Coleus is easily identified by its bright colors, for which it is popular as an attractive garden plant. Being a member of the mint family, it's no surprise that it's considered an invasive species in many parts of the world.
Medicinally, coleus is useful for cardiovascular disease, including hypertension, thrombosis, and angina. Much of its medicinaly ability comes from a constituent known as forskolin, which has been well documented to increase cyclic-AMP. This activity also makes it useful as a nootropic compound where it has seen an increase in popularity in recent years.
Main Herbal Actions:
- Increases cAMP
- Digestive stimulant
- Thyroid enhancer
- Weight loss supportive
Additional usage (not well studied):
One of the lesser studied, but interesting suggested uses of forskolin in particular is as a protectant agains organophosphate and neurotoxic chemical warefare. Particularily cholinergic substances like Serin gas.
Coleus is a part of the mint family, which has roughly 8000 species. It has characteristic brightly colored leaves, but can also have more modest green leaves as well.
Level Of Research:
Clinical Applications Of Coleus:
Coleus is still in need of some quality research for the conditions it is recommended for, however, in the realm of cardiovascular idsease, forskolin extracts have proven to yield good results. Currently the best use of this herb is in the concentrated extract in a formula along with other ingredients. It is also showing some usefulness as an ingredient in nootropic formulas for its ability to increase cAMP.
Avoid use with hypotention.