Maca and Women: Effects on Thyroid, HRT, Menstrual Periods, and Fatigue

The Effects of Maca on Thyroid, HRT, Menstrual Periods, Fatigue, and Menopause.

Maca and Hypothyroidism

Based on studies done by Dr. Gloria Chacon, the alkaloids of maca are believed to stimulate the hypothalamus and pituitary gland to better balance the entire endocrine system.

Some Women who have had moderate to severe menopausal symptoms report that they have been able to reduce their thyroid medication or in a few cases even to stop it entirely after using maca for two or three months. And they all report feeling so much better, much more energetic. In all these cases, the thyroid was under-active.

Some women with hypothyroidism take Armour thyroid, others take Synthroid. What they notice after a month or two is that they begin to feel some of the symptoms of an overactive thyroid, and so they cut back their thyroid medication and the symptoms go away. Some stabilize at 50% of their former dosage of thyroid medication and some stop all thyroid medication. However, they do this, little by little, with frequent testing of thyroid function in order not to shock the thyroid and make their condition worse. It’s impossible give an accurate percentage of women who have had significant thyroid function improvement as a result of taking maca. The results for some, however, are very impressive.

Maca as an Alternative to HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) for Menopause

The most natural way of dealing with menopausal symptoms is the use of organic maca root. The maca produced with the help of chemical fertilizers is far inferior to the maca grown on soil which has rested for five years. The pioneering work done by Dr. Chacon suggests that the alkaloids in the maca root stimulate the hypothalamus and pituitary to produce more precursor hormones which then impact all of the endocrine glands–the pineal, the adrenals, ovaries, testes, pancreas, and the thyroid gland. So maca appears to be stimulating the body to produce its own hormones more adequately rather than supplying hormones from an outside source.

Premarin and Provera, the two most widely prescribed hormone replacement therapies in America are respectively synthetic estrogen, made from pregnant horses’ urine and synthetic progesterone, manufactured in the factory and called ‘progestin.’ Both of these synthetic substances will partially “hook up” like a key in a lock with the estrogen and progesterone receptors in a woman’s body but they are actually a very poor fit.

“Natural” pharmaceutical hormone replacement therapy is also manufactured in the pharmaceutical laboratory but in a different way. The ‘natural’ estradiol is synthetically produced Estradiol Beta 17. It does not start out as horse urine but is manufactured from scratch with the molecules produced synthetically being a much better match for the real thing than the horse estrogen. The ‘natural’ progesterone is derived from a plant, the wild Mexican yam, which in its natural state does not have any progesterone in it.

This type of ‘natural progesterone’ is not harmful and in fact has been shown to have beneficial effects. But of course, taking natural HRT still involves taking hormones, and it has been shown that once you begin to regularly take a certain hormone your body will stop producing that hormone since it is already provided from the outside. The human ovaries, if HRT is not given, will produce some estrogen (in the forms of both estradiol and estriol) and progesterone throughout a woman’s life, although in reduced quantities after menopause.

The adrenal glands, which in part function as a back-up system for the ovaries, also produce estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, the same hormones produced by the ovaries, as well as DHEA and cortisol. So, once a woman has taken HRT for several years, if she annouces to her gynecologist–as many women do–that she wants to stop taking HRT, the doctor panics and tells her that she MUST take the hormones for the rest of her life, because he knows that her ovaries will be atrophied and unable to produce its own estrogen–a situation which really puts her bones at greater risk for osteoporosis. Most women are unaware of this when they begin to take HRT or they would never have agreed to go on it.

Gelatinized Maca Root has the alkaloids to help the endocrine system produce estrogen naturally.

Maca Effects on Menstrual Periods, Hot Flashes, Night Sweats, and Menopause

When women start taking maca for their PMS, their hot flashes, or mood swings, they begin to report very positive collateral effects:

1) Increased energy levels due to improved adrenal and thyroid function.
2) A cessation of sugar cravings.
3) A reduced fluctuation in blood sugar levels, so they don’t get light headed or irritable so easily.
4) Improved sleep patterns, due to improved pineal gland function.
5) Cessation of heart palpitations, because estrogen receptors in heart are filled.
6) Improved bladder function, because estrogen receptors in bladder are filled.

Maca helps to normalize the menstrual cycle, both in terms of number of days in a cycle, the amount of blood flow, and the greatly reduce pain and PMS. The hormonal interactions involving the ovaries, the pancreas, the adrenals, and the thyroid are very complex. Each of these glands has a major impact on the functioning of the other. So any kind of intervention, such as taking hormones, will always leave a lot to be desired because it will not positively impact the functioning of all of the endocrine glands which do a very delicate dance together.

Conversely, these effects have not been replicated when women are taking natural hormone replacement therapy, natural estrogen, natural progesterone, and/or DHEA. The benefits of maca are far more powerful than taking DHEA. The case is similar with uterine fibroids. Women who have taken progesterone cream or oral micronized progesterone for this condition, once they begin taking organic maca root powder, the fibroids have dissolved in two or three months.

Maca and Fatigue

There is a huge difference between taking a particular hormone for a particular condition and taking maca whose alkaloids work at the level of the hypothalamus and the pituitary, causing a profound shift in the entire endocrine system. Maca increases low-DHEA level, enabling the adrenal glands to make DHEA, as well as, other depleted hormones.

Make your own home-made maca superfood energy bars, here’s the recipe from Jenny at Superfood Living.

See more information about Maca:
Maca and Men
What is Maca For?
Maca for Athletes

–credit interview of Dr. Viana Muller by Mary Shomon.— thyroid-info.com

Comments (191 Responses)

  1. Sofia says:

    I am taking YELLOW MACA Powder since 1 month and now I am having my period every week with heavy bleeding, is it normal? Is it to clean my system first?
    Or I was wondering if I was supposed to take RED MACA Powder instead?
    PLEASE HELP! The doctors do not know anything about that! Thank you!

  2. Web Hosting says:

    Maca has been recognized by natives of Peru as herbal remedy helping to treat conditions affecting menopausal women.

  3. Kayla says:

    I am 26 and have had regular periods from the time I was 18 up until an year and a half ago. I had a miscarriage and ever since then I have had irregular periods that were super heavy and painful. I’ve had blood work done, papsmear and even an inter vaginal ultrasound and all tests came back normal. At the point where I was having these tests, I had been bleeding for over 40 days straight. I was super weak all the time and had very low energy, not to mention constant cramps…for 40 DAYS. So since they couldn’t find anything wrong they put my on birth control to help regulate my periods. I’ve never been on birth control, as I prefer natural medicine. I have been on birth control for about 3 months now and although it is helping with my periods, it’s lowering my sex drive and making me psychotic. So today I bought some maca and was wondering, in my case, could I eventually replace my birth control with this herb? Would it regulate my menstrual cycles? That’s all I really care about. I don’t want to stop taking the birth control and then bleed for 40 days again. Any information would be great, thanks.

    Also, I’m not going to seek out a holistic health practitioner…I’ve already spent too much money speaking to “professionals” so please don’t give me JUST that as a response. Thanks.

    • Hi Kayla, Trying maca won’t hurt you. Just eat about one tablespoon everyday. It will probably help with your sex drive and mood, as a lot of people that use mace report these benefits.

  4. Chantelle says:

    Hello, I’m a 33 year old female that has been suffering from PCOS. I do not have regular menstrual cycles. I was looking for an alternative method to balance my hormones and decided to use red maca powder. I’m thinking that it is doing some good because I overall have more energy, less acne, and I am actually having signs of a period. The later result is what is amazing to me because I would only have a cycle after taking my prescribed Provera. I read where you said maca should be taken in cycles, should I do it in my case? Do these new changes help with my attempts to get pregnant?

  5. Tori says:

    Hi Jay – you say in a number of your responses that maca should be taken in a cycle of 3 weeks on and 1 week off. Your only explanation for this cycle recommendation I could find is, “if you want to maximize the benefits.” Would you please explain how this cycle maximizes the benefits and any other reasons for this recommended cycling? I’ve been taking gelatinized maca for a couple of months and it worked wonderfully for a while to relieve my menopausal symptoms of hot flashes and terrible insomnia. But after about a month of symptom relief the hot flashes and insomnia started to return. I don’t know if I should increase the dosage (now taking 10g/day) or if this is happening because I haven’t taken any days off from taking the maca. I’m concerned that if I stop taking it while my symptoms are returning, it will only get worse. It would be very helpful if you would give a detailed explanation as to why you recommend the 3 weeks on / 1 week off cycle including how it maximizes the benefits and if you recommend taking the week off even if the maca isn’t working to relieve your symptoms. Thank you!

    • Great question. The three weeks on, one week off is a theory, which like any other herb with alkaloids like caffeine and theobromine, your body will need a break from it eventually, because it does start to build up a “tolerance.” So, try taking a break and see how you feel. Maybe just start with a few days, if you’re concerned. Sounds like you’ve built up a tolerance, so if you eat more, it might work again.

