Maca is a hormone-balancing root vegetable that is said to be particularly helpful for female fertility.
In addition, this root vegetable comes in various types or colors.
Each color has a different nutritional composition and this can affect how they work in the body.
So, if you’re trying to figure out the best maca for female fertility, then keep reading to learn:
- How maca supports fertility.
- Which color(s) to use.
- The best brands for maca supplements.
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DOES MACA INCREASE FEMALE FERTILITY?
Much of maca’s popularity for fertility comes from its historical use in Peru, where it’s been used for centuries to support hormonal health and fertility (source).
As for modern research on maca and fertility, most of the data is based on animal studies.
Overall, here’s what we do know about how maca and how it may support women’s fertility:
- Rich In Glucosinolates: Maca is part of the cruciferous family of vegetables. Like all plants in this family, maca contains glucosinolates, which are compounds that help with estrogen metabolism. Interestingly, maca is said to have approximately 100x more glucosinolates than other cruciferous vegetables (source).
- Adaptogenic Properties: Maca is classified as an adaptogen. This group of plants are known for supporting our stress response system (aka the HPA or hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis) and regulating cortisol. Simply put, having too much or little cortisol is no good for hormone balance or for fertility. So, by regulating cortisol levels, maca may indirectly improve fertility.
- Supports Hypothalamus and Pituitary Glands: Research shows that maca supports the proper function of the hypothalamus and pituitary glands. The hypothalamus is essentially the overseer of everything related to our hormones. As the overseer, it sends signals to the pituitary, which then sends signals to the ovaries and other glands. So, with the hypothalamus and pituitary regulating the production of hormones throughout the body, it’s easy to see how maca may support fertility.
WHAT COLOR MACA IS BEST FOR FEMALE FERTILITY?
While maca comes in many different colors, yellow and red maca are two options that women can explore for fertility support. Here’s why:
- A study performed with ovariectomized mice – i.e. mice that had their ovaries removed – showed that red and yellow maca increased uterine weight (source). Some experts say uterine weight contributes to better fertility (1, 2).
- Red maca has a high amount of phytonutrients and as such, is often recommended for women’s fertility. In addition, the red maca color is traditionally associated with feminine energy. That said, red maca can be more stimulating (maca is a natural energizer, though it doesn’t contain caffeine).
- Yellow maca is less stimulating than red maca, while still providing the hormone balancing effects that maca is known for. If you’re sensitive to stimulants, consider yellow maca instead. In addition, a study with female mice showed that it increased litter size (source). So this suggests that yellow may indeed be beneficial for female fertility.
So, overall, red and yellow maca may be helpful for fertility.
Which one you ultimately go with has to do with how your body responds to stimulants.
BEST MACA SUPPLEMENTS FOR WOMEN’S FERTILITY
When buying maca powder, you will generally comes across two types:
- gelatinized (it simply means it’s been cooked; there’s no gelatin in it).
I go for the gelatinized form because it’s been cooked and is easier to digest.
Plus, traditionally speaking, Peruvians only consume cooked maca (in the form of porridge).
Now, when it comes to brands, my go-to for maca is The Maca Team. This company has been making only maca products for almost 20 years.
Everything is sourced from small, organic farms in Peru and they have everything from maca powder and capsules to tinctures and whole maca chips.
Aside from Maca Team, the other brand I suggest is Gaia. I haven’t tried their maca, but I use them for other herbal supplements.
1. Maca Team’s Yellow Maca
If you’d like to add maca to your smoothie, oatmeal or warm milk, then this yellow maca powder is a great option.
On the other hand if you want something more convenient that you can take on-the-go, try the yellow maca capsules or tincture.
2. Maca Team’s Red Maca
When it comes to red maca, you have the same choices as with the yellow. You can either get red maca powder, capsules or tincture.
3. Maca Capsules from Gaia Herbs
These maca capsules are made from gelatinized (aka cooked) maca and they’re in the form of liquid capsules.
However, the company doesn’t specify which color maca they used.
Get maca capsules from Gaia Herbs.
FAQs ABOUT USING MACA ROOT AND WOMEN’S FERTILITY
How long should I take maca for fertility?
Like all adaptogens, it can take a while to really notice the positive effects of maca. So, give it 2 to 3 months. However, if you experience negative effects from the get go, it’s best consult with your healthcare provider.
When should I take maca for female fertility: morning or night?
Because maca is energizing, I personally like to take it before noon. That way there’s plenty of time for the herb to work its way through my body and not disrupt my sleep.
Does maca help egg quality?
There are no studies showing that maca directly improves egg quality. But as a nutrient-dense food, maca nourishes the body and supports hormonal health. Both of these factors can affect egg health (along with many other things).
Does maca delay ovulation?
Even though there are no studies showing that maca delays ovulation, remember that maca does affect the function of the hypothalamus and pituitary. Since these glands regulate hormone production throughout the body, it is possible to experience changes in your menstrual cycle as a result of taking maca.
With its long history of use for hormone and fertility support, maca is a noteworthy ally for any woman seeking natural fertility support.
However, it’s essential to remember that maca, like any other supplement, should be used thoughtfully and in consultation with a healthcare provider.
Individual responses to supplements can vary greatly.
So it’s crucial to monitor your body’s reactions and adjust your dosage accordingly.
Above all, be patient with the process.
The path to improved fertility is not always straightforward, but with the right support and resources, it can certainly be a hopeful and empowering journey.
You Might Also Like:
How to Use Maca for Hormone Balance: A Complete Guide for Beginners
Maca Fertility Smoothie: Benefits, Best Type To Use and Recipe Tips
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