Updated: Mar 28
Bacopa or Bacopa monnieri is a popular ayurvedic plant that has been used for centuries as part of traditional ayurvedic medicine. In addition, this herbal medicine is quite popular from its name, Brahmi. While the studies are still on the run, it is said that this herb may increase certain brain chemicals that help with learning, thinking, and memory.
However, what is bacopa extract, and does it have any benefits or side effects? Go through this post to get all your answers regarding bacopa uses.
Understanding What Is Bacopa Extract
Bacopa has many names, out of which a common one is water hyssop. It is quite a popular herb and often comes in use in Ayurveda. The basic idea about having this herb is to improve cognitive function, anxiety relief, and overall health enhancement. In addition, this herb usually grows in wet, tropical environments, and this ability allows it to be part of aquarium use.
Some other names for Bacopa are as follows:
Lysimachia Monnieri L. Cent.
Herpestis Monniera L. Kunth.
Graticola Monniero L. Cent.
Herb of grace
Also, it is important to note one must not confuse Bocopa with Cnidium Monnieri as it is a totally unrelated herb.
Bacopa Extract Benefits: What Are Brahmi Uses?
Now, as already mentioned, Brahmi, in particular, is known for its numerous ayurvedic properties. On top of that, it is highly rich in antioxidant properties. Furthermore, it has components like bacopasides and bacosides, which may enhance memory, cognition, and learning. You may even use it to prevent and lower inflammation in the brain.
There aren't many studies that confirm the health effects of Bacopa in a person. Mostly the studies which have been done focused on the prevention or treatment of various health problems. Sometimes, Gotu kola is also referred to as Brahmi. Therefore, it is crucial you not confuse it with Bacopa. Let's take a look at some of the popular uses and benefits of this ayurvedic herb:
Brain Function And Memory
There are multiple studies that suggest that bacopa extract may enhance cognitive function and preserve memory. According to one animal study, after taking the Bacopa supplement, mice displayed the ability to retain more information and better spatial learning.
Also, one more 12-week study in 46 adults found that consuming a 300 mg dose of this herb supplement significantly increased the ability to process visual details, memory, and learning rate compared to the placebo treatment.
Furthermore, another study of 60 older adults concluded that taking 300 or 600 mg of this herb extract enhanced attention, memory, and the ability to retain information more than the placebo treatment.
Anxiety & Stress
A few studies suggest that Bacopa may help change the activity of some specific enzymes related to the stress response. This indicates that Brahmi may aid brain functioning when a person is under stress.
Furthermore, in a 2014 study, the researchers analyzed this herb's effects on participants who indulged in many tasks. The results showed positive mood and cognitive outcomes and lower cortisol levels (a stress-related hormone) in individuals taking Bacopa.
A state like inflammation occurs when your body needs healing and wants to fight disease. But, this condition is often linked to multiple chronic states, such as cancer, kidney, heart, and diabetes.
In a few test-tube studies, Brahmi appeared to prevent the pro-inflammatory cytokines release, molecules that are responsible for stimulating the inflammatory immune response.
Additionally, in animal and test-tube studies, Bacopa inhibits enzymes like lipoxygenases, cyclooxygenases, and caspases, all of which have significant roles in pain and inflammation.
While all the studies have shown remarkable results in animals, more have to be performed to learn about this herb's effect on humans.
Blood Pressure Levels
Maintaining your blood pressure levels is essential, as high blood pressure can lead to many health concerns. High blood pressure can strain your blood vessels and heart, resulting in a weaker heart and more risk of developing heart conditions.
A few research mentions that Brahmi may aid in keeping blood pressure levels within a suitable range. Also, in an animal study, Bacopa lowered diastolic and systolic blood pressure levels, leading to lower blood pressure and greater blood flow.
Also, one more study mentioned that Brahmi decreased the blood pressure levels in rats with high levels of it. However, there were no such effects in rats having normal levels. If we talk about one 12-week study in 54 older adults, taking 300 mg of Brahmi had no impact on the blood pressure levels in these individuals.
Currently, bacopa extracts have only shown the effects of lowering animal blood pressure. So, more studies need to be done to confirm Bacopa monnieri effects in humans.
What Are The Possible Side Effects Of Using Bacopa Extract?