  6. Elvira says:

    Hello, I’m 31 year old and I started taking raw
    Maca powder for a week now in my smoothie every morning. I udes to be depressed, always tired amd stressed with 2 kids under 5 year old. My regular period was 10 days ago which finished before taking raw maca powder . Yesturday I had red and brown spotting again like period and sugar craving, to mention I changed my diet while taking maca which I” eating now heltier for weight loss. I jooe I can get some answers from you. Thanks si
    Much

  7. Susan Nevins Torreano says:

    Does Maca increase DHEA and Testosterone in menopausal woman who have never used HRT?? Much Thanks

  8. Cee says:

    Hi there. At this point in my life I’m getting desperate. I’m 30 now and about 17 years ago had a brain tumor removed. It seemed to slightly affect my pituitary and hypothalmus. I got my period once before I had the tumor removed. After that I never had it again until my endo made me take b/c pills. I only took them a few years (had normal period ON them). Once I got off them, my period was very sporadic. Sometimes 1-2 years would go by and no period. I feel very weak, tired and over exhausted. I do have hypothyroidism..although I’m extremely skinny. I take Armour. My gyno just told me she thinks my ovaries aren’t sending message to pituitary to ovulate. She put me again on b/c but I hate those pills so I got off. Should I try maca.. and if so how much? and should I first get OFF the Armour…?
    Please help.

    P.S. I’m also on desmopressin because I have diabetes insipidus (from the tumor), NOT diabetes. I also recently got bone density test and my hip was -2.1…ugh.

    • You’ve got a lot going with your health issues. Probably your best bet would be to seek out an endocrinologist who also has a holistic approach to healthcare. Drugs are often prescribed to treat a symptom, and they are often very helpful, but not without side effects. A modified, prescribed diet by a professional, and even energy work, such as shiatsu, could be really therapeutic for you.

  9. Kay says:

    Hi, I recently started taking Maca Root I think the company name is NOW. Anyway, I have PCOS and I was placed on birth control (Lo Loestrin FE) back in 2015. I wanted to know if it was okay to take Maca Toot with the birth control and will it affect my thyroid? I have no problems with my thyroid at the moment and the birth control made my periods very light and stopped me from having the excruciating pain I was having for the most part.

    • Maca Root might effect your thyroid as well as the birth control. You should ask a doctor that know about both maca and PCOS, such as an endocrinologist with a holistic health background, or an ND.

  10. Andrea says:

    I am 42 years old, no children and have had regular periods. Over the past 3-4 years I’ve experienced heavier bleeding due to fibroids and ovarian cysts. I’ve recently noticed thinning hair and constipation. I’m 5’6 and weigh 156 lbs. My TSH levels are: 2.16
    T4: .90
    Triglycerides: 235
    HDL:57
    LDL:108
    VLDL:47
    Would maca be beneficial? If so, what form?

    • You should consult a doctor that understands your health issues and also has a holistic background, such as an ND.

    • Michele says:

      Hishmato thyroiditis disease you have its the enzyme thats high while all is normal

    • Jillian says:

      Your triglycerides seem high. Sugar can contribute to high triglyceride levels as well as negatively affect reproductive health. Try significantly cutting back or completely elimincating sugar, alcohol, and refined carbohydrates from your diet.

      • Jillian says:

        Also, your TSH might be a little low for you. A lot of people feel better when their TSH is below 2 or even 1.5. Ask your doctor to test for Free T3, Free T4, and thyroid antibodies [thyroid peroxidase antibody (TPO) and Thyroglobulin antibody (TGAb)]. You might want to get your Vitamin D levels tested, too, since it plays an important part in hormone production.

  11. Patty says:

    Sorry to post again but noticed errors

    been on bio-identical hrt for maybe 5 or 6 years. I’m 58, in very good physical condition. I’m having issues with my old and new doctor and will no longer be getting biohrt. Too long of a story. My supplement advisor sd to use femenessence maca. Am I reading correctly that because of hrt my glands may have atrophied and wouldn’t be able to produce estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone no matter how little any more? If that is so will maca work as a replacement

  12. Patty says:

    Hi, I have been on bio-identical hrt for maybe 5 or 6 years. I’m 58, in very good physical condition. I’m having issues with my old and new doctor and will no longer be getting biohrt. Too long of a story. My supplement advisor sd to use femenessence maca. An I reading correctly that because of hrt my glands may have atrophied and would be able to produce estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone no matter how little any more? If that is so will maca work as a replacement?

  13. adriana says:

    Hi im 28 years old and recently started maca. Should i stop taking my hormone replacement or take both maca and femoston at the same time?

  14. Rhonda Chichester says:

    Hi I am 40 years old and I have bad PMS that seems to last all month. My periods was off a bit, it never lasted 4 days and I would have clotting but never constant blood flow. My my breast what hurts so bad and I will get these terrible headaches also my mood swings were terrible. I couldn’t remember certain things I was always stressed out or having anxiety attacks but most of all was the water retention. The water retention is so bad that I gain from 20 to 15 pounds in water. I have been taking maca root for about a month and my menstrual cycle seems normal no more breast tenderness headache has gone away my mood has increased so tremendously I feel good in my mind. Also I’m not tired or fatigued and I haven’t been craving food like constant eating. But my concern is will it help reduce the water retention. Meaning will the maca root help eliminate water retention all together. I do know that the water retention has something to do with my menstrual cycle. If it helps relieve the other symptoms of severe PMS will the water retention go away?

    • I don’t know if the maca will help with the water retention. But, that’s good to hear that it helps alleviate lots of other discomforts. Changing your diet might help that. For instance, salt increases water retention. So, maybe try a very-low salt diet for a couple months and see if anything changes.

  15. Sharene says:

    44 years old been having menopause symptoms for about 4 years. Very irregular periods i haven had one in about 6 months. My concern is the fat redistribution, fat going from my butt to my gutt! Will Maca help me with more estrogen? And will it bring my weight back to my hips and butt area? Also are the capsules as good as the powder?

    • Maca helps with menopausal symptoms. Everyones body is different. In your instance, if the shift in body weight is due to menopause, then maca might help. Try taking close to one tablespoon per day of maca powder, everyday for a month or two.

  16. Garyl says:

    Nice article.
    I have one question: What are the optimal dosages when used to increase fertility in women?
    Thank you
    Garyl

  17. Annie says:

    Hi, I am 24 years old. I have thyroid and I am underweight about 92 pounds. I am planning to try macca roots capsules but I do not want it to affect my thyroid in a bad way. Any suggestions?

    • Talk to naturopath if you are concerned, because maca will act on your thyroid in some way. Usually, it helps it function in homeostasis, but if you have serious concerns about how it might affect you, then ask a professional.

  18. Sharlene says:

    Hi!

    I was wondering if Maca is safe to take if you have uterine fibroids? My hormones have been up and down for seven years now. I heard that Maca acts like estrogen in the body and that Maca is not safe to take if you have fibroids. What are your thoughts?

    • Maca effects many hormones in addition to estrogen, such as cortisol an adrenaline. If you have a health concern, its best to ask a professional, like an ND, or holistic health practitioner.

  19. Mfk says:

    Can I take homeopathic medicine and maca root powder?/. I mean is there any side effect if I use maca root and homeopathic medicine at the same time. L

  20. Sam says:

    Hi,

    I was diagnosed with premature ovarian failure at 17. I was taking a contraceptive pill for hormones but recently had a bone scan where they told me I had the bones of a 70 year old (I am now 26) so am now on HRT so try and build them up. I am also taking calcium and vitamin D, and have under active thyroid so take medication for that too. I recently read about Maca and that it helps with all these things, but am worried it will interact with the medication I am currently on. I’d like to take it to see if it helps/balances the problems I’m already dealing with, but also largely for increased energy and libido. If anyone has any insight I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.

    • Sorry to hear about your health issues. Maca helps libido in many people, men and women. Because of your health issues, you should ask your doctor about taking maca with the drugs they prescribed you.

  21. Luisa says:

    I am thinking about taking Maca, but i am on birth control (28 days cycle pill), so i wonder if taking Macca will at all affect or interfere with my birth control? Should i still take it or just altogether forget anout Maca?

  22. Amber says:

    HELP! I don’t know where else to start with this. I have endometriosis and have been on Provera for about 6 years now to control the pain and bleeding. I’ve tried twice before to get off but couldn’t because the pain was too intense. Can anyone tell me of a site that discusses how to get off birth control and onto Maca for someone like me? I am desperate to get off birth control but my pain with the endo is extremely severe. PLEASE HELP!!

  23. Dionje L. Francois says:

    HEY! I’m a 22 year old female who has suffered with irregular periods since I hit puberty. At the age of 13 I was placed on birth control for the sole purpose of “regulating” my cycle. However, as you can guess my period was never regulated. When I’m on birth control I get a period when I’m off I don’t. I’ve been off the pill since April and hadn’t had a period since. I started taking Maca in the capsule form on December 17th and yesterday January 3rd I got my period. So I’m hoping it continues to work and helps balance my underlying hormone issue.

  24. vivian says:

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  25. Bree says:

    Hello! I am 26 years old and was on the birth control patch Ortho Evra for about 5 years. I stopped birth control about 6 months ago and have felt amazing. The only two downfalls was bad acne and sudden weight gain 15lbs I can’t lose! I seriously cannot lose 1 lb and I’ve been eating clean 85/15 and workout out 4 times a week. I’ve never had trouble getting into shape even when gaining a few lbs. I usually fluctuate from 130-137 and am now 150 lbs!!! I have been taking the DIM supp along with liver support which has really helped the acne I was having but still no luck with weight loss. Curious as to if Maca would help with the weight loss getting my body back to normal function again and your thoughts on it?

