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Holy Basil

Scientific name

Ocimum tenuiflorum, ocimum sanctum





Also called hot basil, indian basil, kala tulsi and sacred basil .

Holy basil is an fragrant plant indigenous of india, but also found in australia, west africa, and some middle eastern countries. Popular in ayurvedic medicine, basil is considered a sacred plant utilized by the hindus. The hindu nicknamed holy basil, tulsi, which translates to "the incomparable one". It is also referred to as "hot basil" because of its peppery savor.

Applicable parts used

Leaves, stems, seeds, and oil


Symbolizes good wishes, love, wealth, flying, and protection


Organs & systems affected

Endocrine, cardiovascular, nervous, cardiovascular, immune system.

Flower essence

A tonic for melancholy and low spirits

Mechanism of action

Analgesic, anthelmintic, antibiotic, anticancer, anticonvulsant, antidiabetic, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antilipidemic, antispasmodic, antioxidant, antiplatelet, antipyretic, anxiolytic, anti-thyroidal , antiulcerogenic, hypotensive, immunomodulating, radioprotective, sedative, and wound healing.


Anise and licorice-like (slightly spicy); warming .

Plant constituents

Leaves and stems constituents: saponins, flavonoids, triterpenoids, and tannins.

The leaves also contain an essential oil with constituents including eugenol, methyl eugenol, and caryophyllene, polysaccharides.

The seed oil: contains linoleic acid, linolenic acid, oleic acid, palmitic acid, and stearic acid .

Traditional uses

Orally: common cold, influenza, hyperglycemia, inflamed lungs, earache, headache, stomach upset, fever, malaria, anxiety, and stress. It is also used for mercury poisoning, to promoted longevity, as a mosquito repellent, and as an antidote to snake and scorpion bites. Topically: ringworm and dental plaque.


Precaution & adverse reactions

Nausea and loose stool have been reported.


Anticoagulants, antidiabetics, and pentobarbital.

Pregnancy and lactation

Do not use this if pregnant or trying to become pregnant as in high doses basil reduce the rate of implantation.


Herbal infusion: 1-2 teaspoon per cup. Steep 5 to 10 minutes. Drink as needed

Tincture: 1 to 10 drops as needed.

Condition Specific

  • Anxiety: holy basil leaf extract 500 mg twice daily following meals for 60 days

  • Stress: a specific holy bail extract (ocibest, natural remedies pvt. Ltd.) 400 mg orally in the morning and 800 mg orally at night has been used

  • Dental plaque: 10 ml of a mouthwash containing 4% holy basil leaf extract has been used twice daily for 30 days

  • Diabetes: holy basil leaf powder 2.5 grams mixed in 200 ml of water and consumed daily in the morning for 4 weeks or holy basil 250 mg twice daily for 3 months

Our favorite pairings

Bay, cilantro, garlic, oregano, mint, parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme.


the information contained within this website is for educational purposes only. This site merely recounts the traditional uses of specific plants as recorded throughout history. With the information provided on this website, we wish to begin the journey to educate the community based on research, African holistic health, and herbal science. This information, in no shape or form, is intended to diagnose, treat, cure, prevent disease, or make claims against products or companies. This information provided on this site is to make public information and information acquired from research studies easily available to you. Rooted vigor, llc is giving you the opportunity to draw your own conclusions and make your own decisions from the information provided. The information on this website may or may not have been evaluated by the fda. Seek advice from a medical practitioner as necessary.



Pursell, jj. The herbal apothecary: 100 medicinal herbs and how to use them. Timber press. Kindle edition.



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