Brahmi or Waterhyssop {Bacopa Monnieri}

Brahmi or Waterhyssop or Bacopa and is good for Vata and Pitta

Ayurveda Characteristic and Uses

  1. Effect on doshas – Balancing for Vata and also Pitta
  2. Taste – Bitter, astringent, sweet
  3. Energetics – Cooling
  4. Main Traditional Action: Nervine, medhya rasayana, and anti-anxiety
  5. Other Traditional Uses: Works as a brain tonic: calms the mind, reduces dullness, and enhances intelligence and memory. Helps with anxiety and depression and relieve pain and inflammation. Strengthens all of the dhatus except Rakta. Since Brahmi is rare, a similar nervine herb is often substituted: Mandukaparni (Hydrocotyl Asiata). Gotukola (Centella Asiata) is commonly used in the US.  Gotukola is less nervine than Brahmi. The juice is an ingredient in abhyanga oils and can be applied on painful joints and muscles as an analgesic.


Modern Research

Studies on rats indicate that extracts of the plant improve memory capacity. A randomized clinical trial of 98 healthy older people (over 55 years) showed significantly improved memory acquisition and retention. Components of Bacopa monnieri extract have also been shown to impact the oxidative stress cascade by scavenging reactive oxygen species and reduces beta amyloid deposits in mice with Alzheimer’s disease. Brahmi can also enhance immune function.