Do you hate it when people claim that whatever product they are selling cures and heals everything…me too.  So I research all the different components and provide you with the conclusion…okay so alot of information also comes from my training…but, science is always updating the information – and we need to keep abreast of what is going on…

So, Bacopa – it is a well known Ayurvedic/East Indian herb that has been utilized throughout the centuries for a wide variety of issues…from enhancing cognitive function to epilepsy to bronchitis and asthma.  In Ayurvedic medicine, Bacopa is considered the queen of herbs, only behind Ashwagandha.

The active ingredients in Bacopa include:

  • flavonoids (brahmine, herpestine) (flavonoids are anti-oxidants, anti-cancer, anti-bacterial,
  • amino acids (alpha-alanine, glutamic acid, serine, aspartic acid)
  • bacoside A & B (enhance nerve impulse transmittions; repair damaged neurons; neural synthesis; restore synaptic activity; anti-oxidant activity esp in the hippocampus, frontal cortex and striatum)
  • triterpenoid saponins (enhance nerve impulse transmission) (inc betulinic acid which is anti tumor, )
  • alkaloids (brahmine, herpestine, nicotine)
  • monnierin
  • saponins (d-mannitol, acid A, hersaponin (exhibits protection against seizures in mice), bacopasaponins, bacopasides A, B,I, II, N2 bacopasaponin C)
  • beta-sitosterol
  • wogonin (anti-anxiety) (inc oroxindin)

Now while we can identify what these individual components can do, we always have to remember how effective real natural medicine is…”the whole is more than a sum of the parts”.

The primary actions of Bacopa include:

  • enhance cognitive function (attention, working & short term memory, verbal learning, decision making, planning & problem solving, speed of information processing, strategic functioning, motor responsiveness)
  • protects DNA of astrocytes (important brain cells)
  • protects DNA of fibroblasts (important component of all connective tissues: bone, cartilage, ligaments, blood membranes, nails, hair, skin, etc)
  • relaxes pulmonary arteries, aorta, trachea, ileal and bronchial tissue
  • stabilizes mast cells (which produce histamine – comparable to the disodium cromoglycate)
  • anti-inflammatory – due to inhibition of prostaglandin production
  • lysosomal membrane stabilization (lysosomes “eat” toxins within a cell)
  • inhibit DNA replication in cancer cells

Consequently, Bacopa monniera, has been clinically studied and shown to be effective in the following conditions:

  • cognitive processing:  neural enhancement, learning, memory,
  • bronchonstrictive issues
  • allergy conditions
  • intestinal spasm: IBS (irritable bowel syndrome)
  • protects and resolves gastric ulcers (bacoside A) induced by acetic acid &/or stress)
  • improves the mucosal barrier of the GI tract
  • balances SOD (super oxide dismutase) and catalase
  • promotes vasodilation
  • hypothyroid (increased T4 by 41% in mice, although T3 not stimulated)
  • increases level of glutathione in the liver

Bacopa can be taken as a:

  • tea
  • supplement
  • tincture

 

For more information, contact: Dr Holly at holly@choicesunlimited.ca

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