Maca Diaries: Week One (and the story behind my interest)


We have now finished the first week of our trial run of several maca products (My husband and I do the same brand, my other two “testers” do two separate ones). I am thankful that we have more than me to report about, because our experience with maca have already widely varied. We also had another company officially join this little project, which I am thrilled about.

But more on that later, first I wanted to explain how I got interested in Maca.

The beginning of my Maca Journey

Several months ago, my sister, Christina was going through premature labor. Interestingly enough, her preterm labor started the same week that mine did when I was pregnant with Elena. Because of my own higher risk, and then, because she was going through it as well, I decided to do a little research about preventing or treating preterm labor. I found out a lot of really good info, and two of the supplements Christina started (cod liver oil, and magnesium) actually did seem to help quite a bit.

But as I was researching I came across articles talking about new research for treating preterm labor by giving high amounts of progesterone. It’s still in the beginning stages, but there have been some very promising results. I have also known mothers who have had to go on progesterone to prevent miscarrying. It seems our bodies don’t like to hold onto pregnancies when we don’t have enough, or the right balance of this hormone.

I realized that I have many signs of having an hormonal imbalance (too much estrogen to progesterone), and wondered if that was also linked to the premature labor I experienced with Elena.

Then, the same day I was reading about the above, I happened to look up maca. My sister had been given a little jar of chocolate spread that contained maca. Since she was pregnant, the lady told her that maca had not been tested yet to see if it is safe for pregnant or nursing mothers, so her advice was to be careful with how much she ate. I was curious to see why it might not be safe, so looked it up.

To my surprise I found out two things. First, many people use maca to balance their hormones. Right after reading the research regarding how hormones affect miscarriage and premature labor, this caught my eye. The second thing I found out was that not only was maca traditionally used to boost one’s fertility, but it was used by Peruvian women to maintain their pregnancies and to have babies that were a healthy weight. I was intrigued. By the way, maca companies don’t officially recommend that you use maca while pregnant since it is an “untested” product, that is, unless you count all of the Peruvian women who “tested” it.

So there began my journey, and the seeds of this project got started. I am hoping next week to be sharing a more thorough post about maca. But today, I just wanted to give you a little heads up on how it’s been going so far for all four of us.

Joining us…

The company Maca Magic, has chosen to be part of this project, for which I am so excited about! They not only sent their maca powder, but they also sent it in capsule form, and extract form (which looks like a very convenient form to take). They were also so kind to send a roasted maca, (a coffee substitute), a Roasty Chai maca tea, and a chocolate maca smoothie powder. Even though we were testing out a different company this week, my husband and I decided to try out their tea and smoothie. We enjoyed both of them a lot, and it’s a great way to get in maca for those who have a hard time with the flavor. But I want to do a full review of these wonderful products later, so I won’t give all of the details now.

The Results so Far

Like I said earlier, results have varied.

My two other testers (who, by the way, are my parents), have not noticed any significant change as of yet.

My husband has had more endurance for his very long days. That is very exciting, because I was worried about him having the energy to keep up with his schedule.

And me? I think because I have the most health “issues”, I have actually seen the biggest result. I notice a definite energy boost. Maca also helps support the thyroid, which controls your temperature control. Since my teen years, I have been a little on the cold side, but not anymore! There have been numerous times when I have thought to myself how warm the house was, but when I checked the thermostat, I realized that it was just the normal temperature. I don’t get hot, I just stay nice and warm. It also seems to be helping with my low blood sugar issues (which are related to my adrenal function), and seems to control my sugar cravings.

I am amazed.

By the way, Joel and I were testing Pacific Botanical’s Maca powder, this week, and have obviously had good results!

How does it taste?

My Dad and Joel think it’s just fine. My dad says is tastes “rooty”, and my husband says it tastes malty. My mother and I don’t care for it. Once again, varied results.

We will be doing a blind taste test at the end of this project, and will definitely give you the results of that. We have already found that the maca powders do vary greatly in taste.

Onward to week two!

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I love beautiful and simple food that is nourishing to the body and the soul. I wrote Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons and Ladled: Nourishing Soups for All Seasons as another outlet of sharing this love of mine. I also love sharing practical tips on how to make a real food diet work on a real life budget. Find me online elsewhere by clicking on the icons below!

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Comments

  1. lifeinourfamily says

    Kimi,
    This is off the subject, but I just wanted to let you know I’m really enjoying your blog. I read it almost daily.
    God Bless, and keep up the wonderful work you are doing here.

  2. lifeinourfamily says

    Just read your article. If it wasn’t for natural progesterone, I would not have my two children. I have had many miscarriages.

    There are a couple books out there on the market, that someone your age would not be tempted to pick up yet, by Dr. John R. Lee http://www.johnleemd.com/

    Also there are three websites I reference to friends many times who tend to struggle with hormonal issues. They are as follows…
    http://www.naturallyhealthy.org/
    http://www.infertilityworkshop.com/
    and
    http://www.womentowomen.com/

    I hope these help with your research.

