Bacopa monnieri - Brahmi 101

Bacopa monnieri (Brahmi) Frequently Asked Questions

Curious about Bacopa monnieri (Brahmi) herbal extract? Check out these resources from our site or scroll down to find answers to common questions. If you have more questions, reach out!

Do you sell Bacopa monnieri (Brahmi)?

We sell Bacopa in a 100 gram size (50 servings) as AHA! Memory Support. We also sell Bacopa in larger 200 gram to 1,000 gram sizes. You can check out these options by visiting our online store.

Are Bacopa and Brahmi the same thing?

Yes! Bacopa monnieri also goes by the names Brahmi and Waterhyssop. It’s often referred to as the plant of universal consciousness.

Other less common names include Andri, Herb of Grace, Herpestis Herb, Herpestis Monniera, Hysope d’Eau, Indian Pennywort, Jalanimba, Jal-Brahmi, Jalnaveri, Kleines Fettblatt, Moniera Cuneifolia, Nira-Brahmi, Sambrani Chettu, and Thyme-Leave Gratiola.

What are its health benefits?

The plant has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine for more than 3,000 years. Called the plant of universal consciousness, it is commonly used as a rejuvenator of the mind, a memory enhancer, and a meditation support that can increase clarity of thought.

The International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research describes the following medicinal uses of the plant:

  • memory enhancer
  • cardiac tonic
  • epilepsy, bronchial, and diarrheal ailments
  • malaria
  • headache

The phytochemistry is important here. The pharmacological properties of Bacopa monnieri are mainly attributed to the presence of characteristic saponins called “bacosides.” Bacosides are a complex mixture of structurally closely related compounds, glycosides of either jujubogenin or pseudojujubogenin.

Neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease affect the neurons in the human brain. These chronic and incurable conditions mostly affect aging populations, causing progressive deterioration of neurons, sensory information transmission disruption, and movement control.

Alzheimer’s disease is an age-associated, irreversible, progressive neurodegenerative disease, characterized by severe memory loss, behavioral changes, and a notable decline in cognitive function. Supporting Alzheimer’s treatment with the extract may be an alternative direction for ameliorating neurodegenerative disorders associated with the overwhelming oxidative stress as well as Alzheimer’s disease.

Bacopa has therapeutic uses as an anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antipyretic, sedative, and antiepileptic agent. It’s used to address backache, mental illness, joint pain, and hoarseness. Other uses are as a cardiac tonic and as an aid with bronchitis, respiratory allergies, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, and gastric ulcers.

It interacts with the respiratory, circulatory, digestive, nervous, renal, and integumentary body systems. Today, it’s generally recognized that it supports a healthy lifestyle approach related to issues with cardiovascular disease, immunity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, psychological stress, and neurocognition. There is good reason to believe that a lifestyle-related approach to optimal health will benefit from support from Bacopa as a health supplement.

What properties have been found statistically significant?

The following properties have been studied and found statistically significant include adaptogenic, analgesic, anti-anxiety, anticonvulsant, anti-depressant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, antioxidant, anti-ulcerogenic, nootropic, immunostimulatory, hepatoprotective, and neuroprotective.

What are its anti-aging and neuroprotective properties?

Bacopa may enhance brain function and reduce chronic inflammation and other aging process symptoms. Bacopa monnieri benefits include the possible capability to prevent or postpone the development of neurological disorders and other aging-related conditions.

Neurocognitive herbal support is increasingly being studied due to the biosafety profile of many all-natural herbs and their potential usefulness in addressing cognitive impairment.

A recent study published in Annals of Neurosciences reviewed Bacopa monnieri extract (Brahmi), an herbal nootropic (called Medhya Rasayana in Ayurveda). As the authors note, Bacopa extract “promotes free radical scavenger mechanisms and protects cells in prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum against cytotoxicity and DNA damage implicated in Alzheimer’s disease.”

In the study, Bacopa extract was shown to protect the cholinergic neurons and reduce anti-cholinesterase activity similar to the following cognition-enhancing medications often used to help treat Alzheimer’s disease: donepezil, rivastigmine, and galantamine. Bacopa extract was also shown to reduce hippocampal β-amyloid deposition and stress-induced hippocampal damage.

The study’s subjects were tested on general information, orientation, mental control, logical memory, digit forward, digit backward, visual reproduction, and paired associated learning. Bacopa extract provided neurocognitive herbal support, improving the total memory score. Maximum improvement was seen in logical memory and paired associate learning in humans and reversed phenytoin-induced memory impairment in an experimental model.

As the study’s authors note, “While Bacopa monnieri shows potential to be a novel agent in Alzheimer’s disease, further human trials are recommended to verify the efficacy and rule out any side effects as evidenced by the experimental models.”

Is it used as an anticonvulsant?

It has been used in traditional medicine as a sedative and antiepileptic agent.

Can it provide support for breathing problems?

It’s often used to relieve respiratory problems like asthma, bronchitis, and respiratory allergies.

Is it an analgesic and an anti-inflammatory?

Yes. It’s often used to address backache, joint pain, and other aches and pains. It also contains pro-inflammatory cytokines, which have the potential to accelerate an inflammatory immune response.

Does it provide support for intestinal issues?

