Used for : Coughs, colds, fevers, headaches, lung problems, abdominal distention, absorption, arthritis, colon (air excess), memory, nasal congestion, nerve tissue strengthening, purifies the air; sinus congestion, clears the lungs, heart tonic; it frees ozone from sun's rays and oxygenates the body, cleanses and clears the brain and nerves; relieves depression and the effects of poisons; difficult urination, prevents the accumulation of fat in the body (especially for women after menopause), obstinate skin diseases, arthritis, rheumatism, first stages of many .cancers, builds the immune system. Tulsi contains trace mineral copper (organic form), needed to absorb iron.
Tulsi: Queen of Herbs
Tulsi, Queen of Herbs, the legendary "Incomparable One" of India, is one of the holiest and most cherished of the many healing and health-giving herbs of the Orient. The sacred basil Tulsi is renowned for its religious and spiritual sanctity, as well as for its important role in the traditional systems of holistic health and herbal medicine of the East.
An impressive array of health promoting, disease preventing and life prolonging properties of Tulsi have been described and documented over five millennia. In the past few decades, many of these benefits have been investigated and verified by modern scientific research.
Current research offers substantial evidence that Tulsi protects against and reduces stress; enhances stamina and endurance; increases the body's efficient use of oxygen; boosts the immune system; reduces inflammation; protects against radiation damage; lessens aging factors; supports the heart, lungs and liver; has antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties; enhances the efficacy of many other therapeutic treatments; and provides a rich supply of antioxidants (see related ebook on antioxidants) and other nutrients.
Overall, Tulsi is a premier adaptogen, helping the body and mind to adapt and cope with a wide range of physical, emotional, chemical and infectious stresses, and restores disturbed physiological and psychological functions to a normal healthy state.
These general vitality enhancing and health promoting properties, in addition to Tulsi's many more specific therapeutic actions, likely account for much of the exceptionally broad range of Tulsi's traditional medical uses, as well as contributing to its mythological importance and religious sanctity.
TULSI'S BOTANICAL IDENTITY
Tulsi is identified by botanists primarily as Ocimum sanctum (Rama and Krishna Tulsi varieties) or more recently Ocimum tenuiflorum, and Ocimum gratissimum (Vana Tulsi variety). Belonging to the Lamiaceae/Labiatae mint family, these and other closely related species and varieties (e.g., Ocimum canum) are cousins of the familiar sweet basil cooking herb Ocimum basilicum.
Highly aromatic, different varieties of Tulsi may smell and taste of peppermint, cloves, licorice or lemon, as well as having distinct characteristics of their own.
The leaves of Tulsi are most commonly used for their health benefits, although all parts of the plant, including the roots, stems, flowers and seeds, have significant and differing medicinal and religious symbolic properties. Tulsi beads, made from the woody stalks, are commonly strung in necklaces, bracelets, and meditation malas or rosaries, which are believed by many to have spiritual as well as physical protection benefits.
• Protects against and reduces stress
• Improves stamina and endurance
• Boosts immunity
• Diminishes symptoms of colds, coughs and flu
• Reduces inflammation
• Lessens aging factors
• Powerful antioxidant
• Antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties
• Reduces nausea, vomiting and cramping
• Lowers fevers
• Supports the heart, lungs and liver
• Helps maintain a healthy digestive system
• Useful in blood-glucose management
• Supports oral and periodontal health
• Encourages efficient use of oxygen
• Protects against radiation damage
• Enhances the efficacy of many other therapeutic treatments
• Vitamins A and C
• Calcium, zinc and iron
• Chlorophyll and many other phytonutrients
• Research indicates that Tulsi has a very high safety margin with exceptionally low toxicity, providing general beneficial effects without adverse reactions or other undesirable side effects.
• 2-4 capsules morning and afternoon
• 3-5 cups of Tulsi tea daily
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The chemical composition of Tulsi is highly complex, containing many nutrients and other biologically active compounds. The nutritional and pharmacological properties of the whole herb in its natural form, result from synergistic interactions of many different active phytochemicals. Although Tulsi is known as a general vitalizer and increases physical endurance, it contains no caffeine or other stimulants.
Tulsi is traditionally taken in a variety of forms, including fresh or dried leaf tea infusions (herbal teas), ground or powdered leaf, alcohol tinctures, poultices and oil preparations, as well as seed, root and stem formulations, both internally and topically.
TULSI IN MODERN SOCIETY
The mental and biological stressors of the demanding and rapidly changing social and physical environments of modern urban life are leading factors in illness and premature death throughout the industrialized nations, and are emerging as health crises in developing countries worldwide.
Stress-related disorders, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, neurological dementia, arthritis and other autoimmune disorders, have almost become synonymous with Western-style material progress. Furthermore, many modern medical treatments entail substantial adverse side effects and compounding secondary health risks.
