Some Great Bacopa Benefits

What are the benefits of this herb?

Are there side effects?

What can Bacopa do for you?

Bacopa monnieri is a plant that grows in tropical, moist environments in India, Africa, Australia, Europe, and North and South America. This herb has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine that originated in India and is one of the oldest medical systems in the world. 

Bacopa is best known for its use as a neural tonic and memory enhancer.  It has been used for centuries by the Hindus in rituals involving new-born babies in the belief that it will open gateways to knowledge.  This herb is also thought to have been used by ancient Vedic scholars to memorize extensive hymns and scriptures.

Besides its use as a nootropic, Bacopa has shown promise in attenuating dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy.1

Cognitive Enhancement With Bacopa

Enhancing cognitive function often comes with unwanted side effects.  These can be psychological or the result of toxicity.2

 

3

 

4

 

5

Bacopa contains saponins, which are nootropic phytochemicals that produce only minimal adverse effects when consumed in standard dosages.  These chemicals:

  • Possess Antioxidant activity.6
  • May protect the liver.7
  • Possess neuroprotective activity.8

 

I have a particular interest in cognition because I work on a senior psychiatric unit where a large number of patients have some form of dementia. 

Bacopa helps repair damaged neurons, restores synaptic activity, assists with neuronal synthesis, and improves brain function. 

The primary molecular mechanism is achieved by promoting neuronal communication.  This is accomplished by increasing the growth of nerve endings called dendrites.9

 

10

 

11

Bacopa has been shown to improve delayed recall memory and Stroop task reaction times.12

Antioxidant Effects of Bacopa

The detrimental effects of free radical cell damage are well known.  This damage is linked to many diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer.13

The human body has both enzymatic and non-enzymatic free radical scavenger mechanisms to help cells fight oxidative stress. 

Superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and glutathione reductase are the first line of defense.  The non-enzyme scavengers are vitamin A,C, and E, coenzyme Q10, glutathione, and selenium. 

When an imbalance occurs, as shown in the figure below, free radical damage can lead to aging and cognitive decline.14

Figure 1.15

Bacopa contains powerful antioxidants.16

An extract of Bacopa monnieri was shown to increase the activity of SOD, CAT, and glutathione peroxidase in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum of rats.17

This antioxidant effect has been shown to reverse memory impairment produced in rats using colchicine by attenuating oxidative damage.  This study suggests there may be potential in using Bacopa in the treatment of Alzheimer’s dementia in the future.18

Bacopa and ADHD

A study published in 2014 found a standardized Bacopa monnieri extract significantly reduced all ADHD symptom scores except those relating to social problems.19

Here are the results obtained from this study:

  • Symptom scores for restlessness decreased in 93% of children.
  • Improvement in self-control occurred in 89% of children.
  • ADHD symptoms were reduced in 85% of children.
  • Learning problems were reduced in 78% of children.
  • Impulsivity was reduced in 67% of children.
  • Psychiatric problems were reduced in 52% of children.

The study concluded that B. monnierei was effective in relieving the symptoms of ADHD and was well tolerated.

Other Medical Uses of Bacopa

There are many other possible medical uses of Bacopa.  Some of these include:

  • Anxiety
  • Epilepsy
  • Depression
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Analgesic
  • Anti-microbial
  • H-Pylori and ulcers
  • Stimulation of the immune system
  • Adaptogenic
  • Anti-neoplastic

More studies need to be conducted in order to discover the many benefits of this herb.

Side Effects of Bacopa

Adverse effects reported in clinical trials include:20

  • Increased stool frequency (30%)
  • Nausea (18%)
  • Abdominal cramps (16%)

Less common effects include:21

22

  • Bloating
  • Decreased appetite
  • Dry mouth
  • Fatigue
  • Flatulence
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Palpitations
  • Vivid dreams

Protandim NRF2 Synergizer

Bacopa monnieri is a fantastic substance capable of many positive medicinal effects.  As with other nootropics, when stacked with other nootropic agents, synergy is possible.  The right herbs combined in the correct ratios can lead to excellent results. 

LifeVantage has developed the ProtandimTM series to improve the health of its customers around the world.  I am proud to be involved with this company.  I believe these products are the best available today, and I take them daily.

Bacopa monnieri has been used in ancient medicine for thousands of years. 

It is a popular addition to nootropic stacks and is one of the five ingredients present in ProtandimTM  NRF-2 Synergizer. 

I take all three ProtandimTM Products daily, along with AXIOTM Energy.  I was so impressed with these products that I signed up as a distributor.  I wanted to be able to offer these cutting-edge products to my Sunshine Nutraceutical’s customers.

