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What about Continuing Maca and Flax Oil during Pregnancy?

What about Continuing Maca and Flax Oil during Pregnancy?

Questions:

Hi there Hethir

Firstly, I just want to say how much I love your site. Your knowledge, inspiration and motivation just amaze me.

I just have a question about maca and flaxseed oil. I’ve been trying to get pregnant for 4 months and last month started having your fertility smoothie and charting and testing for the fern pattern. I was using an IUD for contraception previously; it has been out since October. My cycle is usually 29 days and ovulates on day 15.

Well, a strange cycle this one. I ovulated on day 19 and then yesterday, day 23 I started spotting very lightly. It’s still happening today but not as much. I’m thinking this might be implantation bleeding (fingers crossed).

So, I’ve been reading some conflicting information on line regarding flaxseed oil and maca, saying you shouldn’t take it if you are pregnant. Is that right?

Also, most info on maca suggests you stop taking it if you suspect you are pregnant.

What’s your opinion on this? I have found your site to be the most knowledgeable one I have found regarding natural therapies and fertility and would love your feedback on this!

Thanks again

Answer:

Hello and thanks or your email all the way from Australia. I went and checked out that article and looked into the study mentioned.

What I found from reading the study was that…
1. They used flax seeds, not flax oil in the study and
2. The conclusions were based on how much estrogens were found in the urine. Plenty was found in the flax seed consumers and none in the soy flour consumers. This may not have been due to there being estrogens in the flax seed as much as it could have been due to the fiber effect of the flax seeds. Fiber is one of the best things to remove estrogens from the body.

But I would have to agree with that article that Clean Fish Oils are better for pregnancy. They contain omega-3, DHA, and vitamin A which are all extremely important for a growing baby’s brain development.

I like to use flax oil in the smoothies because of the flavor, but I also take fish oils daily, separately.

Your other question about taking maca into pregnancy… Every herbal supplement must say on the label to not take during pregnancy, and it is true for most of them.

The thing with maca is it is used to balance hormones by reducing estrogen. If someone was progesterone deficient or overloaded with estrogen and the maca was helping to balance that and it’s taken away, we may have a slight issue, especially when pregnant.

Maca does not actually contain hormones but it also has not been tested during pregnancy so we cannot know if it is completely safe for use during pregnancy. It is said the Peruvians consume maca during pregnancy with no problems but, to be safe, we suggest to not use maca during pregnancy. You may want to look into something that is proven safe for use during pregnancy, such as progesterone cream.

So, it does come down to gathering information and making the best decision for yourself and your body.

Dr. Christine Traxler M.D., OB/GYN
Dr. Christine Traxler M.D., OB/GYN

Dr. Traxler is a University-trained obstetrician/gynecologist, working with patients in Minnesota for over 20 years. She is a professional medical writer; having authored multiple books on pregnancy and childbirth; textbooks and coursework for medical students and other healthcare providers; and has written over 1000 articles on medical, health, and wellness topics.  Dr. Traxler attended the University of Minnesota College of Biological Sciences and University of Minnesota Medical School,  earning a degree in biochemistry with summa cum laude honors in 1981,  and receiving her Medical Doctorate degree (MD) in 1986.

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[-] 127 Comments
  1. Avatar

    Hi there,
    I had taken maca in attempts to get pregnant with my first baby: no luck for 3 years of trying, then 3 months of maca and we were pregnant. I am now trying to get pregnant again and have been taking maca for several months now – it has helped tremendously with my energy and my MOODS as well. Did ovulation tests and tried for the day before, day of, and day after…My period is now 8 days late, but 4 home tests came back negative…wondering if the maca is possibly affecting the pregnancy hormone levels and therefore not reading on the tests…should I stop taking? I take about 2-3 teaspoons of powder a day. Would hate to stop, as it does help my energy and general well being! Should I wean off it? what would you recommend for dosage in that case?
    much thanks!
    Cynthia

    • Hi Cynthia,

      I have never heard of maca affecting pregnancy test outcome. Pregnancy tests detect human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), if you are pregnant these would be present and should show up on the pregnancy tests. You did not mention if your cycles are usually irregular. If they are it could be that you are still experiencing this. Because I don’t know what brand of maca you are taking, it is hard to know if you are exceeding dosage.

      Here is a piece I did on maca in the past that may help you to determine if continuing maca into pregnancy is right for you………

      Q: Is Maca safe to take during pregnancy? Does it have toxic effects on my baby?

      A: Most nutritional supplements as well as herbal supplements are not suggested for use during pregnancy. Many herbs and supplements should not be used in pregnancy, but this is not true for all of them. This caution statement protects manufacturers from liability in case something adverse happens to the mother or baby during pregnancy while using the product. This caution also alerts the user to the potential for adverse effects. In some cases this caution is a generalization and the risk is relatively low. Manufacturers can not know the potential risks for each individual consumer, so putting a caution on the product makes it safer for consumers in general, minimizing risk to the mother and baby by having them not use the product at all.

      Maca has been used for thousands of years by the peoples of Peru, and they eat it daily; even during pregnancy. Acute toxicity and cytotoxicity studies have shown no potential toxicity for Maca. Hundreds of thousands of people have used maca with no reported side effects. Foods like processed soy have shown to have adverse effects on the developing fetus as well as the mothers hormonal balance due to phyto-estrogens. Maca does not contain hormone like substances like soy or other plants containing phyto-estrogens.

      We really have to think about other foods we consume daily like soda with aspartame, preservatives or food dye, all of these effect our bodies adversely, but they are deemed “safe” for regular use. Maca is a superior food as far as nutritional value goes, so why would this plant be a poor choice for pregnancy? Most maca is also organic. Because it is considered a nutritional supplement and herbal supplement it is still advised that you get permission or talk to your health care provider about using Maca into pregnancy. It is always best to be on the safe side and let your healthcare provider know all herbs and supplements you are taking, especially if you are pregnant.

      If you are not wanting to continue on with it, you could wean off of it by taking a lower and lower dosage over 2 weeks time.

      May you be at peace whatever the outcome!

