Herbs for adrenal support: Gotu Kola

Excerpt from Dr. Susan Lark’s Healing Herbs for Women

Gotu kola (Centella asiatica), also called centella, has been used since prehistoric times in India. It has been used both internally and externally, based on its ability to heal wounds and treat skin conditions such as eczema, varicose ulcers, and leprosy. In the 1880s, gotu kola was incorporated into the French pharmacopoeia. (American consumers sometimes confuse gotu kola and its rejuvenating activity with kola nuts, which are stimulating because they contain caffeine.) Gotu kola has an action similar to Siberian ginseng, acting as a potent anti-fatigue nutrient. People who are experiencing excessive levels of anxiety may find the energy-supporting qualities of gotu kola quite helpful.

Gotu kola was used in China to delay senility. Modern studies are beginning to confirm its effectiveness in improving mental function. It has been used to increase the mental abilities of disabled children. The primary active components of gotu kola are triterpene compounds. These are asiatic acid, madecassic acid, asiaticoside, and madecassoside. These triterpenes liberate the neurotransmitter acety-lcholine, which is important for cognitive function. It is assumed that because of this, mental capacity often improves. Gotu kola also has a tranquilizing effect and counteracts stress.

Suggested Dosage: If using a standardized extract, take 60 to 120 mg per day. If taking the crude dried plant leaves, take 2 to 4 g per day.

For more information about Gotu kola or other herbs that provide adrenal support, see my book Dr. Susan Lark’s Healing Herbs for Women available on AmazonAmazon Kindle and Womens Wellness Publishing.

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