Millions of people all over the world suffer from thyroid dysfunctions. Hypothyroidism (Underactive thyroid), affects more than 30 million women and men (hyperthyroidism is less common). Malfunctions of the thyroid systemically jeopardize our body health. According to Naturopathic endocrinologist and Nutritionist, Laura Thompson, the thyroid gland is the master gland in the endocrine system, it is responsible for energy and metabolism, and any thyroid slowing has significant effects on the overall health of a person. The human endocrine system is mainly made of glands, primarily thyroid, pituitary and adrenal glands. These glands purposely function to release hormones, and in return, these hormones control various body activities. They affect most processes such as sexuality, digestion, metabolism, brain and the nervous system physiology. The thyroid gland stimulates metabolism in the body while also controlling the rate at which the body yields energy from the nutrients. The hormones produced by the thyroid gland affects cells, hence regulating the growth of cells, and it also controls the heartbeat rates. That why most hypothyroidism symptoms include fatigue, weight gain, infertility, depression, low body temperature.
Dr.Viana Muller’s studies on the impacts of Maca on the menopausal women indicate that some of the patients reported reduced thyroid medication, while some stopped the medication after consumption of Maca.Those who stopped taking medication claimed they felt better and more energetic. There was no provision of an exact percentage of women who improved their thyroid conditions due to Maca because at that time Dr.Muller was studying thyroid specifically, but instead, all these women reported the changes to her.
So, what is the Role of Maca in the Thyroid Gland and How Does it Reduce the Symptoms of Thyroid Problems?
Maca basically re-starts the endocrine system. It enhances the mechanics of the endocrine system, the entire system in charge of the glands and their respective hormones. Maca doesn’t contain any hormone, yet its unique nutritional profile has essential nutrients which nourish the endocrine system while supporting the adrenal and thyroid glands produce hormones in adequate and balanced dosages as required by the needs of each person. Maca is an effective and safe non-estrogenic herb which naturally works to balance the hormonal levels without necessarily changing the thyroid chemistry. Most cases of hypothyroidism are often as a result of hormonal imbalance. Thus, the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough hormones, slowing down the body functions.
Maca is a natural substance that helps prevent and treat goiters. More importantly, color plays a significant role in determining the content of Iodine in Maca.The darker the root, the more Iodine is present. Iodine which a great endocrine gland builder is vital for proper thyroid health. Iodine supports balanced moods, healthy metabolism, and healthy blood pressure. Inadequate Iodine in the diet can lead to hypothyroidism, low metabolism problems, goiters, mood disorders, depressions, fatigue and most conditions associated with hormonal imbalances
The hypothalamus releases the thyrotropin-stimulating hormone (TSH), which in turn stimulates the pituitary gland by releasing precursor which in turn stimulates the thyroid gland which releases thyroid hormone. Maca increases the thyroid hormone output in most people with hypothyroid conditions. Maca helps the thyroid produces the Triiodothyronine (T3) (active form) and Tetraiodothyronine (T4) (Inactive form) hormones which are vital in regulating the physiological functions in the body such as growth and developments as well as metabolism. The T4 hormone travels throughout the blood into the cells where it becomes the active form, T3.Thus, if an individual has an under-active thyroid, then the thyroid gland isn’t producing enough T4 hormone for optimal body functioning.
According to Dr.Chacon, Maca contains alkaloids which act on the pituitary –hypothalamus gland axis and the adrenal glands, creating a hormonal balance in the endocrine system, thus preventing hypothyroidism. The alkaloids present in Maca activates the hormones that are secreted by the thyroid gland. Her research shows that regular consumption of Maca balances the master gland, which is the hypothalamus. With a balanced hypothalamus, there is a balance and regulation in other glands, including the thyroid gland.
Besides Maca’s balancing properties, Maca is a powerful adaptogen that is rich in anti-oxidants and Vitamin B complex contributing to stabilizing and balancing the hormonal system. As an adaptogen, Maca responds to body needs, hence increasing the ability of the body to defend itself against mental and physical weakening.