      Blessings,

      Dalene

  2. Avatar

    I have been using Maca for 3 weeks, but I am still not sure if it does any future dangerous side effects such as prostate or thyroid related cancers, eventhough I am using it for 3 weeks I keep researching and to be honest I am really tired of this research as every website says something different I just dont know what to trust, all I want is not to damage myself unintentionally while using Maca, can someone please give me some relaible infirmation on this product I am so stressed ,

    • Hi Sinan,

      I am sorry to hear you are so stressed out. Honestly if a product is stressing you out, it may be best to stop taking it, as the stress is counteracting the benefits of healing. Maca is first and foremost a food. Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is a root-like vegetable shaped like a turnip. It grows at 12,000 feet above sea level and is only found in the high Andes of Peru and Ecuador. For more than two millennia, native Peruvians have used maca root as food and medicine to promote fertility, endurance, energy, vitality, and sexual virility. I think the safety of using it really depends on where you are purchasing it from and what type of Maca you are consuming. The golden variety is what you are looking for. There are other varieties of maca that have a variety of other colors; red, purple and black. The darker varieties red, purple and black do contain higher amounts of iodine, which may not be good for some thyroid problems; this has not been linked to the golden variety that we use in our Fertilica Maca.

      Maca aids the body in healthy stress response, which may be helpful for people who experience high stress lives, anxiety, depression, and fatigue.

      A while back I did a question and answer article on common questions we get about the safety of Maca. It may answer many of your questions regarding maca, you can read it here: http://natural-fertility-info.com/maca-fertility-qa.html

      I did the Maca Q&A because I wanted to know the truth about Maca as well. In all the research I have done on this plant, honestly I cannot find evidence of it having any negative long-term health impact. We suggest it only be used for 3-6 months as needed. Maca has been used for thousands of years by the peoples of Peru, and they eat it daily; even during pregnancy. Acute toxicity and cytotoxicity studies have shown no potential toxicity for Maca. Hundreds of thousands of people have used maca with no reported side effects.

      I am not sure this will help you as the internet searches can be mind boggling and confusing.

      Best wishes,

      Dalene

  3. Avatar

    Hi! I have stumbled on your site and I am amassed of how much wealth of information and help you provide. Thank you.
    I have a 6 year old and we have been trying to conceive for a while, i just do not seem to ovulate properly. I just started the maca in the beginning of my cycle this month after my period ended, i have been taking the EPO, fish oil since april. I will be starting the tussin tomorrow. Hopefully this will work, I will give it time of course. I have been reading about the fertility smoothie in your blog but i did not see the recipe. Can you direct me on the ingredients and how often should i take it and if it is ok with all the supplement i am taking currently?
    Thank you.

    • Hi Samira,

      I assume by tussin you mean Robitussin? Some women do take this to increase cervical mucous. We feel that using natural remedies and not medications is best for the body. If you think you may not be ovulating, or having disordered ovulation there are two herbs you may want to learn more about: Vitex and Tribulus.

      Vitex may help to improve timing of ovulation and the entire menstrual cycle. Tribulus may actually stimulate ovulation.

      You can join our 10 Day Fertility Smoothie Challenge to receive a new Fertility Smoothie recipe each day, or you can purchase the Fertility Smoothies eBook for a variety of smoothie recipes. Fertility Smoothies are find to drink daily!

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  4. Avatar

    I just finished the cleanse last cycle. And this cycle will be our first cycle Trying to Conceive. And I order Maca today. It will probably arrive sometime in the middle of my cycle. Is it ok to start taking it in the middle of my cycle? Or should I wait until next cycle? And is it ok to take Maca with the Natural Progesterone Cream Emerita??? If not, what should I do? Because I ordered both and would like to try both the Maca and Progesterone Cream, but I’m not sure if they can be taken at the same time.

    • Hi Kristina,

      It is fine to begin maca at any time in your cycle. Maca has been shown safe to combine with Natural Progesterone Cream use, including Emerita.

      Thank you for your questions,

      Dalene

  5. Avatar

    Dalene hi there I would like to know if its okay to take maca which I take three times a day with fertibella one time a daily of 125mg and the maca is 500mg.

    • Hi Nelly,

      I am not familiar with fertibella, please contact their customer service to see if maca is safe to combine with their product you are using.

      Thanks,

      Dalene

  6. Avatar

    I just stumbled across this thread out of curiosity, and it is interesting. I just returned to the US after living in Peru for just over 3 years. This is the first time I have ever heard of using maca to try to get pregnant. I started using maca right after we got there, because it is great for energy. I had a nursing baby (well, he was almost a year old when I started the pills), and they had no effect on him that I could see. I bought the pills from a local pharmacy, they are 800 mg, and I started with three a day, then went down to two after a couple of months. One of the ladies I read asked if it upsets your stomach. I had some stomach upset with it for about a month, and I think it may have to do with fiber, more than anything else. Your body gets used to it.

    In Peru, many people buy maca drinks that are prepared on the street. They boil the root (it is like a potato) and put it in a blender with other ingredients. It is marketed for sexual potency for men, but doctors also recommend it to help children who have trouble concentrating. It works well in that case, and, as I said before, to boost energy. I know that the times I ran out, I could really feel the difference. One comment I know came up a few times is that many Peruvians use maca every day. I wouldn’t say that is true. Very few do, unless it is to treat a specific problem. Like I said, I took it for energy, and the maid that worked for me started using it too, but in powder form (she would mix it with her morning coffee).

    When I came back to the States, I brought about 7 bottles with me. You can’t get this dose up here, and what is sold here is pretty expensive. In Peru I paid about $8 or so for 100 800mg pills.

    From my experience (I am not a medical professional), unless you are allergic to potatoes and the like, maca should not be a problem during pregnancy. It would probably help keep you awake during the day, and would probably help with nausea. This, of course, is an opinion.

    I love maca!!

