Brahmi (bacopa monnieri) is a perennial herb that has long been used in Ayurveda
as a natural treatment for a wide range of ailments. This plant has thick and succulent leaves and small white flowers with 4 or 5 petals. The entire plant may be used for medicinal purposes and is available in supplement form at health stores.
Brahmi contains two bacosides, A and B which improve the transmission of impulses between nerve cells in your brain. It also has high amounts of sodium, potassium and significant amounts of manganese, copper and zinc.
Benefits of Brahmi
1. Aids the Nervous System
Brahmi is best known for its beneficial effects on the nervous system. It is considered a brain and nerve tonic that improves intellectual capacity, acuity, clarity of thought and concentration. Studies also confirm that Brahmi can improve memory and learning rate, as well as increase IQ levels, making it ideal for student use. Brahmi also stimulates the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that promotes relaxation, making it a useful treatment for insomnia, anxiety disorders, mental fatigue, learning disorders, Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD
), stress, depression and epilepsy
Brahmi has also exhibited antioxidant properties in the hippocampus, making it an important element in the treatment of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. Studies confirm the Ayurvedic belief in the memory enhancing qualities of Brahmi as it has been shown to improve short term memory and prevent memory loss.
2. Improves Speech
Brahmi is also used to improve articulation and help correct speech defects after prolonged use.
3. Boosts Skin Health
Due to its blood purifying properties, Brahmi has been traditionally used for the treatment of eczema, psoriasis, abscess and ulcerations while stimulating growth of skin, hair and nails.
For more information see the article Benefits of Brahmi.
As an antioxidant, a daily dosage of Brahmi is said to be more powerful than five daily doses of Vitamin-E. A study has shown that Brahmi has possible anti-cancer properties. It may also be used as a tranquiliser, a muscle relaxant, an anti-convulsant, blood purifier, anti-pyretic, carminative and digestive agent. As a natural sedative, Brahmi does not have harmful side effects of dulling the mind that its pharmaceutical counterparts possess, but instead increases mental alertness with regular use. It may be used to lower blood pressure, treat headaches, lower fever, treat hysteria and nervous breakdown.
Brahmi has no known side effects and is gentle enough for use by all persons, regardless of age and gender. It is non-addicting although long-term use is required before you may experience lasting results.
Brahmi can be added to the food you cook in soups and other dishes but due to its bitter taste, Brahmi is best obtained in herb powder and capsule form and is readily sold in health stores as an herbal supplement.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women, however, should always seek the advice of a health professional before taking Brahmi - although Brahmi has been known to be safe for use even in infants to encourage optimal brain development.
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