Monday, 23 February 2015

The Health Benefits of Holy Basil

Holy Basil
Photo Credit- Wikimedia Commons by Sengai Podhuvan

Holy basil or ocimum is the most sacred plant for the Hindus and its leaves and flowers are used in religious ceremonies, prayers and rites. It is a very important plant in Indian Ayurveda system of Medicines since ages. It has the power to cure several ailments including the incurable diseases. Every part of the plant is full of energy giving elements. The incense coming out of the plant purifies the atmosphere, cleans the air and removes the bad odour from the edible things.

It is used for cough, respiratory problems, hiccups, mouth ulcers, asthma, fever, urinary inflammation together with blood and heart related several problems. It has wonderful effects in head, throat nose and eye diseases.

It helps in swine flu and the intake of 20-25 leaves of basil in empty stomach increases the immune system of the body. The intake of basil for 3 months is beneficial in cough, cold, fever, malaria, kala azar or black fever or dumdum fever, flu, respiratory problems, asthma, chronic headache, eye sore, heart problems,  high and low blood pressure, obesity, diarrhea, acidity, constipation, gastric, loss of appetite, proper functioning or kidneys, toothache, white spots on skin etc.
Basil has antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties. The intake of the leaves of basil helps in arthritis, allergy, malignoma, diabetes, viral infections etc. 
The basil oil has rich amounts of vitamin C, carotene, calcium and phosphorus in it. 

The intake of the leaves of basil is also beneficial in arthritis, weakness related to old age, health problems caused by the deficiency of vitamin A and vitamin C, skin problems, facial wrinkles, feet blisters, several health disorders in women, khasra or measles, swelling, skin inflammation and itching, pimples, sunstroke, tapeworms, nausea, premature or sleep ejaculation, fainting and several diseases of women and children.

We can get several benefits from basil by knowing about its properties and the different methods in which it is used.

This herb known as tulsi is grown in every Indian household. It comes in a few varieties with slight differences in color and appearance of leaves. All varieties are of medicinal value in Ayurveda.

Basil purifies the environment and destroys the disease causing bacteria present in the air. A person eating 5 leaves of basil everyday remains free from being afflicted with several diseases.The intake of a leaf of basil everyday helps in chronic fever.
Here is a list of beneficial effects of basil.

1. Cough, Cold, Flu and Fever
The leaves are powerful antioxidants and improve the immunity and are used in cough and cold. The white basil is very effective to cure cough, cold among children. In cough the basil is used with the powder of black pepper. The green leaves of basil are taken with black pepper, dry ginger and honey in cough, flu and fever. The leaves are powerful antioxidants and improve the immunity and are used in cough and cold.
The chewing of the leaves of basil helps in cough and cold.
The intake of the juice of the leaves of basil with water after every 2-3 hours brings down the fever. 
Take the tea of basil leaves in cold, cough and headache. Chewing the leaves of basil helps in cough too.

2. Skin Diseases
The mixture of the juice of green leaves of basil and little lemon is applied on skin to get relief in several skin diseases. The paste of green leaves of basil is applied on pimples and abscesses. The intake of the leaves of basil helps in health and beauty.

3. Memory
The regular intake of the juice of green leaves of basil increases the memory and improves the functions of the brain.

4. Labor Pains and Menstruation
The intake of the juice of green leaves alleviates labor pains.
The intake of the powder of the roots of basil with katha or catechu or an extract of acacia trees put into betel leaves, stops unnecessary bleeding during menstruation.

5. Insect Bites
The powder of roots of basil is applied on the insect bitten area to get instant relief.
The leaves, flowers and roots act as anti venom in case of snake and Scorpion bites. 

6. Ear Pain
Take some slightly warn juice of basil leaves is put into the ears during ear pains.

7. Blood Cleaning
The chewing of few leaves of basil cleans the blood.

8. Swelling of Throat
The seeds of basil are taken with brown sugar to get relief in throat swelling.

9. Indigestion
The juice of green leaves of basil with equal amount of ginger juice is taken in stomach pain. It helps in indigestion too. 

10. Revitalize 
The intake of the seeds of basil with milk increases the masculine strength and sperm counts in the body. It revitalizes and increases the energy and memory.

11. Malaria
The intake of the juice of basil leaves alleviates the effect of malaria.  The mixture of black pepper, basil and lemon is very effective in malaria in traditional medicines as an antimalarial remedy.

12. Stress
The juice of basil soothes and has a calming effect. It is good for lethargy too

13. Kidneys
The mixture of the juice of basil and honey is good for the proper functioning of kidneys. 

14. Cancer and AIDS
Basil is a medicinal plant. It is being tested as a cure for cancer and AIDS in America. It has been found to be effective in radiation burns. 

15. Insect Repellent
The strong and pleasant scent of the plant repels most of the household and garden insects and can even prevent the snakes from entering the garden.

16. Asthma
The odour of basil saves from several respiratory disorders. Sitting near the plants of basil everyday helps in asthma and respiratory disorders. It helps in asthma and tuberculosis. 

17. Immunity
It increases the immune system and acts as a medicine. It has several properties due to which it cures several complex diseases and prevents their occurrence. It boosts the immunity due to the presence of antibodies in it. 

18. Basil for Toothache
Make a powder of the leaves of basil with black pepper and put in in the mouth to get relief in pain.
The massage ash of the burnt branches on teeth gives relief in tooth ache.

19. Basil for Eyes
Put the drops of the juice of basil leaves in the eyes.          

20. Basil for Headache
Apply the paste of the leaves of basil on head to get relief in headache.
21. Digestion
It helps in the proper functioning of the digestive system.

22. Diabetes
It is beneficial for the patients of diabetes. The regular intake of basil leaves in the morning in empty stomach helps to alleviate the effects of diabetes and purifies the blood.

23. Breastfeeding and Childbirth
The leaves should be kept soaked in water overnight and taken in the morning in crushed form with sugar to help in breast feeding.  Another method is to take a tablespoon each of the juice of the green leaves of basil and corn with equal amount of the juice of withania somnifera ashwagandha and honey.
The intake of basil strengthens the uterus after childbirth.


The intake of basil can have both the beneficial and adverse effects on health. So it is advisable to take basil in moderate amount. The excess intake of the leaves of basil is harmful. It has warm or hot effects and should be taken with curd or buttermilk to balance the effects. The intake of 10-12 leaves of basil a day is enough. It is a boon for the women but they should not take more than 5-6 leaves of basil a day. Basil should not be taken in pregnancy. The boiled extract of the leaves alleviates the pains during child birth and breast feeding. 
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