Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is a cruciferous vegetable that grows in high altitude regions of South America. Evidence suggests that consuming maca can significantly improve hormonal health through delivery of phytochemicals that may have adaptogenic properties. One mechanism by which maca may improve general health is through the provision of antioxidant substances contained within the plant tissues. For example, in one study researchers assessed the antioxidant effects of a water extract of maca and found that it possessed significant ability to scavenge a number of different types of radical. Evidence from research suggests that maca has the ability to improve energy utilisation and enhance exercise performance. One mechanism by which this may occur may be through the supply of reasonably high amounts of antioxidants to the tissues of the consumer. Maca may also improve both female and male fertility, and this too could be through the provision of high amounts of antioxidants from the plant tissues.
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