Increase energy, stamina, and libido.
Who could say no to that?!
I have been increasingly interested in the health benefits of maca root. Maca root originated in the Andes of Peru. It has been used medicinally for hundreds of years and is just beginning to gain popularity in the U.S. as a powerful super-food. Here's a few reasons why:
- Maca is abudnant in amino acids, phytonutrients, healthy fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.
- Maca is an adaptogenic herb, meaning it helps the body adjust to any type of stress. It interacts directly with the hypothalamus which contributes to a greater sense of calm and well being.
- The combination of nutrients in maca regulates metabolism, therefore helping yousustain energy for longer periods of time.
- Maca is known for its ability to increase fertility in both men and women. It also helpsboost libido and relieve uncomfortable symptoms of menopause and PMS. (I'm sold!)
The only thing that maca lacks is, well, good flavor. Imagine eating a spoonful of dirt and chalk; it tastes kind of like that. I made some apricot maca bars this last weekend to take on a long bike ride (energy & stamina - check!), and the sweetness of the apricots blends perfectly with the earthiness of the maca. They tasted too good not to share!
Apricot Maca Energy Bars
Makes: 6 bars
Time: 20 minutes
- 1 heaping cup of dried apricots (organic and unsulfured if possible)
- 1/4 cup maca powder
- 1/4 cup raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
- 2 Tbsp. nuts or seeds (I used pumpkin seeds for mine)
- 2 Tbsp hemp seeds
- Pinch of salt
- Parchment paper
- Process the apricots, maca, and cacao in a food processor or high powered blender until you have a sticky "dough". You may have to do this in 2-3 small batches to get it completely blended.
- On a piece of parchment paper, use your hands to knead the seeds and nuts into your dough. It will seem like too many seeds at first, but trust me, it can be done!
- Place the parchment paper in a loaf pan and flatten out the dough so that it fills up the entire bottom of the pan. Do your best to smooth out any lumps or uneven spots.
- Remove the paper from the pan, cut into 6 bars, and store in the fridge.
Hope you love them!