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Mashua Benefits
Mashua, an underappreciated tuber native to the Andes, has been a staple in local communities for centuries, serving as both a nutritional source and a traditional remedy for various ailments.

Mashua Medicinal Properties
Scientific studies indicate that mashua offers significant health advantages, including:
 

  • Skin Condition Treatment: The antioxidant and antibacterial attributes of mashua have traditionally provided topical relief for skin rashes and superficial wounds.
     
  • Pain and Inflammation Reduction: Mashua contains potent analgesic and anti-inflammatory compounds, demonstrating effectiveness in treating both internal and external inflammatory conditions over centuries.
     
  • Prostate Health: The National Library of Medicine has a study, which concluded that, "Mashua has been tested for various biological activities and the extracts (tubers in particular) demonstrated a promising potential as an antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and inhibitors of benign prostatic hyperplasia (prosate gland enlargement)." (J Ethnopharmacol. 2020 Jan 30:247:112152. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2019.112152. Epub 2019 Aug 14.)

    Additionally, various traditional uses involving all parts of the mashua plant (leaves, flowers, and tuberous roots) include addressing sexually transmitted diseases, pulmonary and kidney issues, and parasitic infestations.Until recently, the properties and mechanisms of action of mashua remained a mystery; however, recent investigations have unveiled the tremendous potential of this Andean species in treating various conditions.

    Folk medicine has long recognized mashua's wound healing and skin-protecting activities. Modern science attributes these benefits to elevated levels of phenolic compounds, particularly in darker varieties, which have been found to contain at least 11 different anthocyanins. This characteristic makes the Andean tuber a promising agent for addressing a range of dermatological issues.

    Scientific studies have substantiated the traditional topical uses of mashua for reducing swelling and pain. These studies have identified two alkamides, fatty acid amides produced by some plants, with robust anti-inflammatory activities. Notably, the presence of these compounds is more pronounced in purple and black mashua tubers.

    Furthermore, isothiocyanate