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Thank you for sharing your experience. You are correct in that all of my research on Maca, natives use it in pregnancy, breastfeeding and for their children as well, with no reported problems. In the United States because it is marketed as a nutritional supplement and herbal remedy we have to warn against it for pregnancy and breastfeeding. The Maca we sell is gelatinized, which means the fiber is taken out; this helps with digestion and absorption. You are correct that unless you are allergic to the potato family of plants you should avoid maca. Thanks for sharing your tip that Peruvians usually do not eat it everyday.

      Be Well,

      Dalene

  7. Avatar

    for addition: my doctor do not know anything about maca root and prefer oral syntetic progesteron than progest natural cream.

    • Rany,

      This is something you need to talk to your doctor about. If you desire a more natural route to healthcare I would suggest looking into a Naturopathic Doctor instead.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  8. Avatar

    hi..
    last year(2010) i TTC with maca about 4months.. and i got pregnant.. but infortunately i had miscarriaged in the first trisemester, my doctor prescribe me nsyntetic progesteron but it not help me. finnaly, i had D&C.. i stopped taking maca while i pregnant..
    ant this year..i start TTC again.. since march 2011 i take maca..
    if i pregnant, is it good to continue maca..? i’am affraid while i stop maca during pregnancy, my progesterone will drop immedietaly that cause miscarriage especially in the first trisemester like what i experienced last year.. :-s
    can i take maca Half of TBS a day and natural progesteron cream 1/4 teaspoon a day if i pregnant to prevent miscarriage?
    because i read many peruvian women consume maca to prevent miscarriage.. is that true? how ever there is no study (clinical study) about maca during pregnancy.

    thanks

    • Hi Rany,

      I am sorry to hear about your miscarriage.

      We do not recommend continuing maca into pregnancy. In the US there is little to no research on the use of maca in pregnancy. You are correct in that the native Peruvians often eat maca everyday, even into pregnancy with not adverse side effects. It would be best if you are concerned about maintaining progesterone levels in early pregnancy to learn about using Natural Progesterone Cream in pregnancy. So if you were taking maca and you found out you are pregnant you would contact your doctor, midwife or naturopath, someone who can test your and monitor your hormonal levels, you could then under their guidance switch over to using natural progesterone cream and weaning off of maca. You can learn how to use progesterone cream for pregnancy by watching this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgETYfXEoU8

      You can learn more about how to possibly prevent miscarriage here: http://natural-fertility-info.com/preventing-miscarriage

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  9. Avatar

    Been having IVf and after afew tries we are now 5 weeks pregnant. been taking, royal jelly + propolis and bee pollen sprinkles, q10, Vitamin D3, selenium, foilc acid, multi-vits and fish iols 1400mg. people keep telling me to stop taking royal jelly + propolis, q10, selenium and D3 saying its not safe to take in pregnancy.
    will appreciate your advice as I dont know what to do next or believe, also dont want to risk the pregnancy by taking chances.

    Thanks

    Suzzie

    • Hi Suzzie,

      In general we advise against taking bee products like Royal Jelly, Bee Pollen, and Bee Propolis. If either side of your family has a history of bee allergy you will want to avoid bee products, including honey during your pregnancy, as it may increase the risk of bee allergy in childhood. We also do not recommend CoQ10 during pregnancy, there is just not enough research on it to say whether it is safe for pregnancy. Most commercial prenatals do not have enough Vitamin D in them. Vitamin D can also be obtained for free by sitting out in the sun for 15 to 20 minutes per day. Forget using sun block though as it will actually block the ultraviolet light that is needed to produce Vitamin D. The warm sun helps your skin to create Vitamin D3 that is then transformed into the active hormone form of Vitamin D by the kidneys and the liver. In fact, by being out in the sun for just a few minutes a day, a women’s body can create between 10,000 to 25,000 IU of Vitamin D. As far as selenium goes, please talk to your doctor about that. Folic acid does not need to be supplemented if you are taking a good prenatal vitamin. A really high quality fish oil is recommended, and during pregnancy, essential fatty acids are important to your baby’s brain, eye, and heart development. You can learn more about the importance of continuing fish oil to get adequate amounts of essential fatty acids here: http://natural-fertility-info.com/essential-fatty-acid-fertility

      Congratulations on your pregnancy, we are so happy for you!

      Dalene

  10. Avatar

    Hi! Is it safe to take 369 oil blend even though it has some evening primrose oil in it after ovulation? My husband and I are trying to conceive. Thanks!

    • Hi Katie,

      Our Fertilica 3,6,9 Omega blend does not contain Evening Primrose Oil, but it does contain Borage oil which has a similar action as EPO so it would be best to avoid using this after ovulation if actively trying to conceive. Switching to a pure fish oil after ovulation would be best.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  11. Avatar

    Hi,
    Me and my husband have been ttc go about 7 mths, and have both been taking maca for over 2 weeks now, recently, my BBT has increased, usually it drops from 36.6 to 36.3 before my period, but it hasnt this month and has stayed around 36.5/6, is this because I’m taking maca? I also have a tender feeling in my stomach, slight cramping, feel sick all day long and tired. Can these all be side effects? I am only taking 1 tablet a day of organic maca – should I stop taking it? My husband feels more energetic, but it seems to have the opposite effect on me – is this normal?

    • Hi Emma,

      Some people do get upset stomach when taking maca. If you feel you may be having a reaction to it the best way to find out if it is the maca is to stop taking it and see how you feel. Did you take a pregnancy test? Your symptoms almost sound like you may be pregnant.

      Hope you feel better. Stop the maca for a while and see how you feel.

      Dalene

  12. Avatar

    I have been reading your site for months and love it. I have a question,I had a miscarriage in 7/10,so I started taking Maca to regulate my ovulation, 1 TBS a day for 6 months. I am now 7 weeks pregnant and at 5 weeks pregnant I had them test my Progesterone and it was 30. I have been weaning myself off my Maca, because I just feel better to not be on anything. For the last 2.5 weeks I have been lowering my Maca by 1/4 tsp every two days. I am now down to 1/2 teaspoon a day. However, today I woke up and lost my pregnancy symptoms, and they were very intense for the last 2 weeks. I had severe nausea,(no vomiting) tender breasts,and metalic taste in my mouth. Now, today I have only somewhat of tender breasts. Do you think it could be related to weaning off the Maca? Could it be that I weaned off too fast? Have you known of anyone who weaned off and had a miscarriage? I am just concerned that for some reason, I am no longer pregnant. I talked to the advice nurse and she said that was a good sign, I don’t agree. I have 2 children and I know what being pregnant is like.Please let me know your thoughts,thanks.

