How This Helps

The convolution related to memory is being solved with progress in neuroscience. According to the concurrent assumptions, synaptic plasticity creates among the foundation of memory formation, strengthening, and lengthening. In Alzheimer's disease (AD), which is usually characterized by memory impairment, connections among the cells in the brain are attenuated or lost, resulting in the degeneration of neural networks. Various attempts have been made to discover new treatments for memory dysfunction with increasing investments and attention being put on herbal drugs. Many herbal extracts and plants have documented favorable results when tested for anti-amnesic effects. Brahmi (Bacopa monniera) is one such common herbal medication, which can be employed for quite a long time in the Chinese and Indian medical system so as to treat several ailments. Research shows that Brahmi exerts many pharmacological effects such as memory boosting capacity in treating Alzheimer's disease and Schizophrenia, demonstrating antiparkinsonian, antistroke, and anticonvulsant potentials. Some of the significant health benefits of Brahmi include its ability to enhance cognitive ability, alleviate stress, regulate blood glucose levels, and treat respiratory ailments. Additionally, it helps to boost the digestive system, protect mental health, boost the immune system, and lower inflammation.

What is Bacopa?

What is Bacopa monnieri (Brahmi)?

Brahmi or Bacopa monnieri is a perennial herb used in Ayurvedic and traditional medications throughout the world for generations. [1] You will know it by a different name like water hyssop or herb of grace, but Brahmi is the most common name. It's hard to pinpoint a precise native with this wetland-growing herb, and many experts agree that it's been growing wild in most six densely populated continents for thousands and thousands of years. Unlike several other herbs, Brahmi has a range of unique health effects that have made it so desired and cherished by international cultures. It is named after one of the most significant states of consciousness (Brahman or God-consciousness).

The leaf of this plant is used in Ayurveda to promote intelligence, memory and to calm the nervous system. Brahmi calms emotional turbulence, supports restful sleep, and simultaneously improves concentration and endurance. Brahmi, in Ayurveda, is referred to as a brain tonic and might work on the mind through its influence on the gut microbiology. Recent research suggests that Brahmi supports healthy skin, lymph, and circulatory functions. This herb appears to balance the internal skin that lines the digestive tract in which healthy skin supports healthy microbes; those make neurotransmitters that encourage healthy and stable mood and cognitive functioning.

Occasionally used topically, Brahmi is known to support the body's natural recovery process and healthy blood flow. There are particular valuable alkaloids and triterpene saponins found in Brahmi, which have potent effects on the body, along with many other organic compounds and volatile components. It's often used fresh as a salad ingredient, but the herb may also be dried and ground and used with other herbs. The taste is relatively mild, but the actual reason for using Brahmi is for the effect it has on human health.

See: Ashwagandha for sleep before bed

Difference between Bacopa and Gotu Kola

Bacopa (also known as Bacopa monnieri, herpestis herb, Herpestes monniera, Indian pennywort, herb of grace, and water hyssop), is a staple plant in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. It grows in moist, tropical surroundings. If you're contemplating trying Bacopa, be certain you ask your primary care provider first to weigh the advantages and disadvantages and discuss whether it is suitable for you.

It shouldn't be confused with Gotu kola, an herb which also goes by a single of Bacopa's other name - Brahmi. There is a difference between Brahmi and Bacopa. Brahmi is a name used for two very important but different Ayurvedic herbs used for improving and caring for brain function. The species Bacopa monnieri is named Brahmi in South India, and Centella Asiatica is named Brahmi (also known as Gotu Kola) in northern India, where it commonly grows. These herbs can work together to enhance brain function and maintain the central nervous system (CNS) healthy. Bacopa is native to India but generally grows in the USA.

See: Panchakarma

Bacopa (Brahmi) Benefits

Health Benefits of Bacopa (Brahmi)

Preliminary evidence indicates that Bacopa may have antioxidant properties. The herb contains saponin compounds such as bacosides and bacopasides, which might improve the communication of brain chemicals involved in cognition, learning, and memory, and also inhibit inflammation in the brain. Let's take a close look at the exceptional health benefits of this remarkable Ayurvedic herb.

- May boost cognition: Among the most prized advantages of Brahmi is its ability to stimulate the brain, especially concerning memory and concentration. It has been used in Ayurvedic medicine to improve focus and retention. Some of these organic compounds in Brahmi stimulate cognitive pathways in the brain to enhance the cognitive capability, according to a study by Devendra, Patel Saurabh Shankar et al., 2018 (Journal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry).

