“Brahmi” is a generic term used to describe two different Ayurvedic herbs, Bacopa Monnier and Centella Asiatica.
In fact, Brahmi is not a Tamil word, it is a Sanskrit word which refers to creativity manifested through pure awareness, and the feminine gist of global consciousness.
These two herbs, commonly known as Brahmi, are considered by the ancient people to promote subtle truth and fair awareness and are still common today.
These two valuable and medicinal herbs are greatly admired by the ancient people for their calming properties, and studies indicate that their overall medicinal properties greatly support the nervous system.
Although these two Brahmi herbs differ in attributes and qualities, their primary uses are the same, and there are some useful differences between them that highlight them from one to the other.
Common Names of Gotu kola
Botanical Name : Centella Asiatica
Common Name : Thimmare, Gotu kola
Sanskrit Name : Mandukaparni
Tamil Name : வல்லாரை / Vallarai
Malayalam Name : Kodangal, Muyalchevi
Hindi Name : Gotu Kola, Brahma Manduki
Kannada Name : Brahmisoppu, Vondelaga
Marathi Name : Karinga, Karivana
Telugu Name : Saraswataku
Common Names of Bacopa
Botanical Name : Bacopa Monnieri
Tamil Name : நீர்ப்பிரமி, பிரமியம், தராய் / nir-p-pirami, pirami, piramiyam, taray
English Name : Brahmi, Herb Of Grace, Indian Pennywort, Moneywort, Monniers Bacopa, Thyme-leaved Gratiola, Water Hyssop
Malayalam Name : ബ്രഹ്മി / brahmi
Hindi Name : बाम / Baam
Telugu Name : సాంబ్రాణి ఆకు / sambrani ak
The Meaning of Brahmi?
Often people are confused about the traits and use of Brahmi as they refer to two different herbs, but researchers say that the dual use of Brahmi can be easily understood by clear geological elements.
In South India, the word “Brahmi” refers to the herbaceous plant Bacopa Monnieri, but in North India, the word “Brahmi” refers to the plant Centella Asiatica.
Both the plants have different Latin names to further complicate the process of differentiating the two plants; That is, the herbaceous plant of Bacopa Monnieri resembles that of Herbestes Monnieri, and the genus Centella Asiatica is similar to that of the Hydrocotyle Asiatica. The fact that these two herbs have the same common name, similar functions, and similar qualities are causes for the confusion.
The Bacopa Monnieri plant is named “Bacopa” and the Centella Asiatica plant is “Gotu Kola” for the intention of distinguishing the two plants. But the common name for these two herbs is Brahmi, because they both have mythical and peaceful effects in the brain and its consciousness, and the word refers to the common traits and benefits of those two plants.
Although it is true that these two herbs differ from the geographical regions and botanical name, they have a neutral and generic name “Brahmi” because they are based on the same characteristics and properties.
Bacopa Monnieri and Centella Asiatica are presented as Herpestes Monnieri and Hydrocotyle Asiatica, respectively, based on the appearance of plants and the geographical regions in which they grow.
Benefits of Brahmi (Bacopa + Gotu Kola)
- It helps to stabilize and calm the mind in a tense situation.
- Especially intensifies the process of strengthening the mind and memory power in children.
- Brahmi helps to keep the focus, concentration, and body support stable.
- It has been traditionally used to promote a balanced emotional state in both men and women.
- Provides enough energy during the day and promotes nighttime sleepiness.
- Enhances healthy blood cells and supports their uniform flow.
- Involves the process of promoting fertile skin and hair growth.
Bacopa and Gotu kola both the herbs control Pitta, Vata, and Kapha quickly and intensely.
In addition, the medicinal properties of these two herbs help solve nervous tissue disorders, lymph nodes, urinary tract problems, excessive bleeding, digestive disorders, circulatory problems, and nervous system problems, and provide stability and strength to the body.
More so, Gotu kola reduces muscle spasms, helps to eliminate bad cholesterol in the body, and strengthens bone tissue. On the other hand, the Bacopa plant ensures static blood flow to all tissues in the body and is widely used to treat various body types.
Rural people consider Bacopa as an effective cooling agent, so it is firmly believed that warming can relieve pitta and other bodily problems. Gotu kola is the second plant of Brahmi herbs which has more cooling properties than Bacopa and is used to treat certain types of Vata and Kapha imbalances.
Strong Gotu kola is commonly used in Ayurveda as the best choice to alleviate body heat. In the process of balancing the Vata, Pitta, and Kapha known as the tridoshic, it is assumed that these two delicate herbs will provide incredible benefits.
Although both Brahmi plants have similar characteristics, one may be preferred under certain conditions. Due to its medicinal benefits, this South Indian Bacopa has been known to strengthen the entire body and lead to improved energy.
Also, the North Indian Gotu kola is actively involved in blood purification and rejuvenation of the blood cells, especially for the quality of pitta. A few unconfirmed studies suggest that these two perennial herbaceous plants support the longevity of humans.
