Basil - "King of Herbs"
Basil is an aromatic herb and is considered as one of the healthiest herbs. It has immense medicinal properties. There are around 35 different types of basil and out of which Holy Basil is the most known for its healing properties. It is known as “king of herbs”. In India, Holy basil is known as tulsi and is considered a sacred herb. It is extremely low in calories, has zero cholesterol and fats. It has vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin B12, potassium, manganese, calcium and fiber.
Why should you consume basil leaves?
- Antioxidants found in basil leaves have the ability to fight against the free radicals and thus protects the DNA and the cells from its damage. It is rich in two important water soluble flavonoids known as viceninare and orientin. These antioxidants imparts protection to white blood cells and also protects the cells and thus the DNA. antioxidants also slows down aging.
- Eugenol, citronellol and linalool are essential oils which are found in basil leaves. These oils have anti-inflammatory property and thus help in reducing the inflammation and treating diseases like that of heart, joints and digestive system.
- The phytochemicals and antioxidants prevents various forms of cancer like skin, lungs, liver and oral cancer. It induces apoptosis of the cancerous cells. It reduces the side effects of the chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
- Being antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal in nature, it inhibits the growth of bacteria, yeasts, mold and viruses. It also protects against the candida virus.
- It is excellent for combating stress and depression. It makes the person happy and energetic.
- It strengthens heart muscles and also regulates the blood pressure. It prevents the formation of blood clots inside the blood vessel. Being anti-inflammatory in nature, it reduces the inflammation by inhibiting the release of cytokines which are pro-inflammatory.
- Due to its antioxidant property and the enzymes found in the basil, it helps in detoxification of the body.
- It is extremely beneficial for digestive health as it maintains the normal pH level and also ensures a proper gut microflora. It is helpful in reducing the abdominal cramps, bloating, acid reflux and water retention.
- It acts as a natural aphrodisiac.
- It is effective in lowering the blood sugar levels and thus prevents diabetes.
- It is an excellent antibiotic, germicidal, fungicidal and disinfectant and thus helps in treating fever as fever itself is not an ailment but is caused due to some infection.
- It provides relief from congestion, treats respiratory disorders like bronchitis, asthma and thus makes breathing much easier. It is effective in curing almost all the infections in the lungs. It can easily heal the lungs from the damage caused due to smoking and thus prevents lung cancer.
- It is used as a mouth freshener and being a disinfectant it treats many oral infections. It prevents ulcers and also heals the cells and tissues which have been damaged due to chewing of tobacco.
- It prevents dental plaque, bad breath and cavities.
- It is a mild diuretic and therefore increases urination and reduces the level of the uric acid in the body. This prevents formation of kidney stones. And if someone already has kidney stones, it helps in dissolution of the stones and also relieves from the pain which might be caused due to the presence of stones.
- It works wonders for skin. Being an amazing coolant, it gives a soothing effect to the skin and cures the skin both internally and externally.
- It relieves of headache caused due to migraine or sinus pressure as it is analgesic and sedative in nature.
- It treats conjunctivitis, boils and other eye disorders. It helps in the elimination of free radicals if consumed daily thus, preventing from cataract, vision disorder and macular degeneration.
- There are other numerous health benefits of basil leaves and these includes faster healing of wounds, curing cold & cough, reduces labor pain, destroys rabies germs, treats gastroenteritis, cholera, measles, mumps, nausea, septic, whooping cough, urinary and genital infections.