It was used to heal wounds, improve mental clarity, and treat skin conditions such as leprosy and psoriasis.
Some people use it to treat respiratory infections, such as colds, and in the past it was used for that in China. It has been called “the fountain of life” because legend has it that an ancient Chinese herbalist lived for more than 200 years as a result of taking Gotu Kola.
It has also been used to treat syphilis, hepatitis, stomach ulcers, mental fatigue, epilepsy, diarrhoea, fever, and asthma. Today, in the U.S. and Europe Gotu Kola is commonly used to treat varicose veins.
Gotu kola has been shown to:
- increase the strength of the dermis and increased keratinisation (healing) of the epidermis of the skin
- stimulate blood vessel growth into connective tissue
- increase antioxidant and collagen concentration in wounds and stimulate wound healing
- enhance production of mucin, hyaluronic acid, and chondroitin sulfate, all required for connective tissue, skin, hair, nail and joint repair and growth
- exhibit anti-anxiety activity and enhance mental function
- have anti-inflammatory activity
This is why it is a valuable herb in conditions like psoriasis.