Herb of The Week - Bacopa March 19, 2014 22:12

            This week, we'll be exploring the properties of the bacopa. The Latin name for this plant is Bacopa monnieri. It's other names include: Andri, Bacopa, Herb of Grace, Herpestis Herb, Indian Pennywort, Jalanimba, Nira-Brahmi, Thyme-Leave Gratiola, Water Hyssop.

 

            The history of the bacopa herb starts in India around 500 C.E when India scholars would use bacopa for better comprehension, improved memory, and as an antioxidant support for the brain. For centuries bacopa has been used to promote learning ability. Resent research shows that while bacopa promotes restful, consistent sleeping patterns in the long run, it has no immediate sedating effect. It calms the senses, without causing drowsiness when used consistently. It reduces anxiety, however allows you to stay alert.

            Bacopa grows well in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, China, Pakistan, Taiwan, and Vietnam. It can also be found in Florida, Hawaii and other states of the southern United States. This herb likes naturally wet soil, shallow waters, or marshes. It can be found at elevations from sea level to heights of over 4,000 feet. It is easy to cultivate with enough water available. The bacopa is a small, creeping herb with numerous branches. Its leaves are oblong, and fleshy. Flowers are purple or white in color, and bloom in the summer. For medicinal use, the whole plant is used.

 

            The main effects of the bacopa are improving memory and concentration. It has also been found to be very helpful in the treatment of anxiety, mental fatigue, improving IQ levels, improving mental clarity, improving memory recall, epilepsy, insomnia, asthma, rheumatism, bronchitis, arthritis, backache, constipation, fevers, and digestive problems. Topically it helps with all kind of skin issues including eczema, psoriasis, abscess, ulcers, and hair growth.

            Bacopa is usually taken by tincture, extract, tablets, being consumed in food, or added to topical ointment.

 

            Ailments which indicate treatment with bacopa include: poor memory, ADD, ADHD, anxiety, mental fatigue, poor mental clarity, Alzheimer’s disease , epilepsy, insomnia, asthma, rheumatism, bronchitis, arthritis, backache, constipation, fevers, and digestive problems. Topically it helps with all kind of skin issues including eczema, psoriasis, abscess, ulcers, and hair growth.

 

            The use of herbs is a time-honored approach to strengthening the body and treating disease. Herbs, however, can trigger side effects and may interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications. For these reasons, you should take herbs with care, under the supervision of a health care provider.

            It is not recommended to take bacopa if you are pregnant or breast-feeding; if you are taking a narcotic; if you are taking other conflicting prescriptions, or if you are going into surgery.

 

Fact Breakdown:

 

            Latin Name:  Bacopa monnieri

 

            Medicinal Actions: Adaptogenic, Tranquilizing, Antioxidant

 

            Indications: poor memory, ADD, ADHD, anxiety, mental fatigue, poor mental clarity, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, insomnia, asthma, rheumatism, bronchitis, arthritis, backache, constipation, fevers, digestive problems, eczema, psoriasis, abscess, ulcers, hair growth

 

            Contraindications:  While pregnant or breast-feeding; concurrently with prescription drugs or psychiatric medications; going into surgery.

 

  

Links:

 

Gaia Health – Bacopa

 

              http://gaia-health.com/gaia-blog/2012-02-28/common-herb-water-hyssop-reverses-epilepsy-treats-and-prevents-other-brain-disorders/

 

 

All Ayurveda – Bacopa

              http://www.allayurveda.com/herb_month_january2013.asp

             

 

 

- BACOPA HAIR OIL -

 

Ingredients:

 

2 cups coconut oil

 

Small crock pot

 

2 cups Bacopa leaves

 

 

Directions:

 

Heat two cups of Bacopa stems and leaves in two cups of coconut oil until the Bacopa is nice and crispy.

Scoop out and discard the crispy Bacopa, and mix a pinch of camphor into the hot oil.

Cool the oil and store it in your refrigerator.

You can expect the coconut oil to solidify into a paste which is easy to massage into your hair and scalp. Just make sure that no one ingests the oil, since camphor should not be eaten.

If you don't like the scent of camphor, you can substitute a few drops of any scented oil in this recipe.