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There are nineteen amino acids in Maca

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Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and are essential for the synthesis of specialized cells, neurotransmitters, enzymes, hormones, and DNA. There are 23 different amino acids, 22 of which are required for proper growth and repair.

Many aminos contribute to structural cells such as the replacement components in the blood, including those responsible for the immunity response. Other blood proteins are necessary for the transportation of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Amino acids are responsible for the production of enzymes used in the digestion and other metabolic processes, including the release of energy in the form of ATP stored in the muscle cells. Amino acids also aid in thought, focus, and clarity. They may also assist in the reduction of anxiety, fear, and frustration.

Of the 23 aminos acids, one is manufactured in the laboratory, thirteen are created in the body, and the remaining nine, called “essential amino acids,”  must be acquired through the diet. The names of the nine essential aminos are as follows: L-Histidine, L-Isoleucine, L-Leucine, L-Lysine, L-Methionine, L-Phenylalanine, L-Threonine, L-Tryptophan, and L-Valine. The thirteen nonessential amino acids are L-Alanine,  L-Arginine, L-Asparagine, L-Carnitine, L-Cystine, L-Glutamate, L-Glutamine, L-Glycine, OH Proline, L-Proline, L-Sarcosine, L-Serine, and L-Tyrosine. 
L-Alanine is a non-essential which the body can make from pyruvate. Alanine is one of the most important amino acids released by muscle, and strengthens cellular walls. It also functions as a major energy source. Excessive alanine may be broken down into glucose to provide the body with an alternative energy source.  Alanine is used as also an inhibitory or calming neurotransmitter in the brain. 
L-Arginine, is considered to be a semi-essential amino acid. Although being produced by the body, it may be found lacking and supplementation could be necessary.  Individuals with an excessive amount of ammonia production, due to malnutrition, rapid growth or protein deficiency, may be in need of a supplement. Symptoms of arginine deficiency include constipation, poor wound healing, hair loss, and skin rash.
If the digestive process does not produce the required amino acids, the liver will not produce the proper enzymes for the digestive process. Incomplete digestion will cause putrification which leads to toxic overload. The detoxification process requires an abundance of amino acids one of which is arginine. In times of stress or illness, the requirement for this amino acid is much higher. Arginine is especially important for male sexual health because it composes eighty percent of the seminal fluid.
L-Aspartate aka L-Asparagine aka Aspartic acid
L-Aspartate is non-essential in mammals, being produced from oxaloacetate by transamination. It can also be made in the Urea Cycle from Ornithine and Citrulline. In plants and microorganisms, aspartate is the precursor to several amino acids, including four that are essential for humans: methionine, threonine, isoleucine, and lysine . The conversion of aspartate to these other amino acids begins with reduction of aspartate to its "semialdehyde," O2CCH(NH2)CH2CHO.
L-Asparagine is derived from aspartate via transamidation: A reaction between asparagine and reducing sugars or reactive carbonyls produces acrylamide (acrylic amide) in food when heated to sufficient temperature.
Asparagine was the first amino acid to be isolated. In 1806, two French chemists Louis Nicolas Vauquelin and Pierre Jean Robiquet isolated asparagine in a crystalline form from asparagus juice, in which it is abundant, hence the name they chose for that new matter. The characteristic smell observed in the urine of individuals after their consumption of asparagus is attributed to various metabolic byproducts of asparagine. Aspargine aids transformation of carbohydrates into cellular energy. Aspargine promotes metabolism, strengthens the immune system and removes excess toxins from cells. In addition it also aids to transport minerals into the cells for the production of RNA and DNA. Aspargine keeps the mind sharp by increasing concentrations of NADH in the brain, which boosts the production of neurotransmitters and chemicals needed for normal mental functioning. Aspartate moves the coenzyme nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) molecules from the main body of the cell to its mitochondria, where it is used as fuel to power all cellular activity. According to the hepatic studies of as well as that of muscular, it is known for the crucial role it plays in generating cellular energy. Aspartate, with the crucial role it plays in generating cellular energy, moves the coenzyme nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) molecules from the main body of the cell to its mitochondria, where it is used as fuel to power all cellular activity. Studies also show that aspartate actually increases stamina and endurance levels in athletes. Aspartate is used to treat chronic fatigue and cerebral metabolism of ammonia and glutamine, the use of L-ornithine and L-aspartate ( LOLA ) increases the ability of the liver and other organs to detoxify ammonia.                                                                                                 http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/587349 
L-Carnitine is a naturally occurring nonessential amino acid which plays a vital role in the metabolism of fat. It functions as a transporter of fatty acids into the mitochondria, the metabolic furnace of the cell. It is synthesized, from lysine and methionine in the liver and kidneys. This synthesis requires the presence of iron with two vitamins, B6 and B3, pyridoxine and niacin respectively. Ninety-eight percent of the carnitine supply resides in the body's muscle tissue. Carnitine is a nonessential amino acid and is endogenously synthesized. The essential amino acids methionine and lysine must be exogenously supplemented.
Approximately eighty percent of the amino acids our bodies need are endogenously synthesized; the remaining twenty percent are referred to as the essential amino acids. 
Carnitine was discovered in Russia, and one year later in Germany. The proper name, Carnitine, refers to its Latin origin, carne. Its structural formula was decoded in 1927, and its physiological significance was understood by the 1960's and is thought to help maintain and strengthen heart muscles.
Carnitine is available in the following food sources: red meat, diary products, avocado, and tempeh. Although a well balanced diet can provide approximately 75% of what the body is lacking, often conditions arise that make it difficult to obtain all the Carnitine one needs.
"not present in maca but synthesized in the liver from lysine and methionine " 