    • Hi Ashley,

      Because maca may indirectly effect hormones by nourishing the endocrine system which is responsible for hormone regulation, suddenly taking it away may effect how it functions. It may be best to talk to your doctor about continuing the Maca until the 2nd trimester begins and then wean off of it. At that point the placenta will have taken over production of progestereone and your pregnancy should be fine. I have not had anyone stop Maca cold turkey and then miscarry because of it.

      Here is a an answer I gave recently for another woman concerned about continuing Maca into pregnancy:

      Most nutritional supplements as well as herbal supplements are not suggested for use during pregnancy. Many herbs and supplements should not be used in pregnancy, but this is not true for all of them. This caution statement protects manufacturers from liability in case something adverse happens to the mother or baby during pregnancy while using the product. This caution also alerts the user to the potential for adverse effects. In some cases this caution is a generalization and the risk is relatively low, manufacturers can not know the potential risks for each individual consumer, so putting a caution on the product makes it safer for consumers in general, minimizing risk to the mother and baby by having them not use the product at all.

      Maca has been used for thousands of years by the peoples of Peru and they eat it daily even during pregnancy. Acute toxicity and cytotoxicity studies have shown no potential toxicity for Maca. Hundreds of thousands of people have used maca with no reported side effects. Foods like processed soy have shown to have adverse effects on the developing fetus as well as the mothers hormonal balance due to phyto-estrogens. Maca does not contain hormone like substances like soy or other plants containing phyto-estrogens. We really have to think about other foods we consume daily like soda with aspartame, preservatives or food dye, all of these effect our bodies adversely, but they are deemed “safe” for regular use. Maca is a superior food as far as nutritional value goes so why would this plant be a poor choice for pregnancy? Most maca is also organic. Because it is considered a nutritional supplement and herbal supplement it is still advised that you get permission or talk to your health care provider about using Maca into pregnancy. It is always best to be on the safe side and let your healthcare provider know all herbs and supplements you are taking, especially if you are pregnant.

      Continue to talk to your doctor about your situation. It has been a couple days since you posted this comment, how are you feeling now?

      Warmly,

      Dalene

  13. Avatar

    Hi, I am 41 years old and have been trying to get pregnant for the first time. I have been taking prenatal vitamins, maca in your shakes, fertility pills and moms to be fish oil, are these too many vitamins or am I missing some.
    Any information is greatly appreciated. 🙂
    Thank you Adrienne….

    • Hi Adrienne,

      It sounds like you are on the right track, but I am not sure what “fertility pills” are?! Women over 40 often need to focus on uterine health, improving egg health and making sure their hormones stay balanced.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  14. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,

    Thank you so much for responding so quickly, I will give you some history on me. I am 40 years old have 2 sons from previous marriage got pregnant back in sept 09 and dec 09 both ending in early miscarriages, My current husband doesn’t have any children of his own so I figured before it is to late that I would try again and after doing some research I would try the maca for both him and myself thinking that it couldnt hurt. this cycle was the 1st one that we have actively started trying again and for the past months have been 26 days well this month since using the maca my cycle has changed to 28 days while not a huge change,any change in your tww is noticeable. Since my period has began
    I will take a break form it and then start again when it is over.

    I am very happy that I have found this site being that my insurance doesn’t cover
    fertility issues again thank you for your quick response.

    Michele

  15. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,

    I was wondering if maca can change /delay your cycle if you already have a pretty regular cycle. I started taking it last cycle and am late this cycle I have taken a pt and its neg could the maca have done this thank you for the info.

    hoping for some answers,
    Michele

    • Hi Michele,

      Becuase it has the ability to affect key hormones in theory yes it could cause a delay in your period, the menstrual cycle is run by hormones. I am wondering your reasons for choosing Maca? Everywoman is different in how her body may react to certain herbs. Have you stopped taking it to see if your period starts?

      All the best,

      Dalene

  16. Avatar

    hi, i have been taking vitex for 4 months now and it has helped my cycle to become a bit more regular. will i get more benefits by taking maca aswell? i am also taking selenium,zinc,magnesium,calcium,fish oil,and vit e. can maca replace all these extra vitamins?
    (i take the fish oil and calcium to help with arthritis and the mag for cramp.)
    i really want to bring my ovulation forward as i tend to ovulate between cd19-26, my LP is 10-12 days with no spotting, which is good.
    please advise if maca can help me or any other herbs that can help bring my ‘o’ forward and onto a shorter cycle.
    thank you for your time

    • Hi Trena,

      Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you.

      Maca works differently then Vitex. Maca’s nutritional values cannot replace the other supplements you are taking. Maca is a nourishing food for the endocrine system, aiding both the pituitary, adrenal, and thyroid glands (all involved in hormonal balance.) Maca has the ability to affect key hormones in both women and men without containing hormones itself. Maca helps to stimulate and nourish the pituitary gland, acting as a tonic for the hormone system. When the pituitary gland functions optimally, the entire endocrine system becomes balanced, because the pituitary gland controls the hormone output of the other three glands.

      The Vitex is specific for improving timing of ovulation. The suggested traditional dosage for Vitex is 1000mg a day and best results are achieved after 6-12 months of use.

      Best wishes,

      Dalene

  17. Avatar

    Hello Ladies,

    I have read through most of the maca and vitex threads on TTC and i feel i am getting mixed advice. I am TTC baby number 1 and i have PCOS. I haven’t had a period since July 30th 2010 and it is Oct 21 2010. I purchased Maca about a week and a half ago, and a Fertile Focus Ovulation Microscope. I have been taking 3,000 mg of Maca daily for about 1 1/2 weeks. Since i got the microscope about 4 days ago, i have been testing 2-4 times a day. The first and second day i saw nothing. yesterday i saw minor ferning in the morning and substantial ferning in the afternoon and today i see almost all ferning. My real questions here are

    1.) is it possible for maca to work that quickly? I notice i have increased sex drive, mood is better and energy is insane. Is it possible that maca is already causing me to ovulate after only 1.5 weeks?

