Basil may be most well known today as a culinary ingredient, but it had many other uses that date back hundreds of years, Basil Essential Oil and Herbs have been cherished throughout time in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. In early history, Italian women wore basil to attract potential suitors, and by the 16th century the leaves were discovered to treat respiratory problems and migraines.
The basil plant is a hairy herb that grows up to three feet tall. Though it originated from tropical Asia and the Pacific Islands, Basil is now cultivated throughout Europe and North America. Basil essential oil is created by steam distilling the leaves and flowers of the basil herb.
Basil essential oil is thin and pale greenish-yellow, with a sweet, slightly camphorous scent that offers hints of liquorice and herb. Though not as widely known as some of its counterparts, Basil essential oil is incredibly useful as an analgesic, antidepressant, antispasmodic, anti-venomous, carminative, cephalic, digestive, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, insecticide, nervine, tonic, and stimulant. Quite a list of therapeutic properties!
Emotionally, Basil essential oil can enhance mood and restore mental alertness by stimulating the central nervous system and adrenal cortex. Sluggishness, brain fog, and negativity can all be wiped away by diffusing Basil essential oil or dabbing in on the wrists, chest, and back. Along the same lines, Basil can also fight stress and anxiety, which often resolves headaches as well.
Physically, Basil essential oil is known for its ability to rid the body of bacteria and viruses that cause cold and flu. It can also fight fatigue to alleviate muscle pain, especially when blended in the bath with a few drops of Eucalyptus oil. Since Basil can eliminate odour causing bacteria and kill food-borne germs, it’s an excellent way to purify and freshen the air and improve respiratory issues. As an antibacterial and antimicrobial, Basil can also fight acne breakouts.