Health Benefits and Uses of Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum )

Health Benefits and Uses of Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum )

Ayurveda recommends tulsi or holy basil for skin diseases, acne, pimple, dark circles psoriasis and dandruff. Not recommended for Impotence and male fertility.


Table of Content

Tulsi or Tulasi or Holy Basil in Ayurveda

Ayurvedic Benefits and Medicinal Uses of Tulsi or Ocimum Sanctum

Benefits of Tulsi for Skin Diseases

Tulsi for Psoriasis

Tulsi for Acne, Pimple, Dark Circles and Pigmentation

Home Remedies with Tulsi.

How to Prepare Tulsi Juice – An Ayurveda Way

How to Prepare Tulsi Tea ?

Tulsi or Tulasi or Holy Basil in Ayurveda

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Plant tulsi is known by different names in ayurveda. These names are coined based on its medicinal properties.

  1. Tulasi  or tulsi The plant whose medicinal properties are unfathomable.
  2. Surasa – Its juice has immense medicinal properties with good taste.
  3. Apetaraakshasi, Bhutaghni , Bhutapriya, Bhuteshta, Bhutapati,- It destroys germs and insects.
  4. Bahumanjari, Devadundhubi , Sumanjari,- It has many inflorescence which resemble the drums of god and look beautiful.
  5.  Gramya – it is easily available and easily grown. Plant which is found in every household.
  6. Sulabha, Sulaghni, Subhaga, – Very auspecious
  7. Surabhi, Svadu Gandha – It has very nice fragrance.
  8. Pavani, Visnuvallabha, Haripriya – This is loved and favoured by Lord vishnu

The plant Tulsi or Holy Basil (Botanical name Ocimum Sanctum ) belongs to family Lamiaceae.  It is a tropical plant which grows as weed and also cultivated. Tulsi is worshipped by Hindus and is an important symbol of Hindu religion. It is a very common sight to find Tulsi Vrindavan ( A special structure where tulsi is grown) in houses of Hindus.

This plant has different names in local languages of India. In hindi it is Tulsi, In
English this plant has names like Indian Basil/ Holy Basil/ Sacred Basil. But in
Telugu , Marathi and Malayalam language, it has same name Tulasi. In kannada
we call Sri Tulasi

The tulsi shrub is an erect plant which grows to a height of 50 to 60 cm tall. It has hairy stems, opposite ovate leaves and purple flowers. Leaves have strong scent. There are two types of tulsi
1.Krishna tulsi – Has purple leaves
2.Shri tulsi – Has Green leaves

Chemical composition of tulsi

The holy basil contains Eugenol, Eugenol, methyl ether, Carvacrol, b-Caryophellene,  Bornyl acete, cadinene, camphene, Camphor, Humelene, Methyl chavicol, Limonene etc.

Ayurvedic Benefits and Medicinal Uses of Tulsi or Ocimum Sanctum

Texts of ayurveda describe the properties of tulsi as follows.

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It is light to digest (laghu) and dries tissue secretions (ruksha) . Tulsi tastes pungent (katu rasa) and bitter (tikta rasa). It can penetrate deep tissues (teekshna) and has anti helminthic properties (krumighna). Due to these properties it normalizes kapha dosha and vata dosha. But increases pitta dosha. Leaves, seeds, and roots of Tulsi are used in ayurvedic preparations.

Benefits of Tulsi for Skin Diseases

  1. Tulsi has anti inflammatory properties as it reduces vata . Hence its external application on skin on swollen parts helps to diminish swelling and pain. For this collect 10 to 15 fresh leaves of tulsi and grind them to make paste. Apply this paste on inflamed part.
  2. Tulsi helps in many skin disorders. It is effective in skin rashes, insect bites and itching. Leaves of this plant are effectively used in ring worm infections and leucoderma. Crush few tulsi leaves and apply on insect bites and rashes.
  3. Tulsi swarasa or juice help to accelerate wound healing and also cleanse the wound. For this collect fresh leaves of tulsi and wash them well. Grind these to a paste and squeeze the juice on wounds. (Do this under the supervision of qualified ayurvedic doctor)

Tulsi for Psoriasis

Ayurveda acharyas recommend tulsi, neem and turmeric for psoriasis. This herb has been praised as “kushtaghna” or the one which relieves skin diseases. This can be used internally and externally. A mixture of tulsi juice, neem juice, aloevera or kumari and turmeric can be applied on eczema and psoriasis patches.