    2.) I bought 2 bottles of vitex yesterday and have had mixed feelings, some websites say it is great, while others say to stay away from it. I want to do whatever will work best for pregnancy. If a mixture of the two is whats best, i will do it. If not, i wont.

    I do not want to use too much or too little, i have been to the gynecologist only once, when he diagnosed me with PCOS. He was very into using clomid and other fertility drugs and i absolutely do not want to do that. Any help or advice would be awesome. Thanks so much!

    Kristi M.

    • Hi Kristi,

      1) Yes, many women have had great effects from use of maca for a short period of time. Every woman is different and experiences different results.

      2) This again is based on the individual. Some women find that Vitex does not work for them. Vitex is specific for helping the body to ovulate and regulate the menstrual cycle. If you are really worried you may want to stick to the Maca and see how it goes, if your cycles are still off you may want to add the Vitex. You know your body best. Niether of these supplements is going to be as effective without eating a PCOS specific diet. Have you read our PCOS Diet page, if not here is the link: http://natural-fertility-info.com/pcos-fertility-diet

      Follow the directions on the label of the product you purchased.

      Best wishes,

      Dalene

  18. Avatar

    I am taking Clomid every other month. Would it be OK to take maca in the months in between? Would it be okay to take maca if I have a fibroid the size of an orange??

    Thanks,
    Amy

  19. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,
    I am 42 years old and I have been trying to conceive for the past 10 years with no success. PCOS was diagnosed as the problem and that my overies are enlanrged (what does that mean). Please can you assist me with any fertility drugs that can enhance my chance of conception. I am really despirate for result

    • Hi Helen,

      PCOS means Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. The ovaries usually become enlarged due to cysts forming in the ovaries.

      We do not sell medications for fertility, we promote learning alternatives to medications or preparing your body for optimum results when using fertility procedures such as IVF.

      With PCOS the way you eat matters. A big part of the problem with PCOS is the high insulin resistance. Resistance to insulin increases the bodies insulin levels which effects normal ovulation by preventing the body from ovulating or limiting the maturation process of the released egg. To learn what you can do naturally to reduce the effects of PCOS on your body please go to this link: http://natural-fertility-info.com/pcos-fertility-diet

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  20. Avatar

    hi

    here is the link to the iranian study on vitex, can you post your thoughts on it as this is only negative i can find and really want to give it a go as i have had two miscarriages
    thanks
    journals.tums.ac.ir/pdf/4033

    • Hi Kelly,

      So Hethir and I have reviewed the study. A concern with the study is that the mice were given injections of Vitex at a full human dose and in straight in the abdomen. This is not how humans consume this herb. We still feel it is best to discontinue herbs for fertility during pregnancy unless directed by a healthcare professional trained in herbalism. The patient needs to be monitored closely and given proper dosage that is specific to their unique needs. If you have had miscarriages due to low progesterone a safer choice may be to have a naturopath help you to learn more about Natural Progesterone Cream use in your first trimester and suggest a proper dosage for you. That way the ND can monitor and test your progesterone levels to get the dosage just right.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  21. Avatar

    Hi
    Pls can you advise me

    i have had two identical missed miscarriages at six weeks and my periods are only two days long and always have been. i think this is down to low progesterone, i also have a short cycle.

    I have been taking vitex and maca and am planning on TTC next month. I am apprehensive about taking vitex in pregnancy and have decided to continue Maca, is this as effective in boosting progesterone, i have read maca is safe in pregnancy and i intend to take in first trimester to help hormonally support the pregnancy. are they more effective when taken together? i am worried about vitex as i have read in can femonise male embryos and an iranian studies said it deformed mice foetus that i found on net. Pls can you help me

    Thanks

    • Hi Kelly,

      Hethir nor I have heard of Vitex “feminising male embryos”. If you found a study of interest you would like to send us, please send the link here… We love to read information on subjects that matter to our customers.

      Is it safe to take vitex during pregnancy?
      Aviva Romm states in her wonderful book Botanical Medicine for Women’s Health…

      In placebo controlled studies for teratogenicity and mutagenicity were conducted in rats, and even with the animals ere administered 74 times the dosage typically consumed by humans, no toxicity nor aberations in fetal development were seen. While Vitex can be used to help a miscarriage that is acute, it is best to use at least 3 months prior to conception and continued into the first trimester to maintain stable progesterone levels. The Botanical Safety Handbook provided no contraindications to use during pregnancy.

      Maca may help boost progesterone. In women, maca works by controlling estrogen in the body. Estrogen levels that are high or low at the wrong time can keep a woman from becoming pregnant or keep her from carrying to term. Excess estrogen levels also cause progesterone levels to become too low. Taking maca may help to increase the progesterone levels which are essential to carrying a healthy pregnancy.

      It would be best to get hormone testing to determine if you have low progesterone and if this is causing your miscarriages. It would be best to let your doctor/midwife know you are interested in taking the Maca during your 1st trimester and have them help you determine if this is your best option for carrying to term. To learn other natural remedies that may help prevent recurrent miscarriage please go to this link: http://natural-fertility-info.com/preventing-miscarriage

      Best wishes,

      Dalene

  22. Avatar

    I was previously taking Gelatinized Maca and Camu Camu each day but fell off the wagon some months ago. I am now 12 weeks pregnant and would like to start taking both of them again to support a healthy system for my growing baby. I know that women in Peru eat Maca as part of their regular diet. Do you think it would be okay to start taking them again? Any information you can give me would be appreciated.

    • Hi Rachel,

      To be honest I am not that familiar with Camu Camu, it is a peruvian fruit that is super high in vitamin C and should be fine to eat during pregnancy. Be sure to continue a balanced wholefood diet rich all kinds of vitamins and nutrients. Maca may be used during pregnancy with the approval of your doctor.