L-Cystine is considered a substance that is generally recognized as safe by the Food and Drug Administration. It helps strengthen the immune system, reduce damage from free-radicals, repair RNA-DNA in the cells and assimilation of vitamin B6. Cystine is closely related to  Cysteine. Cystine aids in preventing the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation.  It increases L-Glutathione levels in the lungs, liver, kidneys, and bone marrow. Cystine also has an anti-aging effect on the body which can reduce the accumulation of age spots. Cystine aids pancreatic health, which stabilizes blood sugar and carbohydrate metabolism. Has been used to alleviate some symptoms of food allergy and intolerance. Cystine is a common dough conditioner, flavor enhancer in foods, and a precursor in some dietary supplements. It is most often derived from human hair or duck feathers, and to a lesser extent from pigs' bristles and hooves.  Cystine is also commonly made synthetically using industrial chemicals that undergo a biochemical transformation brought about by non-animal enzymes. Since both forms are expensive, they are not commonly used, making cystine a rare amino, but it is naturally present in blue green algae.
While researching Cystine, we found that the Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG) asked several fast food chains and a major vegetarian food company about the sources of  Cystine in their products. McDonald's told them that  Cystine derived from duck feathers is in their Honey Wheat Roll, the Deluxe Warm Cinnamon Roll, and the Baked Apple Pie. The  Cystine in several items offered at Dunkin' Donuts is also derived from duck feathers. On the other hand, Subway recently announced in March 2007 that it has removed the  Cystine from its otherwise animal product-free Carb Conscious Wrap. When asked about the source of  Cystine in several of its products, Domino's Pizza told them that  Cystine is microbially derived in its Hand-Tossed Crust and that the  Cystine in Domino's Breadsticks, Cheesy Bread, and Cinna Stix is vegetable-derived. The public relations firm for Morningstar Farms told them that the Cystine in their Veggie Bites Country Scramble, Veggie Bites Spinach Artichoke, and Veggie Bites Eggs Florentine was a microbial fermentation product.
Cystine aids pancreatic health, which stabilizes blood sugar and carbohydrate metabolism. It has been used to alleviate some symptoms of food allergy and intolerance.              " not present in maca but can be obtained in spiralina "                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.naturalways.com/spirulina-analysis.htm  www.vrg.org      

L-Glutamate aka glutamic acid is a dibasic nonessential amino acid occurring in proteins. It is also an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. Glutamic acid with glucose, one of the principal fuels for the brain cells, has been used to reduce the craving for alcohol and stabilize mental health.  Its hydrochloride salt is used as a gastric acidifier. The monosodium salt, sodium glutamate, msg is used in treating encephalopathies associated with hepatic disease." not present in maca but can be obtained in spiralina " 
L-Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body, comprising more than 60% of the free amino acid pool in skeletal muscle and greater than 20% of total circulating amino acids. Supplemental L-Glutamine may help reduce muscle soreness and rebuild muscle tissue.

