of those who packs on KGs just by looking at a photo of something sweet.
    Any additional info… ?
    Thank you :)

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi GCChica,

      Start with about 1/2 teaspoon or the recommended dosage from the retailer you purchase it from and slowly work up to as much as 2 tablespoons. Pay attention to your body and how you feel, that that be your guide. Maca is very low in calories and not something that contributes to weight gain. Usually just the opposite, you end up moving more from an increase in energy and lose weight.


  37. marissa #

    I am a person with anemia. I experience a lot of fatigue and tiredness especially when closer to my menstrual cycle. I have heard maca helps with that and also gives energy.. I am a person who does smoothies on a regular basis would maca be okay as an everyday use, once a week?

    I was wondering if it was true as well as any other information. .

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Marissa,

      Yes, maca is perhaps best known for providing a boost in energy among other health benefits. You can use maca daily with one caveat. I recommend cycling it. For example, consume daily for 3 weeks, then take a week off. Or take for 2 weeks straight, then take a couple of days off. This increases its efficacy, and saves you a little money :)


  38. Janette #

    Hi Ryan,

    Please can you tell me where to buy Maca and roughly how much will it cost. I am a senior citizen.

  39. simone #

    Hi Ryan, I know it is heated in Peru, do health benefits deteriorate when it is heated? I’m not sure of temperature breakdowns in maca. Just as iron isn’t absorbed properly if taken with calcium and so on, heating changes compounds etc

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Simone,

      As far as I know maca isn’t negatively impacted by the heat. There is a cooked or gelatinized form that some people prefer because they can more easily digest.


  40. Natasha #

    I heard that BLACk maca root powder can be taken to help enhance a woman’s curves is this true? and does it have to be black or can I have the normal one that they sell in Holland and Barrats

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Natasha,

      I’ve never heard that about black maca – do you have a resource to share? I imagine any color maca would do. They all have similar affects.


  41. Tom #

    Hi Ryan,
    I started to take Organic Maca Powder 4 days ago, 15mg per day and no results yet.
    In how long should I feel the benefits?
    Beside that in those 4 days I was feeling kind of tired, with no energy.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Tom,

      When, and how much, you feel the effects of maca varies from person to person. In my experience it takes a couple of weeks and is a gradual increase in energy. You won’t get a huge surge like you might from caffeine or an energy drink. It’s more of a realization that after a couple of weeks you feel more energized.


  42. Maria #

    Hi am looking at mountain rose herbs maca and the maca teams maca products. I want gelatinized maca and maca team has all colors gelatinized. Have you tried maca team?


    It is really expensive.

    Have you tied taking mountain rose herbs suma root at the same time? I read about suma so was curious to try that. Probably some greek yogurt, coconut oil and vanilla powder simple so it’s more like supplement but without capsules.


    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Maria,

      This is the first I’ve heard of The Maca Team. Their products appear to be high quality, but are very expensive. I’ll have to try sometime. Let me know if you sample them.

      Haven’t taken suma root with maca so I can’t speak to that.


      • Maria #

        Hi there. Another question. I am taking certified organic gelitinized maca from Gaia herbs(was just discontinued may be back later they said)

        I have severe gas and bloating after I took it. This isn’t the first time I’ve taken the maca. It doesn’t always happen.

        What is going on?

        • Ryan Carmody #

          Hard to say. I’d stop taking it. Maybe that form of maca doesn’t sit well with you or maybe maca in general doesn’t agree with you.

          • Maria #

            Hi thanks. Have idea try no coffee and take it with tropical traditions fermented papaya http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/atchara.htm

            Have you tried that? Maybe could be a digestive aid worth trying. I wasn’t mixing it in my coffee FYI

            Also I notice if I take maca with breakfast doesn’t seem to give energy but if I take it later in the day afternoon but before 4pm(so don’t take too late) seems to hae effect. Is that common?

            Great day

  43. Suzuka #

    Hi Ryan,
    I am 35 yrs. From last week I am taking maca capsule but I gained some weight which I never wanted that. I am very disappointed with maca.

    Can you help.

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Suzuka,

      I highly doubt the maca caused your weight gain, especially that quickly. I’d look at foods in your diet or lifestyle.


  44. steve #

    hi ryan,

    i just started to use maca i am using it to increase my libido, i would like to know how long would it take to start seeing the effects of this and how much should i start with in order to get the boost i need?

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Steve,

      I’d start with the recommended dosage of the maca product you purchased, unless you’ve got bulk maca powder. Then I would start with 1 tsp a day and work up to 2 TBSP over the course of 2 weeks. Hard to day when you’ll notice a difference. Everyone responds differently.


  45. Sarah #

    I just ordered the capsule form of maca & I am confused on how to take it!
    Please help

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Sarah,

      Are there directions on the package? If not, I would contact the manufacturer. If the capsules contain powdered maca you can open and dump into your smoothies.


  46. Jeannette #

    Hello there! been reading the comments and am excited to try using Maca, I am usually very tired and at times nap several times during the day. I have also been working out, have lost some weight and need a little more of an energy boost to continue my workouts. The reason I am hesitant to begin is because I have read from several sources over the internet that maca makes you gain weight and that would be the opposite of what I’m trying to accomplish. any advice? thanks!

    • Ryan Carmody #

      Hi Jeannette,

      IMO, the weight gain claims are unfounded. Or at least I haven’t found a viable source to back this up. You certainly won’t gain weight from the calories in consuming small amounts (1/2 to 2 TBSP) of maca each day. If you get the typical energy boost from maca and start lifting heavy objects you could very well gain weight.


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