Bacopa Monneri is a nootropic herb native to India and the surrounding areas. Bacopa has considerable cognitive benefits and using Bacopa is a great way to add further value to your nootropic stack. Advance Nootropics views Bacopa as the best herb for cognitive benefits and have added it to our store.
Bacopa has been used in traditional Ayurveda (Natural Indian) medicines for thousands of years. The main use for the herb in Ayurveda medicines was as an anti-epileptic and nootropic but it has other medicinal benefits. Although it has other benefits, we will only explore Bacopa’s nootropic qualities.
Bacopa Method of Action
Bacopa’s method of action is quite different from other nootropics like Racetams and Ampakines. Rather than increasing the availability of Acetylcholine or efficiency at the receptor sites, Bacopa is said to increase nerve pulse transmission.
Many of Bacopa’s pharmacological constituents have been isolated and studied for possible medicinal uses. The main constituent in Bacopa said to be responsible for its cognitive enhancing benefits is Bacoside-A. The overall consensus in the science community is that the active ingredient(s) in Bacopa contribute to increased kinase activity in the hippocampus and therefore leading to enhanced synaptic activity and nerve impulse levels.
Nootropic Benefits of Bacopa
Studies have shown that Bacopa considerably raises cognitive function and supports accelerated learning and memory. Studies completed over the years conclude that Bacopa increases memory retention. Other studies have shown that Bacopa not only supports memory retention, but also contributes to memory formation.
Bacopa greatly increases “Working Memory” and “Spatial Memory”. It is probably the best herb for memory and learning. Increased working and spatial memory will contribute to overall cognitive performance. The fact that Bacopa has been greatly studied as compared to other cognitive aids makes it very valuable.
Bacopa for Anxiety
Bacopa has been explored as an anxiolytic. Whether or not you may experience anxiolytic benefits from the herb is hit or miss. Studies have shown Bacopa to contain Hersaponins, which cause mild sedative and tranquilizing effects. This is likely to contribute Bacopa’s main anxiolytic properties however, there may be other chemicals at play.Bacopa has been shown to aid in conversation. Conversation is our main form of communication and is not only important in casual social interactions, but also in business. Increasing your working memory during conversation will make you more quick-witted and likely to have better social interactions which may reduce overall opposition and fear of social interactions.
Bacopa as a Relaxant & Sleep Aid
Bacopa can reduce overall sleep quality by reducing stress and inducing relaxation. The increased sleep and relaxation is likely due to the Hersaponins in Bacopa.
Some people experience the sleep inducing effects of Bacopa and view it as an unwanted side effect. If you are in this category, it is best to avoid taking the herb at certain times in the day. Day drowsiness may or may not happen to you and may just be a matter of adjusting the dosage or changing the times of day when you administer Bacopa.
Bacopa as a Brain Anti-Oxidant
Studies have shown certain Alkaloids and Saponins in Bacopa have certain brain anti-oxidant benefits. Bacopa acts as an anti-oxidant by reducing free radicals in the brain and therefore lowering oxidative stress. These free radicals can contribute to neurological diseases and degeneration like Alzhiemer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
Bacopa Side Effects
The side effects of Bacopa should not be overlooked. It is a powerful herb and should be treated with care. There are several drug interactions so you should always consult and physician before starting supplementation with Bacopa. These side effects are listed most frequent to lowest frequency.
- Dry Mouth
- Excessive Thirst
- Frequent Urination
- Digestive Problems
- Irregular Heart-Beat
- Lowered Fertility (Male)
- Liver Toxicity
Bacopa Drug Interations
Anti-Depressants/Psychotics – Anti-Depressants and Psychotics that have a method of action via p540 enzymes (Zoloft etc…) can be compromised while taking Bacopa.
Thyroid Medications – Bacopa can influence the effects of thyroid medication by either reducing or increasing their effects.
Calcium Channel Blockers – Calcium Channel Blockers effects can be increased with Bacopa. Consult a doctor before use.
Sedatives – Bacopa can interact with sedatives like benzodiazepines and alcohol. Use with care.