It’s often used to combat intestinal issues, such as irritable bowel syndrome and gastric ulcers.

Does it support skin health?

It’s an antipyretic and is used to support skin health and relieve skin infections like ringworm.

Can it help with stress?

Bacopa is an adaptogenic herb. Adaptogens help the body combat the effects of stress and enable the body to function normally during traumatic periods. It may help maintain the balance of the nerves and boost energy.

According to some scientific studies, Bacopa monnieri benefits may include decreasing stress and anxiety by improving mood and lowering cortisol levels, which is strongly related to stress levels.

Bacopa monnieri may also lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure by releasing nitric oxide, which aides in the dilation of blood vessels, causes an increase in blood flow, and reduces blood pressure.

So it’s a nootropic that supports brain health and memory?

The plant of universal consciousness, Bacopa is commonly used to rejuvenate the mind and provide meditation support. It’s believed that it can increase clarity of thought. It’s often used to support the treatment of cognitive deficits and to improve learning. It also acts as a tonic for the nerves and may help sharpen memory.

It’s also a nootropic (a substance that may improve cognitive function, particularly memory, creativity, and motivation). Bacopa has traditionally been used to support clarity in thinking, learning, memory development, and concentration in otherwise healthy adults. Some research suggests it may also protect brain cells from chemicals involved in Alzheimer’s disease.

It also acts as an adaptogen, which means it helps the body adapt to new or stressful situations. It is used to improve memory and to help address anxiety, epileptic disorders, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), allergic conditions, and irritable bowel syndrome. It is also used as a general tonic to fight stress.

So it may help to alleviate ADHD symptoms?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurological disorder characterized by hyperactivity, impulsivity, and carelessness. Studies has demonstrated that Bacopa monnieri may help to alleviate the symptoms of ADHD.

Are its health benefits backed by science?

The short answer is “yes.”

A study published in  Rejuvenation Research says this: “This review synthesizes behavioral research with neuromolecular mechanisms putatively involved with the low-toxicity cognitive enhancing action of Bacopa monnieri (BM), a medicinal Ayurvedic herb. BM is traditionally used for various ailments, but is best known as a neural tonic and memory enhancer. Numerous animal and in vitro studies have been conducted, with many evidencing potential medicinal properties.

“Several randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials have substantiated BM’s nootropic utility in humans.”

How did you choose your Bacopa supplier?

For each of the products we sell, company owner Michael Van der Linden and members of our team do substantial research, visit the source, and meet with the collectors and processors personally. We back up our faith in our source and our processors with testing.

What are the plant’s traditional uses?

Bacopa has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine for more than 3,000 years. Its use and effects are described in texts such as the Charaka Samhita, Atharva-Veda, and Susrut Samhita as a Medhya Rasayana-class herb. Medhya means intellect and/or memory. Rasayana means a therapeutic procedure or preparation that, with regular practice, may help to boost a target body system.

Ancient Vedic scholars allegedly used the herb to help them memorize lengthy sacred hymns and scriptures. It is commonly used as a rejuvenator of the mind, a memory enhancer, and a meditation support that can increase clarity of thought.

According to Ayurveda, the plant is bitter, pungent, heating, emetic, and laxative. Therapeutic uses include helping to treat bad ulcers, tumors, ascites, enlargement of spleen, indigestion, inflammations, leprosy, anaemia, and biliousness. According to the Unani system of medicine, the plant is bitter, aphrodisiac, and helpful in the treatment of scabies, leucoderma, and syphilis. It is considered a promising blood purifier and useful in treating diarrhea and fevers.

Can you describe the plant?

It’s a perennial, creeping herb in the family Scrophulariaceae. It is native to the wetlands of southern and Eastern India, Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and South America.

The leaves of this plant are succulent, oblong, and thick. The plant has small, white actinomorphic flowers with four to five petals. Its ability to grow in water makes it a popular aquarium plant. It’s a medicinal herb used in Ayurveda, where it is also known as Brahmi, after Brahmā, the Hindu God of creation.

How do I consume Bacopa extract?

Add 1/2 teaspoon of extract to 1/2 teaspoon of virgin coconut oil or ghee and 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite nut butter. Mix thoroughly. Take 2 servings a day.

Does Bacopa have caffeine?

No.

What phytochemicals does it include?

Phytochemicals are chemical compounds produced by plants. They generally help plants thrive or thwart competitors, predators, or pathogens.

Its alkaloids include brahmine, herpestine, and nicotine.

Its saponins include d-mannitol, hersaponin, acid A, monnierin, and monnierasides I–III.

Its triterpenoid saponins include saponins A, B and C, as well as pseudojujubogenin glycoside.

Its flavonoids include luteolin and apigenin, luteolin-7-glucoside, glucoronil-7-apigenin, and glucoronil-7-luteolin.

Its sterols include betulic acid, stigmasterol, stigmastanol, beta-sitosterol, cucurbitacins, and plantainoside B.

Its bacogenins include jujubogenin; bisdesmosides; bacopasaponins A, B, C, D, E, F, and G; pseudojujubogenin glycosides; and bacopasides I, II, IV, and V.

What if I have more questions about Bacopa?

You can read more scientific studies by visiting the National Center for Biotechnology Information website. Also feel free to reach out!

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