3. Gotu Kola
Gotu kola or Centella asiatica is a common herb in Indian, Chinese and African traditional medicines.
Gotu kola is an adaptogen with antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anxiolytic and diuretic properties. It also stimulates blood circulation and is commonly taken as a brain tonic. Preliminary studies also show that gotu kola has nootropic effects. It is known to slow down the signs of aging and to improve concentration and attention span.
The herb has also been used to successfully treat neurodegenerative disorders and to enhance memory.
Bacopa is more commonly known as Brahmi especially in Ayurveda traditional medicine. The effectiveness of bacopa on cognition and memory is well studied. For example, its antioxidant protection has been shown to extend to the hippocampus.
In the brain, bacopa not only mops up reactive oxygen species but it also breaks down beta amyloid proteins that causes Alzheimer’s disease. Bacopa’s antioxidant effect has been found comparable to that of vitamin E.
Although bacopa improves cognitive functions including memory in people with neurodegenerative disease, it does not have the same effect on normal, healthy subjects. This is because the antioxidant properties of bacopa is only useful where memory loss is caused by damage to the nerves and brain cells.
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