L-Glycine is an amino acid used by the body to build proteins. Glycine promotes health of the thymus gland, spleen, and bone marrow and balance white cell production. Glycine slows own muscle degeneration by supplying additional creatine, which is a compound that is present in muscle tissue. It is utilized in the construction of DNA and RHA.  Glycine is essential for the synthesis of nucleic acids, bile acids and other nonessential amino acids in the body. It has been used in the treatment of manic depression and schizophrenia. Glycine promotes oxygen use in the cells as well as energy and is effective in the treatment of hyperactivity.

L-Histidine* is an essential amino acid that is significant in the growth and repair of tissues. It is important for the maintenance of the myelin sheaths which protect the nerve cells. It is also needed for the production of both red and white blood cells. Histidine strengthens nerve relays, especially in the auditory organs, and has been used to reverse some cases of deafness. Histidine also protects the body from radiation damage, helps to lower blood pressure, and aids in removing heavy metals from the system. Histamine, an important immune system chemical, is derived from histidine.

L-Isoleucine*  for bodybuilding and fitness.

L-Leucine*   powerfully stimulates muscle protein synthesis, some researchers have suggested leucine supplementation may be used to combat age-associated memory loss.  www.trueprotein.com 

L-Lysine*  is a natural supplement that, if taken at a high enough dose, works to restrict the herpes virus without posing any serious health risks or side effects. Lysine, a natural amino acid that is reported to fight the Herpes virus.

L-Methionine*  is beneficial in muscle building, health and fitness.
Methionine is an essential amino acid. It is an antioxidant nutrient and lipotropic agent which promotes the physiological utilization of fat.                                                        
www.greatvistachemicals.com/amino.../L-methionine.html                                                                                                                                                                                                                                www.trulyhuge.com/l-methionine-benefits.html

L-Phenylalanine* is an essential amino acid used to elevate mood, energy and attitude.                                                                                   Warning: Persons born with the genetic condition phenylketonuria (PKU)are unable to metabolize the amino acid phenylalanine, and mental retardation and other severe disabilities can result. Phenylalanine should not be used by pregnant women or by those who suffer anxiety attacks or those who have high blood pressure or with pre-existing pigmented melanoma (form of cancer).  The amino acid DL-phenylalanine may be used with caution if you are pregnant or diabetic, or if you have high blood pressure or suffer anxiety attacks. While dietary phenylalanine restriction may prevent these problems, it also may lead to a low tyrosine level in people with PKU. Tyrosine supplementation may be beneficial in some people with PKU, however the evidence may be conflicting.       " there is no L-Phenylalanine in maca but it is contained in "                              wayup.com  www.janethull.com/newsletter/.../warning_phenylketonurics.php    


 L-Proline, an essential amino acid, is a precursor of glutamic acid, and along with vitamin C, it is a precursor of collagen. Collagen is a building block of tendons and ligaments,
and is extremely important for the proper functioning of joints. Helps maintain and strengthen heart muscles.

OH Proline, also called Hydroxyproline, differs from proline by the presence of a hydroxyl (OH) group attached to the gamma carbon atom.                                                          

L-Sarcosine, also known as N-methylglycine has been used as adjunctive therapy for depression and schizophrenia.                                             

L-Serine helps to form the protective fatty sheaths surrounding nerve fiber and aids patients that suffer from neurological symptoms . Research shows that it is usful in the treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome CFIDS that may be caused by an amino acid deficiency.