Gotu kola helps to stimulate appetite, but the Bacopa herb also provides an appetite suppressant. This is why the extract of Bacopa herb is often consumed for digestive problems with spices such as cardamom and ginger.
The two Brahmi herbs are used to cure joint pain and are very stable in the elderly, helping to eliminate harmful toxins in the body.
Read More: Health Benefits of Gotu kola
How to Use Brahmi Herbs
For the Nervous System
The two herbal plants which are widely called as Brahmi are well known for enhancing concentration, refreshing the mind, enriching the memory, and preserving the quality of consciousness.
Both plants are considered sattvic herbs, which means the process of raising awareness and promoting subtlety. Ayurveda says that both herbs provide all the benefits you can get during meditation such as deep wisdom, emotional knowledge, inner peace, and peace of mind.
The theory is that the benefits of Brahmi plants are to increase the intensity and clarity of the mind.
Both Gotu kola and Bacopa work directly on improving the quality of the brain function associated with intelligence and consciousness, making them a quality cardiac tonic to calm the mind, while Brahmi herbs treat a wide range of mental imbalances, developmental disorders, and behavioral disorders.
Due to fatigue and stress, Vata is likely to worsen and lose strength, in such case Bacopa is used as the best remedy and natural herbal remedy. In addition, Gotu kola can be used to cure emotional problems including both Pitta and Vata. Here you can see some other herbs for nervous system health.
For the Mind
Bacopa and Gotu kola are both traditionally and widely used to treat skin and hair related problems, creating a soothing feeling on the skin and scalp.
Both herbs are thought to be effective in preventing skin degeneration due to dead and non-renewable cells. Using both of these in the scalp stimulates the central nervous system, enhances brain function, strengthens the muscle, and supports the activation of cells.
Aside from that, the Gotu kola plant is used to control pitta growth, and the Bacopa plant is used to calm the nervous system by balancing the underlying nerve imbalances. It is also used for dry hair, un-nourished hair, blonde hair, hair loss, baldness, and other hair problems and helps to improve hair growth.
Overall, the extract derived from the roots of the Gotu kola plant helps to renew and enrich skin cells. Also, the Bhrajaka Pitta located on the skin is known to cause serious and strange effects. Brahmi plants help to protect, soften, and cleanse the skin, and assists to heal wounds and scars gradually.
For the Skin
The medicinal properties of both Brahmi’s plants are known to avoid and cure dangerous effects on the nervous system and help to keep the nervous system healthy. Both herbs act as a tonic that enhances the nerve tissue named Majja Dhatu and helps to reduce tension, fatigue in the body.
These plants have the dual nature of simultaneously stimulating and calming. These improve the body’s energy and awareness during the day, reduce stress caused by various external factors, and provide a good night’s sleep.
Pigments in Bacopa plant leaves, in particular, can help prevent constipation caused by stress and reduce muscle tightness. On the other hand, the Gotu kola has much to do with relaxing the central nervous system and reducing the effects of aging.
Read More: Herbs For Skin Care
How to Consume Brahmi Herbs
One of the proverbs used since ancient times is that “Food is Medicine, Medicine is Food”. So the food we eat daily should have medicinal properties and be free from chemicals. The only way to do this is to consume quality herbs in a daily diet or medicine.
The expectation is that taste should play a very important role in the digestive process, while also being beneficial to the body. Ayurveda recommends the use of herbs in everyday life as it benefits the body and signals to initiate its own supplements.
Internal Use of Brahmi
There are several ways to consume both herbs, such as the Brahmi’s Bacopa and the Gotu kola, which can be eaten in a powder form, or in pill form, or in liquid form.
Bacopa and Gotu kola herb is washed thoroughly with water and dried in sunlight for 2 days. Ensure the plant is well dried and then grind it into a smooth and uniform powder.
The powder made by this herb can be mixed with various ingredients or simply mixed with water. This Brahmi powder can be mixed with hot or cold water and used for cold, Kapha and rheumatism.
It is common for any drug to stimulate the nervous system with particular aroma and potency. For this reason, powder of Bacopa and Gotu kola is gently fried in ghee and then ingested, resulting in a smooth nervous system.
Cow milk is an excellent carrier that enhances the cooling properties and tonifying properties of herbs. Therefore, it is advisable to mix Brahmi powder with milk to treat serious illnesses.
Intake of Brahmi powder with a few more side herbs or carriers helps in tissue growth, strengthening of the organ, and supporting various functions of the body.
Consult with an Ayurvedic practitioner who has deep experience and knowledge of a carrier called Anupan and you can find out how to consume Brahmi powder and which Anupan suits you.
¼ to ½ teaspoon of Brahmi powder is the most common dosage for all ages, and intake once or twice a day will help you with all the physical ailments.
The tablets made by the herbal plants of Brahmi make it easier and more convenient for consumption. These Brahmi plants, which are in tablet form, are especially helpful for those who travel frequently and who spend many days in travels.
It is true that herbs are bad in taste when taken directly or in powder form, although giving them as pills is a good alternative for those who are resistant to flavor and to children. Don’t worry that the tablets will alter the herb’s own flavor and diminish its properties and benefits.
