21 Incredible Benefits of Basil for Skin, Hair and Health – Also known as tulsi, basil is one such plant that occupies a special place in most Indian household. It is often associated with religion and worshiped by the Hindus. In sanskrit, tulsi means “the incomparable one”. It has many benefits for our health and beauty. And here in this article, we are going to share some of the most amazing benefits of basil. Tulsi or basil has been used in Ayurveda for thousand of years, due to its incredible healing properties. Called as “elixir of life”, tulsi is believed to promote longevity of one’s life. It comes with powerful anti bacterial and anti inflammatory benefits as well. And it doesn’t end here. Continue reading this article on Benefits of Basil for Skin, Hair and Health to know more.
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Before we start discussing about the benefits of basil for our skin, hair and health, let us first check out some of the facts about the same.
What is Holy Basil?
Basil or tulsi is an aromatic herb, which belongs to the same family that includes mint, rosemary, oregano etc. Basil plants can have different sizes as well as varieties. Evidence suggests that the cultivation of tulsi dates back to almost 5000 years ago, and most likely was originated in the Hunan region of China. Scientifically known as Ocimum sanctum L. or Ocimum tenuiflorum L, tulsi or basil can be found in several variants. Rama tulsi, Krishna tulsi and Vana tulsi are the most common types of tulsi that are found in India. Along with that, there is Mediterranean basil, Thai sweet basil, cinnamon basil, lemon basil etc.
It is an important healing plant in many folk system of medicines, specially those which are popular in Southeast Asia and India. And if you are wondering why so, then take a look below to find out the components present in holy basil.
Let us find out what are the main benefits of basil for our skin, hair and health below.
Benefits of Basil for Skin
1. Skin Cleansing Benefits of Basil
One of the best beauty benefits of basil is that it can provide deep cleansing effect to our skin. Tulsi or basil, thanks to its astringent properties, works best for those with oily skin types. It helps in removing dirt and impurities that clog the pores and also remove the excess oil from the skin. The same astringent benefits of basil also help with pore tightening and improve our skin texture.
- Take a handful of fresh basil leaves and prepare a paste by adding some water to them. Combine an egg white to the basil paste and apply the mixture all over the face. Wait for 10-15 minutes and wash off using plain water. Repeat this tulsi face pack twice in a week for clean and clear skin.
2. Anti Acne Benefits of Basil
Tulsi paste works like wonders to give you acne free skin, thanks to the anti inflammatory, anti bacterial and anti fungal benefits of basil. It helps to kill the acne causing bacteria and disinfect the pores. Also, tulsi is astringent in nature, which helps to soak up the excess oil and moisture and dry out the existing acne. Additionally, basil leaves are known for blood purifying benefits, which also help to get rid of acne as well as other skin infections.
- Prepare a simple face pack by mixing together a tbsp basil leaves paste, some sandalwood powder and required amount of rose water. Apply it on the face and let it stay until the face pack gets dry. Wash off using plain water and repeat 2-3 times in a week. This face pack works great to treat acne and blemishes.
- Boil 250 gms of boiled tulsi leaves in equal amount of sesame oil. Use this concoction to treat skin infections and get rid of the itching.
3. Anti Aging Benefits of Basil
Here comes another important benefits of basil for our skin. Being loaded with anti oxidants, tulsi or basil can reverse the effect of premature aging. It not only helps to neutralize free radicals, but researches suggest that tulsi can balance the anti oxidant enzyme system in our body as well as stimulate the metabolism of oxidative waste products. It helps in rejuvenating the skin and brings back the youthfulness.
- Consuming basil water (boiling a few tulsi leaves in water) regularly is extremely beneficial for avoiding premature aging. Alternatively you can crush the leaves once the water cools down and have it for the same result.
4. Skin Lightening Benefits of Basil
Basil or tulsi leaves can effectively lighten our skin tone. Pollution and sun damage are among the main culprits, which lead to skin darkening. Basil has detoxifying effect, which gives relief from the effects of pollution, UV damage, stress as well as skin infections. The essential oils present in basil helps in moisturizing and nourishing the skin and improve the complexion.
- Prepare a tulsi paste by mixing some water with fresh basil leaves. Add some besan or gram flour to that. Mix together and apply the resultant mixture all over the face. Let it dry and then wash off. Regular application of this helps to improve our skin tone.
- Alternatively, you can powder few dry basil leaves and add some water to that for preparing a paste. Apply this paste on the face and wait till it gets dry. Wash off with plain water and repeat regularly. This will not only lighten the complexion, but also add a beautiful glow to the skin.
5. Removes Blackheads
Blackheads as well as whiteheads are common skin problems that can lead to acne, if not treated on time. However, its quite difficult to get a perfect solution to get rid of blackheads and whiteheads. Natural ingredients like basil or tulsi can work wonders in removing them. Blackheads or whiteheads are basically small bumps on the skin, which are the result of clogged hair follicles. The anti bacterial as well as anti inflammatory Benefits of Basil make it an ideal remedy to treat these skin problems. Tulsi contains camphene, which works as a natural toner and helps to remove excess oil, dead skin cells and other impurities that clog the hair follicles and form blackheads and whiteheads.