      Congratulations and best wishes,

      Dalene

  23. Avatar

    Thank you so very much Dalene.

    And one more thing I forgot to let you know that I have been pregnant with my second while I was taking maca powder.

    Thank you once again.

  24. Avatar

    hey! i had a miscarriage at 11 weeks pregnant in May. the doctor said it was just something that happened and we couldnt have stopped it even if we knew before. i did have to take clomid to get pregnant and we were successful on our 2nd round, the first time i ovulated. i did start my first perod on my own after the miscarriage, which is a good sign becausei was hving to take progesterone before to start my period. i think my estrogen levels were just out of wack and hoping that because i have now been pregnant that it fixed whatever was wrong. so we are wanting to start ttc again and i have just started drinking fertility smoothies this week. i put flaxseed oil, whey protein, and fruit in them and started taking Maca in a pill form today. i just saw where you are not suppose to take maca while on your period and today i am still spotting from my period. (day 5). should i wait to until i stop bleeding before i keep taking the maca?? also, i have heard that i need to stop taking the maca while ovulating and only start back if i start my period the next month. is this right??? im just a little confused i guess! lol!…also, do you think i should add any other vitamines to my smoothie that would help??

    • Hi Tonya,

      Thanks for sharing your story, that must have been a very difficult experience for you and your husband. Maca has been shown to be safe for use throughout the menstrual cycle. Hethir and I feel that it is best to give your body a rest during your period. If you know your period is ending and you have a bit of spotting it will not hurt you to begin Maca if you choose. You may also want to read our Recurrent Miscarriages page and learn what you may be able to do to work toward preventing another.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  25. Avatar

    Hi
    can you help i have had two miscarriages at six weeks and have had blood work done which shows i have low progesterone.
    my doctor has not prescribed me natural progesterone
    please can you advise me what i can take to imncrease my progestorone and should i take it up to 12 week s of pregnancy?

    • Dear Kelly,

      I am sorry to hear of your losses, this must be very hard for you.

      The good news is that you found out what may be causing your miscarriages.

      The following is from our Recurrent Miscarriages page:

      Vitex (Chaste Tree berry) Has been traditionally used by midwives and herbalist to prevent miscarriage associated with low progesterone. It can be used in conjunction with progesterone creams.

      Is it safe to take vitex during pregnancy?
      Aviva Romm states in her wonderful book Botanical Medicine for Women’s Health…

      In placebo controlled studies for teratogenicity and mutagenicity were conducted in rats, and even with the animals ere administered 74 times the dosage typically consumed by humans, no toxicity nor aberations in fetal development were seen. While Vitex can be used to help a miscarriage that is acute, it is best to use at least 3 months prior to conception and continued into the first trimester to maintain stable progesterone levels. The Botanical Safety Handbook provided no contraindications to use during pregnancy.

      Low progesterone during pregnancy may be a leading cause of recurrent miscarriages. Progesterone is responsible for creating a healthy environment in the womb by creating and maintaining a healthy uterine lining. It also may reduce the chances of blood clots and immune system responses to the fetus as a foreign substance. It is the pregnancy hormone.

      If you feel this might be your situation try to get your hormone levels tested before using the progesterone, than get tested again to make sure your levels are high enough.

      There has been great success from people I personally have worked with and have heard of many midwives swearing by natural progesterone. Progesterone cream is used from right after ovulation until your menstrual cycle, or if you get pregnant continue use and contact your health care provider.

      Make sure to have at least two bottles on hand, because running out could cause a big drop in progesterone which may cause the menstrual cycle to begin.

      For complete information on Natural Progesterone Cream useage please go to this link (toward the bottom of the page is some information on continuing this product into pregnancy): http://natural-fertility-info.com/progesterone-fertility-guide

      I hope this helps you! You may also want to see a naturopathic doctor who can monitor you while using herbs/progesterone cream and adjust the amount used just for you as well as test your progesterone levels. It is also important to be monitored while using this during pregnancy as well.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  26. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,

    I’m back and pregnant…… I continued to take Royal Jelly and Maca Punch every morning…. and heard Maca is fine to take while pregnant because it is a super food.
    Now that I am pregnant… can I still put hemp seeds, vitamin c and spirulina in my shakes?

    Thanks again Tawney

    • Hi Tawny,

      CONGRATULATIONS! We are so happy for you.

      Hemp seeds, vitamin C and spirulina are fine to put into smoothies during pregnancy. As for the Royal Jelly and Maca, please get the ok from your doctor.

      Best Wishes for a happy and healthy pregnancy!

      Dalene

  27. Avatar

    Does menopause hit during pregnancy? I mean can the symptoms of menopause arise during? I am confused, am I having the symptoms of menopause? I am four months pregnant.

    • Dear Sumaiya,

      If you are pregnant you will not be having a menstrual cycle, you will not get your period everymonth. There is no way you are going through menopause during pregnancy. Pregnancy may have many of the same symptoms as menopause, but menopause occurs when you are no longer ovulating. You do not ovulate during pregnancy because you are carrying a baby in your womb.

      Congratulations on your pregnancy!

      Dalene

  28. Avatar

    I have a 3 month old baby, I am suffering from postpartum depression and i started taking maca and see a difference but i was wondering it’s safe for breastfeediing? does maca cause spotting? or migraine headaches?
    thank you

    • Dear Chelsy,

      Maca may be safe to take during breastfeeding, but please talk to your healthcare provider first to get approval.

      If you are experiencing migraines or spotting and you think the Maca is contributing to this please stop taking it. Those conditions may also be associated with postpartum depression.