  26. Mary says:

    I have been taking maca now for 3 weeks and I’ve seen a tremendous difference in my period.Although at first it seemed as if it was not coming so i drank ginger tea in hot water and my period came the next day.Absolutely no PMS where as just last month’s period i had heavy painful breasts and severe cramps.
    Is it beneficial to use during my period and during ovulation cause I’m trying to conceive.

  27. Erin says:

    I’ve just missed a period…I’m going on two weeks late! I’ve taken pregnancy tests that come back negative but I’m bewildered. I add maca to my smoothies regularly in the morning (5-6 days a week and at least a tablespoon along with other superfood supplements), could I be taking too high of an amount that I now have skipped a cycle? Has anyone heard of this happening?

  28. Olivia says:

    Hello,
    I have had very painful and heavy periods in the past. However, earlier this year, I notice the period is painful, but less heavy/ shorter days. I have been using Maca powder in smoothies and drinks for the last four months. However, this month, I noticed my period is three days late so far, and it have not started as yet. I am not pregnant and 33 y.o.Should I be concerned?

  29. Veronica says:

    Jay, I am a 44 y/o woman who is in menopause. I haven’t had a period in about 4 yrs and i’m happy with that. But I’m still having hot flashes, irritability and night sweats. I’ve heard taking Maca will bring my period back. Is this true?

    • Daisy says:

      Veronica, your question interest me as I’m having that same question due to I have been using it for 2 months straight and now feel much better since using it but now, I feel as if I have my period after 4 years. I don’t know if the bleeding is common as this is the first time using it this long. I take only 1 capsules every morning with my breakfast. I hope Jay can answer these questions.

  30. Rosemary says:

    Hi, Can I take maca powder daily alongside Hormone Replacement Therapy. Am currently undergoing fertility treatment with my gynecologist and I stopped taking maca as I was afraid that it might interact with it. My gynecologist placed me on Clomid, progynova tablet, HMG and HCG injection and progesterone capsule. I really need to know if I can continue with taking maca. Thanks

  31. cha says:

    Hi i took maca, for the first month i had my first 28 day cycle, ovulated on day 14. Usually i have long cycles but ovulatory like 36 days cycles and i took it for thsi reason to ovulate earlier and balance hormones. The second month (this month)i dont seem to have ovulated and its cycle day 25. Should i stop it and give up? I did not increase dose. What could have caused this if first cycle on it was perfect 28 days? May i add that i feel perfect on it, no moods..just myself and energy. Can somebody shed a light on this???

  32. Crissie says:

    If i am taking levothyroxine can i take maca?

  33. Jane says:

    Hi..I was diagnosed with oestrogen +ve breast cancer last year.. would O be able to take macca or any other adaptogen?..many thanks..Jane.

  34. Shay says:

    Hi I recently started taking Maca root because I read it helps with Fertility. I am 27 and my husband is 30 he is taking it also. I had a miscarriage over a year ago and have not gotten pregnant since, my hormone levels have been checked and everything came out “normal”. I want to know if I continue to take maca root will it mess up my already regular cycle or hormone balance. I do not want to end up messing up my hormone levels if they are fine now. I am really concerned because I can’t seem to find anything that will answer my question. Thanks so much!

  35. sarah says:

    Hi, I just started taking maca four days ago, ive broke out with some serious cystic acne. Ive also been trying out a new preworkout so im not sure which is the i ssue. But anyways my real question is this am I able to use maca (pill form). While im taking birth control pills?

  36. Chachi says:

    Can I drink the maca tea & maca flour with smoothie the same day? of course with different timings.

  37. Kristen says:

    Hi,

    I am a bit of a mess so I’m hoping maca may help not hinder my health further. Two months ago I got diagnosed with a DVT in my left leg and a PE in the chest. I had been on birth control for over 15 years to help “regulate” my heavy periods since I was told by my doc then that I have a hormonal imbalance. I am now off birth control, and on xeralto for a blood thinner. My first period was hell after stopping birth control and starting xeralto. I was heavy and clotting and my hemoglobin dropped so I was anemic and needed iron transfusions. In an attempt to help my next period, they inserted mirena IUD. This period started lighter but slowly got worse to the point of clotting and my IUD came out. My doctor want me to try synarel nasal spray which induces menopause-like symptoms. The doctor said it’s that or see him in emerge for anemia. I am desperately trying to resolve this naturally since it all seems like band aids and more harm inflicted to my body. My questions are : 1) is maca safe to take while on blood thinners like xeralto
    2) how much should I take and how long?
    3) will maca help regulate and lighten my period or make it worse?

    Thank you for any clarity you can provide!

  38. sarat says:

    I have had uterine fibroid for a couple of years now.and I am perimenopausal at the moment.. Hot flashes,no libido,night sweats.. I want to use maca but I don’t know if it will make my fibroid bigger since the feed on estrogen. I am almost 50 and have never been on birth control pills..please advice
    ..thanks

  39. Niovi says:

    Hello! I bought maca for its benefits! I made some banana oat bars with maca and chocolate. I eat one a day.. So this month i have period for 10 days… I started to visit forums to understand better maca. All people say that maca wasnt good for them.. Especially for their menstrual cycle. So why all saying about the benefits of maca for hormonal issues?? This is wrong ! Why to take maca and destroy my cycle! Experts must say more about the side effects of maca.

  40. Imegahan says:

    I had Graves disease (hyperthyroid) as a teen, after which my periods were never normal again (cycle good; flow skanty). I sought to become pregnant a couple of times in life, with practioners pushing infertility treatments, but I always knew it was connected to hormone imbalance. By the time I discovered less invasive/ poisonous methods, I was in my late 40s, and no one would even talk to me about pregancy. It seems maca, and other similar remedies could have helped me. I want to use these for me new phase of life as a peri menopausal woman (not for pregnancy so much as for balance).

  41. Imegahan says:

    I’m a 51 year old female who is on biodentical HRT (sad to hear that this was not the healthiest choice my gp could have made for me). I’d like to switch to maca but was told that this is not as easy or automatic as one may think. Any thoughts on making the switch? Should I engage in a wait time during which I am on neither? What about symptoms during the wait time? Thanks an awful lot.

  42. Brittney says:

    Hi, hoping anyone can help! I took maca November’ 14 half way through January. I’m currently 2 1/2 months late with all negative pregnancy tests but, a lot of symptoms (Last test a week ago). Has anyone ever heard of maca contributing to false negatives? Either way ultrasound appointment is set for next week

    • naz says:

      hey Brittney

      whatever happened here? I am worried because I too am taking maca and my period is late but wondering if it is just a side effect

      • Tanisha says:

        I took maca root for 2 weeks once a day and my regular period was 5 days late! I am not pregnant and I’ve read on other sites this is a typical symptom for some women.

  43. Clare says:

    Just to say was told I was depressed 2 months ago knew I wasn’t was given prozac didn’t take them, got fsh done which said I was perimenopausal and not ovulating given hrt wouldnt take that either, one of the worst for me was i felt so not like a wonman, breast tissue gone, low libido, up and down like a yoyo, did my homework on what to do, went to health shop got maca, OMG love maca, maca is my new best friend, husband on prozac 2 years suffered depression he just stopped taking prozac and started on maca he is also a different person, no withdrawal from prozac, and where prozac didn’t work but he took it in case it might one day, maca is working big time. Oh yes for me yoyo moods gone, breast feel full and libido good, energy excellent, ive started to do more, and my need for sugar/chocolate is still there but hugely reduced. I feel more normal now. 1 question could the maca have made me start ovulating again? Thanks for such great information.

    • Carol says:

      Clare, what brand of maca are you using? Different maca types have different effects. Would love to know.

    • Elise says:

      I would love to know what brand or where you get this maca that has had such profound effects on your body and libido. Ive always had full large breasts and bottom and very high sex drive but since experiencing Ovarian Insufficiency at 39, the extremely low estrogen levels and an fsh of 89 my once voluptuous body with curves in all the right places ihas within months deflated on me and has gone to my Belly. I just started low does of BHRT a month ago. But maca capsules was the first thing I took when I started to suspecting what was happening to me when the extreme hot flashes hit hard. And the Gaia ma a capusules quickly remedied that. But that was very low does of maca I think I need to get the powder for so I can dose out more.

      I’m just extremely distraught, my butt has gone from a lifetime of being plump and round round to flat within 1 month. I want my body back :(((I’m only 39 I’m too young and not ready accept that there insnt something that will help get my my lovely curves back. And if this particular maca worked for you I’d like to know what brand/kind as well!

  44. Kristina says:

    Hi,

    I was diagnosed with an undrsxtive thyroid 2 years ago. I lost weight rather than gaining which I found was strange.. I’ve recently had my thyroxine increased to 100mg and each time I have my medication increased I suffer slight weight loss from the medication due to the side effects..keeping in mind I’m very petite so end up looking ill each time I lose weight.

