Basil: An Herb with Incomparable Benefits

Basil has been known to be an ancient native to India and many other Asian and African countries. Basil has long been used as a sacred and noble herb. In fact, the word “basil” comes from the ancient Greek “basilikon” which means “royal”.

Today, Ocimum basilicum (the scientific name for basil) grows in many places around the world. Many people even grow basil in their kitchen garden. This fragrant herb is used as a seasoning in a variety of dishes and plays a key role in Italian and Thai cuisine.

Skin benefits from basil

  • Blackheads and Pimples

Basil contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities that treat blackheads and acne. It removes dust from your face and naturally washes your face. Make this herb into a face wash by cutting some leaves of basil. Add some turmeric to the basil juice. Blend well and use it as a mask. Then rub your face with ice.

  • Gets rid of scars

Basil can be used to lighten scars. With the help of basil leaves, bruises and acne scars can be healed. Make a paste by heating some chopped basil leaves and mix in one teaspoon of honey and a lemon in a bowl. Use it as a face mask. Let it sit on your face for 15-20 minutes and wash it off with cold water.

  • Improves Skin Health

Basil leaves are full of antioxidant properties that make your skin shine and nourish the body. Take some fresh basil leaves and crush them smooth. Mix this juice with one tablespoon of glycerin. Use it to gently massage your face twice every day.

  • Fights Skin Infection

Basil has strong antibacterial properties that can prevent stubborn skin infections like ringworms and eczema. Take some basil leaves and squeeze them into a paste and mix half a cup of yoghurt into it. Apply it on the affected areas to get relief from Ringworms and Eczema.

Basil for Hair Problems

Apart from skin, basil is an amazing natural remedy for hair too. When chronic hair problems give you sleepless nights, this simple herb may work as a surefire cure.

  • Dandruff Basil is a natural anti-inflammatory agent that soothes dry itchy scalp and all other associated issues like dandruff, infections, etc. As a result, the scalp becomes healthy.
  • Hair Fall If you suffer from excessive hair fall, basil may reduce it to a great extent. It strengthens hair roots and delivers nourishment to the hair fibers so that you do not lose them so frequently.
  • Hair Growth The lightweight and refreshing basil oil is known to stimulate hair follicles by boosting blood circulation throughout the scalp. Hence, massaging the scalp with it may promote the growth of new and healthy hair significantly.
  • Gray Hair Basil also helps in combating premature graying of hair. It makes gray hair comparatively darker while enhancing the overall texture and volume of your locks.

Basil for Stress & Anxiety Management

All parts of the holy basil plant act as an adaptogen. An adaptogen is a natural substance that helps your body adapt to stress and promote mental balance.

The concept of an adaptogen is a holistic approach. But scientific research shows that holy basil has pharmacological properties to help your mind cope with many types of stress.

The source of your stress can be:

  • Chemical
  • Physical
  • Infectious
  • Emotional

In the case of physical stress, holy basil is known to increase endurance in animals. Animals who had holy basil leaf extracts and went through environment-induced stress scenarios showed:

  • Enhanced metabolism
  • Improved swimming time
  • Less tissue damage
  • Lower stress levels in loud environments

Human and animal studies saw reduced:

  • Stress management
  • Sexual problems
  • Sleep issues
  • Forgetfulness
  • Exhaustion

According to the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, holy basil has antidepressant and anti-anxiety properties comparable to diazepam and antidepressant drugs. These studies have examined the leaves.

One study found that people who took 500 milligrams (mg) of holy basil extract each day felt less anxious, stressed, and depressed. People also felt more social.

Ayurvedic practitioners recommend drinking holy basil as tea using the leaves. And since it’s caffeine-free, it’s OK and even recommended to drink daily. The act of drinking tea can be ritualistic and as calming as yoga. It fosters clear thoughts, relaxation, and a sense of well-being.

But if the basil’s bitter and spicy flavor isn’t your cup of tea, a supplement in pill form or as an alcohol extract is available. There’s less risk of contamination when taking an herb in its natural form.

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