It is critical to realize that these herbal supplements can be much more effective when combined with other substances in the proper ratios.  The ProtandimTM series is able to activate the body’s natural pathways in order to achieve superior results.

Click on the banner below to read more about these innovative products.

Finally, if you are the entrepreneurial type and want to build a lucrative business for you and your family, send me an email.  I can help you get started. 

This is one of the most positive life decisions I have made.  A chance to build a business where you learn personal growth skills while helping others become healthy is fulfilling.

If you have any questions about this post or any medication or natural supplement, please feel free to reach out.  I attempt to answer every email I receive. 

Have a great week! 

Be happy and healthy, and stay safe!

Michael Brown in Lab Coat with arms crossed

Michael J. Brown, RPh, BCPS, BCPP

Mr. Brown is a Clinical Pharmacist specializing in pharmacotherapy and psychiatry.

Read Michael’s story here.

Feel free to send Michael a message using this link.

 

 

Disclosure:  This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you click on, or make a purchase through a third-party link.

Gingersnap Espresso Scones

Gingersnap Espresso Scones

Disclosure:  This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you click on, or make a purchase through a third-party link.

My stepdaughter always requests these scones when she comes home from college. My wife loves them too. They are perfect when paired with a hot cup of premium coffee. These scones are easy to make and only need to bake for 15 minutes. I made this batch in about 45 minutes. I know you will enjoy these.

Initial Ingredients for Gingersnap Espresso Scones


300x250 Silver Cuisine with AARP Members

For those of you who have been following my blog, you already know the first step in all of my recipes. I always set out all needed ingredients prior to beginning to prepare the recipe. This serves two purposes. First, I can take a picture for my readers to see. I also don’t have to worry about getting halfway through the recipe only to discover I am missing an ingredient. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

I have a mini food processor I use for small jobs. For this recipe, I use six ginger snap cookies. Crush the cookies as shown above.

First six ingredients mixed

Mix the first six ingredients together. These include the cookie crumbs, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Cut the butter into small cubes. Add the cubes to the dry ingredients and cut the butter in using a pastry blender or two knives. The mixture should resemble a coarse meal when done.

After the butter is cut in, add the egg and buttermilk and stir until dough is just combined. The dough will be sticky.

Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough a few times and pat into a 10-inch circle as shown. Place on a cookie sheet coated with cooking spray. Cut dough into wedges. Do not cut all the way through. I cut this into seven wedges because my family likes bigger pieces, but ten wedges would be a good size for most. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Scones right out of the oven

This is what the scones will look like when removed from the oven. Let the scones cool for about 15 minutes. Prepare the glaze.

Prepare glaze by mixing the coffee granules with one tablespoonful of hot water. Add powdered sugar and mix well. Drizzle glaze over the scones.

Gingersnap Espresso Scones

Yummy scones that pair well with coffee

Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins

Course Breakfast

Servings 10

Equipment

  • mini food processor
  • baking sheet
  • mixing bowl
  • Wooden Spoon
  • small spoon

Ingredients

  

  • 6 Gingersnap cookies (crushed)
  • 1-3/4 cups Flour
  • 1/4 cup Granulated sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 cup Chilled butter cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Egg
  • cooking spray
  • 1 tbsp Hot water
  • 1-1/2 tsp Instant coffee granules
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

 

  • Grind Gingersnap cookies.
  • Mix ground cookies, flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Cube butter and cut into the dry mixture until it resembles a coarse meal.
  • Add egg and buttermilk and stir.
  • Mix until just combined.
  • Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead a few times. Form dough into a 10-inch round. Cut into 7-10 wedges but do not cut all the way through the dough. Bake in a 400-degree oven for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool for about 15 minutes before glazing.
  • Prepare glaze by mixing coffee granules with water. Add powdered sugar and mix well.
  • Drizzle glaze over scones

Keyword scones

Michael J. Brown RPh, BCPS, BCPP – Clinical Pharmacist

Owner – Sunshine Nutraceuticals LLC.

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

Disclosure:  This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you click on, or make a purchase through a third-party link.


Initial Ingredients for the white chocolate raspberry cheesecake

White chocolate raspberry cheesecake is one of my favorite sinful indulgences. I try not to go overboard but for Thanksgiving this year I decided to make one. Above you will see all the ingredients pictured that you will need for this. The cheesecake takes some work, but it is well worth it. I have made many cheesecakes and will share some of my secrets with you as I go through the recipe.