Herbs in the form of tablets allow you to receive signals that are relevant to your digestive process. These pills also provide the means of curing many other diseases. Taking one to two pills once or twice daily can be beneficial.
It is good news for mothers who have babies, that both the pagoda and the Gotu kola are not only in the form of powders and pills, but are now available in liquid form.
They also provide an easy way to consume these herbs for children and elders. The liquid extract of the Brahmi herb is easy to integrate and very convenient to consume. And unlike tablets, they don’t have expiry days, which means they have a longer life.
External Use of Brahmi
People think Brahmi is an edible drug, but the truth is, you can use it for external purposes as well. Just as you use the Brahmi plant as a powder, tablets, and liquid extract form for internal purposes, you can use these herbs in two different forms, such as paste and oil, for external purposes.
Cleanse the Bacopa and Gotu kola plants in freshwater and then grind them well with a little amount of water or honey. External application of this paste on the skin and joints can treat a number of skin-related ailments, such as dry skin, wrinkled skin, besides it can treat joint pains and arthritis.
Oil made from mature Bacopa & Gotu kola plants has various benefits, so it can be applied externally to affected areas. This oil provides great relief for bone problems such as arthritis, and stroke in elders caused by aging and improves mobility and independent walk.
The oil made from Brahmi plants is also used to make your skin healthy. It can effectively treat nervous system disorders, brain problems, and support healthy hair growth.
Research on Brahmi (Bacopa & Gotu Kola)
Various official scientific research has demonstrated that both perennial herb plants, Bacopa Monnieri and Centella Asiatica, have many uses and a fair amount of value. These studies suggest that the health benefits of Brahmi herbivory have different health benefits than other herbs.
Studies have observed that this perennial herbal plant causes specific changes in the venous system, appropriate mental health, ability to support tone effectively, and balanced cognitive function. We are unable to provide all the findings of the study but we have summarized some of the findings of the researchers.
This is a placebo-controlled study of the double-blind effects of Centella Asiatica (Gotu kola) in the human healthy acoustic initial response, conducted by Broadvegne, J., et al. [Abstract. Dec 2000.8]
A study by Stough, C., et al., To determine the extent to which the extract of Bacopa Monnier, another herb of Brahmi, has an effect on cognitive function in chronic human subjects. [Abstract. Aug 2001]
A study by Virendra Kumar, MH, and YK Gupta on the antioxidant stress and cognitive effects of Centella Asiatica in an Intracerebroventricular Streptozotocin Model of Alzheimer’s Disease in rats. [Abstract. May-Jun 2003]
Side Effects of Brahmi
Generally, herbs should be consumed with a proper guide or a suggestion. They may have serious side effects when ingested with the wrong medication or herbs.
This is why it is advisable to take any medication according to the doctor’s proper prescription. Consuming too much of Brahmi’s herbivores, Bacopa, and Gotu kola, can infect the nervous system, and using them with incorrect carriers or supplemental herbs can lead to increased Vata.
Side Effects of Bacopa Monnieri (Bacopa)
People have reported that they have some adverse effects such as excessive thirst, indigestion, dry mouth, increased intestine movements, nausea, fatigue, relaxation, numbness, and drowsiness while using Bacopa.
Research has shown that continued use of the herb may significantly increase the production of hormone levels of the thyroid gland. Although Bacopa is the best and valuable perennial herb of the Brahmi, the proper prescription will help keep your body healthy.
Side Effects of Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola)
Studies have shown that consuming an excessive amount of Gotu kola can cause a slightly narcotic (drug-like) feeling. Excessive consumption of this plant can cause dizziness, skin irritation, headache, and drowsiness.
A large number of people who consume Gotu kola report nausea and gastric irritation. In addition, the herb Gotu kola has the ability to reduce the fermentation of liver enzymes responsible for metabolism. Although Gotu kola is a herbal plant that has many benefits, it is best to consume it in certain quantities.
Contraindications of Bacopa & Gotu Kola
It is my opinion that there is a certainty of the contradictions in all the God-created and man-made objects in the world. In that case, how much we are vigilant when using an object is depending on knowing its contradictions.
It is important to be aware of and accept the inconsistencies, whether they are daily use products, food, or medicine. In addition, it is always advisable to have a proper consultation before using herbs and medicines.
Contraindications of Bacopa Monnieri (Bacopa)
People with allergic reactions should avoid the medicinal or dietary supplement of the perennial herbal plant named Bacopa Monnieri that belongs to the family of Figwort.
Generally, there is a risk of side effects when consuming two different medications with different traits, so people who take antidepressants, calcium channel inhibitors, antidepressants, and anti-epilepsy medications may avoid Bacopa or consume less according to the doctor’s recommendation.
Contraindications of Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola)
Avoiding Gotu kola (Centella Asiatica) herbal and its components can protect you against the side effects of those with itching, rash, and allergic reactions. Patients who take vasodilators, benzodiazepines, diuretics, hypoglycemic drugs, hormone agents, barbiturates, and cholesterol supplements are advised to avoid the consumption of the Gotu kola herb.