ADAPTOGENS VOL.1 - MACA
If I can put my finger on one of the most special natural phenomena that exist in general, and in the culinary world in particular - I point on adaptogens.
If you are a bit involved in the health scene, you have probably heard (especially recently!) The term adaptogens, which is now an increasing trend, but the truth is that they have existed for centuries and have been used for decades, and now they are finally coming to the front of the stage.
My initial introduction to the term adaptogens was part of my thyroid research,
And I remember reading an article about other natural ways to support the gland when one of the sections was a recommendation to incorporate a plant that encourages thyroid activity. This plant was part of a group of plants called adaptogens.
My real deep insight into them was when I tried to regulate my hormonal activity because I was not getting my menstrual at all for a very long time after I stopped taking birth controls pills (after seven consecutive years!).
letting my body heal itself without any unnatural interference and understanding that each of us is different was a huge deal for me and proofed itself after getting my hormonal activity back in balance.
the best thing was to see how good is to listen to my body and give it the time it needs!
do not stress out because your not following and functioning like your surrounding. your body is unique, treat it accordingly.
So what are actually adaptogens?
These are types of plants that have healing abilities and gentle effects on us that help protect and balance the body by mainly improving our ability to cope and adapt to different stress situations.
They were discovered by a group of soviet scientists at the late 40's who were sent to search and develop materials that would allow their athletes, military personnel, and various representatives to improve their endurance, strength and mental abilities that would bring them international fame.
Different adaptogens do not have one specific action like many existing herbs, but they are beneficial to the body as a whole, and can normalize and moderate any effect or pressure we are dealing with, which is VERY common these days. In addition, each one has a special effect on a different system in the body and has a root effect. More resistant to storms outside.
Adaptogens have a lot to offer people who are looking for deeper ways to enrich their lifestyle, vitality and energy - they are not a substitute for a healthy lifestyle but rather support it, meaning that you will still have to protect yourself by good night sleep, good nutrition, etc.
Medical advice: Before using any plant, consult your doctor. There are certain adaptogens that have effects on blood pressure (licorice) and those that should not be consumed during pregnancy (holy basil). Do not rush to introduce them without doing homework on the subject and get the right advice. Consumption: Adaptogens work better with regular use, and if using them the right way, you don’t usually need to worry about them putting a particular strain on the body or your body building up a tolerance.When you begin to consume adaptogens it is very important to start gradually, they are SAFE to use but it can be too much for your body to start hard. I like to start choosing one adaptogen to use at least once a day for a while before switching over to another or taking a rest (well, personally i don't really stop at all). I find that it helps me to reevaluate their affect on me.
Follow-up: In order to truly notice the change that is happening to us in the body and see if they really affect us positively, I recommend keeping a diary. Record the days and feelings that are going on before you start using them, gradually start using them and after a few weeks record the same days with the same routine. sometimes there are small gentle changes we won't notice if we won't stop to ask ourselves how we handled with situations and then look back to see our progress.
In this first volume from the series of ADAPTOGENS articles , I chose to delve into my favorite adaptogen that is well-known for it's connection to our hormonal activity
Maca is a root growing in Peru, and is remarkable in that it thrives under very difficult conditions for cultivation due to the tremendous altitude in the Andes.
The maca is estimated to increase libido and a balance of hormonal health and fertility in men and women. it's helping to regulate the endocrine system, which are glands that produce hormones and have a direct affects on our metabolism, growth, sexual function, sleep and mood.
There are eight different types of maca root, and studies done in different types have shown that each type has a slightly different profile of vitamins, minerals, and other factors.
Although it is used as a fresh vegetable in Peru, in Israel it is available only in its dried form and powder
And it has a earthy, mainly nutty and slightly caramel taste.
Safety use: Maca is traditionally used as a food and is therefore considered safe, but should be gradually started in order to recognize it for the body and increase gradually. Approximately 1,000-1,500 mg of powdered maca per day at start, usually divided into several doses.
Popular ways to use maca powder:
Smoothies, Porridge, Raw desserts, Granola, Overnight oats, Waffles and pancakes and this amazing coffee-free hot elixir.
CASHEW - MACA ELIXIR this recipe is basically without any nut mylk preparations because nut butter+water creates the mylk and creaminess we are looking for in lattes. ingredients:
2 cup boiling water (wait 2 min to cool before using)
2 Tbsp cashew butter (or any other nut or seed butter you like)
1 Tbsp maca powder
2 tsp cacao powder
1 tsp tahini
1/2 tsp mesquite
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of vanilla extract
blend all the ingredients in a high speed blender for 2 minutes.serve with anise star and cinnamon on top.