The leaves and seeds of the basil plant are the important medicinal parts of this herb, which is regularly used in cuisines and recipes all over the world. Basil essential oil is popular in Europe, Central Asia, India and Southeast Asia. The oil is extensively used for culinary purposes in the Mediterranean region and still forms the active ingredient of many Italian recipes such as pesto. It is also used when making pasta and salads.
Basil was widely used in ancient times in place like India for various medicinal purposes (Ayurvedic medicine). The herb was used to treat diarrhea, cough, mucous discharges, constipation, indigestion, and certain skin diseases.
- Decongestant (especially for circulation through the lungs and prostate)
- Disinfectant (urinary and pulmonary)
- Stimulant for the nerves and adrenal cortex
Emotionally and spiritually, basil essential oils are helpful in dealing with feelings of anxiety, fear, or nervousness, and has been said to be the oil of "renewal". It is strengthening and calming to the heart and mind, making it perfect for overwhelm, stress, fatigue, and may even assist a person in their efforts to overcome addiction.