Mainly, consuming bacopa extract may not cause any side effects. However, a few individuals can experience specific minor side effects. Here are some side effects which you may experience after taking Bacopa:
Increased bowel movements
Bacopa Monnieri may also increase your blood calcium levels. Furthermore, it may have a negative effect on neurotransmitter levels like GABA, serotonin, and dopamine.
In addition, Brahmi is not ideal for pregnant women since no studies justify its use for them. Moreover, this ayurvedic herb can react with a few medications. Therefore, if you are considering taking this herb, make sure to speak to your healthcare provider before taking it.
Precautions And Warnings Regarding The Use Of Bacopa
Until now, we know that Brahmi has many uses, of which cognitive ability enhancement is the most prominent. But is Brahmi actually safe for everyone, or do you need to look for some warnings and precautions regarding using this herb?
Here are some warning signs for all age groups and people with special conditions:
Pregnant And Breastfeeding Women
There is a lack of data on if a pregnant or breastfeeding woman can consume Brahmi. Therefore, try to stay safe by avoiding consuming this herb.
Kids And Children
In a usual scenario, taking Bacopa by children ages 6 to 14 for a period of six months is possibly safe. Children below the age of six must avoid having this herb.
There are some chances that taking this herb may worsen your stomach ulcers. Therefore, if you are considering having this herb, ensure to talk to your healthcare provider.
Taking bacopa extract if you have a thyroid condition is not a good idea, as this may lead to increased thyroid hormones. Avoid it because this herb may even react to your thyroid medications.
Slow Heart Rate
A person may suffer from a slow heart rate after consuming Brahmi extract. Also, if you already have a heart condition or slow heart rate, consult your doctor before using this herb.
Bacopa extract may worsen your Asthma and COPD. So, make sure to talk to your healthcare provider if you are considering taking Brahmi.
Gastrointestinal Tract Blockage
Chances are, taking this herb may worsen your GI tract blockage. If you have such an existing condition, talk to your doctor before taking this herb.
Urinary Tract Blockage
A person can face a worsening effect of taking Bacopa if they have a condition like urinary tract blockage. Have a talk with your doctor if you are thinking of using this extract.
Interactions With Other Medicines
There isn't much research regarding Brahmi's interactions with medicines. And when we are talking about different medications, we are also considering neurotransmitters. While keeping this in mind, here are some medications that may interact with Bacopa:
Drugs metabolized by your liver
Medications to treat Alzheimer's disease
While considering the above medications, there are currently no known interactions between Brahmi and foods, supplements, or other herbs.
In addition, remember that these herbs are still not recommended to nurse children, mothers, or other medical conditions. Furthermore, as mentioned, pregnant women must avoid taking Bacopa as no study backs its effectiveness. In fact, a few animal studies say that this herb may lead to lower fertility.
What Is The Ideal Dose Of Bacopa Extract?
Bacopa herb is available in the form of tablets, powders, and extracts. You can easily get your hands on this herb by shopping online or visiting your area vitamin store. Furthermore, you can achieve additional convenience by shopping for bacopa extract at Shea's Apothecary. We offer quality herbal extracts at the best prices to our customers.
Now, talking about the ideal dose of Brahmi extract, there still needs to be more research on what range of amounts will be best for the individuals. In fact, there are multiple factors that help determine an appropriate dose for this herb, including:
Current health status
If you have decided to try this herbal extract, consulting your healthcare provider will be a good decision. The doctor is able to examine your health and see if using this herb will be safe for you or not. Furthermore, they can even determine the correct dose for this extract. Regarding bacopa extract studies in humans, the amounts ranged from 300 to 450 mg per day.
Bacopa extract or bacopa monnieri is a widely used ayurvedic remedy that has been taken in use to treat various diseases and conditions. The animal and human studies on this extract suggest that this herb may help enhance brain functioning, lower stress and anxiety, manage high blood pressure and inflammation, may contain anticancer properties, and might be able to treat ADHD symptoms.
The available research data on this ayurvedic herbal extract looks promising because of its many potential health benefits. However, more studies on Brahmi must be done to understand its effects on humans fully.
Visit Shea's Apothecary to purchase top-quality herbal extracts, including Bacopa, American ginseng, ashwagandha, angelica, etc. Our prices are set, so everyone can enjoy these herbs' health benefits without worrying about their affordability. To purchase them, please use the following contact details:
Phone: 916 208-9096
Shop Address: 2322 Butano Drive, Suite 210 Sacramento, CA 95825
Do Visit our website to confirm our shop's visiting hours.