History Brahmi plant which is also known as INDIAN PENNYWORT is a small creeping herb. Its botanical name is Bacopa Monnieri L. Pennell.  It usually  grows to a height of about 1 metre.  Its  branches  can grow about 30 cm. Leaves are oval shaped and small.  This plant  requires full sun for proper growth and hence blooms well in summer. It requires consistently moist  soil.  The whole plant can be used for medicinal purposes. Brahmi plant The plant Phytochemistry Brahmi plant contains •	Alkaloids:  Brahmine, nicotine, and herpestine •	Triterpene saponins: Bacosides and bacopasaponins. saponins are primarily responsible for the bioactivity of the plant.  •	flavonoids •	tannins, •	carbohydrates •	proteins  •	steroids Pharmacology and therapeutic uses Brahmi is a Sanskrit word derived from “Lord Brahma”. Brahmi literally means   ‘energy’.  Brahmi is an important medicinal plant that has been widely in use therapeutically for centuries in Ayurvedic system of medicine.  Brahmi name was  mentioned in several Ayurvedic treatises such as  Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita in the ancient times.   It is grown in the regions of Indian continent, Nepal, Sri Lanka, China, Taiwan, Vietnam & USA. 	In a study, children between age 6 and 12, suffering from ADHD were administered standardized Bacopa Monnieri extract for a period of 6 months. The study showed that there was 20% improvement in 75% cases of children.  In addtion to that there was fair improvement in the cognitive functions, memory functions, improved learning and more stable behaviours.   In the traditional medicine: 	Brahmi is used to treat Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, ADHD, Asperger’s syndrome, autism, insomnia and depression.  	Brahmi is widely to used to increase the memory, cognitive functions, intellect even in children 	Brahmi is used as  a protective and curative medicine for gastric ulcer. It is used even for stress-induced ulcers. 	Brahmi extract is used  in bronchoconstrictive and allergic conditions. 	It is used to strengthen the immune system and   to improve nutritional status. 	According to the Ayurveda Brahmi has antioxidant properties and therefore, Brahmi extracts are often used as blood purifier. 	Skin problems like eczema, psoriasis, abscess and skin ulceration are treated using Brahmi. 	In the Indian subcontinent Brahmi hair oil is used for improving brain related conditions such as head heaviness, head itching, relaxation effect, to promote hair growth, to reduce hair fall. Some studies published in  ‘Evid Based Complement Alternat Med’ that  Bacopa demonstrated suppression of acetylcholinesterase activity, which resulted in enhanced cholinergic function leading to improved attention and memory processing Therapeutic Plants & Materials Herboveda Series:8 Alerts! Alert may be needed in the case of infants, pregnant women, lactating women and those who are on drugs for chronic ailments. In these cases suitable medical advise is needed
Health Scan March 2019 www.healthscan.biz