Benefits of Eating Basil Leaves
I love basil. It is one of my favorite herbs to eat, especially in a Caprese salad. There’s just something about the taste of basil, tomatoes, and balsamic vinaigrette all mixed together.
As good as basil is to eat in today’s video we will be taking a look at some of the benefits of consuming or using basil.
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According to the botanical definition, “herbs” are plants that don’t have a woody stem and die back each winter. It’s also defined as any plant or plant part that has historically been used for culinary or fragrance purposes.
Basil is commonly used as a garnish for all sorts of dishes. This versatile ingredient can be added to virtually any dish you can think of – from meat and seafood to vegetarian dishes and even desserts!
Oh, and did I mention the Caprese salad?
It has so many uses and is one of the most versatile herbs used in cooking today. But did you know that there are many benefits to eating basil?
I recommend always using fresh basil as opposed to dried. You will get the best out of the plant by doing so. Fresh leaves should be bright green and free of damage.
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Basil Benefits Digestion
Sweet basil has an amazing chemical compound known as eugenol. Eugenol has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that make sure your digestive tract is healthy. Basil provides support for your digestive and nervous systems, ensuring you have optimal digestion and a pH balance that is just right.
Basil also helps to reduce bloating.
Basil Reduces Oxidative Stress
Research has found that basil can protect both the heart and brain from oxidative stress.
This condition leads to the damaging of cells in the body. The study, published in Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, found that basil contains a compound called eugenol as mentioned before, a natural antioxidant.
Eugenol can be found in other common herbs, such as rosemary and sage, but basil has a higher concentration of the compound.
Basil Supports Liver Function
Basil is a plant that has been shown to help liver function. Studies have shown that basil has antioxidant and hepatoprotective properties, and can alleviate or prevent many types of liver disease including inflammation, cirrhosis, and cancer.
Basil also contains significant amounts of vitamin A, K, and folate which help promote healthy liver function.
Most people think of basil as primarily a cooking herb, but it also has many health benefits.
The leaves contain significant amounts of antioxidants and other compounds called terpenes which help protect the liver from damage caused by free radicals such as oxidative stress and toxins such as alcohol.
May Help With Depression
Basil, a plant in the mint family has been found to possess antidepressant and mood-lifting properties. It may also help with anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Again, basil’s main active ingredient is eugenol which has been found to possess antidepressant and mood-lifting properties.
Basil essential oil is known to help you treat depression and anxiety.
The herb is considered to be a powerful adaptogen or an anti-stress agent. Basil is also used as an anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting agent, which helps manage stress and we all know that stress can lead to depression.
Basil For Skin Rejuvenation
Basil is a great herb to deep cleanse the skin and help improve its overall appearance.
Perfect for people who have oily skin. It also removes dirt and impurities from your skin, which in turn keeps your pores clear. Mix together equal parts fresh basil leaves, sandalwood powder, and rosewater. Apply it on your face and let it sit for about 20 minutes.
Rinse it out with cool water. Basil has both an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effect which could be helpful for treating acne.
Basil And Heart Health
Based on what I said earlier you already know that basil contains eugenol. But did you know that eugenol helps lower blood pressure by blocking calcium channels?
It also reduces triglycerides and cholesterol levels. In addition, basil has been proven to increase HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol) while lowering LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol).
That’s not all. You will also find magnesium in this herb that improves blood circulation and allows your blood vessels and muscles to relax, preventing muscle cramps.
In addition, basil and basil seeds contain many nutrients including vitamin C, Vitamin K, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese, fiber, and other minerals.
There are more varieties than the four I am mentioning but these are the most commonly seen.
Basil is one of the most widely grown herbs, as it gives a unique flavor to dishes from Italian to Middle Eastern. Today basil can be found easily in supermarkets as well as in dry form. It has a sweet, licorice clove taste that works well in many dishes.
Used to add flavor in a range of Thai and Southeast Asian dishes, anise-licorice has a sweet taste.
Originally from Mexico, also known as Mexican spice basil, has a spicy, fragrant aroma and flavor. It has a hint of cinnamon flavor. It is usually served with white rice stir-fried vegetables
Bush or Greek Basil:
Has a mild flavor and the aroma is moderate. Forms a bush and grows well in pots. The leaves are small and can be used as a substitute for basil in dishes
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