Basil leaves, a.k.a Tulsi is regarded as a holy plant in Indian culture. This medicinal plant is literally worshipped and you can see it planted at the entrance or in front of almost every Indian household and is an important symbol in the Hindu religious tradition. It is well known for its amazing healing power and medicinal properties and is the principal herb in Ayurveda. It is of great significance
Since time immemorial, the mankind has relied on the healing power of herbs. If we dig into our ancient past, we would find enumerable references of traditional herbs with numerous health benefits. One such plant, which finds it mention everywhere, is tulsi or basil. The holy tulsi, also known as the ‘ QUEEN OF HERBS ’ ,is the most sacred of all the herbs found in India. In Ayurveda, tulsi is regarded as a divine plant. The benefits of the plant are much beyond our knowledge and its mere presence can bring a change. Dr. RM Gupta, a naturopath, says, “ tulsi is not only beneficial in curing cold and cough but it can also act as an anti-cancer and blood-purifying agent.” There are three types of tulsi mentioned in Ayurvedic texts – Rama tulsi, Shyama or Krishna tulsi and Vana tulsi, all having their own different benefits. According to Hinduism, it is regarded as Goddess Tulsi. Its leaves are offered during the worship of Lord Vishnu and his incarnations of Krishna and Vithoba. Beauty benefits – Tulsi stems and roots are known for the making of the tulsi malas. Tulsi also known as skin rasayana, helps to stay healthy and supple as it is a good source of vitamin C, carotene, calcium and phosphorus. For hair, add a small amount of tulsi oil to coconut oil and massage well. Tulsi helps to improve blood circulation and keeps the scalp cool. Applying tulsi paste, keeps the scalp and roots clean and dandruff free. It has also been successfully tried by some naturopaths in treatment of leucoderma. Its anti-oxidant properties prevents the body from damages caused by free radicals, thus delaying the aging process and appearance of wrinkles and other signs of aging. Health focus- According to the reports published, an oily substance found in tulsi actively destroys tuberculosis bacilli. It is also used to prepare more than 300 medicines in Ayurveda and homeopathy. During eclipses, may people believe that if leaves of the tulsi plant are kept near the food items then it prevents any adverse effects on them It is claimed that tulsi promotes positive thoughts among people who come in contact with it. The plant has the ability to clear bad air, and therefore known to promote positive thoughts among people who come in contact with it. Medicinal value- Not only from the religious point of view but from a medicinal perspective also, tulsi has endless medicinal values and these are – Swine flu– wonder herb tulsi not only keeps this dreaded swine flu away but also helps in fast recovery from it. Tulsi improves the body’s overall defense mechanism including its ability to fight viral diseases. It was successfully used in combating Japanese encephalitis. The juice of tulsi leaves, should be consumed twice a day with empty stomach as it reduces the chances of swine flu returning. Cough– tulsi is one of the basic ingredient of almost all the Ayurvedic cough syrups and helps mobilize mucus in bronchitis and asthma. Eye disorders– tulsi juice is an effective remedy for sore eyes and night blindness caused by lack of vitamin A. Tooth disorders– tulsi is good for maintaining dental health and is an excellent mouth freshener and oral disinfectant as it destroys germs and bacteria found in mouth. Radiation poisoning and cataracts– tulsi gives promising protection from radiation poisoning and cataracts. Fever– during rainy season, when dengue and malaria fever prevail, tender leaves of tulsi, boiled with tea, acts to prevent these diseases. In case of acute fever, a decoction of the leaves boiled with powdered cardamom in approximately half-a-liter water, mixed with sugar and milk brings down the body temperature significantly. This should be repeated after every two or three hours. Headaches– tulsi is used as an effective medicine for headaches. A decoction of the leaves twice a day can help get rid of headaches. Respiratory disorders– the herb, tulsi is useful in treatment of respiratory system disorders. Tulsi leaves boiled in half-a-liter water, till half amount of water is left, added with ginger and honey is an effective remedy for asthma, bronchitis, influenza, cough and cold. This can also be given with cloves and common salt, to get immediate relief. Home remedies with tulsi- Tulsi strengthens the body to fight diseases caused by the deficiency of vitamin A and C. It also has the potential to cure feminine diseases. In case of sore throat, boil tulsi leaves with water and drink twice a day. This water can be used to gargle. Tulsi juice and honey are effective in curing hiccups. Tulsi leaves provide relief in ear pain and infection. Put a few drops of tulsi leaves into the ear for relief. To get relief from pain due to burns, apply tulsi juice mixed with equal amounts of coconut oil. To get quick relief from itching, apply tulsi juice mixed with lemon on the affected portion. Eating a few leaves of tulsi improves digestion, relieves acidity and gastric trouble. Tulsi leaves boiled with water, and then cooled can be applied on acne-affected area and eliminates pimples. A few leaves of tulsi chewed can cure ulcers and infections in mouth. To cure malaria, take 5-6 leaves of tulsi with black pepper powder twice a day. Using the powder of dry tulsi leaves, and brushing teeth with this powder can keep healthy gums and prevent bad breath.
Holy basil or Tulsi is an herb which is well known for its medicinal properties. An important ingredient in Ayurveda medicines, it has played a great role in the health system of India. Tulsi, a perennial shrub, belongs to the mint family called Labiates and is believed to have originated here in India. It can be grown from the seed or from the tip or root cuttings. The Tulsi plants