Bacopa (generic name)
treats Memory, Anxiety, Epilepsy, Irritable bowel syndrome, and Cognition
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Adults (18 years and older)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for bacopa in adults. According to tradition, 50-150 milligrams two or three times a day has been used. For anxiety, 30 milliliters of bacopa syrup per day in two divided doses (representing 12 grams of dry crude drug) for four weeks has been used. Other preparations that have been used include 2 ounces of crude aqueous extract of bacopa daily for up to five months or 2-4 milligrams per kilogram of body weight of defatted alcoholic bacopa extract dissolved in distilled water daily for up to five months.
Children (younger than 18 years)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for bacopa in children. Nevertheless, based on traditional use, 350 milligrams per teaspoonful of dried plant extracted in a syrup has been taken three times daily for three months in children ages six to eight.
SafetyDISCLAIMER: Many complementary techniques are practiced by healthcare professionals with formal training, in accordance with the standards of national organizations. However, this is not universally the case, and adverse effects are possible. Due to limited research, in some cases only limited safety information is available.
Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to Bacopa monnieri, its constituents, or any member of the Scrophulariaceae (figwort) family.
Side Effects and Warnings
Side effects of bacopa may include nausea, dry mouth, thirst, and fatigue. Bacopa has been reported to cause palpitations (irregular heartbeats); patients with heart problems should use with caution.
Use cautiously in patients taking drugs or herbs that are metabolized by cytochrome P450 enzymes, as bacopa may negatively affect these enzymes.
Use cautiously in patients taking thyroid drugs, as bacopa may increase thyroid hormones.
Use cautiously in patients taking calcium blocking drugs, as bacopa may additively interact with them.
Use cautiously in patients taking sedatives, as bacopa may additively interact with them.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Bacopa is not recommended in pregnant or breastfeeding women due to a lack of available scientific evidence.
Interactions with Drugs
Bacopa may additively interact with calcium blocking drugs. Caution is advised.
Bacopa may negatively affect cytochrome P450 enzymes and may interfere with the way the body processes certain drugs. As a result, the levels of these drugs may be altered in the blood. Patients taking any medications should check the package insert and consult with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist, about possible interactions.
Bacopa may increase thyroid hormones and could interact additively with hypothyroid medicine.
Bacopa, when taken concomitantly with phenytoin, may reverse phenytoin-induced cognitive impairment. Consult with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist, to check for interactions.
Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements
Bacopa may negatively affect cytochrome P450 enzymes and interfere with the way the body processes certain herbs or supplements. As a result, the levels of other herbs or supplements may become too high in the blood. It may also alter the effects that other herbs or supplement possibly have on the P450 system.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature edited and peer-reviewed by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com): J. Kathryn Bryan, BA (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Nicole Giese, MS (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Shaina Tanguay-Colucci, BS (Natural Standard Research Collaboration); Verda Tunaligil, MD, MPH (Harvard School of Public Health); Catherine Ulbricht, PharmD (Massachusetts General Hospital); Wendy Weissner, BA (Natural Standard Research Collaboration).