No matter where one looks, every region of our planet offers at least one indigenous plant to its surrounding peoples, that enhances stamina, vitality and energy: Ginseng from the Orient; Ashwagandha from India; Rhodiola (Arctic Rose) from Siberia.
In the high Andes of South America, a hardy plant called Maca fulfills this role. The root (actually a tuber) has been cultivated as a vegetable by indigenous peoples of Bolivia and Peru since pre-Incan times. It flourishes in conditions where few other plants can survive (altitudes above 14,000 ft, in extremes of weather) which may help explain its powerful strengthening and vitalizing properties.
As well as serving as a food staple in Peru and Bolivia, Maca strengthens the body, overall, by supporting production of hormones from ‘the top down’ (pituitary downwards). It has been shown to improve libido in both men and women and, importantly, may also improve fertility. Maca is also useful to include in menopausal programs to alleviate hot flashes and other hormonal-related changes.