    Is it ok if I start taking maca and lower my dose of thyroxine?

    Regards

  45. Lisa says:

    Hi I have been taking maca powder for about four weeks now – it’s made me feel so much better with energy – but I’m nearly two weeks late with my period and I my breast are tender – so would the maca throw off my cycle this quickly? I hope you will be able to help thank you

  46. a says:

    Hi there. I have been taking maca for about four months. I have endometriosis. Stage four. Doctors are baffled. I’ve had five surgeries, been on lupron. Which is a form of chemo. I also lost my ovary, but I have ORS, so it regenerated. I chose to go the natural route. I also avoid, dairy and soy, gluten and the animals that eat it. Basically, no beef, pork, eggs, little to no chicken or turkey. Again, I’ve been on maca four almost four months. Plus, I have a pretty normal cycle 27-28 days. Do I have a chance at conception? Also, I was suggested progesterone cream, but I’m concerned because most contain soy. I’m hesitant about using it. Please help

  47. anne says:

    Im in the process of having my hormones tested, so far my dhea has come back high, my md questioned if I was supplementing dhea, I am not. I am awaiting corrisol, progesterone etc.My blood work for thyroid came back on the low normal side, she suspects sluggish thyroid, I have gained about 30 lbs in last few months. My vit d was only 22 , last 8 weeks ive been on 50,000 iu per week.I am 32 years old and my face is covered in acne like a teenager, acne on my cheeks? I’ve never experienced this before. How much maca to start? Could this make my condition worse?

  48. Rina says:

    Hey, So OMG my body has not been so good the past few months starting from:
    5-6 Days is my normal period length, mostly 6 days…

    August 2014 – 6 days, started on the 1st – 6th and then spotting 22nd – 27th – Brown light spotting
    Sep 2014 – Normal period and had no spotting, so then i thought everything was fine
    Oct 2014 – Period 14th – 18th and then spotting on the 22nd
    Nov 2014 – from the 13th – 27th was spotting non stop, from light to medium and then dark brown discharge back to light (very frustrating)
    Dec 2014 – 21st – 25th – light to medium brown spotting and 26th – 29th REAL heavy bleeding with clots, 30th – 2rd Jan 2015 – light spotting using panty liner
    Jan 2015 – I am still waiting………………

    In my november statement i was sent home with a radiology slip to get an ultrasound, on Dec 4 2014 they found a small 8mm cyst on my left ovary and fluid on my right ovary and recently i went back for an update and i now have one on both ovaries which a both still very small. I got referred to see a specialist which was on tuesday 27th jan 2015 and he recommended me going on the FemmeTab pill. my period was spose to be here on the 30th jan when im suppose to start on the pill and im still waiting for that however, I have been using Maca Powder for almost 4 weeks now in yoghurt and sometimes banana smoothies because i love bananas 🙂 I also cant forget to mention that I have hypothyroidism and have been since i was a wee one, i am now 26yo i have 2 beautiful children a boy and girl and yes i am trying to concieve. also i have not had any spotting at all during january, ive had experienced pregnancy symptoms throughout these months but sort of like menopause symptoms aswell especially with my body temperature? lastnight about say 15mins after having sex with my partner, i became very cold, shakes and just felt like my whole body was gonna go numb. ive done all std checks and all have shown up negative.

    ive been going crazy long enough and been in pain might aswell say everyday since august and its really affecting my everyday activities because ive just become so fatigued. I will admit tho, Maca has helped alot with my moods lately 🙂

  49. Nic says:

    Hi, I have PCOS and started taking maca capsels on sept 19 to help us concieve, on sept 27 I had a very heavy period and found out I was pregnant on nov 2nd. Unfortunately I miscarried on nov 22. I started back on the maca and had one light period, but now, (feb 1) i am a few days late and negative pregnancy test. Should I stop the maca for a week or assume that it is working and just taking time to regulate my hormones in order for my period to come back so we can start trying to concieve again?

  50. Jean says:

    I am 65. Long story short – throughout my life, I have been misdiagnosed as borderline diabetic at 18 even though my fasting sugars were at 200. From then on as a type 2 diabetic with no one ever completely testing me before starting insulin at 47. Also, diagnosed with pernicious anemia at 4, and no one every putting me on iron & B12 therapy, until I found a female physician at 52, who ran a blood test and my oxygen levels were at 7.8. It took until I was almost 60 before feeling almost like a regular person – except, I have always said that I was born tired, and will die tired. I am always tired, and do not sleep well. I have nice bags under my eyes not just from the lack of sleep). My pharmacist told me that could be because my adrenal glands are sick. I feel that even though my thyroid tests come back normal, when they do a more in-depth test, several factors come back not in the normal range, but still they are telling me I am normal. I have never been normal. I just found out about maca and have been on it for 3 days. I am very excited about what I have been reading, and everyone’s reviews, etc. I did notice that it tells you to stop taking birth control pills if you are taking maca. What about prempro? Can I still take the 2 together. I have high T-cells and libido is not a problem for me at my age – just would like to have some zippy in my steps and less bags under my eyes before my time is up.

    • Hi Jean, you can take maca with prempro. Also, exercise and a vegetarian diet with lots of water might help you sleep better. We also have a deep sleep adaptogen tea blend that a lot of our farmer’s market customers use to help them sleep. Take care!

  51. maizarat says:

    Hi I have using maca for 2weeks and now am suppose to be on my period but have not seen anything pls what can you advise me to do.

  52. Rebecca says:

    Hi, I am 23 years old an have three children. I am not looking to get ptegnant again any time soon. I haven’t had a period in over two years due to pregnancy/miscarriages and birth control. I always get pregnant on birth control and then I miscarry about six weeks into the pregnancy. I just had a daughter eight weeks ago. I figure my horemones are all out of wack still so I started taking Maca Root Herbal Supplement 525 mg once a day from GNC five weeks ago. I had a period for seven days and it stopped seven days ago but now I started bleeding again today already. Do you think the Maca Root capsules are causing this odd menstrual cycle? What do you think I should do? Should I change the form of Maca Root I’m taking or should I just stop taking it? I don’t want to get pregnant again and since birth control never works for me we’re trying natural family planning but that is hard to do when my oeriod is all out of wack. Can you help me?

    • Hi Rebecca, Maca typically improves fertility in both men and women. However, I helps to balance hormonal function as well. Look at other changes in your diet. There are other ways to get to a balanced body. Are you eating mostly fresh vegetables? Drinking herbal tea regularly? Cutting meat consumption down to about 20% of your diet? All these can help your body return to homeostasis. Also, all forms of sustained stress is detrimental to our health. Try breath-work, meditation, etc. If you have specific questions about how maca interacts with birth control and other medications, please seek out a naturopathic doctor. Thanks for your question!

      Jay

  53. kim says:

    Hi – I am taking a MACA supplement/capsule 500 mg 1-2 times per day for the past 3 weeks and am not noticing any differences one way or the other such as increased libido, increased muscle (I work out 5 days a week), increase stamina etc. It is not quite time for me to start my menstrual cycle so I am not yet sure if I will notice a difference with this. My question is, am I taking enough MACA? I heard to start slow to avoid possible side effects such as rapid heart beat or insomnia and so far have not experienced any negative side effects.

  54. Lynn says:

    My hemocrit tends to run on the high side of the normal range.
    Should I take this or avoid it?

  55. Sam says:

    Hi is macca safe during pregnancy.I have done some research and some said its safe.some said dont take it while pregnant..I am now pregnant and dont know what to do.I had a miscarriage before and dont want to risk it by not taking it..

    please help.thanks

  56. Nicole says:

    Hi,

    I am experiencing low libido on my birth control. I want to see if maca would affect my birth control thanks!

    • Hi Nicole,

      Maca and your birth control may interact in some way, because both effect your estrogen levels. Birth control elevates estrogen and progesterone, while maca acts like a balancing adaptogen to try to bring hormones into balance.

  57. Piya says:

    Hello..
    my menstrual cycl is not proper since it started. i would always have to take medicine for menses to come. the first time my menses occur in 17yrs and that too with the help of medicine. nd from that onwards i always take medicine for menses otherwise menses doent happen. doctor prescribed me some contraceptive pills for 9 months. but that 9 month period is stretched to 6 yrs with the break of 3 4 months after every 9 months cycle.
    now i am 9 months married and menses still doesnt happen without medicine.
    does thi maca powder help me ??
    plzzzz respond to my query as soon as possible.
    thanx.

    • Hi Piya,

      Try taking maca, but make sure that it doesn’t interact negatively with any other medications or herbs you are taking. Eat one tablespoon of gelatinized maca root powder everyday in a smoothie for about 3 weeks.

  58. Megan says:

    I forgot to add thst I take thyroid replacement medication (thyroxine)

  59. Megan says:

    Hi, I had my thyroid removed due to goiter 7 years ago. Pms and heavy menstral periods have haunted me ever since. Is it safe for me to take Maca?

  60. Clare says:

    Hi,
    I’ve used maca before and really liked it, but haven’t used it for a while… I am current not on the pill, but I want to go back on it, and I want to know if it’s okay to take maca while on the pill? I’m not actually worried about getting pregnant; what I want to do is to skip my period, and be able to take maca, and know that the mac won’t effect my ability to skip my periods.

