Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), also known as holy basil,a sacred plant in Hindu belief. Hindus regard it as an earthly manifestation of the goddess Tulsi; she is regarded as the avatar of Lakshmi, and thus the consort of the god Vishnu. In some legends, she is called Vrinda and distinct from Lakshmi. It is a medicinal herb used in Ayurveda, a form of alternative medicine that originated in India. Closely related to culinary basil, tulsi is native to India and Southeast Asia. Tulsi is considered an adaptogenic herb.
Tulsi has numerous benefits. Its leaves can be used directly upon boiling or in dried powdered form. Below are the listed benefits of Tulsi—
1. For stress and anxiety:
High cortisol levels result in stress and anxiety. Basil is known to bring your cortisol levels down and make you feel relaxed. It’s essentially an adaptogen and is loaded with antioxidants that calm you down. And basil not only relieves psychological stress , it also safeguards your body from physiological, metabolic, and chemical stress too.
2. Fights Cancer :
Basil extracts are known to possess radioactive properties which help fight off tumour cells. Besides being able to prevent cancer when taken long-term, the leaves reduce tumorigenicity and are known to slow down or delay breast cancer development
3. Regulates cholesterol :
Tulsi is known to help people with hypertension and cholesterol by preventing blood clots. It also checks overall heart health.
4. Weight loss:
A study revealed the usage of tulsi in helping support weight loss. This is because of its cholesterol and blood glucose regulation effects, both of which end up influencing the BMI. In the study, patients who were supplemented with 250 mg of holy basil noted a reduction in their BMI and lipid profiles.
5. Regulates blood sugar:
Tulsi is beneficial for diabetes patient. Diabetes has become a common problem especially for elderly people. Regular intake of tulsi can bring down sugar levels, especially for type2 diabetes.
6. For dandruff and hair fall:
Tulsi has moisturising properties that help in hair growth and keeping them shiny. Adding coconut oil to tulsi and massaging your scalp with it also gives rid of dandruff. It also help in preventing early greying of hair— take a few fresh basil leaves and mix it with amla (Indian gooseberry) powder. Make the paste the night before and apply it in the morning before you wash your hair for good results.
7. Improves eye sight:
Poor eye healthT is due to numerous problems like conjunctivitis, irritation in the eyes, infections and inflammatory responses. Basil scavenges and protects the eyes from damage caused by free radicals and oxidative stress. It prevents macular degeneration too and plays a role in the treatment of cataracts and various vision disorders.
8. For liver problems:
Tulsi does wonders as a detoxing herb thus improves overall liver health.
9. Immunity booster:
Tulsi does wonders in boosting immunity level, therefore it is highly recommended if you have cold, fever or flu. Tulsi is also proven to be beneficial for Covid-19 protection.
10. Dental plaque:
Because of the antibacterial properties, Tulsi is a natural mouth freshner. It prevents the building up of oral plaque
11. For Indigestion:
By maintaining pH balance of stomach it helps ease and regulate acidity. It thus, helps in digestion of food.
Tulsi water can be consumed everyday, most effective time to use this water is in the morning— empty smotach. It does not have any side effects. Using tulsi leaves for making tea adds aroma to the tea and also make it good for boosting immunity. Tulsi ka kadha, is soothing and work wonders with Common cold and cough.
Tulsi is considered a holy plant and therefore, there are many inhibitions about plucking and consuming Tulsi. If you find yourself in similar dilemma here is the mantra that can be chanted while plucking leaves— Om Subhdray Namha Matsatulsi Govind Hridyanand Kaarini, Narayanasya Pujarth chinomi Twan Namostutai.