Basil essential oil, sometimes called “sweet basil oil”, has a naturally sweet, warm, spicy and herbal smell. Basil essential oil is derived from Ocimum basilicum plant through steam distillation. Basil essential oil is a warming oil that is noted for its ability to clear the head. It is also a very effective antispasmodic. Its aroma is stimulating and uplifting.
In addition, basil is commonly used to be a herb that is used to enhance the flavour of many recipes. Its uses extend far beyond the culinary world. Basil essential oil has been used for centuries to treat all kinds of health concern.
An ancient herb found in Egyptian pyramids, the kings of old were often anointed with basil in special ceremonies.
In Asia, basil is commonly used to counter venomous poisons from snakes and insects.
In India, basil is sacred; it is planted around temples and graves. It is also used in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine to treat cold, flu, fever, muscle aches and earaches.
Centuries ago, basil was considered to have an alluring scent; Italian Women wore the oil and even set pots of basil outside their windows to attract possible suitors.
However, it uses today extend far beyond the culinary world. Basil essential oil is used to treat various wounds and infections, and it often serves as a calming agent to combat inflammation, help reduce adrenal fatigue and treat nerve and muscle conditions.
The chemical components vary dramatically depending on the chemotype. Be certain of the chemical profile and chemotype of the oil you are using.
Known Basil chemotypes: linalool, estragole, eugenol, metyhl chavicol, methyl eugenol, methyl cinnamate.
If the oil oil contains eugenol, it may cause skin irritation in people with sensitive skin.
KEY BENEFITS OF BASIL ESSENTIAL OIL
Here are the top uses of basil essential oil that demonstrate its protective capacity.
Ocimum basilicum L. (sweet basil) belongs to the Lamiaceae or mint plant family, which includes about 200 species of various basil botanical varieties and forms grown around the world. With a naturally sweet, warm, spicy and herbal smell, basil oil can be used in multiple ways both internally and topically.
Basil essential oil benefits include:
- Fighting bacteria
- Fighting infections
- Reducing disease-causing inflammation
- Fighting viruses
- Relieving congestion
- Increasing urine output
- Fighting free radical damage
- Stimulating the nervous system
- Stimulating the adrenal cortex
USES OF BASIL ESSENTIAL OILS
1. Acts As An Anti-Bacterial and Anti-Fungal Agent
To combat bacteria and fungus in and around the home, diffuse or vaporize basil oil, or combine it with a natural cleaner in a spray bottle to rub down surfaces and help remove bacteria from kitchens and bathrooms.
2. Relives Cold and Flu Symptoms
Diffuse basil throughout the home to fight common cold and flu symptoms such as congestion. Add 2 to 3 drops to a steam bath, or combine 2 drops of basil essential oil with 2 drops of eucalyptus essential oil and a carrier oil to help open up the nasal passages.
3. Freshens The Air
Aid in eliminating odor-causing bacteria and mold by diffusing basil oil, combining 4 to 6 drops with baking soda to clean kitchen appliances or spraying a mixture of water or natural cleaner and a few drops of basil oil in the toilet, shower, and garbage can.
4. Aids in the Treatment of Urinary Tract Infections
Add 1 to 2 drops of basil oil to food, or dilute 1 to 2 drops with a carrier oil and take it internally to assist in detoxifying the urinary and digestive tracts.
5. Relaxes Muscles
Rub 3 drops of basil oil into painful swollen muscles or joints to help relax them. To lessen tense areas and feel immediate relief, add Epsom salts, lavender oil and basil oil to warm bath water.
6. Reduces Ear Infection Discomfort
Rub equal parts basil and frankincense oil diluted with coconut oil behind the ears to help reduces swelling from an ear infection and encourage healing.
7. Promotes Oral Health
Add a few drops of pure basil oil to your mouthwash or toothpaste. This will also help to protect your teeth and gums from toothaches, ulcers, sores and viral blisters.
8. Loss of Sense of Smell
Apply under the nose and to toes to regain or increase the sense of smell.
9. Bug, Snake & Spider Bites
Diffuse or spray diluted in water to repel insects. Apply topically to bite.
10. Digestive Booster
Basil essential oil is known for helping to stimulate digestion and naturally relieving constipation. Pure basil oil can be taken internally by adding one to two drops to warm water or tea, or you can inhale it and massage it directly into painful areas such as the abdomen and lower back.
11. Migraines & Dizziness
Apply with Wintergreen or Peppermint to temples and back of neck for fast relief of pain.
12. Flavour Enhancer
You’re probably familiar with how just a couple of fresh basil leaves can majorly enhance a dish. Basil oil can also infuse a wide variety of recipes with its signature aroma and flavour.
All it takes is adding one or two drops to juices, smoothies, sauces, or dressings in place of using fresh torn basil. In the process, you’ll make your kitchen smell great and reduce the risk for food contamination, too! Now, there’s a win-win situation.
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- Avoid use during pregnancy
- Not for children under 5
- Avoid with a history of estrogen-dependent cancer
- Possible skin irritant
- Not recommended in the bath
Recommended Blends Using Basil
Take advantage of basil’s protective abilities by blending it with other antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory oils. As a herbaceous, slightly spicy smelling oil, it blends nicely with light- and fresh-smelling oils.
• Chamomile, lavender, and basil for healing
• Citrus, basil, and tea tree for cleaning
• Basil, eucalyptus, and cardamom as a bug spray
• Carrier-oil dilutions included in culinary recipes
• Clove, tea tree oil, and basil as a mouth rinse, with peppermint for good measure
Basil’s flexibility in blending aromas, protective effects in nearly every way, and overall safe and simple application measures make it an underrated essential oil.
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