Maca can be taken in the form of a supplement.

iStockphoto.com/Joe Potato

The South American country of Peru is home to numerous beneficial plants, including Peruvian maca root, a legendary sex-enhancing root passed down from the Inca. I'd heard about Peruvian maca herb and extract for years. Peruvian maca root has been dubbed "Peruvian ginseng," even though it bears no relation to ginseng. But like ginseng, the maca plant is employed into a Peruvian maca extract to increase strength, energy, stamina, libido and sexual function, a winning combination of health benefits if there ever was one.

To investigate maca's health benefits and understand the role that maca plays in Peruvian culture, my wife and I headed down to Peru to explore the maca trail. In the process we met with maca traders, growers and scientists, and came back tremendously impressed by this plant, which is now available as a supplement in U.S. health food stores.