- Helps improve memory, learning capacity and information-processing.
- Supports central nervous system function.
- Has a positive effect on the hippocampus.
Inspired by the sacred practices of Ayurveda, Bacopa monnieri is a nootropic supplement in vegetarian capsules, made from Bacopa leaves and standardised to 20% bacosides (the chemical compounds responsible for its nootropic effects).
It helps improve memory, learning capacity and information-processing, while at the same time supporting the whole central nervous system in functioning properly. It is often combined with Ginkgo biloba, another ‘gold-standard’ of Ayurvedic medicine.
Bacopa monnieri is aimed at many groups of people:
According to ancient Ayurvedic writings, Bacopa monnieri was recommended for various conditions of the central nervous system and mind: attention deficit, memory problems, chronic stress, decline in cognitive performance… It was used to stimulate awareness and help maintain an alert mind.
Today, research is beginning to confirm such anecdotal use. Many studies, including clinical trials, suggest that extracts of Bacopa monnieri help to improve certain cognitive functions and maintain memory (1-3) (retrieval of information (4-5), learning capacity, associative memory (6), visual memory, work memory etc.).
As is the case for almost all Ayurvedic plants, scientists have discovered mechanisms of action that support the claims made for this nootropic.
Bacopa monnieri primarily encourages the formation of synapses (7-9), the junctions between two neurons which ensure that information is transmitted and neural circuits are maintained. All our cognitive abilities depend on these circuits: if they become weak or disappear, our performance declines. How does Bacopa monnieri do this? By triggering the production of several molecules central to healthy synaptic function: glutamate and neutrophins such as BDNF and NGF (10-12). These molecules are crucial for initiating the process (13-14). They support the creation of neural circuits (an essential stage in learning), help to maintain existing circuits (vital for preserving memories) and are involved in a cascade of neuromolecular events that support cognitive performance.
Recent double-blind trials showed improvements in cognitive function following supplementation (15-16). Standardised extracts of Bacopa containing at least 20% bacosides (the compounds responsible for the previously mentioned effects) have also produced positive effects on short-term memory in healthy individuals (17-20).
When deciding which Bacopa monnieri supplement to buy, be sure to keep in mind the benefits offered by our product:
There are two types of intervention for improving aspects of cognition: taking nootropics such as Bacopa monnieri and brain training (21-23). A large number of studies show that brain training reduces age-related cognitive decline (24-27), and some suggest it is even more effective when combined with Bacopa monnieri supplementation.
The theory behind this potential synergy is quite simple.
Brain training reactivates neural circuits that were previously under-exploited or were in decline (28-30). As we age, many neural circuits disappear or become weaker in areas of the brain important for cognition and memory, such as the hippocampus, the striatum and the prefrontal cortex (31-32). When brain training is practiced frequently, it repeatedly reactivates these circuits and improves the connection between the neurons of which they’re composed (33). As a result, it helps boost or reorganise them more effectively. This reinforcement involves several molecules mentioned earlier in this article: glutamate, BDNF and TGF. Molecules whose production is promoted by Bacopa.
In other words, brain training is the stimulus which signals to the body that it’s time to boost its neural circuits. Bacopa is the supplier, providing the elements it needs in order to do so.
It’s therefore highly recommended that alongside supplementation with Bacopa monnieri, brain training, such as puzzles, brain teasers and a range of cognitive tasks, is practised regularly. The aim of this combined approach is to counteract the cognitive losses that lead to decline. It needs to be maintained for at least 12 weeks to be effective.
Bacopa monnieri can also be combined with Ginkgo biloba supplements to increase blood supply to the brain and help maintain cognitive function.
If you’re interested in other natural Ayurvedic products available to buy at Supersmart, you may wish to consider:
As a precautionary measure, Bacopa monnieri is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Bacopa monnieri can in theory increase the effects of phenothiazine, a neuroleptic drug.
This product should not be used as a substitute for a varied, balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. It’s important to follow the guidelines on how to take it and the recommended dose, and to use it by the ‘best before’ date. It is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or for children under 15. Keep out of children’s reach. Store in a cool, dry place.
|Daily serving: 6 capsules
Number of servings per bottle: 16
|Quantity per serving|
|Bacopa monnieri (leaf extract standardised to provide 20% bacosides)||600 mg|
|Other ingredients: Acacia gum.|
Whether for end-of-year exams, professional challenges, or simply to maintain cerebral capacity as you get older, discover the best natural nootropics for stimulating cognitive ability.
Have you heard of the MIND diet? It’s a set of dietary practices designed to promote good brain health. Put it into practice with our recipe suggestions.
Are you keen to think faster, more effectively and for longer? Discover the 7 most effective, natural ‘nootropic’ products for boosting your brain power.