photo: iStock

This week we will kick off October with an essential brain herb, in honor of Mental Illness Awareness Week, which starts today. We will be reviewing a very popular herb used in Ayurveda and Central American tribal medicine: Gotu Kola.

Gotu Kola, or Centella Asiatica, is one of my personal favorites out there. It is known to boost intelligence, memory, and longevity for your joints and muscles.

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Gotu Kola is also a supreme skin tonic, used to rejuvenate skin and body tissue, stimulating collagen synthesis. Its primary pharmacological aspect are its triterpenoids, which have been shown to promote longevity for cells and tissues – particularly connective tissues, aiding in healing process and wounds (internal and external.)

It is also a master herb with potent anti-inflammatory qualities, and antioxidant powers. Gotu Kola carries anti-oxidants like Vitamin C and E to areas where there is damage. For this reason it's used in a lot of cosmetic products for its remarkable skin repairing chemistry.

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It is regarded as one of the most spiritual and rejuvenating herbs in Ayurveda and is used to improve meditation. It is said to develop the crown chakra, the energy center at the top of the head, and to balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain, which the leaf is said to resemble.

Brain Power Recipe:

  • 4 Oz of fresh pressed orange juice
  • 2 Oz fresh pressed grapefruit juice
  • 2 Oz of fresh pressed beet juice
  • 1Oz fresh pressed ginger root
  • 1 Tsp Gotu Kola powder

1.    Mix all ingredients

2.    Add the Goto Kola and shake well!

3.    Enjoy!

Use a regular juicer if possible to have a fresh juice. If you don't have a juicer, you can use a blender and strain using a cheesecloth or any fine mesh cloth available.

Physically: Supports the brain, memory, and skin.

Emotionally: Soothes the mind for meditation.

Spiritually: Increases meditative ability to access the higher self.

Adriana Ayales is a Founding Creator and botanist. When she's not writing for Vivala.com, you can find her at the apothecary Botica & Co. in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.