Ever Heard About the Amazing Health Benefits of African Basil?
Were you informed that these leaves possess benefits that are good for your health? Do not worry; this post is intended to show light on the real matter and help you gain some valuable knowledge on the plant. Scent leaves (African basil) have a unique taste and smell, sometimes repulsive, fragrant, or sweet, depending on the way of cultivation. Some of the varieties can even cause folks who smell it to become drunk.
Ocimum gratissimum is an aromatic, perennial herb indigenous to Madagascar, Africa, and S. Asia. This herb grows to approximately one meter in height, with many branches arising from its base. It has elliptic-lanceolate leaves that narrow at both ends and white to pinkish, lengthy, pale flower spikes. Recognized names for African basil include O. suave and O. viride.
Like other members of the Ocimum genus, this herb contains alkaloids, essential oil, glycosides, tannins, and many other chemical constituents.
How Can this Amazing Herb Keep Us Evergreen?
It all transcend the beautiful structures of these plant in your garden, you ought to be informed of the health advantages you can reap from its usage. Shall we then go through the health benefits below?
Maintenance of the Eyes
The leaves are rich in Vitamin A, which aids good eyesight. Vitamin A is required by our retina of the eyes in the form of retinol, which combines with a protein “opsin” to form another protein, “rhodopsin,” the light-absorbing substance which is ultimately necessary for both low-light (scotopic vision) and color vision.
The deficiency of retinol can be terrible for the eyes and thus can lead to xerophthalmia (a medical situation in which one’s eye fails to produce tears) and night blindness. Both of these are preventable when adequate levels of scent leaves are consumed.
Scent leaf is well known for its capability to kill mouth bacteria and help combat bad breath. It is also believed to be able to put tooth decay to a halt.
As an anti-inflammatory, African Basil has the same efficiency as aspirin and ibuprofen. It is very profitable. The plant also is not irritating to the stomach. That is because in this herb, are more elements to prevent damage in the body.
Squeeze some leaves and then drain the extract. After that, take some parts of the extracts and add warm water. You may give this healthy juice to your child, friends, and colleagues. The juice will not just help to treat your cough but also will improve your immunity, so you may no longer get a cough too often.
Healthy for the Heart
Particularly for adults, the leaves help to prevent diseases such as heart problems. Every 100 g of African basil leaves contains 33 g of protein. In addition to this high protein, the leaves are also rich in magnesium, which helps to lower bad cholesterol and boost blood circulation.
The leaves, when crushed and applied to the skin, is a known remedy for infections treatment. The fluid extract can also treat catarrh and cold.
Treatment of Diarrhea
Hot water (100 degree Celsius) and Ethanol extracts of the leaves have been widely demonstrated to be effective against many pathogenic bacteria well known to cause diarrhea, such as Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Salmonella sp. It is therefore conceivable that these leaves can be effectively brewed as a tea to cure cases of diarrhea caused by either of the organisms mentioned earlier.
Also, the use of these leaves in the treatment of diarrhea can be related to the relaxant ability of the essential oil found in it; which is possible to be due to a direct impact on the smooth muscle of the longest section of the small intestine (ileum) rather than an indirect effect on neurotransmitter release.
These leaves can help ease bloating and also aid in digesting our meals on time. Brewed African basil leaves may have some calming effects on the bowel and help with stomach evacuation. Drinking scent leaves extracts also ease heartburn.
As a result of the herb’s antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, the scent leaf extract is also utilized as a food preservative.
Maintain Good Eye and Mouth Health
The scent is very rich in vitamin A. As we know that ascorbic acid can cope with various types of infections of the eye, such as eye-soothing stress and conjunctivitis. Also, for the correction of night blindness and much other vision complication. These basil leaves are also are used to evacuate bad breath.
Lowers Blood Sugar
Both African basil soft stems and leaves can prevent cancer and lower cholesterol. African basil leaves especially normalize sugar levels and shields the insulin-producing cells from any form of damage. Also, the leaves can protect one’s body from harsh radiation.
Treat Malaria and Fever
African basil leaves mixed with bitter leaf is also used in Nigeria as a potent cure for fever and malaria.
Scent leaves are high in compounds like cineole, camphor, and limonene, which are larvacides and so are very harmful to insects and even our enemy ‘mosquitoes’. The leaves can be put in a potted and placed in residential areas to serve as a repellent for mosquitoes, houseflies, and many other insects.
This has a double function given that by lowering the population of houseflies and mosquitoes in residences, the occurrence of malaria and enteric diseases (borne by houseflies) are both reduced to a bearable level.
Helps with Lactation
If you have some issues with lactation after child delivery, African basil leaves can help stimulate your milk secretion. You can eat some of the leaves or add them to your ration often. For example, you may add the leaves to meat or fish dishes! Doesn’t it look delicious?
Repair Smoking Damages
These leaves can also mend damages caused by nicotine and smoking. It is said to have the capability of lowering the nicotine amount in the body.
Scent leaf is a great source of arginine (an amino acid) that aids in the maintenance of optimal penile sperm vitality and health. It also contains beneficial compounds such as apigenin fenchone and eugenol, which can facilitate erection.
Besides, the boron and anetol in the leaves are able to induce estrogen in women whilst the same eugenol notable in men helps to kill the fungus that has been implicated in vaginal discharge.
Treatment of Fungal Infections
Some research has revealed that scent leaves to have antifungal activity against Candida albicans, Penicillium Chrysogenum (also known as Penicillium Notatum), and Microsporum gypsum. Chloroform extracts gotten from these leaves showed vast antifungal activity against the aforementioned fungal species. Thus, the leaves, when smeared on the skin, help in the treatment of these infections.
Great Source of Aromatics and Oils
The entire oil extracts derivable from the plant leaves have a wide range of usage. Also, the essential oils can be used for aromatherapy massage since the oils can refresh and relieve the body. The essential oils can be used in the manufacture of perfumes, soaps, aromatherapy oils, and ointments.
There are a good number of other unconfirmed uses of this powerful plant, including; ceremonial washing of corpses (in Indonesia), reduction of nicotine levels, etc. One clear thing is that the plant is more than meets the nose and must be better researched and utilized before its beauty in its entirety can be duly appreciated.
It was recently found that these leaves can also alleviate pain. The tea gotten from the leaves is beneficial for healing fever, menstrual pain, cough, malaria, and some respiratory problems. Should you be living with any issue with your stomach and often have stomach aches, then taking scent leaf extract can help you get a lot of relief.
Promotes Normal Hair Growth
Hair loss is among the most feared risks of cancer chemotherapy. Investigations by some researchers showed the efficacy of these leaves essential oil (Ocimum oil) in boosting hair growth and follicular production in cyclophosphamide-induced alopecia (hair loss).
Edible plants with antimutagenic activity and chemopreventive potential have been documented from several plant groups. Investigations have proved that extracts of scent leaves have antimutagenic ability against reverse mutation, which is often induced by either 4-nitrophenylenediamine, ethyl methanesulfonate (EMS), or 2-aminofluorine.
Despite the long list of the health benefits of this plant, it is expected of you to carry your medical doctor along before using any form of this product. This is to control the dosage you’re to take depending on your body requirement, health status, physiological conditions (e.g., lactation). It is also necessary to confirm from the medical test that you are not allergic to any compound of the herb.