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What you need to know about Gotu Kola

WHERE DOES COME FROM?

Gotu Kola aka Centella Asiatica or Asian Penny is indigenous (naturalised) to South Africa, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, and the South Pacific. as well as to parts of India Asia. It is also found in Australia, southern U.S.A, and South America. All parts of the Gotu Kola plant are edible and possess medicinal qualities, including the root, bark, stem, flower, and fruit, with the leaves being most commonly used in healing.

Historically, Gotu Kola has also been used to treat syphilis, hepatitis, stomach ulcers, mental fatigue, epilepsy, diarrhoea, fever, and asthma. Today Gotu Kola is most often used to treat varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency, a condition where blood pools in the legs. It is also used in ointments to treat psoriasis and help heal minor wounds.

Gotu Kola is anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, insecticidal, and antifungal — all beneficial properties for the health of your skin.  These properties make topical application useful for minor wound healing, burns, psoriasis, stretch marks, scars, cellulite, and scleroderma.

 

Benefits of Gotu Kola

Wound healing and skin lesions

Gotu Kola has been applied to the skin, or used topically, for minor burns, psoriasis, preventing scars after surgery, and preventing or reducing stretch marks.

Another benefit that Gotu Kola is most known for is its ability to improve blood circulation. This speeds up the skin’s healing process (goodbye, pimple scars and blemishes!) and makes it effective in treating varicose veins, broken capillaries, and stubborn cellulite. This also helps hair loss problems as better circulation means improved delivery of nutrients and oxygen to the scalp. Because of its potent health and skin care properties, gotu kola is often featured as a key ingredient in serums, eye creams and beauty oils.

Hair Benefits

Gotu Kola thought to increase hair length and stimulate hair growth, possibly by increasing blood circulation to the scalp. Gotu Kola can be used several ways for hair such as a tea, a powder, and even an oil. It acts as a fortifying agent that nourishes the hair follicles and scalp and priming it for a healthy hair growth.  It helps in improving blood circulation, allowing the proper flow of oxygen and nutrients to the scalp.  With such potent components we should not be surprised this herb is used for hair loss. Sometimes hair loss is a result of malnourished cells or hair follicles, and Gotu Kola plays a hefty role in strengthening the hair follicles due to nourishment of the scalp through the strengthening of the blood vessels.

 

It can be used as:

  • An oil in scalp massages
  • As a tea but to get even better results drink the tea and use the oil as a scalp massage.
  • The powder can be used in a hair mask by combining aloe vera gel with the powder and mix into a paste. Not only will this be a great hair mask for hair loss, but it is also a soothing and scalp irritant deterrent.

Gotu Kola increases blood flow

Gotu Kola is well regarded for its ability to improve circulation. Gotu Kola is beneficial for those who travel regularly, a clinical study found that people who took Gotu Kola before flying had less ankle and leg swelling than those who did not take it.

 

Gotu Kola Alleviates stress, anxiety, and depression

 

By bringing brain chemicals into balance, Gotu Kola can help alleviate stress, anxiety, and depression. Gotu Kola increases levels of the feel-good neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, and reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Additionally, Gotu Kola protects the brain from inflammation. Chronic inflammation of the brain is now thought to be an underlying cause of depression. In human studies, Gotu Kola increased calmness, contentedness, and alertness and reduced symptoms of anxiety and depression.

 

Gotu Kola helps you sleep

Getting adequate sleep is one of the best things you can do for your brain. Gotu kola has been used as a natural sleep aid for thousands of years. Traditionally, gotu kola tea is sweetened with a little honey as an Ayurvedic remedy for insomnia.

 

How to use Gotu Kola

  • Dried herb: You can make a tea of the dried leaf, 3 times daily.
  • Powdered herb: available in capsules
  • Tincture (1:2 w/v, 30% alcohol): 30 to 60 drops (equivalent to 1.5 to 3 mL, there are 5 mL in a tsp.), 3 times daily.

 

IT IS BEST NOT TO USE GOTU KOLA FOR MORE THAN 6 WEEKS WITHOUT TALKING TO YOUR DOCTOR. YOU MAY NEED TO TAKE A 2-WEEK BREAK BEFORE TAKING THE HERB AGAIN.

 

INTERACTIONS:

  • Drugs that affect the liver: Gotu Kola contains things that may hurt a person’s liver and taking it along with some other medications that also can harm the liver may cause liver damage.

 

  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs (including statins): In animal studies, Gotu Kola raised cholesterol levels. It may also raise cholesterol levels in humans, although no studies have been done.

 

  • Diabetes medications: In animal studies, Gotu Kola seems to increase blood sugar levels. People with diabetes should not take Gotu Kola without first talking to their doctor.

 

You can buy our Al Khemist range of herbs, spices, roots, and powders at our store Tree of Eternal Life, 124A West Green Road, Tottenham N15 5AA +44 208 800 3114 or on our website www.treeofeternallife.co.uk.

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