    • Hi Clare,

      Maca will acts to balance out your hormones, so it will not stop your periods; it may actually help them to be more regular however.

      • Jackie says:

        Hello there. So I have been taking an all Natural Supplement for my Thyroid since I was diagnosed with Hypothyroid 5yrs ago.. i was taking Synthroid and at some point it started making my heart raise faster..so i spoke w my Gyno and she said im only PARTIAL hypo.. so i stopped taking Synthroid and found a natural SUPPLEMENT to help my body produce hormones naturally.. and sure enough for my last blood test, my thyroid is good.
        But i have been reading alot of positive information about hormone balancing by taking maca root…
        I’d like to try it.. but my question is that, will it interfere with my Supplement???

  61. Jenny says:

    Hi,

    I had my ovaries removed some months ago due to cysts and scartissue from endometriosis. I’m 45 and had regulator periods before surgery.
    I’m on low dose bioidentical estradiol and a higher dose of progesterone (day 8-28) to feel ok and still manage my endometriosis.
    It hasn’t worked for me and I tried maca a few days ago. I’ve been feeling a little bit better since.
    Can I combine maca with bioidentical hormones or do I need to stop bioidenticals? Since having no ovaries maybe maca is not enough…?
    Thanks for all the info!!!

    • Hi Jenny,

      This sounds complicated, however maca acts as an adaptogen for your hormones, so taking it regularly may balance out the hormones in your body. It probably wouldn’t hurt to try, but I am almost positive that it will interact with the hormone meds you mention in some way.

  62. Zella says:

    Hi, I’m 51 and began using estradiol patch about 10 months ago. I had a hysterectomy at age 43 due to numerous fibroids. I retained my ovaries, but my GP told me before I began the patch that they’d basically shrivelled up. I have always felt the heat, which has steadily worsened over recent years to the extent I have to constantly fan myself,can easily have perspiration dripping from my brow for no apparent reason, dislike exercise because I feel too hot, and I could go on! Since beginning the estrogen patch it has calmed down considerably, but I’d like to settle it even further as I’m still prone to overheating! A friend is urging me to try maca. I am interested – but are there contraindications with the patch? With Effexor (225mg daily)? With Karvea (half tab daily? Will it help me stay cooler?

    • Hi Zella,

      Maca daily might help you, but it will likely interact with those medications in some way. I would look at your diet also as a way of cooling your body. Avoiding most meats (fish is okay), fruits and nuts. Eat more leafy greens, cultured vegetables, and herbal teas.

  63. love says:

    Hi jay

    I am 32 yrs been introduced to maca powder.been taking it for a month now.but has delayed my periods for 3 weeks now and no possible sign of it coming.pls am getting worried. Should I atip taking it or what.?

  64. Gtbaby says:

    I am 41years old and use Ortho Evra patch for birth control. Can I use Maca supplements? A year ago I went to a doctor and he prescribe I take DHEA 10 mg for adernal fatigue. I stopped taking it cause my hair was falling out. Would it be a good idea to take it if I’m on the patch?

    • Hi Gtbaby,

      Maca might interact with the birth control in some way. Your hair falling out might be due to something else. Try changing your diet and taking more adaptogenic herbs that do not stimulate your immune system.

    • Sarah says:

      Gtbaby, hair falling out is a symptom of the adrenal fatigue beginning to affect the thyroid (or so I was told when it began happening to me). So maybe the maca would help the whole endocrine system balance out again. Seems to be working for me.

  65. Joanne says:

    Hi, I am 55 years old and after getting off Mirena, i have not had my period for five years and love it. However, Maca was recommended to me for fatigue, stress, brain fog etc. I was wondering if Maca, after five years of no period, would bring it back? Personally, I don’t want my period back lol

  66. Kenley says:

    So happy to have found this info! I have been trying to conceive for a year and I just turned 31. My husband is taking maca (capsule) for low sperm and I’m thinking I should take it too. My cycles are very regular but awful pms symptoms. Should I try this? I also have thyroiditis pop up now and again but as of today my blood work was normal. I ovulate and “tick just right” but would like to know if this might help boost fertility and also, I’m on medicine for
    High blood pressure, will it be ok with that?

  67. Jade says:

    Hi,

    I’ve had slightly irregular periods and a few other health issues which are on the mend. I’m interested in taking maca powder but am getting married in December and have set the date so that it will fall in the middle of my cycle. If I start taking maca powder (small doses and going off it as recommended), is it possible or likely that it will change the approximate time my menses come?

  68. Nikki says:

    There are lots of reasons I would like to try Maca. But can anyone give me a straight answer to this question as I can’t find one and it’s getting frustrating!!! I’ve always had a 28 day cycle, very lucky, so I don’t want to mess this up. Will maca affect my cycle!! Nikki

  69. Erin says:

    Hey! Great write up and informational passage you have! Very detailed! Had a question. I’m 16 5″6 and 150 pounds. I am trying to gain back some women curves such as hips and butt. I heard Maca Root Powder does something with the estrogen in our bodies, and when we gain weight it will go to the “womanly places” aka hips and butt. Purchased pure Maca Root Powder from local health food store. I am also weight lifting hard 5x a week, and drinking whey after workouts (trying to gain more muscle as well). Will Maca help in my quest to gain some weight on the booty and hips?

    • Hi Erin,

      It might. Maca works to balance out hormone levels, including estrogen. Also, it helps to balance thyroid, which controls weight and metabolism, as well as, body temperature. Never hurts to try, it might also aid in your recovery time in weight lifting, as it will help reduce elevated levels of stress hormones, like cortisol and adrenaline; keeping you feeling balanced while working out.

  70. Marcy says:

    Hi I took an organic Maca root 1000mg, yesterday am . I have hypothyroidism and take 125 mcgs of Synthroid.
    Today I am having chest pain and I feel very hyperthyroid ; sweating.. Could the Maca have worked that quickly with just 1 dose? I also take ginko biloba now and then . Vit d3 . Coq10. A, e ,selinium. B complex. Salmon oil and zinc. I’m 44 years old. I have had chest pain off and on for years but this was a but more intense . Should I not take the Maca anymore? Ugh. Hate thyroid disease!
    Thanks for this website ; I have never had a decent doctor yet..

    • Hi Marcy,

      Hypothyroidism is a auto-immune disease that effects a lot of women. Maca is powerful and effects everyone differently. So, yes, it is possible that the maca root is effecting you in some way. Check to make sure that nothing else is in the capsule.

      • Belinda Olive says:

        No hypothyroidism is not a autoimmune disease alone. If you have hasimotos and have antibodies that is a auto immune

        • Christiane says:

          Correct! Hypothyroidism / hyperthyroidism isn’t autoimmune disease on its own. How ever one can be Hashimoto (autoimmune) hyper/hypo. I have hashimotos leaning to hypo. It’s quite complex and fluctuates greatly.

  71. josie says:

    I have very irregular cycles my doctor gave me provera to stop my bleeding but it did not work still bleeding,now he started me on bcpills but i don’t want to take it. I want to take maca to see if it may help me with my abnormal cycles somebody please help me and my husband are ttc. HELP

    • If you are otherwise without any serious health problems and are not on
      birth control or any other artificial hormone supplements, then there is a good chance that regular use of a high quality maca powder will bring back your periods. I think that one tablespoon of maca powder per day for three weeks is best. I am not sure how many grams that is; my guess is 9g per day(9,000 mg). Remember that maca powder is essentially just a root ground up, so pills are often underdosed. Maca is consumed in copious amounts in the Peruvian Andes, where it comes from.

      Hope this helps.

  72. JoAnn says:

    I have recently learned about Maca. I have had hypothyroidism since college and now I am 43. I have been on Synthroid off and on for 20 years. I am not very good at remembering to take my medication. I have been taking maca root gel cap at 750 for 2 weeks now and don’t feel any difference. Any suggestions? Do I take it daily for life? What is the “right” amount?

    • Tuesday says:

      Hi JoAnn, did you get an answer to your question? I have been on synthroid for 20 years myself and am going to wean myself off. So much conflicting info. on maca and other veggies like broccoli. Some say eat, some say don’t.

    • Hello JoAnn,

      Taking maca root is safe. You can eat as much as you want to. Maca is an adaptogenic root powder. So, it will only aid in bringing your body to homeostasis. Try moving away from gelcaps and using one to two tablespoons of maca root powder in a shake or on yogurt.

  73. Liliana says:

    Hello,
    I’m 27 & started taking maca to balance out my hormones as well as all the benefits it provides. I have two kids & don’t plan on anymore which is why I am on a low dose birth control pill. I took the maca for a couple weeks in my smoothies & I missed my period. I’m very regular so of course that terrified me. I stopped taking it & finally am getting my period for the following month. When would you recommend I begin taking it so it won’t mess up my cycle?

  74. Rebecca Wingar says:

    Hi, I posted this question before, but there has been no reply, I’m hoping to get an answer this time.

