The health benefits and uses of Basil Leaves
1. Basil is a common herb which is used to flavour to delicious meals. This has been used for over 5000 years in India and China and has some wonderful health benefits for the human body.
2. Basil leaves contain phytochemicals which help to prevent cancerous cells in the body. It can also slow down the growth of tumours.
3. The leaves are often mashed to make delicious basil pesto. This can be used as a healthy dip or added to salads, pasta or as a pizza topping.
4. They have a calming effect on the stomach and help the body to digest foods. Basil is a staple in Italian cuisine.
5. In Ayurveda, holy basil (also known as Tulsi) is considered to be an “elixir of life”. It works as an aphrodisiac to boost libido and arousal in both men and women.
6. Basil leaves help to balance the Ph levels of the body and improve digestion. It can reduce stomach cramps, acid reflux and destroys harmful parasites such as stomach worms.
7. They are rich in antioxidants which destroy harmful free radicals in the body. Free radicals cause damage to our DNA, so it’s important to eat foods rich in antioxidants.
8. Extracts from the leaves are used to make basil essential oil. This contains concentrated nutrients and can be used in oil burners to improve breathing and reduce brain fog.
9. Basil oil can be added to homemade healthy sauces to protect the body from viruses, bacterial infections and an overgrowth of candida.
10. Studies have also shown that basil leaves can help to protect the body from diabetes, as they reduce inflammation and blood sugar levels.
11. You can make a herbal, basil tea by steeping a few leaves in hot water for 2 minutes and then drinking. It has a strong flavour and often smells sweet.
12. When you consume basil in fresh, dried, tea or oil form it helps the body to produce detoxifying enzymes. These reduce a build-up of fat in the liver to protect your body against liver disease.
13. Basil oil can be applied to the skin as a cooling agent in the summer. Simply massage a few drops into the temples and enjoy the cooling, relaxing effects.
14. Basil contains Vitamin K which helps the body to prevent heart disease. It does this by preventing the arteries from becoming calcified.
15. It also contains Vitamin A which boosts the health of the eyes, especially with age.
16. These nutrients along with vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and omega 3 fatty acids all work together to strengthen the bones, boost immunity, reduce acne, skin irritation and more.
17. The Amish use basil leaves to alleviate coughing and colds by simply chewing the fresh leaves, or drinking basil tea.
18. Basil leaf tea may also be added to a hot bath to soothe aching muscles and trigger relaxation.
19. A few drops of basil essential oil can be applied into the ears to treat ear infections. It destroys harmful bacteria within the ear canal.