- May heal cognitive disorders: Brahmi can decrease the onset of cognitive disorders like Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Research has indicated it to be a possible therapy for stimulating the creation of new neural pathways. It also helps in lowering the oxidative stress in the brain, which keeps our minds sharp as we age. The plant also has exhibited neuroprotective properties with therapeutic potential for individuals experiencing memory loss.

- Relieves Stress & Anxiety: The leaves of this Brahmi plant could be chewed (just 2-3 at a time) to alleviate tension and anxiety. The active ingredients in this herb may affect hormonal balance in the body to positively impact the stress hormones balance in our body.  The calming effect avoids the side effects of medications used for stress and anxiety treatments.

- Useful in treating epilepsy: The leaves of Brahmi are used as a remedy for epilepsy for centuries. This is supposed to be due to the impact the herb has on neural pathways. It can help to prevent epileptic seizures, in addition to other forms of mental illness, including bipolar disorder and neuralgia. Seizures occur in the body as soon as your brain cells, which communicate through electrical signals, send out the wrong signals. Normally, many seizures are needed before there's a diagnosis of epilepsy. While little human studies have been done, there's plenty of study in animals that indicate Bacopa might be a pure epilepsy treatment. These research studies find that therapy with Bacopa modulates gene expression, helps fix the faulty reception of brain cells, and helps increase GABA responses. All these results are a great indication that the cognitive impairment and seizure action brought on by epilepsy could potentially be alleviated with Bacopa.

- Chronic pain reducer: Chronic pain is a massive health issue, and regrettably, a majority of people with chronic pain suffer from depression. A review published in Current Medicinal Chemistry revealed that Bacopa monnieri not only has strong antidepressant effects, but it's pain-reducing capabilities comparable to morphine. The analysis also suggested that this herbal remedy provides protective advantages for organs commonly affected by opiate toxicity such as the brain, heart, and kidneys. Researchers reasoned that Bacopa is may be a safe and well-tolerated herbal treatment for pain control in several clinical trials, including various age classes.

- Anti-inflammatory properties: When the leaves of the Brahmi plant have been rubbed topically on affected areas of the body, the chemicals released can reduce swelling and remove irritation, in addition to inflammation inside the body also. This is perfect for people suffering from arthritis, gout, and other inflammatory conditions.

- Antioxidant properties: The antioxidants in Brahmi are vital for promoting a healthy lifestyle. Antioxidants may remove free radicals, the harmful byproducts of mobile metabolism, which could cause cells to undergo cell death or mutate into dangerous cancerous cells. These free radicals affect all biological systems, so the inclusion of Brahmi in the diet can help maintain optimal health and a healthy metabolism. Antioxidants can also prevent certain forms of cancer. But more scientific evidence and research need to confirm this claim. There's one especially dangerous toxin, called acrylamide, which Brahmi has especially shown resistance to. Acrylamide is linked to neurodegenerative diseases, so this may add to the herb's list of advantages also.

- Enhances respiratory health: Brahmi may boost your respiratory health.  It's been used in Ayurvedic medicine for treating bronchitis, congestion, chest colds, and blocked sinuses. It may clear out excess phlegm and mucus and relieve the inflammation in the throat and respiratory tracts to offer you rapid relief.

- Boosts immunity: Once consumed in any form, tea, leaves, or otherwise, Brahmi can give the immune system a necessary boost. The nutrients are supplemented with the antioxidant chemicals to improve the reaction time of our immune system against germs, viruses, or bacterial disease.

- Skincare: If you would like to accelerate wound recovery and moisturize the skin at precisely the same time, spread Brahmi oil or juice on the affected place.  It can lessen the appearance of discoloration and leave you with smooth, healthy skin enriched with its regular essential oils.

- May regulate blood sugar level: In a 2015 animal research study in the Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, Brahmi was linked to regulating blood glucose levels as it's an antihyperglycemic effect. When diabetic rats were administered with 500 milligrams of Brahmi for 30 days, a significant decrease was found in their sugar levels. Depending on the type of diabetes condition, it could have the ability to help improve your symptoms of hypoglycemia and permit you to live a normal, healthy life.

- May treat digestive issues: Brahmi is a sedative and calming herb, in addition to anti-inflammatory and might assist in providing relief from gastrointestinal conditions such as nausea and vomiting.