Tulsi for Acne, Pimple, Dark Circles and Pigmentation

Tulsi cleanses the skin from within. This is an ideal skin cleanser for oily skin. It removes dirt and impurities from skin and pores. A face pack made from paste of fresh tulsi leaves help to reduce acne, pimple and scar. It also reduces inflammation and reduce eruption of zits.

Paste and Juice of Tulsi leaves help to reduce acne, pimples and scars. Take a handful of fresh tulsi leaves and grind it to make a paste. Apply this on face and wash it off with cold water. Repeat this twice in a week when you have oily skin, acne, pimple and pigments.

Other Ayurvedic Medicinal Uses of Tulsi

Apart from above mentioned important uses this plant has other uses to manage our health.

Balances Kapha

This herb balances Kapha. Hence it is recommended in productive cough , bronchitis and asthma where the infected mucous or kapha has to be expectorated. It is regularly used in chronic respiratory diseases. Ayurveda acharyas praise this plant as “Kapha Vinashini” for this property.

Smokers are more prone to bronchitis and cough. They can use this herb to strengthen their lungs (quitting smoking is always a best option).

Best Anti Microbial

This plant has anti-microbial properties. Hence texts of ayurveda recommend to use this herb in infected wounds , common cold, cough and viral fever. Hence it is recognised as “krumihara

Aids Digestion.

It improves taste and increases appetite. This herb boosts agni or metabolism and relieves indigestion. It also helps to detox body and skin by expelling toxins. It relieves hiccups, nausea and vomiting. Tulsi relieves pain which occurs in flanks due to bloating and flatulence.

Helps in management of heart health.

Studies have shown that this plant helps to reduce blood cholesterol level and help to improve heart health.

Ayurveda scholars recommend to use this in psychiatric conditions, disorders of eyes and urine retention.

Reduces Sexual urge

This plant is regularly given to Bramhacharis or Students who have to concentrate on studies. It reduces sexual urge and helps them to concentrate on studies. This can be used by men who want to cut down their habit of masturbation.

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  1. Fresh juice of Tulsi leaves is used in nasya karma. This method helps to relieve headache and diseases of head and neck. Tulsi leaves act as nervine tonic and help to sharpen memory.
  2. According ayurveda, preparations of Tulsi are beneficial in indigestion, intestinal parasites, bad breath and constipation.
  3. Crushed leaves of tulsi are very effective in fever, cough, bronchitis and other diseases of lungs. It helps in expectoration of excess mucous secretion.
  4. Tulsi acts as a cardiac tonic and purifies blood.
  5. Seeds of tulsi are effective in premature ejaculation .
  6. Consuming 10 – 12 leaves of Tulsi per day helps to manage anxiety and stress.

Apart from these researches have shown that tulsi is very effective in reducing blood sugar and blood cholesterol.

Home Remedies with Tulsi

  1. It is beneficial to smear crushed tulsi leaves on skin rashes, ring worm affected areas and insect bites
  2. Make a smooth paste of tulsi leaves and apply it on acne and pimple to see effective results.
  3. Fresh tulsi juice mixed with ginger and honey help to reduce cough and cold.
  4. Tulsi decoction is very beneficial in fevers like dengue and malaria.
  5. Gargling with tulsi tea or decoction helps to reduce throat pain and mouth ulcers.
  6. Regular consumption of Tulsi leaves help to control diabetes and blood cholesterol.

How to Prepare Tulsi Juice – An Ayurveda Way

Ayurveda acharyas recommend to use all plant parts of tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum) to prepare its juice. Collect leaves, tender branches, tender roots, seeds and flowers of tulsi. Wash them well with flowing water. Cut them into small pieces. Grind them in a mortar and pastel (khalwa yantra) to prepare a soft paste. Do not add water. Place the prepared paste on a thin cotton cloth and squeeze it to get pure tulsi juice.