    Loving Jesus and My Family,
    Mrs. Anita Koller

  3. Anonymous says

    how much maca do you take? I followed your link to the pacific botanicals site, but wouldn’t know how much to order.

  4. Kimi Harris says

    Life In Our Family,
    Thanks so much for the sweet comment. It’s always so encouraging to me to get comments like yours.

    And thank you too for the links! I will definitely be looking them up. 🙂 I am hoping that maca alone will clear up some of my issues (like is has with other people), but if that doesn’t work, it’s good to know of other options.

    Anonymous,
    Wow! That was quick. 🙂 You may want to wait until I have more of a full review of all of the products, because I think that some of the other brands are excellent as well. But to answer your question (if you are especially eager to start taking it *smile*), I take three teaspoons a day, my husband takes two, and both of my parents take a tablespoon. I recommend starting low and building up. 🙂

  5. Brandy says

    Wow! I wish I would have known about this four years ago! One of my daughters was orginally a twin. When I lost the one, my body began threatening the life of our little survivor. In order to preserve the pregnancy, my OB put me on progesterone in a pill form. It was synthetic and made me have horrible morning sickness, must worse than any of my other pregnancies, plus I gained almost three times what I usually gain. I feel I have never recovered my metabolism from that pregnancy, even though our daughter is almost four! I can’t help but wonder if this maca product you are talking about would have been a superior option for me.

    Of course, what I did at the time was worth it since I have a little girl to show for it. 🙂

  6. Kimi Harris says

    Brandy,
    Sounds like you have been through a lot. I can relate because not only did I go through premature labor with Elena, we lost our first baby at two months, waiting for a heart transplant. Pregnancy can be a wonderful thing, but it can also be scary when things go wrong.

    I will be sharing some of research about maca later (next week, hopefully), but I am afraid I don’t have a lot of research to give about preventing premature labor. Maca is just starting to get “tested” for different things, and they are mostly concentrating on other aspects of the root. But it is exciting that it is a traditional use of it!

    Depending on how this trial run goes, and depending on whether we are blessed with another pregnancy, I would be interested in taking it, for sure, to see whether it helps or not. 🙂

  7. Mrs. S says

    I have been reading about maca all over the place in blogland it seems. Thank you for doing this review of different products, as I wouldn’t know which one to pick.

    I have low thyroid and am working on getting off of a medication and will be trying out maca. I am looking forward to more reviews and hopefully some full healing.

    Blessings,
    Mrs. S

  8. stayathomemyheart says

    Hi there!

    I recently began giving maca a try as well. I have a funny story about buying it, tho! I had read about it on a healthy-eating email list as a remedy for PMS. So, I head to the local Whole Foods and I’m looking all through the women’s supplement section, finding nothing, when I finally ask if they carry maca. The clerk gave me a “knowing” smile and took me over to the va-va-voom section of herbs. I was soooooooooooooo embarrassed!!! I very loudly explained I was looking into maca for PMS 😉

    The bottle I purchased from Whole Foods was called Maca Magic. I plan to try the maca from Mountain Rose Herbs soon as I am ordering from them some other stuff.

    I HAVE noticed my fingers and toes are not nearly as chilled as normal. I did still have PMS this month, unfortunately! 🙂

    I’ll be eagerly watching/reading your research. Thanks for sharing.

    Deborah

  9. Kimi Harris says

    Deborah,

    Oh my! Your story made me laugh, but that would have been embarrassing! But, I kind of have that same feeling sometimes blogging about it. I should have some type of disclaimer saying that’s NOT why I am interested in it! LOL

    I think that Maca Magic has some great products. I am excited to try more of them.

    How much are you taking a day? I am taking three teaspoons right now.

    And do report back on whether you notice any difference using it. 🙂 I would love to hear how it goes for you.

    Kimi

  10. sharon says

    hi on my third week have found eight caps work well started to lose weight that i had put on due to teribble hormone problems over the last few years.
    Concentration levels up labido up STARTING TO FEEL HUMAN AGAIN FOR THE FIRST TIME IN FIVE YEARS. Cant explain how ill i have felt through hormones but feel like im getting my life back .Instead of one good day a month i feel abit of good in every day. I hope it gets to feeling good all day every day.

  11. says

    I saw that you are crediting our website with helpful info and just wanted to thank you. We will be happy to add a link here as well. I very much like your site and the info is very helpful as well. It is our desire to help couples overcome infertility in the healthiest of ways.

    Keep up the good work. Keep us in mind if you have other fertility recipes we can link to. Blessings, brenda
    http://www.infertilityworkhop.com

  12. Rachael says

    Hi. I ran across something about maca on the internet and then I saw “My Maca Balance” at whole food and decided to give it a try. I am 43 and had not had a period for two months. I am always regular but my period just stopped and I thought I might be entering peri-menopause (yikes). I also tested negative for pregnancy. I took a scoopful of the powder on Monday and Tuesday and started my period tuesday night. I really think this stuff works. I just hope it doesn’t have any negative side effects.