See: Asian herbs for boosting immunity against COVID-19

Precautions & Side effects

Small doses of Brahmi as prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners aren't correlated with any known side effects.  It has been used safely in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries.  Long-term use of any herbal supplement is generally discouraged, and Brahmi is no exception. Normal usage for over 12 weeks is discouraged, so it should only be used if you want it to alleviate a particular symptom or illness. Also, because of its effects on the respiratory system, urinary tract system, cardiovascular disease, and blood glucose levels, you should consult a doctor if you suffer from asthma, urinary tract infections, a diminished heart speed or hyperglycemia. Apart from these concerns, this herb is not considered to be a naturally-occurring food.


See: Immune boosting foods

References

1. Dave UP, Dingankar SR, Saxena VS, Joseph JA, Bethapudi B, Agarwal A, Kudiganti V. An open-label study to elucidate the effects of standardized Bacopa monnieri extract in the management of symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children. Adv Mind Body Med. 2014 Spring;28(2):10-5. PubMed PMID: 24682000.

2. Kean JD, Downey LA, et al. A systematic review of the Ayurvedic medicinal herb Bacopa monnieri in child and adolescent populations. Complement Ther Med. 2016 Dec;29:56-62.

3. Morgan A, Stevens J. Does Bacopa monnieri improve memory performance in older persons? Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial. J Altern Complement Med. 2010;16(7):753-759.

4. Kongkeaw C, Dilokthornsakul P, et al. Meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials on cognitive effects of Bacopa monnieri extract. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014;151(1):528-535.

5. 6 Stough, C., et al. “The Chronic Effects of an Extract of Bacopa monniera (Brahmi) on Cognitive Function in Healthy Human Subjects.” Psychopharmacology. 156.4 (2001): 481-484. Online. PubMed. 22 Mar. 2012. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11498727?dopt=Abstract

6. 7 Veerendra Kumar, MH, and YK Gupta. “Effect of Centella Asiatica on Cognition and Oxidative Stress in an Intracerebroventricular Streptozotocin Model of Alzheimer’s Disease in Rats.” Clinical & Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology. 30:5-6 (2003): 336-342. Online. PubMed. 22 Mar. 2012. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12859423?dopt=Abstract

7. 8 Bradwejn, J., et al. “A Double-Blind, Placebo-controlled Study on the Effects of Gotu Kola (Centella Asiatica) on Acoustic Startle Response in Healthy Subjects.” Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology. 20.6 (2000): 680-684. Online. PubMed. 22 Mar. 2012. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11106141?dopt=Abstract

8. Sathyanarayanan V, Thomas T, et al. Brahmi for the better? New findings challenging cognition and anti-anxiety effects of Brahmi (Bacopa monniera) in healthy adults. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2013;227(2):299-306.

9. 1 Pole, Sebastian. Ayurvedic Medicine: The Principles of Traditional Practice. Churchill Livingston Elsevier, 2006. 149-150, 187-188.

10. 2 Svoboda, Robert. Ayurveda: Life, Health and Longevity. Penguin Books, 1992. 224-225, 227.

11. 3 Gogte, Vaidya V. M. Ayurvedic Pharmacology & Therapeutic Uses of Medicinal Plants. Reprint. Chaukhambha Publications, 2009. 437-438, 466-467.

12. 4 “Bacopa (Bacopa monnieri).” Natural Standard: Professional Monograph. Online. 20 Mar. 2012. http://naturalstandard.com/databases/herbssupplements/brahmi.asp#

13. 5 “Gotu kola (Centella Asiatica Linn.) and Total Triterpenic Fraction of Centella Asiatica (TTFCA).” Natural Standard: Professional Monograph. Online. 20 Mar. 2012. http://naturalstandard.com/databases/herbssupplements/gotukola.asp#

14. Sarris J, Kean J, Schweitzer I, Lake J. Complementary medicines (herbal and nutritional products) in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): a systematic review of the evidence. Complement Ther Med. 2011 Aug;19(4):216-27. DOI: 10.1016/j.ctim.2011.06.007. Epub 2011 Jul 26. Review. PubMed PMID: 21827936.

15. Cicero AF, Bove M, et al. Short-Term Impact of a Combined Nutraceutical on Cognitive Function, Perceived Stress and Depression in Young Elderly with Cognitive Impairment: A Pilot, Double-Blind, Randomized Clinical Trial. J Prev Alzheimers Dis. 2017;4(1):12-15.

16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23772955 

17. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4124189/ 

18. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22747190 

19. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22074576 

20. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3116297/ 

21. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3116297/

See: Anxiety, Depression, Hairloss, PMS, & Wrist pain with Bisoma & Tetrasoma Acupuncture, Sasang Herbs

Get a Consultation
(650) 539-4545
Get more information via email