Bacopa extract is taken from the succulent leaves of a small creeping plant commonly found growing throughout damp and marshy wetlands of India. This herb, with its small white flowers, is often mistaken for a water lily, although the two are unrelated. Bacopa (Bacopa monniera or B. monnieri) is also known as brahmi and water hyssop. The name of brahmi is thought to be derived from the Hindu’s creator of the universe, Brahma. The extract possesses medicinal qualities and is used to treat numerous mental and physical conditions.
The herb is most often used as a brain tonic, especially within its native origin of India. Bacopa extract has been used for centuries to restore and nourish the central nervous system. Properties found in the extract are known to increase mental functions within the brain. Bacopa contains antioxidants that are thought to protect brain cells, making them stronger and healthier. In fact, the extract is commonly used to enhance memory and concentration, thus improving learning comprehension and processing skills.
These antioxidants can also reduce the effects of stress on the brain. As a result, bacopa extract can be used to calm the nerves. It works especially well for alleviating symptoms associated with nervous exhaustion, anxiety, and depression. The herb also increases serotonin levels, which promote relaxation. This can help alleviate problematic headaches as well and has even been used to treat ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
The herb boosts the immune system and as a natural anti-inflammatory, it is used to treat other conditions as well. For instance, bacopa extract is thought to help with irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, epilepsy, bronchitis, asthma, hoarseness, and allergy symptoms. It may also improve heart function. The leaves of the plant have been historically used for treating certain conditions such as anemia, sprains, fractures, diabetes, hemorrhoids, coughs, and rheumatism.
The plant’s anti-aging qualities are known to restore one’s youth and vitality, possibly stimulating the sex drive as well. Bacopa is also commonly used to repair damaged skin, minimizing scars and smoothing out cellulite. Bacopa is available in various forms. In addition to bacopa extract, this herbal remedy is available in both pill and powder forms.
Other than excessive sleepiness associated with high dosages, there are no known side effects from the use of bacopa extract or other forms of this plant. It is always advised to seek the consultation of a qualified homeopathic or health care practitioner beforehand. Additionally, the herb may not be suitable for children or women who are pregnant.