Pans needed for the water bath to cook the cheesecake

The first secret is pictured above. I use a water bath to cook the cheesecake. As you can see from the picture, the springform pan fits into the roasting pan. This helps keep the cheesecake from splitting. I have tried several methods, and this works the best. As you will see later, I also place the cheesecake into a turkey-sized oven bag before placing it into the water bath. The keeps water from getting into the cheesecake.

oreo crust crumbs

The first step is to make the crust. This is super simple. I use double-stuff Oreos for my crust. I used 22 cookies. Pulse the cookies in a food processor as shown above. I then melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the microwave. Add the melted butter to the cookie crumbs and mix with the food processor.

Crust ready for the freezer

Pour the cookie crumbs into a springform pan and press them into the bottom as evenly as possible as shown above. Place the pan and crust into the freezer while you prepare the filling.

In a food processor or mixer, add the cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla, and lemon juice and blend for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix for another 10 seconds.

Add eggs one at a time and blend just to incorporate after each egg. Do not over mix.

Add 2 inches of water to a saucepan. Place a metal bowl with a lip into the saucepan as shown above to create a double boiler. Turn on low heat to melt the white chocolate chips. Be sure to continuously stir the chips until they are completely melted.

Add the sour cream to the melted white chocolate to cool the chocolate down before mixing it into the batter. Add the sour cream mixture and raspberries to the batter and mix until blended.

Cheesecake in turkey bag ready to bake

Place the cheesecake in the turkey bag as shown above. Add 3 to 4 inches of water to the large roasting pan. I pre-heat the oven with the roasting pan and water. When the oven reaches 400 degrees, add the cheesecake to the water bath. Be very careful when doing this, the water will be hot. Cook the cheesecake at 400 degrees for ten minutes. Turn the oven down to 350 degrees and cook for another 55 minutes.

baked cheesecake

Take the cheesecake out of the water bath and remove the turkey bag. Let the cheesecake cool before covering it with plastic wrap and placing it into the refrigerator to cool. I prefer to refrigerate the cheesecake overnight.

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

A sinfully delicious dessert the whole family will love.
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Total Time 1 hr 50 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 10
Calories 682 kcal

Equipment

  • 10" X 3" Springform Pan
  • Reynolds Kitchens Oven Bag – Turkey Size
  • Food processor or large mixer
  • Large Roasting Pan for Water Bath
  • Measuring Cups
  • large saucepan
  • metal bowl with lip for a double boiler
  • Wooden Spoon
  • rubber spatula

Ingredients
  

  • 4 eggs
  • 3 pkgs Cream Cheese 8 oz.
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 11 oz white chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups sour cream
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries

Instructions
 

  • Set out all equipment and ingredients to be sure you have everything needed. This is always a good idea to prevent a bad surprise during the cooking process. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • For best results, use a hot water bath to cook the cheesecake. I use a large roasting pan, a springform pan and Reynolds turkey bags to keep water out of the cheesecake. I have found this to be the best process to keep the cheesecake from cracking. Add 3-4 inches of water to the roasting pan and place it in the oven while the oven is pre-heating. You can add more water after placing the cheesecake into the bath if necessary.
  • In a food processor, pulse the Oreo cookies into crumbs. Add 2 tablespoons melted butter and mix until incorporated.
  • Press crumbs into a springform pan evenly as shown. Place pan in the freezer while preparing the filling.
  • Add cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla, and lemon juice to a food processor fitted with a metal blade and mix until blended. Scrape sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.
  • When well mixed as shown, add eggs one at a time, and mix just until incorporated. Do not overmix.
  • This is how the filling should look after the addition of the 4 eggs.
  • Set up a double boiler. I use a large saucepan with 2 inches of water. and a metal bowl with a lip that fits the saucepan. See picture.
  • Place the metal bowl into the saucepan, add the chocolate chips, and stir constantly. Use low heat to slowly heat the water.
  • When the chocolate is completely melted, stir in the sour cream (I do this to cool the chocolate and add the mixture to the filling. Add the raspberries and mix until incorporated. It is important to not over mix!
  • The final filling should look like the picture.
  • Pour the filling into the springform pan containing the cooled crust. Carefully place the pan into a Reynolds turkey bag as shown. Open preheated oven and place wrapped pan into the water bath. Be sure the bag is folded up so water can not get into it. Be very careful not to burn yourself during this step. The oven, water bath, and pan will be VERY hot. Cook at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn the oven down to 350 degrees and cook for another 55 minutes. The cheesecake should jiggle just a little when moving.
  • Carefully remove the cheesecake from the water bath and turkey bag. Turn oven off and let the water cool before removing it to prevent and accidental burn. The cheesecake will look like the picture. Let the cheesecake cool on the counter for about an hour. Place plastic wrap over the cheesecake and refrigerate overnight.
Keyword cheesecake, white chocolate raspberry cheesecake

I hope you enjoy one of my favorite desserts. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Michael J. Brown, RPh, BCPP, BCPS
Clinical Pharmacist
Owner – Sunshine Nutraceuticals LLC.