    I started taking maca in capsule form approximately 3 weeks ago, I started with 1 500mg capsule a day for the 1st week, and then worked up to 2 capsules a day (I did start with maca powder, but I just can’t stand the taste of it). I am trying to conceive and it has been suggested to me that maca might help balance my adrenal glands, which have been noted to be ‘sluggish’ during reflexology. I an on day 4 of my cycle and my period has been extremely light, and my mood has been very low for the past week or so. Could you tell me if this is something which is normal when starting to take maca, and if my period is likely to normalise again as I wouldn’t be happy if all my cycles were to continue like this, not an ideal environment for implantation. Thank you for your help!

    • Hi Rebecca,

      Thanks for your questions. Its important to remember that maca is an herbal adatogen; its a root with alkaloids that trigger the pituitary gland to do its thing; which is to regulate the production of hormones. There are other aspects of ones life that can cause mood to be low and fluctuations in menses, like diet and stress levels. Also, its important to find a source of maca powder that is potent and effective, because not all maca is equal. That being said, maca could be having an effect on your mood, menses, and adrenals. Maca is going to effect each person a little differently from the next. It is recommended that one takes maca in cycles of three weeks daily and then a week off. So, since you’ve started three weeks ago, try stopping for a week and see how you feel. Also, consulting a naturopathic doctor or a health coach that knows about maca and women’s health wouldn’t hurt. Hope this helps a bit!

  75. Dev says:

    Hi I recently lost about 20 pounds and have had a lot of stress. I think that was the reason why I lost my period for about 3-4 months. I am starting to eat more and was wondering if maca power would help bring my period back faster and allow me to have regular cycles in a healthy way.

    • Hi Devorah,

      Thanks for your question. It certainly wouldn’t hurt to try maca,
      especially if you aren’t taking any hormonal medication and are trying a
      holistic approach. Try eating about one tablespoon of maca root powder
      everyday for three weeks and see how you feel.

  76. Elizabeth says:

    I’m 33 and I’m very regular cycle of 28 days, I’m taking Maca to help me get pregnant , I notice that I’m starting spot so my period should get here today or tomorrow which is a week early. Should I continue taking it? ahould I contiue taking it? also I’m taking in powder form dailiy , what is the right dosage?

    • Hi Elisabeth,

      Yes, you may continue taking maca. Most people eat one-half to one tablespoon of maca everyday for 3-4 weeks, and then take a week off. It is an herbal adaptogen, so if its working for you, please continue.

  77. Thank-you for such a helpful post and detailed responses. I’ve read all your comment responses, which ave also been helpful.

    I am 31 and had two easy pregnancies in my 20’s. We’re trying to conceive again. I began taking gelatinized maca powder in March. In May my BBT were a little lower than normal pre-ovulation (two days at 96.9), but went to normal levels post-ovulation. I seem to have conceived, but then had a very early miscarriage. When my bloodwork was done 2 weeks later I asked them to check my thyroid. My TSH results came back at 6.7. I was prescribed synthroid, but have not chosen to start it yet.

    My question is could the maca powder have caused slightly elevated TSH rates? I don’t have symptoms of hypothyroidism, except for cold sensitivity (which is nothing new and is likely related to poor circulation in my case). I feel fine, which is why I hesitate to go on meds. Perhaps I should stop taking maca, though I’d hate to do that if it’s actually helping. Thanks for your advice!

    • Hi Rachel,

      Maca doesn’t act directly on the thyroid; it works on the pituitary gland, which in turn works better to regulate the other glands. To answer your question, yes its possible that taking maca did elevate your thyroid hormones, especially if they were below normal to begin with, as many people, in particularly women, find that maca is effective at balancing out the effects of hypothyroidism. Now, if you start taking synthroid, you will be artificially elevating thyroid hormones in your body, so maca may not be as effective once that starts. I know of a couple in their forties that got pregnant and had a healthy baby. Both were eating copious amounts of maca while they were trying to conceive, but I believe they stopped taking maca once she was pregnant. Women’s bodies go through dramatic hormonal changes, especially during pregnancy, in particular, the elevated estrogen. Your best bet would be to consult a naturopath that understands maca and pregnancies.

  78. Pam says:

    I meant I’m taking only one dose a day. It has been four days on it. Thank you.

  79. Pam says:

    I’m 44 and believe I’m starting perimenopause. Insomnia,anxiety, mood swings. But I’m also type 2diabetic and have hypothyroidism. I started taking one dose of femmenessence maca life and noticed water retention in my fingers and my arthritis in my neck and fibro seems worse. Plus extreme heartburn. Should I stop taking this. I did notice other than the pain I am calmer today. Thanks for any feedback

    • Hi Pam, It depends on how long you’ve been taking the maca for. Also, just diet in general can effect all these issues you are having. It wouldn’t hurt to stop taking it for a few days and see how you feel. Remember maca powder is just a root, its an adaptogen. I am not familiar femmenessence…maybe try an organic gelatinized maca powder. Many women have told me that maca is effective in mitigating the effects of perimenopause. Stick with it.

  80. Rebecca says:

    I started taking maca in capsule form approximately 3 weeks ago, I started with 1 500mg capsule a day for the 1st week, and then worked up to 2 capsules a day (I did start with maca powder, but I just can’t stand the taste of it). I am trying to conceive and it has been suggested to me that maca might help balance my adrenal glands, which have been noted to be ‘sluggish’ during reflexology. I an on day 4 of my cycle and my period has been extremely light, and my mood has been very low for the past week or so. Could you tell me if this is something which is normal when starting to take maca, and if my period is likely to normalise again as I wouldn’t be happy if all my cycles were to continue like this, not an ideal environment for implantation. Thank you for your help!

  81. Linda says:

    I’m 50 and I’ve been taking Maca since December with fantastic results eliminating my perimenopause symptoms (brain fog, heavy, painful periods, breast pain, fatigue, weepiness). Unfortunatley I now have hot flashes which I never had before. I was taking as much as 1000 mg of Maca a day, but was told I may be having hot flashes because I was taking too much. I now take about 167 mg a day which still keeps all my symptoms at bay except the hot flashes. I also use a small amount of progesterone cream everyday (1/2 tsp). I notice if I don’t use the progesterone, I become pretty irritable. Any ideas on how I can eliminate the hot flashes? Thank you!

    • Hi Linda, That’s a great question. I’ve been told by many women that are perimenopausal that one of the first signs that maca is working for them is the subsiding of hot flashes. Have you tried maca leaf tea? It works fast and is a potent combination with the maca root powder.

    • Carol says:

      Linda, try rhodiola and magnesium for the hot flashes.

  82. Amanda says:

    I recently started taking Maca root after doing some research. I am 26 years old, low libido, always have late periods, and want to have another baby. Was hoping Maca root would help with fertility, and libido. I have been taking it for 1 week, and I don’t know if its too soon to expect anything, but I am taking 3 525 mg tablets a day. I got a period, 2nd day of taking maca, but have been extremely tired, and irritable, and almost depressed feeling. Is this normal? Will the side effects subside? I was really hoping to find something that worked…

    • Hi Amanda,

      Try taking a maca root powder that is not in pill form; 1/2 to one tablespoon a day for three weeks. Also, pay attention to other aspects of your diet and lifestyle. Are you eating lots of greens and organic if possible? Stay away from HFCS, refined sugars, and processed foods in general. Your diet plays a big role in mood and libido. Also, exercise and yoga are great for enhancing libido and energy levels.

  83. Roberta says:

    My estrogen level is 98 and my progestrine is 0.2. I am menopausal with some of the symptoms…hot flashes…mood swings…heart palps..have been on synthroid but took myself off ( with my doctors permission and regular blood tests ). Can Maca help me and if so how much should I take and how often??

    • Hi Roberta,

      Maca may help to regulate all glands of the endocrine system. Try taking 1/2 to 1 tablespoon (depending on your weight and metabolism) of gelatinized maca root powder everyday for three weeks and see how you feel. Many women have reported that maca helps mitigate menopausal effects, like hot flashes.

  84. kimberly says:

    Hi I had my thyroid removed in sept my levels are low I take synthroid and now cytomel. My estrogen level is low as well. I am extremely fatigued and I was extremely stressed but now it has dimineshed a little. I bought maca root geletinized and have been taking 4 days no results yet should I just give it more time?

    • Hi Kimberly,

      Maca root works on the pituitary & pineal glands, which in turn regulate the function of the thyroid gland. Since, you’ve had your thyroid removed, maca may not do much to help with balancing aspects of thyroid function, like body temperature and body weight. However, it still may help with the function of your existing endocrine glands, like adrenals and ovaries. It makes sense that it is helping balance out stress hormones (epinephrine), as it helps your pituitary gland regulate those levels.

