Aphrodisiacs are supposed to heighten sexual function and libido. Some of them work because they have an effect on hormone production and others work because they stimulate other parts of the body, including the brain. Maca has been said to be a natural aphrodisiac that can also increase fertility in men and women. As a natural remedy for sexual ailments, Maca has seen increased interest in recent years, but is it really an effective aphrodisiac and fertility enhancement substance, or are the claims completely groundless?
Why is Maca seen as a natural fertility treatment?
Maca grows naturally in the Andean region and has been used for thousands of years by the indigenous population as a fertility treatment. There has been some excitement for men and women trying to conceive in other parts of the world when the plant became more well-known. As a result, there have been a number of studies conducted on whether or not Maca is a viable natural treatment for infertility.
Where do the claims of Maca being a natural aphrodisiac come in?
The flip-side of the Maca coin from fertility is aphrodisiac. The same conclusions were made about Maca being a natural aphrodisiac as they were about Maca being a natural fertility treatment. In times of lower birth rates and virility, the Andean peoples would use Maca to turn things around. Because people in other parts of the world like being able to treat both of these things in a natural way, they latched onto Maca being the perfect, natural solution.
What have studies shown about Maca as a natural aphrodisiac and a fertility treatment?
Unfortunately, most studies conducted do not support the claim that Maca has an effect on hormone production in men or women. In one study, a group of men were given Maca and a placebo was given to a control group. Neither group saw any change in the production of reproductive hormones, including testosterone. This indicates that Maca does not have any effect on fertility or as a natural aphrodisiac in men from the hormone perspective.
The same was found when women were given Maca. One study was testing to see if menopausal women would gain a boost in hormone production with Maca as a natural alternative. The study found that Maca had no effect at all on hormone production.
Why do people insist Maca is a natural aphrodisiac and fertility treatment?
The same study that found that Maca has no effect on hormone production concluded that while menopausal women had no change in hormones, the women that were taking Maca had a significant increase in alleviating certain psychological symptoms. Among these were depression and anxiety. This study also found that Maca was able to alleviate sexual problems in participating women. Clearly, Maca does help as a natural aphrodisiac.
How does Maca work as a natural fertility treatment and aphrodisiac?
The answer to why Maca does seem to work as a natural aphrodisiac and fertility treatment may lie in its antioxidant properties. In addition to the claims that Maca is an aphrodisiac and good for fertility, it was touted as a powerful antioxidant. This, at least, has been substantiated in a study published in 2002. Because Maca’s natural antioxidant properties can rein in free radicals and generally assist in making the body function better, it can help create a better environment for the libido. This could be the reason behind the claims of Maca as a natural aphrodisiac and fertility treatment, and it could also explain how Maca was able to help post-menopausal women alleviate anxiety and depression.Last Updated: Thursday, August 2, 2012