Basil is far more than a burst of tantalizing flavor for which it is known in the culinary world and community of those acclaimed chefs.
Basil, originally grown in Asia and the Middle East is well known in Ayurvedic medicine, an ancient Indian system of health maintenance and natural healing. It was used to manage or prolong the aging process but also as a remedy for diabetes, digestive disorders, skin problems, infections and bug bites including snake bite.
There are well over 100 known varieties of basil all contain the same unique healthy phytonutrients and anti-oxidants(orientin and vicenin). The concentrated compounds that provide the distinct smell or fragrance are eugenol and apigemen which are volatile oils. Some of these compounds are anti-oxidants which protect the body against free radicals that can be damaging.
Medically, basil is documented for its anti-inflammatory properties. It is similar to the compounds found in oregano, thyme and medical marijuana, it may be substituted since it provides the same relief without the “high”. Laboratory studies in India have found that the antioxidant activity in basil has the potential to block or suppress liver, stomach, lung and skin cancer especially melanoma.
More specific, basil can kill or disrupt the bacteria that causes acne in the skin which makes it suitable for skincare formulations. The most favorable of the basils for skincare preparations would include Thai, sweet or Holy basil.
Basil is high in vitamin A which can play an important role in eye health. Soaked basil leaves can relax or sooth the eyes as well as prevent infections and swelling. Basil leaf juice is an effective remedy for sore eyes and night blindness.
Basil can be used in food and teas for it’s calming effects. Other uses of basil may include dental care, bad breath, relief of headaches, respiratory issues, even relief of kidney stones from the urinary tract.
Personally, I enjoy fresh basil leaves not only in my tea and it’s outstanding in iced tea. Try a few fresh leaves in your bath while soaking before bed, the fragrance will help to rest you mind while calming the whole body.
Wow ~ sleep better?? Try it!