As part of the mint family of herbs (which also includes rosemary and oregano), Basil is one of the most beneficial in promoting health. It also adds the most incredible flavor to many recipes and is easy to grow, making it a desirable and popular addition to any herb garden.
Basil is a natural anti-inflammatory that helps fight cancer, viruses and infections. It is a very versatile herb which can also help combat stress and anxiety and promote cardiovascular health.
Powerful Antioxidant Properties
Scientific research has proven that Basil contains powerful antioxidants which help to fight cancer, prevent diabetes and is helpful in reducing pain and fever. It also supports liver function, protects blood vessels and boosts your immune system.
Helps Reduce Blood Glucose and Cholesterol Levels
Other reported findings of Basil’s effects as a health booster are that it reduces blood glucose levels, lowers triglycerides and cholesterol, and reduces inflammation which has been linked to the onset of diabetes.
Assists Brain Function
Other benefits of Basil include the power to lessen the effects of mental or mood-related problems such as anxiety and depression. Basil helps brain function and stimulates the brain’s neurotransmitters which regulate hormones.
Basil’s Essential Oils
There are many varieties of Basil, one of which is Holy Basil which is mostly used for its power to heal. Because of this it is also the most researched type of Basil. Every part of the Holy Basil plant (roots, leaves, stem and seeds) produces a different and valuable essential oil.
Basil’s antioxidant-abundant essential oils provide a unique taste and smell and are also the catalyst for Basil’s healing benefits. These unique oils prevent the plants from being consumed by predators such as bugs, soil fungus and various rodents.
Basil Provides Health Benefits Around the World
The most commonly used variety of Basil used for most recipes is Italian Basil, which contains high levels of magnesium, vitamins and all-important antioxidants. Some perfumes and household cleaners use Basil extract and dental care professionals use it as a healing agent to fight bacteria and germs.
Basil is considered a sacred herb in Southeast Asia and India, where it is cherished for its healing powers. It has been used for thousands of years in teas, tinctures, tonics and ointments. You will see the Basil plant depicted as a healing symbol in many Hindu traditions and is translated in Sanskrit as “the incomparable one.”
The country of Italy has long revered Basil as a symbol of love and it is believed to increase libido as well as blood flow. Ayurveda and Hinduism have named Holy Basil “the elixir of life” and use it extensively as a mood and sex function booster.
Basil plants grow throughout the warm summer months and are sold all year round at farmers’ markets. Supermarkets also carry basil as a mainstay of their herb offerings.
As Basil is easily accessible and provides so many health benefits, it makes sense to add this aromatic and tasty herb to your meals whenever possible.