Basil Essential Oil SWEET

Adam Michael has this to say “Basil essential oil has a light and refreshing aroma. Inhale basil and it will clear the head and assist concentration. Now, the basil plant (Ocimum basilicum) takes its name from the Greek word for a king – ‘basileum’, possibly because the plant was so highly prized that it was considered a King among plants, or maybe because it was an ingredient of an oil for anointing kings. Sir John Parkinson in his herbal says ‘The smell thereof is so excellent that it is fit for a king’s house’. The plant is still greatly valued in present-day Greece, both for cooking and as a medicinal herb, and has various popular names, such as ‘Joy of the Mountains’ and ‘Boy’s Joy’. Pots of it may be found placed at the foot of the pulpit in Greek churches.

Basil has been used since antiquity for chest infections, digestive problems, and jaundice and some writers consider it an aphrodisiac. By the 16th century it was widely used for headaches, migraines and head-colds, being made into a powder and inhaled like snuff to clear the head! We may find inhaling the essential oil a more civilised method, but it is still used for the same problems. It is also an excellent cephalic, second only to rosemary in its clarifying effect on the brain, so it is good for mental fatigue. It is certainly an oil that can be described as uplifting and one early herbalist said that basil ‘expels melancholy vapours from the heart’.

Basil finds major uses in treating all kinds of respiratory infections, including whooping cough and many feverish conditions. Basil essential oil is also antispasmodic, and massage over the stomach and it will ease many digestive difficulties. It can be used, again in gentle massage over the abdomen, to assist scanty and painful periods. As a massage oil, basil may perhaps not be a popular choice used alone, but blends well with other oils, especially lavender, and is very good for tired, tight, overworked muscles. It is especially good for athletes, dancers and other people engaged in strenuous physical activities.”

Botanical Name: Ocimum basilicum

Origin: Egypt