      Some ideas to help reduce PPD:

      -Hire a Postpartum Doula
      -Plan to freeze meals so that you have food for at least a week after the baby is home
      -Have someone stay with you and your partner who will cook, clean, do laundry and answer the phone for a few days
      -Have a friend organize other friends and family to bring you meals for 1-2 weeks
      -Listen to your body, if you are exhausted go to to bed, call a friend to help
      -Eat a nutrient dense diet
      -Drink Plenty of water
      -Snuggle your naked baby against your bare skin as often as possible

      Some areas have Postpartum Doulas that are in training that can help out for free. If you are interested in finding a Postpartum Doula in your area please go to the Doulas of North America Website (DONA) at this link: http://www.dona.org/

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  29. Avatar

    I started to take 2.5mg of Femara on cycle day 3-9. Getting ready for IUI
    Is it still safe for me to take Maca? It says its a super food and food is food right?
    Any insite on this.
    I have asked me DR however getting a call back could be days and I would already be on day 4 or 5
    Thank you
    Tawny

    • Dear Tawny,

      Eventhough Maca is considered a superfood it has the ability to effect key hormones. We do not recommend using it while on fertility medications, but it may be ok if your doctor give you the OK.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  30. Avatar

    I heard the Camu Camu berry (Vitamin C) is more effective than the Acerola Cherry is this true?

    Unfortunaltey I can not locate the keifer grain on Mothering.com is there a strong need for it or am I okay with out it?

    Thanks again
    Tanya

    • Tawny,

      It is fine without it…as for the camu camu berry, not sure. I think the cherrry was chosen for this because it is so yummy!

      Warmly,

      Dalene

  31. Avatar

    Thank you Dalene,

    Can you tell me what 2000-3000 mg coverts to is teaspoons or tablespoons?
    Aslo can I take the fertility smoothy everyday or do the 10 day smoothy challange?
    I am also looking for the Aerola Cherry Vitamin C in powder but can not find it on yoru site. Can you please advise where I can find it along with the Keifer grain?

    Thank you again,
    Tawny

    • Hi Tawny,

      You can do the 10 Day Fertility Smoothie Challenge, but it is best to continue the smoothies everyday or as many days in the week as possible. The challenge gives you great smoothie recipe ideas.

      One Tablespoon of Maca usually equals 1000mg.

      For keifer grains, try a search on mothering.com to find some for free.

      We like the Acerola Cherry from HealthForce Nutritionals. It can be ordered from their website.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  32. Avatar

    Good morning Darlene,

    I’m a regular taker of Royal Jelly 1 vile every monring… and I have now purchased Maca and Spirulina. Today is day 7 of my cycle and we are set for our 1st IUI insemination after my next period.
    From now till them can you please tell me how much Maca and Spirulina I should take daily.. I have read to stop during your cycle to give your body a break… I just want the best possible out come for the IUI.. I have 1 child conceived naturally however this time around it looks like we need some help.
    Thanks again
    Tawny

    • Hi Tawny,

      General suggested usage of Maca: 2000-3000 mg a day. To obtain desired results, maca needs to be taken regularly. There have been no side effects found from taking maca.
      As for the Spirulina, please follow the directions on the product label.

      I hope this is it for you!

      Best wishes,

      Dalene

  33. Avatar

    Hi, Just found out that I am 4 weeks pregnant. The doctors said my progesterone is low and would like to start me on supositories. My question is I started taking 3- 500 mg a day about 2 weeks ago. should I stop? can I continue? will it hurt to take the supositories and the maca together??

    Brooke

    • Hi Brooke,

      Congratulations! We are so happy for you. Because doctor prescribed progesterone is usually not natural and is a medication you will need to ask your doctor if it is ok to continue the Maca. There has not been enough research as to how fertility medications will react to fertility herbs such as maca. There are no known side effects from using maca, but it does have the ability to affect key hormones though it does not contiain hormones. If your doctor gives you the ok to continue it you should be fine.

      We wish you a happy and healthy pregnancy!

      Dalene

  34. Avatar

    I just found out I’m 4 weeks pregnant ,but my progesterone levels are only 6.7. SHould I try maca?or just emerita progest? Or both?

    • Hi Dorthy,
      Congratulations! You should really contact your doctor/midwife right away and work with them to make sure your levels are right. Progesterone cream would be the best way to increase progesterone and has been shown to be safe during pregnancy. But it is really important for you to speak with your health care provider about this.

  35. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,

    I cannot thank you enough for all your information. I would stop taking flax seed oil right now. I get some Fertilica’s Omega 3,6,9 Complete EFA. However, I can see that it has some flax seed oil too!! I am taking EPO till ovulation only…do you think is there a risk for me?? I need some help with as I cannot see fertile CM…thanks again.

    Regrs
    P

  36. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,
    Thanks for your answer. No I have not change anything. Oh…I took Maca during my period, just spotting today…I bought two bottles of Maca before I saw your web 🙁 It is from a respectable brand here in the UK but I am afraid I am taking another brand. I am taking 2x500mg of maca. untill when? I am also taking evening primrose oil till ovulation and after flaxseed oil two….what should I stop if I get pregnant? I just read it will help me… I had a miscarriage and I am 39 a bit concern with my age and fertility. please help me…
    God bless you all
    Thanks

    • Hi Paloma,

      We don’t recommend using Maca during your period, it is best to give your body a rest from fertility herbs and let it naturally cleanse during your period. Don’t feel bad about using a different brand. Maca may be taken all month long except while on your period. Some women choose to continue maca during their first trimester of pregnancy to help maintain progesterone levels. Please talk to your doctor about continuing maca during pregnancy. Discontinue the Evening Primrose Oil if pregnant because it can cause mild uterine contracitons (good up to ovulation, may help to tone uterus), but if you are prone to miscarriage, those contractions may not be good for pregnancy.

      There is a debate out there right now about Flax oil. Some experts think Flax oil may contain phytoestrogens. Because of this we like to use a blend of Omega 3,6,9 Complete EFA.

      EFA’s are essential for the production of hormones in both the woman and men. Hormones use these fats as building blocks for what will become progesterone and many other reproductive hormones. We carry the best essential fatty acids available.