L-Taurine is an amino sulfonic acid present in high amounts in meat and fish. The most abundant dietary source of Taurine is human breast milk. Large amounts of Taurine are also found in the human brain, retina, heart and platelets. Taurine is normally synthesized in the human body in adequate amounts from cysteine and hypotaurine. Supplementation is necessary in non-breastfed infants because their ability to synthesize Taurine is undeveloped and cow's milk does not provide a sufficient amount. Taurine is often added to human infant formulas, enteral products and some parenteral nutritional solutions. Excess Taurine is excreted by the kidneys.

Taurine is involved in retinal photoreceptor activity, bile acid conjugation, white blood cell antioxidant activity, central nervous system neuromodulation, platelet aggregation, cardiac contractility, sperm motility, growth, insulin activity and osmoregulation. Taurine alters intracellular calcium movement, increasing left ventricular function without any adverse changes in arterial pressure in patients with congestive heart failure. Taurine might also decrease the odds of heart failure because it seems to lower blood pressure and might normalize excessive sympathetic nervous system activity that often occurs in people with hypertension which may lead to congestive heart failure.

Preliminary studies also suggest Taurine might have natriuretic and diuretic activity. Taurine might also have a cholesterol-lowering effect. There is some evidence that Taurine might also have antioxidant and free radical scavenging activity. Platelets normally have high levels of Taurine and can become more prone to aggregation during Taurine depletion. Taurine is an amino acid-like compound and a component of bile acids, which are used to help absorb fats and fat-soluble vitamins. Taurine also helps regulate the heart beat, maintain cell membrane stability and prevent brain cell over-activity. Taurine is used in the treatment of congestive heart failure (CHF), high blood pressure, hepatitis, high cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia) and cystic fibrosis. Other uses include seizure disorders (epilepsy), autism, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), retinal degeneration, diabetes and alcoholism. It is also used to improve mental performance and as an antioxidant.


 L-Threonine*  is an essential amino acid that helps to maintain the proper protein balance in the body. It is important for the formation of collagen,

L-Tryptophan* may be your choice for treatment of depression. Tryptophan is safe and legal and can be purchased without prescription, and has been recomended as treatment for mental health.                   Warning: People born with the genetic condition phenylketonuria (PKU) are unable to metabolize the amino acid phenylalanine. Mental retardation and other severe disabilities can result. While dietary phenylalanine restriction prevents these problems, it also leads to low tyrosine levels in people with PKU. Tyrosine supplementation may be beneficial in some people with PKU, though the evidence is conflicting.    " L-Trytophan is not present maca but it is contained in spiralina "

L-Tyrosine is important to the structure of almost every protein in the body; it is a nonessential amino acid that the body synthesizes from phenylalanine.
Tyrosine is converted by skin cells into melanin, the dark pigment that protects against the harmful effects of ultraviolet light. It is also the precursor of several neurotransmitters, including dopamine, L-dopa, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. Tyrosine, through its effect on neurotransmitters, may affect several health conditions, including Parkinson’s disease, depression, and other mood disorders. Preliminary findings indicate a beneficial effect of tyrosine, along with other amino acids, in people affected by dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. Thyroid hormones have a role in almost every bodily process and contain tyrosine as part of their structure. Due to its role as a precursor to norepinephrine and epinephrine, two of the main stress-related hormones, tyrosine may also ease the adverse effects of physiological, environmental, and psychologcal stress. Tyrosine is involved in coloration of hair and is involved in skin protection from sunburn. It slows aging of cells and suppresses hunger centers in the hypothalamus. Food sources may include meat, fish, dairy, grains, legumes, and other foods containing protein.  

L-Valine*, along with leucine and isoleucine, is a branched-chain amino acid. It is named after the plant valerian, the source of valium. Valine cannot be produced by the body and must be ingested through foods or supplements. Amino acids are essential for everyday body functions, as well as for maintaining muscle and regulation of the immune system. Valine is not processed by the liver, it is taken up by muscles. Valine may be useful to combat insomnia and nervousness. It is also shown to improve disorders of the muscles, and is effective as an appetite suppressant. Valine also greatly benefits the regulation of the immune system. Valine is also essential for muscle tissue repair and muscle metabolism, and also increases exercise endurance. Perhaps the biggest benefits are experienced by athletes who perform long distance sports and bodybuilding. Some foods sources include  poultry, kidney beans, leafy vegetables, and dairy.