  85. Taryn says:

    Hi Jay,

    I am 26 and had the merina removed in January as my husband and I would like to conceive. I had a period immediately after and then nothing for 3 months. The Dr prescribed provera to bring on a period but it didn’t work. He then put me back on the pill to bring a period and a month later it arrived. I have been off all meds since then and still no period. Day 60 now and I decided to start taking Maca root a week ago. I have been taking 2 tsp at night with water.
    However now my thyroid seems to be enlarged and I can feel it in my throat like it is swollen? it is bugging me and I was wondering if I should stop taking it? I am having headaches as well. Dr tested my thyroid in April and said it was fine. I am wondering if my current hormonal imbalance could be exasperated by taking Maca root? am I taking too much? Should my thyroid react so quickly and aggressively? Thanks

    • Hi Taryn, its interesting to me that your doctor gave you provera because that is HRT usually given to women going through menopause. Maca usually doesn’t make a hormonal imbalance worse. However, its not recommended for someone with hyperthyroidism. Maca does not effect the thyroid directly, but works through the pituitary gland to regulate the thyroid, which in turn releases hormones that effect body temperature and body weight. It’s important to remember that maca doesn’t act like a prescribed drug, but is a nutritional supplement with potent alkaloids. It is an adaptogen. Stress and diet can effect the thyroid as well. Try stopping the maca for a few days and see how you feel, and then start taking it again, but try half the amount and eat it with other food.

      • Carol says:

        Provera is indeed given to women to get hypermenstruation back in check. It’s only prescribed to menopausal women if their estrogen is way high in the progesterone ratio.

  86. Fay says:

    Hi,I would like to ask you,I have been diagnosed with adrenal insufficiency,and with hydrocortisone the endo gave me also hormone replacement as I don’t have period any more and I am only 37 years old.i am thinking of taking Macca supplement ,do you believe that will help me?if yes then what kind do you suggest?

    • Hi Fay, maca may help with adrenal burnout, because it helps tone the biofeedback of the endocrine system. However, since you are taking HRT that’s been prescribed by a doctor, you should consult a qualified naturopathic physician that knows both about nutrition as therapy, which would be maca, and how it interacts with HRT.

  87. Therese says:

    Hi,

    I’ve had Ovarian & Uterine Cancer (synchronis – no primary) and the original curetttings were positive for oestrogen and progesterone receptors. I’ve had a complete radical hysterectomy, chemo & radiation therapies. Menopause symptoms sice then have been brutal. Clearly I’m not able to take any form of HRT but I was wondering if Maca is a safe alternative.

    • Hi Therese, there is no harm in trying. Maca will help your pituitary gland regulate your thyroid gland, which in turn effects body temperature and weight. So, maca might help reduce the severity of some aspects of menopause like night sweats and hot flashes.

      • jen says:

        No harm in trying?? My understanding is that maca could be dangerous for people who have a history of hormone-related cancer. I’d say there could definitely be a harm in trying if she ends up with cancer again! Therese, I’d get 2nd and 3rd and 4th opinions before putting myself in danger of going through that again, if I were you!

        • Carol says:

          Thank you, Jen. Maca is a mystery, and keep in mind there are different types of maca, supposedly with different effects. One kind definitely reduces estradiol, while another apparently raises estrogen. I’ve had various effects with it. If you’ve had cancer, don’t play around with herbs with effects that are not definitely tested or entirely understood.

  88. Amy says:

    I recently turned 50. I have not had children, and it seemed to be too late when the time was right about 5 years ago. I began perimenopause a few years ago. I’ve used Progesterone cream for 10+ years to successfully manage symptoms of estrogen dominance, PMS, and breast pain. My periods stopped last summer, and I began having more difficulty sleeping, along with some night sweating and then the breast pain returned. For several years, the breast pain seemed to be on a pattern related to stress, i.e. it would begin sometime after late Nov and become worse late Dec or early Jan. In late Dec I tried Maca Root powder and within two days had a fairly normal period but none since. (Note that I didn’t change anything about my use of Progesterone cream, which has been 3 weeks on, 1 off.) I had more energy, higher libido (which has probably always been low), was sleeping better and breast pain went away. About 2 months ago, stress increased and then peaked about 2 weeks ago. My throat felt “crowded”, and it may be that my thyroid is swollen. I hadn’t heard about taking a week off of the Maca, and am wondering if I should reduce Progesterone and/or Maca, and if I should take a week off of the Maca, how to do that?

    • Hi Amy, these are all excellent questions. Try going off of maca for a week and see how you feel, then start again. Also, maca is not right for a person with hyperthyroidism. If your thyroid is swollen, you should get that checked by an expert naturopathic doctor who knows about maca. The maca will help to “wake-up” your pituitary gland and thus the rest of your glands. Since you are taking hormone supplements, its more complicated, so a consultation with an expert is advised.

    • Karen says:

      If you are taking the progesterone for three weeks out of the mounth you are the one that dropped your ovulation, not menopause. You are only supposed to take use progesterone in the lutenal stage of your cycle which is the latter half. Using it anytime other before ovulation stops ovulation. This is a form of birth control. Personally I would stop the progesterone and the maca and see if the throat swelling goes away. Then I would start from scratch.

  89. Jasmine says:

    Hello, I am 26 years old and am always tired regardless of how much I sleep. I also have very low libido. I read about Maca and it seems to have a lot of benefits. I have also read a lot about it and see negative things about it. Will it help to regulate all hormones? Will it cause too much testosterone which could cause more manly features? or would it go to the other extreme and cause infertility? Also, I read somethings about people’s heart racing with it, etc. Somewhere also mentioned that there could be different Macas used for men and women? Is this true or could the same one be used? Lastly, I also read that maca is not intended to be ingested raw but cooked and the gelatinized form helps. Can you please clarify that. I just want to make sure Maca is safe and a good fit for me. Thanks for your help.

    • Hi Jasmine, these are all great questions. Maca is an adaptogen. This means that it helps correct imbalances in your body, in particular, it helps the pituitary gland, the pineal gland, and the adrenals all reach a homeostasis. Our bodies are always dealing with stress and hormones are a way that the body communicates with itself when under any stress. Maca is a food that can help with this function and help reduce an over-abundance of stress-hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, also it can help balance testosterone and estrogen. But, it doesn’t directly introduce these hormones like a drug. It just helps certain glands, like the pituitary gland, function at its optimal potential so that it can regulate the hormone levels in your body. It’s not a drug, so it won’t cause any weird side effects like hormone meds might. It won’t cause infertility, actually quite the opposite. Men and women are so different chemically, even more so people in general all have different levels of hormones and health, so maca will effect everyone differently depending on their chemistry and overall health. Maca is a root, like a turnip or a beet. It is very fibrous and tough. So, it is traditionally “gelatinized” to make it easier on the bodies digestive system. Gelatinized is just a fancy word for lightly cooked.

  90. terrie says:

    I’m 39 years old and am trying to conceive my 4th and last baby. My children are now older teenagers. I have very regular cycles and have had my thyroid levels checked and they are normal. I have charted and know that I in fact ovulate on cycle days 14/15. I read where Maca root would help with older eggs. I took it this month and have experienced very heavy bleeding with clots. Was it the maca that caused the heavy period?

    • Hi Terrie, That’s a great question. Personally, I know of a couple around the farmer’s markets that conceived and the mother was your age. They had a healthy baby. Maca does effect hormones, but everyone’s chemistry is so different, that its always a good idea to have a personal consultation with a professional that knows what maca is, such as a naturopath, practitioner of holistic medicine, or a professional midwife.

  91. Diana says:

    Hi, I have very bad menstral cycles which include, vomiting, lightheadedness, fainting, diarrhea, cold sweats, hot flashes, but only mild cramping, I’m 29. Years ago my gyno put me on birth control pills which fixed this but I didn’t want to be on them and stopped a year ago. I started taking 1-500mg geletanized maca capsule daily for a month, all symptoms disappeared during my cycle BUT I bled terribly. I went through 3-4 pairs of pants for several days. I thought I was bleeding to death. So this month I didn’t take them and I’m back at square 1. Any advice?

    • Hi Diana, your problem sounds like it needs the consultation of a naturopathic doctor or a doctor trained in holistic medicine. They will look at you as a whole rather than prescribing a drug. There are probably dietary changes that you can make to help. As far as the maca goes, it probably isn’t going to hurt you to continue taking it. However, try stopping for a week. So, 3 weeks on and one week off. Repeat.

  92. Carolina says:

    I’m 16, and previously had secondary amenorrhea. I lost my period for 2 years, but I took a hormone replacement for 10 days. It’s been about 2 months since I’ve taken the medication, and i got my period back this week but Its not regular at all. Would maca root help with regulating it at all? Would it make my stop my menstrual cycle? Thank you!

    • Jay says:

      Hi Carolina,

      If your health issues are behind you now, and you’ve stopped taking hormones, then taking maca might help normalize your menses. Try taking 1/2 tablespoon of organic gelantinized maca root powder everyday for three weeks or so.

  93. Josie says:

    Hi, I’ve been looking to take Maca to help my fatigue. I’m 18 and for the past couple of years I’ve been feeling sooo sleepy during the day no matter how much I sleep. The gp tested me for anemia and said my iron levels were below average but not yet anemic. I’ve taken iron pills for the past few months daily but they haven’t helped so I’m looking to take Maca.

