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Try these 6 ways to use tulsi according to Ayurveda for better health

Tulsi is found in most homes in India but very few people know about the myriad health benefits of tulsi. Read on to know just what holy basil can do for you.
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From body to mind, tulsi is truly a healer! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Dr Partap Chauhan Updated: 26 Jun 2020, 11:31 am IST
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Native to India, you will find that holy basil, better known as tulsi, graces almost every home as an aromatic perennial shrub. In Ayurveda, it has tremendous spiritual as well as medicinal significance. 

However, despite its common existence and easy availability, most people are not aware of tulsi’s basic uses and health benefits.

To understand its benefits better, let’s get to know a little more about this miracle plant.

Where is tulsi found?
Holy Basil now grows in many regions throughout the world, but it is native to India. It is prominently featured in varied cuisines throughout the world including Italian, Thai, Vietnamese and Laotian.

Not just one, there are three different types of tulsi
According to Ayurvedic texts, the three different types of tulsi are: rama (green leaf) tulsi, shyama (purple leaf) tulsi, and vana (wild leaf) tulsi. Although all three types of tulsi have their uses in Ayurveda, green leaved rama-tulsi is the most widely used. The fragrance of the leaves is quite attractive and the taste is excellent, especially when the dried leaves are brewed in tea.

This is how you can use tulsi for better health
Tulsi extracts are used in Ayurvedic remedies for common colds, headaches, stomach disorders, inflammation, heart disease, various forms of poisoning, and malaria. Traditionally, it is taken as herbal tea, dried powder, fresh leaf, or mixed with ghee. The essential oil extracted from certain forms of tulsi is used for medicinal purposes as well as in skincare preparations due to its antibacterial properties. 

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Let’s soak in the phenomenal benefits of our desi tulsi. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

In fact, here are some home remedies with the herb that you can try:

  1. A decoction of tulsi leaves, honey, and ginger is a beneficial remedy for bronchitis, asthma, influenza, cough, and cold. Water boiled with tulsi leaves can be used in case of a sore throat.
  2. The herb improves resistance to stress and has a normalizing influence on blood pressure as well as blood sugar imbalances. Chew 12 leaves twice a day to maintain overall health.
  3. Tulsi is effective in purifying blood which helps with preventing ulcers and infections in the mouth.
  4. Tulsi seeds, taken mixed in water or cow’s milk, act as an antioxidant which also proves to be nourishing and soothing for the body.
  5. Tulsi has a strengthening effect on the kidney. In case of renal stones, the juice of tulsi leaves and honey if taken regularly for six months will expel them via the urinary tract, according to Ayurveda. Though you must consult with your doctor first.
  6. A decoction of tulsi leaves makes a good medicine for headache. Pounded leaves mixed with sandalwood paste can be applied on the forehead for relief.

The best part about the versatile tulsi? You don’t need to buy fancy teas to reap its benefits. You can grow it at home and bask in the glory of holy basil. 


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About the Author

Dr. Partap Chauhan, director of Jiva Ayurveda, is an author, public speaker, TV personality and Ayurvedacharya. ...Read More

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