Gotu Kola, commonly known as Centella, Asiatic pennywort or Gotu kola is an Ayurvedic herb and nervine tonic that is mainly replenishing and rejuvenating for the central nervous system. It is also helpful for calming nerve disorders and chronic anxiety.
Gotu kola is one of the great medicinal adaptogen and Rasayana herb. Many peoples used it for centuries in Chinese medicine and Indian traditional medicine system, i.e., Ayurveda.
We also know it as Centella Asiatica. Gotu Kola leaves is of fan-shaped consumed as a dry powder or by tea infusion. We can also consider it as a brain tonic useful for improving memory, mental alertness, and concentration.
Some active ingredients in it include triterpene saponins such as asiaticoside , madecossoside, and madasiatic acid. It is wild creeping vine which grows throughout India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka.
In these countries, we commonly use it as a new culinary green and herbal remedy. It is indigenous to hot, humid climates such as China, South Africa and many tropical regions including parts of Australia.
- 1 1. Spiritual herb and Shen tonic:
- 2 2. As an adaptogen and nervine tonic:
- 3 3. A solution to stretch marks and cellulite:
- 4 4. Brain tonic and memory booster:
1. Spiritual herb and Shen tonic:
Gotu Kola is sometimes called Brahmi, and although its properties are like Brahmi, it is not the same plant. In Ayurveda, it is known to as mandukaparni.
Ayurvedic experts consider Gotu Kola as a highly sattvic herb known to enhance one’s spiritual nature. Thus, it is often used to assist in meditation. Sattvic herb used to work with crown chakra and help to induce a steady, calm and peaceful of the mind.
They frequently use Gotu Kola with other sattvic herbs such as Shatavari, gingko, and tulsi to increase psychic activities and open one to spiritual insights.
It was first to acknowledge in legends by those who witnessed elephants, renowned by their longevity, eating the leaves of the plants as a staple part of their diet.
In Chinese medicine, They call the herb “luei gong gen” and similar to east Indian perspective, they view it as potent Shen tonic adaptogen that helps to increase and awaken spiritual consciousness.
2. As an adaptogen and nervine tonic:
The leaves of it are very well known for their effect as a nervine tonic adaptogen. The herb has a rejuvenating and restorative influence on the central nervous system.
Its tea or powder can be beneficial for relieving anxiety and tension. These features are not sedative means they won’t put you on sleep. It acts to calm the body by replenishing and supporting healthy nerve functioning.
Gotu kola is a non-caffeinated herbal stimulant, that is beneficial as a Jing tonic for its effect at nourishing the adrenal glands, helping to activate a clear alert state.
Because of these qualities, We often use it for some neurological disorders and depression. It is helpful for providing restful sleep and assists in alleviating stress-related insomnia.
3. A solution to stretch marks and cellulite:
It helps promote blood circulation. So the way it reduces the sign of the cellulite and stretch marks by improving blood flow towards the surface of the skin.
Stretch marks are just a deterioration of the epidermis (top layer of the skin). So by blood circulatory tonic, it can improve issue specifically related to stretch marks on any part of the skin.
It helps promote the healing of the cellulite, or the reduction of cellulite is by acting as a blood cleanser. Cellulite mostly occurs because of the accumulation of toxicity and fat cells to grow and sort of push through layers of the skin. So overall detoxification helps you to decrease the appearance of cellulite.
4. Brain tonic and memory booster:
As the brain is an integral part of the central nervous system and therefore is primarily influenced by the properties of gotu kola. The shape of the leaf also falls in line with doctrine signature as it closely resembles the human brain.
Best known for its ability to improve brain power and considered as a great herbal stimulant for memory and other cognitive functions. It helps to increase mental alertness, intellectual performance and the ability to concentrate or focus.
Gotu Kola has also increased the production of GABA which is amino acids, helps us feel relaxed.
5. Varicose vein:
Because of the natural acids found in Gotu Kola, it can help decrease the symbol of the varicose vein such as swelling and pain by acting as an anti-inflammatory to the circulatory system.
Many prove it to be effective from chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). It is a condition that arises when the various walls and valves in the legs veins aren’t functioning correctly. This makes it hard for the blood to return upwards to the heart from the legs, causing blood to pool and collect.