Tutsi's powerful general adaptogenic properties offer significant
preventative and curative potential with respect to the stress-related
degenerative diseases endemic to industrialized societies.
A significant complementary role is emerging for traditional herbal medicines and holistic approaches to health in the prevention and treatment of the pervasive illnesses of modern civilization. Recognizing the importance of broadening Western medical perspectives, the World Health Organization has recommended that traditional health and folk medicine systems be integrated with modern medical therapies to more effectively address health problems worldwide.
Substantial evidence has accumulated that, in addition to Tulsi's many specific therapeutic applications, the herb's powerful general adaptogenic properties offer significant preventative and curative potential with respect to the stress-related degenerative diseases endemic to industrialized societies. Ongoing clinical investigation of Tulsi's health promoting qualities is sure to bear rich fruit.
Relatively little known in the West, the holy basil Tulsi is certain to emerge in the near future as a major player in the growing field of herbal health supplements and medicines, both in daily self-care and in professionally managed health care systems.
To learn more on this topic, be sure to also read the related article, Amazon Herb Company review: John Easterling, rainforest herbs and more.
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15 Benefits of the Holy Basil (Tulsi)
2. Fever & Common Cold: The leaves of basil are specific for many fevers. During the rainy season, when malaria and dengue fever are widely prevalent, tender leaves, boiled with tea, act as preventive against theses diseases. In case of acute fevers, a decoction of the leaves boiled with powdered cardamom in half a liter of water and mixed with sugar and milk brings down the temperature. The juice of tulsi leaves can be used to bring down fever. Extract of tulsi leaves in fresh water should be given every 2 to 3 hours. In between one can keep giving sips of cold water. In children, it is every effective in bringing down the temperature.
3. Coughs: Tulsi is an important constituent of many Ayurvedic cough syrups and expectorants. It helps to mobilize mucus in bronchitis and asthma. Chewing tulsi leaves relieves cold and flu. bronchitis and asthma. Chewing tulsi leaves relieves cold and flu.
4. Sore Throat: Water boiled with basil leaves can be taken as drink in case of sore throat. This water can also be used as a gargle.
5. Respiratory Disorder: The herb is useful in the treatment of respiratory system disorder. A decoction of the leaves, with honey and ginger is an effective remedy for bronchitis, asthma, influenza, cough and cold. A decoction of the leaves, cloves and common salt also gives immediate relief in case of influenza. They should be boiled in half a liter of water till only half the water is left and add then taken.
6. Kidney Stone: Basil has strengthening effect on the kidney. In case of renal stone the juice of basil leaves and honey, if taken regularly for 6 months it will expel them via the urinary tract.
7. Heart Disorder: Basil has a beneficial effect in cardiac disease and the weakness resulting from them. It reduces the level of blood cholesterol.
8. Children's Ailments: Common pediatric problems like cough cold, fever, diarrhea and vomiting respond favorably to the juice of basil leaves. If pustules of chicken pox delay their appearance, basil leaves taken with saffron will hasten them.
9. Stress: Basil leaves are regarded as an 'adaptogen' or anti-stress agent. Recent studies have shown that the leaves afford significant protection against stress. Even healthy persons can chew 12 leaves of basil, twice a day, to prevent stress. It purifies blood and helps prevent several common elements.
10. Mouth Infections: The leaves are quit effective for the ulcer and infections in the mouth. A few leaves chewed will cure these conditions.
11. Insect Bites: The herb is a prophylactic or preventive and curative for insect stings or bites. A teaspoonful of the juice of the leaves is taken and is repeated after a few hours. Fresh juice must also be applied to the affected parts. A paste of fresh roots is also effective in case of bites of insects and leeches.
12. Skin Disorders: Applied locally, basil juice is beneficial in the treatment of ringworm and other skin diseases. It has also been tried successfully by some naturopaths in the treatment of leucoderma.
13. Teeth Disorder: The herb is useful in teeth disorders. Its leaves, dried in the sun and powdered, can be used for brushing teeth. It can also be mixed with mustered oil to make a paste and used as toothpaste. This is very good for maintaining dental health, counteracting bad breath and for massaging the gums. It is also useful in pyorrhea and other teeth disorders.
14. Headaches: Basil makes a good medicine for headache. A decoction of the leaves can be given for this disorder. Pounded leaves mixed with sandalwood paste can also be applied on the forehead for getting relief from heat, headache, and for providing coolness in general.
15. Eye Disorders: Basil juice is an effective remedy for sore eyes and night-blindness, which is generally caused by deficiency of vitamin A. Two drops of black basil juice are put into the eyes daily at bedtime.
DISCLAIMER: These are only general guidelines as a first aid. It is always better to see a doctor depending upon the intensity of the case. The views expressed above are entirely those of the author.