By: Rebecca Beris, MFA
Health and Supplement Researcher and Writer
Bacopa – an active ingredient in Neurolon
Neurolon is a supplement that belongs to a class of supplement called Nootropics. This a Greek word that means “Towards the Mind” also known as “smart drugs” and are commonly used to improve brain function and cognitive abilities. Nootropics can include substances synthesized from chemical substances as well as components of medicinal plants that have been refined.
One of the reasons Neurolon stands out from other nootropics that are available on the market is because Neurolon uses a higher percentage of Bacopa extract then most comparable products.
What is Bacopa?
It is a tropic herb from the family Scrophulariaceae. Bacopa that has been a remedy in India for centuries, is used as a traditional medicine for longevity and cognitive enhancement. Bacopa extract is used in nootropics such as Neurolon as it is a key ingredient in promoting brain stimulation and neurotransmitter growth.
How does it work?
Bacopa contains the saponins called bacosides, these bacosides affect specific neurotransmitters in the brain. A neurotransmitter is something that carries signals along and between nerves. According to the University of Michigan Health System: Bacopa seems to increase the effects of the following neurotransmitters: serotonin, gamma amino butyric acid and acetylcholine.
Serotonin, Gamma amino butyric acid and Acetylcholine explained:
Serotonin is an inhibitory neurotransmitter. A key function of serotonin is to contribute to general well-being and happiness. Many researcher believe that serotonin is a chemical that is responsible for maintaining mood balance. Low levels of serotonin may be responsible for causing depression.
Gamma Amino butyric acid is an amino acid that acts as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It clams nervous activity by inhibiting nerve transmissions in the brain and as such can create a calming effect in individuals.
Acetylcholine is a natural neurotransmitter. It plays a central role in the formation of memories, the ability to concentrate and verbal and logical reasoning. Acetylcholine may also limit the neurological decay associated with neurological degenerative conditions.
By increasing the effects of these neurotransmitters Bacopa works to promote a general feeling of well-being. It also helps with anxiety and depression and enhances memory.
It is also thought that Bacopa can boost cognitive agility. A placebo-controlled study of 24 volunteers concluded that it can boosts cognitive performance as well. The results support the use of the herb to assist people suffering from cognitive related issues.
What are some other benefits?
– Reduction in dopaminergic neuronal death seen in Parkinson diseases;
– Aid in the treatment of epilepsy such as reducing convulsion occurrence;
– Reduction in the effects of physiological stress;
– Reduction of neural inflammation associated with aging over a period of three months
and may exert a neurological anti-aging effect.
– Animal research has also reported that Bacopa extracts can relax the muscles that
control the blood vessels, the intestine, and the airways of the respiratory system, and
can help both prevent and heal ulcers in the stomach.
Bacopa offers a vast array of health benefits. It is a herb that has been proven to stand the test of time.
Neurolon offers a higher percentage of Bacopa extract then most comparable products on the market.
Health System University of Michigan,http://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/hn-4019005#hn-4019005-how-it-works
McIntosh, James, Serotonin: What does serotonin do?, Knowledge center, http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/232248.php
Denver Naturopathic Clinic, http://www.denvernaturopathic.com/news/GABA.html
Nootriment Editorial Staff, Acetylcholine’s role in the brain as neurotransmitter, http://nootriment.com/acetylcholine/
Downey LA, Kean J, Nemeh F, Lau A, Poll A, Gregory R, Murray M, Rourke J, Patak B, Pase MP, Zangara A, Lomas J, Scholey A, Stough C. An Acute, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Crossover Study of 320? mg and 640? mg Doses of a Special Extract of Bacopa monnieri (CDRI 08) on Sustained Cognitive Performance. Phytother Res. 2013 Sep; 27(9):1407-13.doi: 10.1002/ptr.4864.
Health System University of Michigan, Bacopa How it works, http://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/hn-4019005#hn-4019005-how-it-works