It results in a varicose vein, leg cramp, ankle swelling, and other related symptoms. Gotu kola is a natural vasodilator which increases the blood circulation, improves blood flow and strengthen vessel walls.
6. Treat Alzheimer’s disease:
Because of its action on the central nervous system help in the prevention of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. So Gotu kola is essentially an anti-inflammatory to the brain. And it is shown in a clinical study to prevent the calcination.
According to modern research, they can trace this ability alone back to its triterpene content which prevents the calcination or alkaloid plaque on the brain that leads to neurological disorders.
7. Good for hair, skin and wound healing:
Gotu kola benefits are mainly for the healing of skin and repair damage to the epidermis layer as well as connective tissues. Two of the primary compounds discovered in gotu kola leaves responsible for these effects are the saponins called asiaticoside and madecassoside.
They mainly use these two mostly derived from the gotu kola as an ingredient in commercial skin creams. It helps to stimulate skin repair, increase collagen synthesis, control inflammation and elevate antioxidants, directing them to the damaging area.
Using internally or topically, We have respected the herb for centuries as an Ayurvedic remedy for dermatitis, wound healing and for maintaining clear, smooth complexion.
Gotu kola is also great for strengthening the hair and nails. It is because of the asiaticoside triterpene elements, but the leaves of gotu kola are a rich source of the minerals and some vitamins including calcium, germanium, cobalt and B vitamins. It is favorite herbal additions to shampoos and conditioner.
Gotu Kola acts as a mild diuretic so it can detoxify your body through urination. That help lessens the burden on several organs including the kidney and the liver.
When the liver is forced to work harder than it should by becoming overly toxic, the entire mind and body suffer. It can cause weight gain, diminished sex drive, poor mood, fatigue, skin issues, brain fog, digestive problem and more.
By taking Gotu Kola, it helps to rid the body of toxins to support better overall body functioning. It includes greater energy, a positive mood, better mental clarity, increased libido, and improved wellbeing.
9. Increased longevity:
We know it to be a fountain of life. Thanks to the story of the herbalist who has said to extend his life by over 200 years by taking it daily.
Gotu Kola has long been considered as a longevity herb. We even reported Daoist master and herbalist Li Ching-Yuen , a famous proponent and user of the plant during his time to have passed away at 256 years. His longevity was largely due to his daily gotu kola habit.
While the accuracy of the report is up to debate, scientific research has shown that it contains potent therapeutic properties that include his ability to prolong life.
The health benefits of the plant are wide ranging from the brain and blood to digestion and everything in between.
10. Managing diabetes symptoms:
One of the many complications of diabetes includes deterioration of the capillaries. That causes a slowdown of the delivery of the essential vitamins and minerals and oxygen to tissues.
It causes a condition referred to as dysfunctional micro-circulation which can lead to a serious problem like damage to the nerve, kidney, eyes and other organs.
Gotu Kola believed to help address this tissue by lessening or eliminating these symptoms.
11. Relief from joint pain:
As Gotu kola is a powerful anti-inflammatory. It can also provide relief for those suffering from the joint pain related to a problem like arthritis. It improves joint function and eases common arthritis symptoms.
12. Support heart health:
Gotu kola found to be beneficial for the heart patient. It is something that showed in a 2007 study published in a journal Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica.
They showed the compound madecassoside to inhibit the oxidation of the lipids, prevent depletion of antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase and prevent early death of the heart cells.
The expert says plant may even help prevent a stroke by preventing blood clot formation.
Side effects of the Gotu Kola:
Although Gotu kola is safe to use, sometimes it has side effects which are very rare. Some people who consumed gotu kola may experience an upset stomach, headache, and drowsiness. This is because Gotu Kola makes your skin more sensitive to the sun.
Medical expert advice to avoid gotu kola if you have a history of cell skin cancer or melanoma.
People with liver diseases should also avoid it. Stop using Gotu Kola and call your healthcare expert if you have any of the following sign:
- Liver problems such as nausea
- Stomach pain
- Low fever
- Loss of appetite
- Dark urine
- Clay-colored stools
- Jaundice(yellowish of the skin or eyes)
- you have a high cholesterol level
- Avoid it at the time of pregnancy because of its effects on the blood circulation.
- Avoid its use during breastfeeding.
- It’s important to limit your sun exposure and sunscreen while taking it.