Uses of tulsi juice

  1.  This juice is very effective in fever, cough and bronchitis.
  2. This juice can be used in nasya karma to treat migraine headache
  3. Tulsi juice helps to reduce acne, pimples, rashes and other skin problems. Juice of tulsi can be applied on affected skin.
  4. Consumption of tulsi juice helps to get rid of intestinal parasites.
  5. Regular consumption of tulsi juice purifies blood and also keeps the heart healthy.
  6. Tulsi juice reduces blood sugar and cholesterol level.

How to Prepare Tulsi Tea ?

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Preparation of Tulsi Tea:

Ingredients:

1. Tulsi leaves : (Dry or Raw) –  1/4 cup
2. Tender barks 🙁 Dry or Raw) – 3 tea spoon
3. Clove: 1
4. Pepper (optional) – 1
5. Cumin seeds (Jeera): – 1/4 spoon
6. Water – 4 cups
5. Honey: 2 tea spoons
6. Lemon (optional) – 1/2 tea spoon

Method of Preparing Tulsi Tea:

Warm clove, pepper and cumin seeds (jeera) on a hot pan. Powder this with the help of mortar and pestle. Finely chop tulsi leaves and tender barks of tulsi. Mix clove, pepper, cumin seeds and tulsi leaves. Pound this mixture in mortar till it becomes coarse.

Boil 4 cups of water in a saucepan and add the coarsely ground ingredients. Allow it to boil till the water content reduces to one cup. Filter the decoction and allow it to warm down. Add honey when decoction is luke warm. Lemon juice can be added to this .

Caution while using tulsi (side effects)

  1. If this herb is consumed in large quantities , it may cause burning sensation.
  2. If this has to be used in pregnancy please consult an ayurvedic physician.
  3. Men with oligospermia (low sperm count and motility or male infertility) should refrain from using this.
  4. Since this herb increases pitta, do not use this when you are hungry , or have burning sensation, during migraine attacks, heavy menstrual flow, bleeding from nose etc.
  5. Never use tulsi along with milk. They both form opposite food combination which harms health.

Health Benefits of Tulsi tea:

Regular consumption of Tulsi tea helps to detoxify skin. This herbal drink helps to prevent acne eruption, dark circles, flaring up of psoriasis, allergic rashes and other skin infections. It is a best ayurvedic skin detox tea.

Tulsi tea is an effective home remedy to relieve constipation, indigestion and it acts as an appetizer.

Regular consumption of tulsi tea reduces inflammation of joints in conditions like arthritis and gout.  It reduces blood sugar and blood cholesterol level. Thus it is helpful in conditions like diabetes.

Tulsi tea detoxifies liver and reduces inflammation of liver. Hence texts of ayurveda recommend use of tulsi in jaundice and other liver diseases.

Tulsi tea when consumed regularly acts as a nervine tonic. It increases memory power, reduces migraine headache and acts as a stress buster.

Tulsi tea is an age old remedy for cough, common cold and throat pain. Regular use of tulsi tea helps to boost immunity of lungs and respiratory system. It acts as an expectorant and relieves the blocked airways of bronchial tree.

Seeds of tulsi can be added to the list of ingredients while making tulsi tea. Tulsi seeds are effective in premature ejaculation and also increase quantity of semen.

Pepper, cumin seeds, honey and clove impart a wonderful flavor to tea and enhance the medicinal properties of tulsi tea. Honey is called as “Yogavahi”. The substance which has a quality of penetrating the deepest tissue is called as Yogavahi. When honey is used with other herbal preparations it enhances the medicinal qualities of those preparations and also helps them to reach the deeper tissues.

Consult Dr.Savitha Suri for ayurvedic remedies. Email drsavithasuri@gmail.com . WhatsApp + 91 6360108663

Author : Dr. Savitha Suri Consultant Ayurvedic Physician

Reference : https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4296439/

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