  13. Clara says

    Hello,

    I have been using Maca powder for 2+ months now. I had been ttc for 3 years, have had endometriosis since I was 25, I am 33 now. Went to the fertility doc, had surgery last August, was ttc since, and nothing. I found out about Maca and Royal jelly, amongst other things like Spruillina and Arginine. I bought them all! I wanted to experiment since no one else cares to tell you these things, and wester docs are clueless about this stuff. I just heared it worked based off other women’s testimonies. On top of that I was on Prenatal vitamins for about 2 years and was taking fish oil, oh, and I have thyroid issues ( I stopped synthroid on my own because I am tired of western drugs, and didn’t see a point since it was only 50mcg and didn’t get pregnant).

    So, I GOT PREGNANT! That was a miracle in itself. I just found out on Friday, but then Friday afternoon I started spotting, and then started bleeding at midnight. Saturday all day, but it wasn’t normal blood. I was of course scared and confused. I didn’t feel like I lost the baby, and in the back of my mind I felt peace from God, I had praying all month before I got pregnant for Him to remember me, just like Hannah in 1 Samuel, and HE DID! So, I still felt sick and felt like peeing, all the symptoms of pregnancy, Sunday morning, then today, Monday morning as I was going to the doc to get checked out. The Nurse Prac. checked me down there and said my cervix is still closed. This means I didn’t have a miscarriage, so that was hopeful. They took my blood and will tell me tomorrow where my numbers are. I have a great feeling that I am still pregnant, and I know that Maca powder is to credit, along with God of course leading me to this wonderful vegtable He made.

    Ladies, this stuff works, along with a lot of prayers. At the end of the day it is God who gives life, and He lead me to Maca and His other wonderous creations that helped me get my hormones on track. Just have faith!

  14. luna says

    Hello,
    I started taking maca 3 weeks ago and I am gaining weight also feel as if I have morning sickness, I heard it helps with the quality of th egg, is any of you having the same symp. ?,Thanks

  15. Jenihoff says

    Hi! Very interested in hearing about your results! My husband and I had been trying to conceive for almost 4 years when I came across this amazing root and thought what the heck it can’t hurt! I was pregnant a month later. Unfortunately it resulted in a miscarriage but gave me hope. I really think the maca had everything to do with it. We both took it daily. I am ready to start taking it again and see if I have similar results. Will let you know!

    • Gayathiri says

      Which type of Maca did you use? they are few kinds exampl black, red, yellow, white…
      which one is good for trying to conceive?
      thanks

  16. all bleahed out says

    Hi there. I’ll be following this to see the results. As a post menopausal woman, I’d be very interested in knowing how old yr mother is, and whether changes might be felt more slowly by her. I was recently told that my complete inability to lose weight [not a lot to lose but too much for my back] has to do with hormone imbalance possibly due to long term [10 years] of using contraceptives while also entering menopause. So, yes, I’m curious especially since I havent found other testimonies by older women.
    good work –

    • Chris Angel says

      Hi there, just saw your post on maca while I was trying to find so e stuff to send my daughter in law who is suffering wih PMS . I recommend this stuff. Did you keep taking this.? I am now 54 and took it for two years while getting bad flushes and extreme fatigue. Helped me immensely and my energy levels rose and flushes stopped. I have gone off it now as I am more balanced but is definitely my go to help, and would tell as many friends as possible. I used Natures Way.

  17. Karen says

    Hi I was wondering which brand did you like the best and what was your daily regime? do you rec all forms like take a powder, liquid and a pill. I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks again

  18. Ingrid says

    Hello,
    I want to know iif I could balance my daughter’s hormones with Maca. To control prepuberty. She is now 7.
    Thank you,
    Ingrid

    • says

      Hi Ingrid,

      Maca is amazing, i use it daily for adrenal support and to balance my hormones. it is a natural adaptogen so it will balance out whatever is out of whack within that individual body.

      always start with a small dose say 1/2-1 tsp a day for a week or so then gradiually increase.

      i find its goes beautifully in a banana strawberry smoothie, or any smoothie for that matter.

      Enjoy.

      Amila

  19. Susie says

    I know this post is a bit old, but never mind. I just want to share that I was searching for maca information and I come across this site. I too had a pre term baby and the doctor never found out why. 7 months after the birth I was diagnosed with hypothyroid….so, it all make sense to me now!! Even though now I feel well generally, I am worry that having a second child will shoot up my hormone problems once again, your post give me hope! Thanks!

  20. Ana says

    I want to ask you, if Maca help someone with acnes on chin and jawline area, cause they are caused of hormonal disbalance

  21. says

    Thank you for doing this review of different products, as I wouldn’t know which one to pick.
    I am ready to start taking and see if I have similar results.

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  1. […] second trial week for the maca project (read about it here, and the first part of the maca diaries, here), and it is going very well. I think it’s time for me to give you a little more information […]

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