Maca, Lepidium Peruvianum, has improved the health of thousands and can do the same for you. As you know, amino acids are essential and they are a requiremed for optimum health. Maca will provide you with the proteins that you require to improve your better health immediately with no side effects.  If you are seeking an increase in libido, or simply seeking a natural supplement to increase your energy and stamina, Maca is for you. Maca will give you the natural nutrition that you need to restore balance to the endocrine system as well as to provide a boost to your immunity. You will also find an increase in clarity, focus, and a sense of well being. This herbal supplement has been food for millions of indigenous persons for thousands of years. Maca is an adaptogen, a true super food, and can balance your diet as well as your life.
The chemical analysis of maca root has revealed an abundance of protein containing a total of 18 amino acids, nine of which are essential. It also contains eight minerals and a full array of vitamins. It is scientifically proven that Maca contains more amino acids than any other substance known on earth. Its greatest contribution is the occurrence of six sterols (natural steroiods). Maca also contains saponins and a few carbohydrates. The amino acids are listed below, as well as information about saponins. Also included is a full explanation of the effects of an adaptogen and the roll they play in providing you with optimum health. Maca contains all the amino acids listed below and the daily requirements have been computed based on one gram of MACA.
Alanine: 63.1, Arginine: 99.4, Asparigine: 91.7, Glutamine: 156.5, Glycine: 68.3, Histidine: 20.9, Isoleucine: 47.4, Leucine: 91.0, Lysine: 54.5, Methionine: 4.0, Phenylalanine: 55.3, Proline: 0.5, OH-proline: 26, Sarcosine: 0.7, Serine: 50.4, Threonine: 33.1, Tyrosine: 30.6, Valine: 79.3.                                                                                                                                                                                                                     (Dini, 1994) computation based on one gram of Lepidium Peruvianum (Maca).  

Triterpenoid saponins have been the focus of most studies of adaptogen constituents. Saponins include ginsenoside from Panax ginseng, gypenosides from Gynostemma and eleutherosides from Eleutherococcus. The lipophilic properties of ginsenosides, for instance, favor binding to intracellular steroid hormone receptors. Triterpenes also include phytosterols and phytoecdysteroids, both of which are thought to have adaptogenic roles in mammals. Phytosterols have been studied more in food science than phytotherapy but are known to have immune function.  Phytoecdysteroids are in common use by athletes and weight lifters for the anabolic effects they produce. Rhaponticum carthamoides is notable for these compounds. Oxylipins are fatty acids that have been oxidized and display prostaglandin-like activity due to a shape similar to leukotrienes. Examples are the hydroxylated fatty acids in licorice, Glycyrrhiza glabra. 

In addition to the above constituents, many adaptogens contain
polysaccharides that have been reported to stimulate immune system components and have immune system enhancing benefits. Polysaccharide rich plants have a long history of use in traditional practices such as Chinese medicine. In addition to stimulating the immune system, they are used to increase vital energy and considered qi tonics.
Adaptogens that contain polysaccharides include: American ginseng, Asian ginseng, astragalus, cordyceps, eleuthero, licorice, lycium, prince seng, reishi, rhaponticum, and shatavari.

Maca is an adaptogen which means that it is a superfood. Adaptogens maintain homeostasis, they assist in maintaining a balance of the hormonal system and offer support to the immune system as well, as the following quote explains:

"(A)daptogens... are products that help the body adapt through a broad range of  physical and emotional stressors, and are considered safe for long term use... (They)... have the effect of normalizing functions.
If a level is too high, it is lowered, or if it is too low, it is raised...; (therefore) restoring the body’s natural state of homeostasis or harmonic balance (Dr. Keneth Pelletier, Stanford University School of Medicine, 2000)."                                                     Adaptogen: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The word adaptogen is used by herbalists to refer to a natural herb product that increases the body's resistance to stresses such as trauma, anxiety and bodily fatigue. In the past they have been called rejuvenating herbs, qi tonics, rasayanas, or restoratives. All adaptogens contain antioxidants, but antioxidants are not necessarily adaptogens and that is probably not their primary mode of action.

