Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Basil for sinus congestion

Basil for sinus congestion

Basil, a culinary herb, is known as Saint Joseph’s Wort in English-speaking regions. One of the favorite herbs of Greeks and Romans, basil is also regularly used in the Asian and Italian food. Botanists call it Ocimum basilicum.



The plant
The annual plant, a native of India, is used to decorate temples in the country. Holy variety of basil grown in India is called Ocimum sanctum.
The herb, susceptible to frost, grows well in sunny locations with some shade. You can sow the seeds in large containers.
Basil attracts butterflies. So if you like butterflies plant it in your garden and enjoy its multifold benefits.

Uses
The versatile herb, known for more than forty centuries, is used for cooking, cosmetics and medicines. Spicy and pungent scent of the herb enhances flavor of food. For example, it improves taste of vegetables such as marrows, brinjals and courgettes. You can use its oil, powder, paste and or fresh leaves. Ayurveda and Siddha doctors use it for its medicinal properties.
Leaves and seeds are used for cooking. Basil is used with mint, parsley and celery in cooking. Basil also goes well with tomatoes. The herb is an excellent salad dressing.
Dry it in summer and use the powder to garnish food in winter.
Italians use the herb in famous pesto sauce.
You can burn dry basil to keep mosquitoes at the bay.
The African tribes believe that basil leave paste encourages hair growth.
The herb aids in digestion. It gives relief from nausea. Apply fresh basil leaves to the temples to heal headaches.
To heal infections of the mouth, gargle with the herb. Add basil leaves in boiling water for gargle.
Basil leaves offer relief from the pain in heels due to standing for a long time.
A combination of basil, fennel and rosemary is used for lung disorders like asthma and bronchitis.
Add fresh basil leaves in hot water and inhale the steam / vapors to ease sinus congestion.
The herb has antimicrobial, antibacterial and antiseptic properties.
Basil strengthens immune system and cleans the system and thereby protects you against all kinds of diseases and infections including sinus congestion and infections.
The herb, named after serpent-like animal Basilisk that carried deadly poison, was used as an antidote to poison. It was believed that just a gaze of the animal could kill.

 

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