- Boil a handful of fresh basil leaves in two cups of water. Remove from the heat and lean over the container. Absorb the steam for 10-12 minutes and then use a blackhead removing tool to remove the blackheads.
Benefits of Basil for Hair
After sharing the main Benefits of Basil for skin, let us now check out the hair Benefits of Basil or tulsi.
6. Keeps Scalp Healthy
If you want healthy hair, it is very important to keep the scalp healthy. Dandruff and various types of other scalp infections often trouble us with excessively dry and itchy scalp as well as severe hair fall. Tulsi or basil can be our one stop solution to treat all the scalp infections and get rid of hair fall. The anti bacterial and anti fungal Benefits of Basil help to keep the scalp healthy by eliminating dandruff and other scalp infections. Furthermore, the anti inflammatory Benefits of Basil help in giving relief from dryness and itchiness of the scalp. Also basil helps in improving blood circulation in the scalp. This leads to optimal nourishment of the hair follicles, rejuvenate them and induce new hair growth.
- Prepare basil paste by adding some water to basil leaves. Add this basil paste to your regular hair oil and then apply the mixture all over the scalp and hair. Leave it on for 30-40 minutes and then wash off with mild shampoo. Regular application helps in maintaining healthy scalp as well as rejuvenate the hair follicles.
- Alternatively, you can add a small amount of basil oil to your regular hair oil and then use this oil blend to massage your scalp. This is a great remedy for dry and itchy scalp.
7. Prevents Premature Graying of Hair
This is one of the best beauty Benefits of Basil. The anti oxidant present in tulsi can be attributed to for this benefit. Grind a few dry basil leaves and prepare basil powder. Soak some basil powder as well as amla powder in water overnight and then use the mixture to wash your hair the next morning. This remedy is very useful in treating premature graying of hair as well as hair fall.
Benefits of Basil for Health
Hope you enjoyed learning about these amazing Benefits of tulsi for our skin and hair. Below we have discussed the main Benefits of tulsi for our health.
8. Anti Oxidant Benefits of Basil
Researches suggest that tulsi contains a range of natural anti oxidant. This anti oxidant components helps in preventing the free radicals from causing oxidative stress to our body cells. Tulsi contains phenolics and anthocyanins, which are powerful anti oxidant. Along with that, tulsi or basil also contain two important water soluble anti oxidants known as orientin and viceninare. They help in protecting the white blood cells in our body, which are responsible for our immune function. The anti oxidants present in basil is useful in keeping the chromosomes from being altered and resulting in cancerous cell growth. These anti oxidants also help in slow down the effects of aging.
9. Helps in Managing Stress
Tulsi or basil works as an adaptogen, which means it can help the body adapt to stress and normalize the harmful effects of stressors. Lab researches have found that, when rabbits were given fresh basil leaves and exposed to high stress environment, there was significant improvement in oxidative stress level. 2 gms of fresh basil leaves were given to the rabbits for a period of 30 days and the results were impressive. They experienced cardiovascular as well as respiratory protection against stressors and there was also significant decrease in blood sugar levels and increase in anti oxidant activity. The basil actually helps in reducing hormone levels as well as corticosterone levels in our body to maintain a balanced functionality during stressful events.
Additionally, the anti inflammatory and the immune boosting benefits of tulsi help in managing stress. Basil or tulsi is beneficial to increase energy and improve focus, which help us deal with stress in much better way. An Australian study has proved that, along with physical, chemical as well as metabolic stress, basil can also address psychological stress.
Regular consumption of basil tea has been found to promote energy and get rid of the feelings of stress.
10. Promotes Strong Bones
As we age, our bones start to lose its density, which makes them fragile and lead to several bone related injuries and physical conditions. Specially women suffer from osteoporosis, which is a bone related condition. Basil is an excellent source of vitamin K. Vitamin K is helpful in better absorption of calcium. Calcium, as we all know, is essential for healthy bones. Being a rich source of vitamin K, tulsi boosts calcium absorption and prevent bone related conditions.
11. Heart Friendly Herb
Yes, that’s true. Basil or tulsi is a heart friendly aromatic herb. It has the ability to prevent heart attacks and coronary heart diseases. The flavonoids present in the basil help to prevent clot formation on the arterial walls, thus help in preventing cardiac arrest. Furthermore, the anti inflammatory and anti oxidant benefits of tulsi help in contracting and relaxing the muscles that control the blood vessel function. It inhibits the release of ‘cytokins’, which are proteins that are secreted from cell to cell and are used to communicate and raise the body’s immune defenses.
Now, when this happens for a prolonged period of time, it causes a negative affect in our body. It puts unnecessary stress on our organs and slows down the blood circulation as well as hormone regulation. And it affects our heart badly as well. It can cause build up of fatty, cholesterol-rich plaque in blood vessels, which in turn increase the risk for a heart attack or stroke.
