Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica synonyms Hydrocotyle asiatica L. and Trisanthus cochinchinensis) is native to India, Sri Lanka, Northern Australia, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Melanesia, Papua New Guinea, and other parts of Asia.
It is also known as Asiatic Pennywort, Indian Pennywort, Luei Gong Gen, Takip-kohol, Antanan, Pegagan, Pegaga, vallaarai, Kula kud, Bai Bua Bok, Brahmi, rau má, Manimuni, Saraswathi Plant, & Ondelaga. In china it is called Lei Gong Gen
It is used as a medicinal herb in Ayurvedic medicine, traditional African medicine, and traditional Chinese medicine.
Traditional Uses of Gotu Kola:-
Gotu Kola is a mild adaptogen, it is mildly antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcerogenic, anxiolytic, a cerebral tonic, a circulatory stimulant, a diuretic, nervine and vulnerary.
The isolated steroids have, in the past, been used to treat leprosy. In addition, preliminary evidence suggests that it may have nootropic effects. It is now used to help increase attention span and concentration and through some folkelore to combat ageing. It has has anti-oxidant properties and is used for de-toxification.
Constituents of Gotu Kola:-
It has large amounts of pentacyclic Triterpenoids which include Asiaticoside, Brahmoside, Asiatic Acid and Brahmic Acid (madecassic acid). Other constituents include Centellose, Centelloside and Madecassoside.
Culinary Uses of Fresh Gotu Kola:-
In Indonesia, the leaves are used for sambai oi peuga-ga, an Aceh type of salad
In Thailand Vietnam and Laos, the leaf is used for preparing a drink or can be eaten in raw form in salads It is famously used in roadside vendor drinks alongside coconut, roselle and chrysanthemum health drinks.
In Malaysia the leaves are used for Ulam a type of Malay salad.
It is one of the constituents of the Indian summer drink thandaayyee.
In Bangladesh mashed centella is eaten with rice.