Last update April 3, 2023

Lepidium meyenii

Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Cruciferous plant cultivated in the Andes (Peru, Bolivia). The root is consumed, rich in proteins and nutrients (nutritional value similar to that of cereals) used secularly in the diet of Andean populations. It contains macaenes and macamides (unsaturated fatty acids and their amides), glucosinolates, imidazole alkaloids, sterols, catechins, and vitamins B, C, E, and K. (Fitoterapia.net, Lock 2016)

It is popularly attributed fertility-enhancing functions that have not been rigorously scientifically proven. (Wang  2019, Valerio 2005) 

It does not affect prolactin levels (Gonzales 2016), nor does it have estrogenic (Powers 2015) or androgenic effects (Bogani 2006). No published adverse effects. (LiverTox 2019, Gonzales 2016, Valerio 2005)

Being a tuber widely used in the diet of Andean populations and devoid of toxicity, its consumption would be compatible with lactation.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Lepidium meyenii is Maca in Latin, botanical name.

Is written in other languages:

Lepidium meyenii is also known as

Tradenames

Main tradenames from several countries containing Lepidium meyenii in its composition:

  • Euroton™. Contains other elements than Lepidium meyenii in its composition
  • Maca Vibe

References

  1. Fitoterapia.net. Vanaclocha B, Cañigueral S. Fitoterapia.net. 1992 - - Disponible en: https://www.fitoterapia.net. Consulted on Dec. 21, 2023 Abstract
  2. Wang S, Zhu F. Chemical composition and health effects of maca (Lepidium meyenii). Food Chem. 2019 Aug 1;288:422-443. Abstract
  3. Gonzales-Arimborgo C, Yupanqui I, Montero E, Alarcón-Yaquetto DE, Zevallos-Concha A, Caballero L, Gasco M, Zhao J, Khan IA, Gonzales GF. Acceptability, Safety, and Efficacy of Oral Administration of Extracts of Black or Red Maca (Lepidium meyenii) in Adult Human Subjects: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2016 Aug 18;9(3). pii: E49. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  4. Lock O, Perez E, Villar M, Flores D, Rojas R. Bioactive Compounds from Plants Used in Peruvian Traditional Medicine. Nat Prod Commun. 2016 Mar;11(3):315-37. Review. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  5. Powers CN, Setzer WN. A molecular docking study of phytochemical estrogen mimics from dietary herbal supplements. In Silico Pharmacol. 2015 Mar 22;3:4. Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  6. LiverTox. Maca. 2019 Apr 10. LiverTox: Clinical and Research Information on Drug-Induced Liver Injury [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; 2012-. Abstract Full text (link to original source)
  7. Gonzales GF, Gonzales C, Gonzales-Castañeda C. Lepidium meyenii (Maca): a plant from the highlands of Peru--from tradition to science. Forsch Komplementmed. 2009 Dec;16(6):373-80. Abstract
  8. Bogani P, Simonini F, Iriti M, Rossoni M, Faoro F, Poletti A, Visioli F. Lepidium meyenii (Maca) does not exert direct androgenic activities. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006 Abstract
  9. Valerio LG Jr, Gonzales GF. Toxicological aspects of the South American herbs cat's claw (Uncaria tomentosa) and Maca (Lepidium meyenii) : a critical synopsis. Toxicol Rev. 2005 Abstract

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