BACOPA

OTHER NAME(S):

Andri, Bacopa, Bacopa monniera, Bacopa monnieri, Brahmi, Herb of Grace, Herpestis Herb, Herpestis monniera, Hysope d'Eau, Indian Pennywort, Jalanimba, Jal-Brahmi, Jalnaveri, Nira-Brahmi, Moniera cuneifolia, Sambrani Chettu, Thyme-Leaved Gratiola, Water Hyssop.<br/><br/>

Overview

Overview Information

Bacopa, also known as brahmi, is a plant that has been used in traditional Indian medicine (Ayurveda). Be careful not to confuse brahmi (Bacopa monnieri) with gotu kola and other natural medicines that are also sometimes called brahmi.

Bacopa is commonly used for Alzheimer's disease, improving memory, anxiety, and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) among many other uses. But there is limited scientific research to support these uses.

How does it work?

Bacopa might increase certain brain chemicals that are involved in thinking, learning, and memory. Some research suggests that it might also protect brain cells from chemicals involved in Alzheimer's disease.

Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Ineffective for

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Bacopa does not seem to help keep IBS symptoms from returning after they have gone away for a while.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Anxiety. Taking bacopa syrup daily for 4 weeks seems to reduce symptoms of anxiety, including nervousness, racing heart, trouble sleeping, headaches, tiredness, difficulty concentrating, and stomach discomfort in some people with anxiety.
  • Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Taking bacopa for 6 months seems to improve ADHD symptoms such as restlessness and learning problems by 20% or more in some children with ADHD.
  • Improving memory. There is mixed evidence about bacopa for improving memory. Some research shows that bacopa extract taken for 12 weeks does not improve memory and attention. However, other research shows that taking bacopa improves some measure of memory in otherwise healthy older adults. Also, taking bacopa extract seems to improve some measures of memory and hand-eye coordination in children aged 6-8 years. It seems that some bacopa extracts can benefit memory while others do not.
  • Epilepsy (seizures). Taking bacopa extract for 5 months might prevent seizures in some people with epilepsy.
  • Asthma.
  • Backache.
  • Hoarseness.
  • Mental illness.
  • Joint pain (rheumatism).
  • Sexual problems.
  • Fluid retention.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate bacopa for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Bacopa extract is POSSIBLY SAFE for adults when taken by mouth appropriately and short-term, up to 12 weeks. Common side effects include increased bowel movements, stomach cramps, nausea, dry mouth, and fatigue.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking bacopa if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Slow heart rate (bradycardia): Bacopa might slow down the heartbeat. This could be a problem in people who already have a slow heart rate.

Gastrointestinal tract blockage: Bacopa might cause "congestion" in the intestines. This might cause problems in people who have a blockage in their intestines.

Ulcers: Bacopa might increase secretions in the stomach and intestines. There is concern that this could worsen ulcers.

Lung conditions: Bacopa might increase fluid secretions in the lung. There is concern that this could worsen lung conditions such as asthma or emphysema.

Thyroid disorders: Bacopa might increase levels of thyroid hormone. Bacopa should be used cautiously or avoided if you have a thyroid condition or take thyroid hormone medications.

Urinary tract obstruction: Bacopa might increase secretions in the urinary tract. There is concern that this could worsen urinary obstruction.

Interactions

Interactions?

We currently have no information for BACOPA Interactions.

Dosing

Dosing

The appropriate dose of bacopa depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for bacopa. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References

REFERENCES:

  • Chaudhuri, P. K., Srivastava, R., Kumar, S., and Kumar, S. Phytotoxic and antimicrobial constituents of Bacopa monnieri and Holmskioldia sanguinea. Phytother.Res. 2004;18(2):114-117. View abstract.
  • Dar, A. and Channa, S. Calcium antagonistic activity of Bacopa monniera on vascular and intestinal smooth muscles of rabbit and guinea-pig. J Ethnopharmacol. 1999;66(2):167-174. View abstract.
  • Garai, S., Mahato, S. B., Ohtani, K., and Yamasaki, K. Bacopasaponin D--a pseudojujubogenin glycoside from Bacopa monniera. Phytochemistry 1996;43(2):447-449. View abstract.
  • Garai, S., Mahato, S. B., Ohtani, K., and Yamasaki, K. Dammarane-type triterpenoid saponins from Bacopa monniera. Phytochemistry 1996;42(3):815-820. View abstract.
  • Goel, R. K., Sairam, K., Babu, M. D., Tavares, I. A., and Raman, A. In vitro evaluation of Bacopa monniera on anti-Helicobacter pylori activity and accumulation of prostaglandins. Phytomedicine. 2003;10(6-7):523-527. View abstract.
  • Kar, A., Panda, S., and Bharti, S. Relative efficacy of three medicinal plant extracts in the alteration of thyroid hormone concentrations in male mice. J Ethnopharmacol. 2002;81(2):281-285. View abstract.
  • Kishore, K. and Singh, M. Effect of bacosides, alcoholic extract of Bacopa monniera Linn. (brahmi), on experimental amnesia in mice. Indian J Exp.Biol 2005;43(7):640-645. View abstract.
  • Martis, G and Rao, A. Neuropharmacological activity of Herpestis monniera. Fitoterapia 1992;63:339-404.
  • Mukherjee, G. D. and Dey, C. D. Clinical trial on Brahmi. I. J.Exp.Med.Sci. 1966;10(1):5-11. View abstract.
  • Pawar, R., Gopalakrishnan, C., and Bhutani, K. K. Dammarane triterpene saponin from Bacopa monniera as the superoxide inhibitor in polymorphonuclear cells. Planta Med. 2001;67(8):752-754. View abstract.
  • Rao, C. V., Sairam, K., and Goel, R. K. Experimental evaluation of Bocopa monniera on rat gastric ulceration and secretion. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2000;44(4):435-441. View abstract.
  • Rastogi, S., Pal, R., and KulshreshthaDK. Bacoside A3--a triterpenoid saponin from Bacopa monniera. Phytochemistry 1994;36(1):133-137. View abstract.
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  • Russo, A., Izzo, A. A., Borrelli, F., Renis, M., and Vanella, A. Free radical scavenging capacity and protective effect of Bacopa monniera L. on DNA damage. Phytother.Res. 2003;17(8):870-875. View abstract.
  • Sharma, R, Chaturvedi, C, and Tewari, PV. Efficacy of Bacopa monniera in revitalizing intellectual functions in children. J Res Edu Ind Med 1987;1-12.
  • Singh, H. K. and Dhawan, B. N. Effect of Bacopa monniera Linn. (brahmi) extract on avoidance responses in rat. J Ethnopharmacol. 1982;5(2):205-214. View abstract.
  • Singh, R. H. and Singh, L. Studies on the Anti-Anxiety Effect of the Medhya Rasayana Drug, Brahmi (Bacopa monniera Wettst.) - Part I. Journal of Research in Ayurveda and Siddha 1980;1(1):133-148.
  • Sumathy, T., Subramanian, S., Govindasamy, S., Balakrishna, K., and Veluchamy, G. Protective role of Bacopa monniera on morphine induced hepatotoxicity in rats. Phytother Res 2001;15(7):643-645. View abstract.
  • Vohora, SB, Khanna, T, Athar, M, and Ahmad, B. Analgesic activity of bacosine, a new triterpene isolated from Bacopa monnieri. Fitoterapia 1997;68(4):361-365.
  • Benson S, Downey LA, Stough C, et al. An acute, double-blind, placebo-controlled cross-over study of 320 mg and 640 mg doses of Bacopa monnieri (CDRI 08) on multitasking stress reactivity and mood. Phytother Res 2014;28(4):551-9. View abstract.
  • Dave UP, Dingankar SR, Saxena VS, et al. An open-label study to elucidate the effects of standardized Bacopa monnieri extract in the management of symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children. Adv Mind Body Med 2014;28(2):10-5. View abstract.
  • Downey LA, Kean J, Nemeh F, et al. An acute, double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover study of 320?mg and 640?mg doses of a special extract of Bacopa monnieri (CDRI 08) on sustained cognitive performance. Phytother Res 2013;27(9):1407-13. View abstract.
  • Kidd PM. A review of nutrients and botanicals in the integrative management of cognitive dysfunction. Altern Med Rev 1999;4:144-61.. View abstract.
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  • Morgan A, Stevens J. Does Bacopa monnieri improve memory performance in older persons? Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial. J Altern Complement Med 2010;16:753-9. View abstract.
  • Ramasamy S, Kiew LV, Chung LY. Inhibition of human cytochrome P450 enzymes by Bacopa monnieri standardized extract and constituents. Molecules 2014;19(2):2588-601. View abstract .
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  • Singh M, Murthy V, Ramassamy C. Modulation of hydrogen peroxide and acrolein-induced oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunctions and redox regulated pathways by the Bacopa monniera extract: potential implication in Alzheimer's disease. J Alzheimers Dis 2010;21:229-47. View abstract.
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  • Uabundit N, Wattanathorn J, Mucimapura S, Ingkaninan K. Cognitive enhancement and neuroprotective effects of Bacopa monnieri in Alzheimer's disease model. J Ethnopharmacol 2010;127:26-31. View abstract.
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More Resources for BACOPA

CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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