Holy Basil – A Heavenly Herb
Hindus regard Tulsi (Holy Basil) a sacred plant. It is found almost in every Indian household. It is also known as Vrinda, a Goddess and a consort of Lord Vishnu.
Three types of tulsi are commonly described:
Rama – It is a green-leaf variety with a clove-like character.
Krishna -- This type of tulsi has purplish leaves and it has peppery taste.
Vana -- It has dark green leaves and its fragrance is lemony.
Basil is not only considered sacred but it has many medicinal qualities also. Holy Basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum) is native to south east Asia. In India basil has a history of treatment for many ailments since time immemorial. Not only this it has a high nutritional value. It contains:
Vitamin A and C
Basil or Tulsi is called ‘Queen of All Herbs’. It is used to cure many diseases.
Health Benefits of Basil:
Reduces Stress and Anxiety: Holy Basil has qualities of reducing stress and anxiety. It is said to increase endurance, thus helps in coping with stress and anxiety more effectively.
Prevents against Cancer: Basil protects human body against toxic chemicals. It also prevents cancer by reducing the growth of carcinogenic cells.
Protect Wounds against Infections and Treats them: Extracts made from tulsi leaves boost healing of wounds. Holy basil is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and painkiller. Holy basil helps in the speedy healing of wounds. Tulsi or holy basil is also very effective against—Mouth ulcers
Lowers Blood Sugar: Holy basil can help in type –II diabetes. Trials have shown that basil can help symptoms of diabetes such as –Weight gain
Excess of insulin in blood
Resistance against insulin
High blood pressure
Lowers Cholesterol: Taking holy basil can help in the reduction of total cholesterol in the kidney, liver and heart.
Eases Joint Pain: Holy basil has anti-inflammatory properties. It can help people suffering from arthritis or fibromyalgia.
Protects Stomach: Holy basil can help counteract the effects of stress-induced ulcers. It has following benefits:It decreases acid.
It extends life of mucus cells.
It increases mucus cells and also increases mucus secretion.
Supports Liver Health: Holy Basil has in it antioxidants. It is very good for liver health. It plays a major role in Indian traditional medicine for diseases related to liver.
Protects against Skin Aging: Studies show that it has properties that might help protect the skin from the effects of aging. Consuming basil may not prove beneficial against the aging, while its extract applied on the skin may improve skin hydration and reduce roughness and wrinkling.
Improves Cardiovascular Health: It has been found that holy basil improves cardiovascular health. It reduces high blood pressure and reduces cholesterol.
Protects against Diseases Caused by Mosquitoes: Daily consumption of basil helps in protecting against diseases caused by mosquitoes. It is a good ant repellant and thus it helps in preventing from many diseases caused by ants and other insects.
Holy basil has many health benefits other than mentioned above in the list. It is called ‘Queen of Herbs’. In Hindu mythology it is considered sacred or we can say it is considered a heavenly herb. Truly it is heavenly not only for Hindus but for the people of all communities since it is beneficial in so many diseases.