Knowledge about adaptogens dates back thousands of years to ancient India and China, but serious scientific study did not begin until the late 1940s. In 1947, Dr. Nikolai Lazarev defined an adaptogen as an agent that allows the body to counter adverse physical, chemical, or biological stressors by raising nonspecific resistance toward such stress, thus allowing the organism to “adapt” to the stressful circumstances.
In 1968, Israel I. Brekhman, PhD, and Dr. I. V. Dardymov formally gave adaptogens a functional definition, as follows: An adaptogen is nontoxic to the recipient.

An adaptogen produces a nonspecific response in the body, an increase in the power of resistance against multiple stressors including physical, chemical, or biological agents. It has a normalizing influence on physiology, irrespective of the direction of change from physiological norms caused by the stressor. Very simply, adaptogens are nontoxic in normal doses, produce a nonspecific defensive response to stress, and have a normalizing influence on the body. They normalize the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA axis). As defined, adaptogens constitute a new class of natural, homeostatic metabolic regulators.

It is claimed that adaptogenic herbs are unique from other substances in their ability to balance endocrine hormones and the immune system, and they help the body to maintain optimal homeostasis. Adaptogens have a normalizing effect on the body and are capable of either toning down the activity of hyperfunctioning systems or strengthening the activity of hypofunctioning systems. However they are also functional at the level of allostasis which is a more dynamic reaction to long term stress, lacking the fixed reference points of homeostasis. 

Adaptogenic Herbs

Most herbal adaptogens that have been identified have long been used in either Ayurveda or Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Adaptogens with a significant level of scientific research confirming their use include: Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis), Dang Shen (Codonopsis pilosula), Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus), Holy Basil (Ocimum sanctum), Ginseng (Panax ginseng), Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia), Jiaogulan (Gynostemma pentaphyllum), Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), Maca (Lepidium peruvianum), Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum), Rhaponticum (Rhaponticum carthamoides or Stemmacantha carthamoides), Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea), Schisandra (Schisandra chinensis), Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) and Shilajit (Ashphaltum bitumen).

Possible adaptogens with less scientific research include: Amla (Emblica officinalis), Astragalus (Astragalus membranaceus), He Shou Wu (Polygonum multiflorum), Lycium (Lycium chinensis), Prince Seng (Pseudostellaria heterophylla), Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus) and Suma (Pfaffia paniculata).

Panax ginseng is an example of an adaptogen that has demonstrated an "overall normalizing effect." Among the active ingredients found in Panax Ginseng are substances called ginsenosides. The herb contains ginsenosides Rg1, which can stimulate the nervous system, and ginsenosides Rb1, which calms it.  However ginsenosides alone do not determine the active strength of ginseng and some preparations with higher ginsenosides have lower activity, indicating that cofactors are necessary to potentiate the adaptogenic properties of ginseng. 

Since the 1940's, the soil in North America has been depleted of it's natural minerals by the use of artificial fertilizers, created from the surplus nitrogen formally used in the manufacturing of bombs in WWII. This chemical nitrogen has been used to replace the natural occurring microbial activity. These chemicals and the use of toxic pesticide sprays may be responsible for the increase in disease as well as the lowering of the standard of health in the past 70 years.

Maca is grown naturally in the Peruvian Andes without the use of toxic fertilizer or pesticides. Maca also contains eighteen amino acids to provide your body with the protein required to launch you into better health quickly with no side effects.  If you are seeking an increase in stamina as well as in increase in metabolism, or seeking a natural suplement to increase libido, Maca would be for you. Maca can give you the natural nutrition that you require to restore balance to the endocrine system as well as to provide a greater boost in immunity, not to mention clarity and focus.

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