12. Promotes Weight Loss
Though there is no strong scientific evidence behind it, but certain theories suggest that holy basil help in losing extra pounds. Experts say that tulsi or basil extracts have this ability to lower blood glucose level as well as blood cholesterol levels, both of which are responsible for weight gain. Also, it has been seen that tulsi can reduce the secretion of “cortisol”, which is the stress hormone and it ca also lead to weight gain. This, way, tulsi helps in losing extra kilos.
13. Boosts Immunity
Tulsi or basil has been traditionally used to boost our immunity system. Basil leaf is particularly beneficial in improving our immunity, as studies have proved. It has been seen that basil works wonderfully to treat a number of respiratory disorders. It helps in giving relief from asthma, bronchitis as well as lungs infection. These diseases are the result of weak immunity system. Basil leaves extract helps in dissolving the phelgm and thus treats allergic bronchitis, asthma, and eosinophilic lung disease. In folk remedies, tulsi or basil leaves are very popular to bring down a fever and it also gives relief from associated cold. Not only cold and fever, but basil leaves can accelerate the healing process of wounds, cuts and burns.
Chewing a few basil leaves itself can give relief from the common symptoms of cold and flu. In case of fever, simply boil some basil leaves in water and drink the liquid. To bring down high fever, a decoction of basil leaves with a pinch of powdered cardamom can be extremely beneficial.
14. Protects the Eyes
One of the most important health benefits of tulsi is that it as the ability to prevent eye disorders. Our eyes are delicate and they are susceptible of various fungal and bacterial infections, such as conjunctivitis. The anti bacterial, anti fungal as well as anti inflammatory benefits of basil help to treat such eye infections effectively. It’s soothing properties bring down the redness and gives relief from itchiness as well as burning sensation of the eyes. Also, tulsi extracts has the ability to fight off cataracts and other vision related problems. In fact, it has also been found effective to treat serious eye problems including macular degeneration as well as glaucoma. Furthermore, the anti oxidant benefit of tulsi keep the eyes safe from free radicals as well as environmental damages.
15. Protects Oral Health
Not only the eyes, but tulsi extract can improve and protect our oral health. The anti bacterial benefits of tulsi help to control oral plaque and that’s why, it can be used as a very effective mouth wash. Moreover, studies have found that tulsi has prevent effect on those suffer from swollen and bleeding gums. The best part is that it doesn’t have any side effects.
16. Improves Digestion
Tulsi or basil is extremely beneficial in boosting our digestive system. It has the ability o reduce the acidity level in our body, thus balancing the pH level of our body. A balanced pH level is essential to improve as well as immunity. This, in turn, increases the number of beneficial bacteria within our gut and reduce the number of harmful bacteria that can harm our health. And not only this, but basil has been found extremely effective in reducing bloating and water retention, loss of appetite, stomach cramps, acid reflux, and also help to kill stomach worms.
17. Treats Ear Infection
The anti bacterial benefits of tulsi help to treat ear infection as well as earache. In case of ear infections, crush a few basil leaves and extract the juice. Apply the basil juice to the infected ear carefully, so that it doesn’t get through the ear canal. Alternatively, you can mix together some basil oil and coconut oil ad apply this on to the affected ea with the help of a cotton ball.
18. Helps in Regulating Blood Sugar Level
Basil or tulsi has been found particularly beneficial for those with type 2 diabetes. It helps in increasing insulin secretion and thus, keep the blood sugar level under control. Not only this, but tulsi also helps in lowering the blood sugar level after fasting or eating a meal.
19. Acts as a Natural Aphrodisiac
This is another vital benefits of tulsi for our health. This aromatic herb works wonderfully as a natural aphrodisiac and improves the quality of sex life. Consumption of tulsi has been found to increase energy by boosting blood flow all over the body, which explains why it is called as a natural aphrodisiac.
20. Fights Depression
Tulsi or basil is extremely beneficial to improve our mood. It can fight off depression or anxiety effectively. Studies and researches have confirmed that basil has the ability to stimulate neurotransmitters that regulate the hormones which actually control our mood and make us happy as well as energetic. This is why, tulsi or basil is often referred as a natural anti depressant.
21. Gives Relief from Joint Pain
The anti inflammatory benefits of tulsi help in fighting inflammation and give relief from joint pain, caused by inflammation. Basil or tulsi contains eucalyptol. It is one of the most important ingredients of basil and it offers anti inflammatory benefits. Topical application of tulsi helps in reducing the inflammation as well as the pain by increasing blood flow to the affected area. Also, tulsi works as a natural pain killer and gives relief from pain effectively.
22. Gives Relief from Headache
Many folk remedies use basil as a natural treatment for headache. Basil tea, dried basil or basil juice (with some honey) – all have been found beneficial to get rid of headache.
These were the major benefits of basil for our skin, hair a well as health. Hope you found this article helpful, thans for reading 🙂