12 Impressive Uses for Basil You Didn’t Know
Basil is one of the most commonly grown herbs. Most people know that you can and should use basil in the kitchen. Basil and tomato products pair together beautifully. There are hundreds of recipes you can try that allow the unique flavor of basil to shine through. Basil also has other uses aside from being one of the best culinary herbs available.
Some of these ways to use basil involve essential oil. Remember that essential oils are a much higher concentrated amount of basil. If you are pregnant, you should confirm that basil essential oil is safe before using it.
12 Ways to Use Basil
1. Calming Your Stomach
Italians might be on to something by adding basil to half of their recipes. Basil is known to have a calming effect on the stomach. By adding basil to many dishes, you might be guaranteeing your stomach won’t feel queasy later.
If your stomach already feels queasy, try adding ½ teaspoon of fresh or dried basil into the water. Drinking this will help soothe indigestion and get rid of that feeling of fullness that leaves many nauseous.
2. Household Cleaning Spray
Making your household cleaners is cost effective and helps to eliminate all of those chemicals in your home that might be harmful to your family members. You can use basil essential oil in your cleaning recipe. Vinegar is often the base for most homemade cleaners. Try adding 20 drops of basil essential oil and 15 drops of lemon essential oil to your next batch of cleaner!
3. Coughs and Colds
Many people swear that basil leaf is the perfect home remedy for coughs and colds! To utilize it, you need to chew on fresh leaves to reduce your coughing spells. You could also try to make a tea from dried basil. Doing so will help to shorten that pesky cold that doesn’t seem to want to go away.
If you have an acute fever, basil leaves boiled with cardamom in water can be drunk several times a day. The juice of basil leaves is helpful to bring down a high temperature. Try these methods throughout the day to beat back a cold.
4. Soothing Sore Muscles and Joints
A primary benefit of basil essential oil is the ability to soothe your sore muscles and joints. It acts as a natural cooling agent, relaxing those painful muscles that you worked all day.
There are several ways to tap into this benefit. You can rub diluted basil essential oil over the areas that are aching the most. You can make a cream using the essential oil, letting you use it wherever you are. Try adding a few drops of basil essential oil to your bathtub.
5. Headache Facial Steam
Headaches can be debilitating. An interesting home remedy is to try facial steam with dried basil leaf. All you need to do is add a tablespoon of dried basil leaf to two cups of boiling water. Place a towel over your head and lean over the pot with the boiling water and basil leaf. Breathe in this steam for 5 to 10 minutes. You will notice a headache starts to go away quickly. Of course, you do have to walk around afterward smelling like basil, but that’s better than a headache!
6. Natural Antibiotic
Basil is said to act as a natural antibiotic. Instead of resorting to conventional antibiotics to solve problems, basil can come to the rescue. Basil oil can be used as a treatment for antibiotic-resistant infections. There is evidence that it can fight Staphylococcus, Enterococcus, and Pseudomonas. That is pretty impressive for a simple, culinary herb.
7. Focusing Agent
Sometimes, we all need to focus. It might be on a large test coming your way or a project that requires your attention. At the same time, it is hard to focus on one thing when our daily lives can be busy. If you need to focus, try diffusing an essential oil blend featuring basil. Rosemary is another essential oil that pairs well with basil and will help you focus.
8. Battling Ear Infections
One of the best ways to use basil is for ear infections. You are going to need basil essential oil rather than basil leaf to battle an ear infection. Basil essential oil is antibacterial, and you can apply it to the outside of your ear to help combat the infection. It is best not to put essential oils inside of your ear!
9. Bug Bites and Stings
Summertime brings the endless battle against bug bites and stings. Since you are spending more time outside, you have a higher chance of getting bitten or stung by an insect. If you are outside and have access to fresh basil leaves, try chewing up a leaf and applying it to the bite. Doing so helps to relieve the pain and draw out the insect venom that causes itchiness.
You can also use basil essential oil in your homemade bug bite cream. It will do the same thing!
10. Stress Reducing
Who doesn’t need less stress in their lives? Basil is said to have properties that can reduce stress and help you relax when the time comes. If you want to tap into the natural stress relieving properties of basil, try adding two cups of strong basil leaf tea to a warm bath. You can also drink basil tea if you are up for the flavor.
11. Leveling Blood Sugar
Another impressive use for basil is to help level out your blood sugar. If you notice your blood sugar might be too low, try adding basil regularly to your teas or juices. It can have awesome results!
12. Prevent Acne Breakouts
Basil can help to prevent acne outbreaks. The oil in the fresh basil leaves can help to clear bacteria from the skin that clogs your pores. Applying basil juice to the area is the best way to reap the benefits. Basil juice also has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce redness and provide much-needed relief. You might even notice that your skin feels softer after using basil.