    I just wanted to know would it affect my menstruation cycles? Currently I’m fairly regular, every 28 days and it lasts about 4 days. I use to the rhythm method as contraception and it has been working, but if the Maca changes my cycle I’m afraid it could cause me to get pregnant.
    Please get back to me
    Thanks 🙂

    • Jay says:

      Hi Josie,

      Maca has alkaloids that directly affect the pituitary and pineal glands. The pineal gland makes melatonin, which helps us to stay asleep once we’ve fallen asleep, so it could help with your sleep. Maca may also affect the timing woman’s menstruation cycle, because it will make the pituitary gland communicate with the ovaries. The potency of maca powder also compounds in your body overtime, so taking a half-tablespoon once probably won’t do anything, but if you take it daily…then the effects are more noticeable. It helps balance out hormonal swings associated with a woman’s period. Maca leaf tea might be a good choice, because it will help you sleep.

    • Karen says:

      Did he test your thyroid? Sounds like hypothyroid issue to me. Maca root may help with that as well, but you need BC — get a no-hormone IUD – NOT MIRENA (mirena IUD has hormones and will put tons of weight on you). Best of luck.

  94. Dianne says:

    I had my ovaries and my uterus removed 3 months ago due to endometriosis. I’m on an estradiol pellet at the moment. Would Maca benefit me at all? Is it safe to use with the implant or is it basically one or the other? Thank you.

  95. Tammy says:

    I have been on Armour for two years just recently found out my T-3 was too high so my dr replaced my Armour with Synthroid. I am wondering if taking maca powder would mess with my medication.

    • jay says:

      Armour and Synthroid are medications that supplement the thyroid hormone (T-3) and the thyroid-stimulating-hormone (T-4). Essentially, when one takes these pills the pituitary gland stops making T-4 and the thyroid gland atrophies. Ideally, there would be a medication that only replaces T-4 that allows the pituitary gland to continue working, but there isn’t. Maca is a powerful alkaloid that works directly on the pituitary gland, but may not directly work on the thyroid gland. While, the pituitary glands function is to regulate the thyroid gland, that is not the only gland of the endocrine system. Maca might trigger the pituitary gland to scan your body for T-3 levels and possibly release T-4. Maca is an adaptogen, so it may not affect your medication. Try the loose leaf maca tea.

      • endodoc says:

        I am an endocrinologist and that atrophy effect can happen to your adrenal glands if you take steroids but it does NOT happen to your thyroid if you take thyroid hormone. Taking thyroid hormone does not suppress or atrophy your thyroid gland.

      • Mistress Maia says:

        Jay Sir, The pituitary gland does not make t4 but rather Thyroid Stimulating Hormone which in turn stimulates the thyroid to make t4 aka levothyroxine..this is not TSH, t4 is then converted to t3 in numerous places throughout the body. The pituitary gland can sense if t4 levels are high and reduces the release of TSH thereby slowing t4 production in the thyroid gland. Beyond the TSH from the pituitary you have thyroid releasing hormone coming from the hypothalamus dictating what the pituitary gland should do. Nor do people taking Armour or Synthroid cause their thyroid gland to atrophy, this would be because they usually have autoimmune destruction of their thyroid(hypo); or with autoimmune stimulation(hyper) of the thyroid they will radioactively destroy the thyroid and then supplement with thyroid meds to stabilize the patient. The supplementation of t4 or t3 medications assist the normal functioning of the body. Hypo and hyperthyroidism can be life threatening. I would increase your knowledge of physiology/pathophysiology substantially before giving out thyroid speculation and advice to people on what a supplement may or may not do to their bodily functions. For real people, if you want to take something ask your doctor first!

  96. Chris says:

    Hi, I’ve never had my thyroid scanned or been tested for a thyroid imbalance, but I had a miscarriage at 5 weeks last October, and now I suspect some form of postpartum thyroiditis. I need to get my hormone levels checked, but based on my symptoms (jittery, anxious, irritable, from November to January, and now calm, but very tired) I think something might be off balance. My cycle was always very regular since I came off the birth control pill in 2012, but after taking maca root – 1 teaspoon/day for 2.5 weeks this cycle, I am now 5 days late for my period, and my basal body temperature is way up in the 36.9-37°C range, so it looks like AF isn’t about to arrive either. I’m at a bit of a loss, as all the home pregnancy tests I’ve done have come back negative. Could the maca have thrown my cycle out of whack? Could it have had an incidence on my thyroid activity? Any advice/testimonies would be much appreciated.

    • jay says:

      The alkaloids in the maca help to stimulate the pituitary gland to do its primary function, which is to release or stop the release stimulating hormones to the rest of the endocrine system. It works on bio-feedback. So, if a certain hormone is too low, it will release a related “stimulating hormone,” or vice versa will stop releasing the stimulating hormone. In the case of thyroid function, the hormone is called thyroid-stimulating-hormone (TSH); in the case of estrogen and testosterone it is called gonad-stimulating-hormone (GSH). The thyroid releases hormones that control body weight, temperature, and energy levels. It sounds like the maca is doing something to your chemistry. Have you had fluctuations in body weight?

      In your case, you should get your thyroid examined by an expert. A doctor will do some tests that will show levels of TSH, GSH, and other hormones in your body, and make an assessment. You can examine your thyroid at home, too. It should not be visible when you look at your neck in the mirror (ie, no bumps), and it should have a rubber-like feel to it. An enlarged thyroid is common as women progress in years.

      Try maca leaf tea. Brew a strong batch and see how you feel while slowly sipping it.

    • Melanie says:

      2 years ago, I had attempted taking Maca to help balance my hormones. I have hypothyroidism and hormone imbalances, among many other things, is common among hypothyroid patients. I, like you, had always had regular cycles. I took the Maca, and after that, my periods began skipping every other month. Then it would be absent for 2-3 months on end. Then I tried HRT per my docs advisement. She put me on bioidentical testosterone based on my labs and symptoms (one of which included low libido). After research, I decided to stop the testosterone pellet. I figured the high doses of testosterone had stopped my cycles. 6 months later, I still have not had a period in 2 years. It seems to be the mystery that still plagues me. I’ve had ultrasounds, blood work, etc and still can not figure out what caused absent menstrual cycles. I forgot to mention, I am only 28. In some articles I have seen a few women asking the same question. Every time, they are told that Maca can’t/won’t do that. For me, I think the testosterone pushed it over the edge but it began with Maca. For whatever reason, it seems to upset the cycles for only few women. I figure it has to do with hypothyroid + another condition/deficiency. I have followed the stop the thyroid madness to uncover many other issues I have had going on. My adrenals, sex hormones, vitamin deficiency, and mineral deficiencies are all things I have had to address on top of my thyroid. Also, I don’t know if maybe I wasn’t dosing right. I know herbs like vitex need to be taken a certain way otherwise it can do more harm than good. Anyways, I’m not much help but thought I would reply and let you know your not the only one who has this happened to you.

      • hananah says:

        I came across the same info about maca and my thyroid, after I made my thyroid worse from taking it daily for a year.
        Be careful ! Do lots of research! Maca made my health issues far worse.

  97. Amy says:

    I am taking Maca to try and balance my hormones after being diagnosed with premature ovarian failure (I was diagnosed 2 years ago at age 27). My menstrual cycle has been very predictable (24 days) but flow is unpredictable.
    I’ve been taking maca for three weeks. My period is five days late and I have fairly severe ovary pain (pregnancy tests are negative and I am waiting to have ultrasound scan to check for anything else).
    Is there a possibility the maca is making my condition worse? Can anyone recommend what I should do (stop supplements/change supplements)

    • jay says:

      Maca has alkaloids that stimulate the function of the HPA (hypothalamus, pituitary, adrenal)-axis, and consequently the rest of the glands of the endocrine system. This includes the ovaries (and testicles) which make and release gonad-hormones, like estrogen. So, it is possible that maca is effecting the ovaries in some way. The question of if it is making it worse is not likely, but it is a good idea to take maca in cycles. So, 3 weeks on, and one week off. Try taking a break and see how you feel. Also, the quality of maca varies across the marketplace, so it is important to use maca from a trusted source. Try maca leaf tea, it has a higher concentration of the therapeutic alkaloids and it is fast acting, so you will be able to tell immediately from drinking the tea by trial and error how the maca effects you.

    • Susan says:

      The usual dosage recommendations for a petite frame is (5.3 or less) 1/3 teaspoon daily..always.with food and one day off a week. If you are experiencing cramping you probably taking too much…unless you are a case where you are allergic (not often). Try two days on one day off….reevaluate every five days though…you must wait and reevaluate every five days to change your dosage.O
      ver time it has a cumulative effect and you won’t need as much! Call the company where you purchased from. Good luck!

    • Imegahan says:

      SO what happened?! Are you okay? Was it the maca? Pray God it was temporary, whatever the case! Hope you are well.

    • cathcaff103 says:

      Please don’t take maca if you have thyroid problems. Maca makes the problem worse. It causes increased anxiety insomnia emotional problems mood swings aggression and mental health problems. You can become very ill very quickly with this herb. It affects your nervous system and brain and is only available with prescription in certain countries. Also maca increases your tpo anitibodies causing a goitre. Hypothyroidism is a genetic condition there is no cure and maca just makes it worse.

      • Chiara says:

        Where did you get this information that says it makes the thyroid condition worse? And is it hyper- or hypo- thyroidism that is made worse by the herb?? You can’t talk just from opinion and with generalizations. Any sources?

      • jj says:

        You’re shilling. Go away.

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