Herbs have the power to make powerful shifts in our lives physically and mentally. A healthy and well-functioning mind is an essential pillar of Ayurveda. There are a variety of Ayurvedic herbs that are highly effective in boosting concentration, memory, and cognitive function. Here are some of our favorites.
Brahmi or Gotu Kola is considered a brain tonic in Ayurveda and is highly effective in improving memory, intellect, and concentration. Brahmi is also considered an adaptogen and is deeply soothing for the nervous system, helping to promote a positive mental state and emotional well-being. It effectively soothes excess Pitta and Vata, although it can aggravate Vata in excess. Brahmi can be consumed as a fresh juice or powder or capsule form. Start with a tsp in hot water or almond milk, or explore capsule options.
Shankhapushpi is a potent herb for supporting mental well-being and tranquility. Having a calm and positive mind plays a huge role in our ability to concentrate. The flowers of Shankhpushpi help restore a clear and balanced mind and combine beautifully with Brahmi and licorice to improve focus and cognitive function. Shankhapushpi is typically consumed in powder or capsule form, and you can consume up to 6 grams daily to see considerable benefits.
Calamus root is an herb that traditionally is highly esteemed by Yogis, used to enhance their practice and connect to a deeper level of consciousness. Historically, Calamus was used to promote a healthy brain, sharpen memory, enhance awareness, and increase communication. Calamus cannot be consumed internally in the United States; however, it can be used topically, either as a dry powder, paste, or an herbalized oil to warm the body and pacify the mind.
In recent years, Ashwagandha has become well known for its powerful effects on mental and emotional well-being. Ashwagandha, or Withania Somnifera, is a powerful adaptogen and mental rejuvenator. It is an incredibly grounding herb, helping to improve focus, memory and strengthen the nervous system. The root of Ashwagandha is the part of the plant consumed, and the powder is often mixed into beverages combined with other herbs.
It can also be taken as a supplement. It is a deeply rejuvenating herb and is a great option to pacify excess Vata. Ashwagandha is a slow-acting herb, so it is important to take an appropriate amount daily to see adequate results over time.
Herbal Tonic for Focus
- 1 cup hot water
- ½ cup plant-based milk
- 1 tsp Brahmi powder
- 1 tsp Ashwagandha powder
- ⅛ tsp cinnamon
- Sprinkle of cardamom
- 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
- Bring water to a boil. Pour it into a mug and add room temperature plant-based milk.
- Add your Brahmi, Ashwagandha, cinnamon, cardamom, and mix together thoroughly.
- Add your sweetener of choice and stir. Top with extra cinnamon if desired and serve warm.
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