Holy Basil (Tulsi)

Holy Basil

Holy Basil the name often given to the herb tulsi will awaken the mind bringing mental clarity whilst also relaxing the nervous system, allowing time for the restoration of the adrenal glands which have become exhausted by trauma, depression or anxiety. It modulates the stress response, increases adaptive energy and nourishes the vital spirit.

Holy basil is an antidote to the pressures of modern life. It has adaptogenic qualities and improves the systemic response to physical, biological, emotional and environmental stress enabling one to enjoy more stamina and less stress. Its potent antioxidant effects offer neuroprotection to safeguard against cerebral degeneration and memory loss. Holy basil prevents increased corticosterone levels which become elevated in prolonged stress. It works on both the sympathetic and parasympathetic sides of the autonomic nervous system by first acting as a stimulant and then a relaxant.

The Plant

Holy basil is a very special plant. For thousands of years it has been worshipped by Hindus, who consider it to be an avatar of the Goddess Laxmi.

Three Key Points To Remember

  1. Holy Basil will stimulate the brain and clear mental fog
  2. Holy Basil relaxes the nervous system giving it time to restore and re-balance
  3. Holy Basil contains aromatic and pungent volatile oils which stimulate a tired mind. It lifts nervous depression and depletion and can be used alongside conventional medications

A Little Bit Of Chemistry

Tulsi plants produce aromatic essential oils that have a scent, similar to that of our native culinary basil. One of the components of these essential oils is ursolic acid, this element helps to correct cellular function. The essential oils also work synergistically together to suppress protein kinase-C (PKC) and downregulate matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) which prevents angiogenesis and induces apoptosis.

PKC is specifically involved in receptor desensitisation, in modulating membrane structure events, in regulating transcription, in mediating immune responses, in regulating cell growth, and in learning and memory. In addition, ursolic acid also moderates the inflammatory cascade, including the production of COX-2.

View our list of Herbs in Ayurveda

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Ayur ~ Life. Veda ~ Science or Knowledge.