In use for thousands of years in Asia, Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica) is a leafy herb that is a member of the parsley family. Gotu Kola's traditional uses include promoting healing of wounds and resolving skin conditions, in addition to improving mental clarity. In more recent times, research on Gotu Kola indicates that it is effective in stimulating cerebral circulation, which promotes brain health.
What is Gotu Kola?
Gotu Kola is a plant native to Asia, India, Sri Lanka, South Africa, and the South Pacific islands. The stems and leaves of Gotu kola are used medicinally; it is not related to the kola nut (Cola nitida). Unlike the kola nut, Gotu Kola is not a stimulant and does not contain any caffeine. Gotu kola is also utilized as a leafy green in Sinhalese and Sri Lankan cuisines.
According to studies, chemicals found in Gotu kola reduce inflammation and also lower blood pressure. This helps make Gotu kola a valuable herb for improving memory and increasing brain power, among other benefits).
Gotu Kola Benefits
Over its many centuries in use, Gotu kola has been taken to resolve a number of conditions and disorders, including:
- Improving blood circulation to the brain, resulting in enhanced attention span, concentration, intelligence, and memory.
- Increasing energy levels and restoring general well-being.
- Resolving skin conditions, including psoriasis and minor burns.
- Treating parasitic, bacterial, and viral infections, such as shingles, dysentery, leprosy, the common cold, cholera, urinary tract infections (UTIs), syphilis, influenza, swine flu, tuberculosis, elephantiasis, and schistosomiasis.
- Reducing anxiety, depression, fatigue, and psychiatric disorders.
- Improving the healing of wounds and reducing the appearance of scars and stretch marks.
- Resolving digestive disorders, including indigestion, stomach pain, diarrhea, and stomach ulcers.
Gotu Kola Side Effects
Side effects from Gotu kola are exceedingly rare; in a few instances with individuals taking high doses of Gotu kola, skin allergies, headaches, nausea, and drowsiness were reported. Individuals with liver disease and those who take medications for liver conditions should not use Gotu kola. In addition, people with a medical history of cancerous or precancerous skin lesions should avoid using Gotu kola.
According to research, Gotu kola may be a factor in reduced fertility, so women who are pregnant or are attempting to become pregnant should avoid Gotu kola. Nursing mothers should not use Gotu kola.
How Does Gotu Kola Help Brain Function?
Gotu kola contains natural chemicals known as Triterpenoids; researchers have found that Triterpenoids help to reduce anxiety and enhance mental functioning. In one study, medical professionals discovered that people who were given Gotu kola had a decreased likelihood of being startled by a new noise as compared to people who were given a placebo. This "startle noise" is an indicator of anxiety levels, so the researchers found that Gotu kola is a helpful factor in anxiety reduction.
While Gotu kola has a number of benefits, we are pleased with its proven effects as a brain and nervous system revitalizer. Wondering about which brain supplements contain Gotu kola? Check our brain supplement reviews!