Are Rasberry Ketones Safe While Pregnant Or Breastfeeding? Do They Work For Weight Loss? Are There Side Effects?

Disclosure:  This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you click on, or make a purchase through a third-party link.

What can I use raspberry ketone for?

Is raspberry ketone safe while pregnant or breastfeeding?

Is a raspberry ketone supplement right for me?

Raspberry ketone is the compound found in the red raspberry responsible for its distinctive odor. This substance is often used as a flavoring agent in the food industry.

 1

Raspberry ketone is a popular weight loss supplement. This substance has also has been used to promote hair growth and improve the elasticity of the skin.

This post will take a closer look at this unique substance and the data to support its use. Raspberry ketone is available at our Sunshine Store in both capsule and liquid form.

Raspberry Ketones for Weight Loss and Obesity

Raspberry ketone helps to regulate adiponectin in the body. Adiponectin is a protein specific to adipocytes (cells that store fat). Adiponectin is thought to affect both insulin resistance and atherosclerosis.

 Raspberry ketone helps to burn fat by breaking it up more efficiently within these specialized cells. 

Higher levels of adiponectin are found in people with healthy weight. As overweight individuals lose weight, adiponectin levels increase.

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After four weeks of supplementation with raspberry ketone, Ushiki et al. were able to show a significant loss of both body weight and body fat. Arteriosclerosis index scores and triglyceride levels were also suppressed.

 4

 

The data mentioned above is from three small studies. There are many success stories on the internet for individuals claiming raspberry ketone has helped them lose weight. 

I am currently in the middle of the Whole 30 diet, so am unable to test the product at this time. I plan to try my supplement in both forms to see if it indeed curbs my appetite.

 More research needs to be conducted to determine the optimum dose, potential side effects, and effectiveness of raspberry ketone supplements in helping with weight loss. 

 

Raspberry Ketones for Hair Loss and Skin Rejuvenation

Raspberry ketone may be useful in treating alopecia (hair loss).

A small study was conducted by Harada et al. in 2008. This study had many limitations, including a small sample size (N=10).

After five months of daily treatment with topical 0.01% raspberry ketone cream, 50% of the subjects showed increased hair growth.


This same study also looked at the effects of raspberry ketones on skin elasticity.

The study was performed on ten healthy females. The researchers concluded the topical raspberry ketone increased cheek skin elasticity.

 5

Raspberry ketone works by promoting the release of insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1) in the scalp. This helps to create new hair cells and increase hair count.

Raspberry Ketone Use During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Although the FDA categorizes raspberry ketone as “Generally Recognized as Safe” when used as a food additive, there is insufficient evidence to determine whether this substance is a safe supplement for weight loss in individuals who are pregnant or breastfeeding. I would suggest not using raspberry ketone if you fit into either of these categories.

Raspberry Ketone Side Effects

More studies need to be conducted to determine the incidence of various side effects that may be caused by raspberry ketone. I have listed a few adverse effects reported by users of this substance below:

  • Increased blood pressure and heart rate.
  • Nausea.
  • feeling jittery.
  • Decreased blood sugar levels.
Michael Brown pictured with Final Thought written

After researching raspberry ketone, I believe this supplement can work for some people.  I would prefer to see more research on its effect on weight loss.  I do not think this supplement is harmful, but would definitely not recommend it to a woman who was pregnant or breastfeeding. I feel the risk outweigh the benefit in this circumstance. 


Overall I have been impressed with the positive information I have learned while researching my supplements. I plan to keep the raspberry ketone in my store as I believe it may benefit some of my readers. 

My product also contains African Mango, which has positive effects on obesity and diabetes.


I would love to hear feedback from anyone who has used this product. I may even add your story to this post!

Michael Brown in Lab Coat with arms crossed

Michael J. Brown, RPh, BCPS, BCPP

Mr. Brown is a Clinical Pharmacist specializing in pharmacotherapy and psychiatry.

Read Michael’s story here.

Feel free to send Michael a message using this link.