      Fertilica’s Omega 3,6,9 Complete EFA is Molecularly Distilled and Hexane Free. Our fish oil contained in this product is molecularly distilled to remove PCB’s, dioxins and heavy metals such as lead and mercury. The process also reduces oxidation of the oil which helps to keep it fresh and stable.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  37. Avatar

    Hi Dalene,

    Why isn’t it safe to take maca while on your period? (i can’t seem to find it on the site)

    much thanks

    Gemma

    • It’s not that it isn’t safe, Hethir and I both feel that herbs should not be taken during menstruation because this is time of hormonal shift and a cleansing time for your uterus. It is a great time to give your body a rest from the fertility herbs and let it naturally do its thing.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  38. Avatar

    Hello Dalene,

    Firstly, thank you for all this must appreciated information. I am TTC after a miscarriage. I believe that I could take maca in the middle of my cycle so I did. Today CD17 I have a very light period, four days after of taking Maca. (I have 2 tables per day) Do you think it has anything to do with my intake of Maca?
    Thanks and all the best to everyone!
    Paloma

    • Hi Paloma,

      There is no way for me to know if the Maca caused this or not. It may or may not have. Have you changed anything else in your diet/life that may have effected your cycle? Maca is safe to use throughout your cycle, except while on your period. Are you taking our Fertilica Maca or another brand? What is the dosage you are taking?

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  39. Avatar

    I have been taking Maca, COQ10 and royal jelly, bee pollen propolis for few months already. I got a positive result on home pregnancy test yesterday. Should I continue with all the above supplements? Pls advice.

    • Hi Rachel,

      First, Congratulations! Good for you!

      Since you read this article you know what we generally recommend. Quitting maca cold turkey may create a progesterone surge, if you have low progesterone to begin with it may not be a good idea to stop maca abruptly. You may want to wean yourself off. Some women choose to continue Maca in their first trimester. Please talk to your doctor about continuing the Royal Jelly and Maca during your first trimester. CoQ10 should be fine to continue.

      May you have a heatlhy and happy pregnancy and baby!

      Dalene

  40. Avatar

    hi, i have had 4 natural miscarriages all ending b4 8wks of pregnancy, i have had fertility tests done and all came back normal. i have just ordered your fertility cleanse but is there anything else u would recommend to me to improve my chances of a healthy pregnancy and hopefully carry full term. it would be much appreciated.

    • Hi Vicki,

      I am sorry to hear of your struggles. Have you read our Recurrent Miscarriages page? This page is full of wonderful tips on the best natural remedies for this heart-breaking feritlity issue. The Fertility Cleanse Kit may be a great way to begin your new journey.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  41. Avatar

    Is metformin considered a fertility med or do u mean meds like clomid etc?

    • Hi Michelle,

      Metformin and clomid are fertility medications. If it is prescribed by a medical doctor (MD) is is probably a medication.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  42. Avatar

    Hi just following up from the last question above? I have read in a number of areas that one should not take Maca if you are taking fertility medication, I was wondering why?

    Thanks

    • Menik,

      There has not been enough research as to whether it is safe to take maca while on fertility medications. We have to err on the side of caution because Maca has the ability to affect key hormones without actually containing hormones. Fertility medications contain hormones.

      All the best,

      Dalene

  43. Avatar

    Is it safe to take Maca during ovulation and IUI treatment? I will begin my first IUI this week.

    P.S. I absolutely love your site. Keep up the great work!

    Sincerely,
    Wanda

    • Hi Wanda,

      Yes it is safe to take Maca during ovulation. It is a food that has no known side effects. If you are taking fertility medications, please stop taking maca unless you get approval from your doctor.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  44. Avatar

    hi there .im tyring to conceive..and ive been taking maca 300mg three times/day., is it sufficient–do kindly reply

  45. Avatar

    hi
    i have been taken maca for 2 months and i feel great. For how long i can be taken maca with mi varicocele problem?

    • Dalene

      Hi Armando,

      First I would like to post the definition of varicocele by Wikipedia.

      Varicocele is an abnormal enlargement of the vein that is in the scrotum draining the testicles. The testicular blood vessels originate in the abdomen and course down through the inguinal canal as part of the spermatic cord on their way to the testis. Up-ward flow of blood in the veins is ensured by small one-way valves that prevent backflow. Defective valves, or compression of the vein by a nearby structure, can cause dilatation of the veins near the testis, leading to the formation of a varicocele.

      Maca has no side effects and may be taken long term.

      As always, let your doctor know all the supplements you are taking including Maca.

      Best Wishes,

      Dalene

  46. Avatar

    Thanks Hethir…
    Reading your website really helped me get here. Can I substitute the hemp seeds and milk with just hemp milk?

  47. hethir

    Congratulations Anna!! That is such great news. The fertility smoothie recipe is specific for fertility. I would not make the same smoothie for pregnancy, but here is a smoothie recipe for pregnancy that is super nutritious:

    1/2c blueberries
    1/4c yogurt
    1 banana
    1t spirulina or greens blend
    2 scoops clean whey protein
    1T hemp seeds or chia seeds
    fresh squeezed juice or organic milk

    -Blend and enjoy!

  48. Avatar

    Hi Hethir – I drank the fertility smoothie, did acupuncture and just got the news that I have a positive blood test! It’s still very early and my doctor still has me on estrogen patches and progestrogen injections. Can I drink the fertility smoothie with all the same ingredients or would you recommend something else?

    Thanks!!!!

  49. 1,000 mg of maca is the usual dosage. It is best to take maca daily, all month long. If you are having troubles sleeping try taking it in the morning. With our Maca you will only need to take 2 in the morning.

  50. I have read that one cannot overdose on Maca as it is a vegetable (like not ODing on potatoes, etc., it’s food). I have had two miscarriages in the past 8 months and am ready to TTC again. I am on progesterone vaginal inserts for after ovulation until period starts and will stay one the inserts once pregnant to give the young life the best chance to be born.

    I am wondering how MUCH maca to take prior to ovulation and then after ovulation in order to conceive?

    I muscle test myself as needing 5 capsules a day so I take three in the a.m. with food and then 2 in the evening. However, I had a very short period this time and am wondering if I should cease the Maca when my period starts and then start again after it is over or after ovulation?

    Also, I am having trouble sleeping at night. Is this because I am taking the maca in the evening with my supper?

    Your guidance will be greatly appreciated.

    Sincerely,

    Pamela