Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Power of Herbs: Basil


As you can see my friends I am focusing today on the very special herb. I know that I promised every Wednesday but with me being absent from my blog, and not working like I use to I thought that today is a good time to present one more very powerful herb grown for medical as well as culinary use. 
Basil is one of the oldest and most popular herbs all over the world and in many countries and traditions also called as a Holy Herb. It is absolutely necessary for our health. 
Basil is originally native to Iran, India and regions of Asia and basil leaves are known to have disease preventing and health promoting properties, so their health benefits are on a higher rank.
This herb is very low in calories and contain no cholesterol, but are very rich source of many essential nutrients, minerals, and vitamins.



Basil contains:
facts found on the wiki and to read more about it click here
  • Zeaxanthin,(is one of the most common carotenoid alcohols found in nature. It is important in the xanthophyll cycle. Synthesized in plants and some micro-organisms, it is the pigment that gives paprika (made from bell peppers), cornsaffron, and many other plants and microbes their characteristic color)  is a yellow flavored carotenoid compound. Herbs, fruits, and vegetables that are rich in this compound help to protect from age related macular disease, especially in the elderly.
  • Vitamin A, (the light-absorbing molecule retinal, that is necessary for both low-light (scotopic vision) and color vision)  has antioxidant properties and it is necessary for vision. It is also required for maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin. Consumption of natural foods rich in vitamin-A has been found to help body protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.
  • Vitamin K, (is a group of structurally similar, fat-soluble vitamins that are needed for the posttranslational modification of certain proteins required for blood coagulation and in metabolic pathways in bone and other tissue)  in few words plays role in the strengthening of the bone function by helping mineral process.
  • Basil herb contains good amount of potassium, iron, manganese, copper, and magnesium. Potassium is an important component and it helps control heart rate and blood pressure.
  • The use of basil leaf tea is recommended in nervous system fatigue, insomnia and painful menstruation. 
  • Basil essential oil has a refreshing effect and hence it is used for treating nervous tension, mental fatigue, melancholy, migraines and depression. Due to this calming nature of basil essential oil, it is widely used in aromatherapy. It regular use gives mental strength and clarity.
Where to find Basil tea?
Personally I use Basil for culinary uses that you can find in any store. Making the tea is the easiest. For 8oz of tea you will need:

  • 2 Tbs. Dry Basil
  • 8 oz Water
  • Boil the water and place Dry Basil. 
  • Let it cook for 20 second and take it off the burner.
  • Cover and leave it like that for next 3 minutes.
  • Drain the tea into your cup and drink.
*Note: Don't add sugar, you might use 1/2 teaspoon of pure Honey.
The best result is if you drink it after meal instead of juices or water. Or perhaps instead of your afternoon coffee drink this tea because it will relax you and your stomach will thank you too! Also recommended few hours before bed time. 

If you want to know more about my first pick on "The Power of Herbs" click here.
It was Bay Leaf and I can honestly say it is fantastic herb for both medical and culinary use. 

Enjoy your week ahead!

Your Friend,


Sandra 







All the images and recipes are ©2010, 2011 & 2012 Sandra's Easy Cooking. All Rights Reserved. 
You cannot copy, or republish without permission of the author.

Creative Commons License

50 comments :

  1. Sandra, I love basil tea!! I thought I was the only one! :)

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  2. I've never had basil tea but I do love basil. I'll definitely have to try this!

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  3. Basil is a lovely herb, I use it a lot, but never had a tea. I shell fix it!

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  4. @Katrina, yey, I am not the only either!:))

    @CherylK, You have to try it..I am so sure that you will love it!

    @Marina, I am glad you like the Basil now you have to try the tea..

    Thanks ladies for you lovely comments!!!

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  5. I love basil and used to add them in my cooking and definitely love to try your basil tea too :)

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  6. Thanks for all the information about basil. I love to cook with basil, but never had a tea. I'd love to try it.

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  7. Hi Sandra - I love this idea! I am a big tea drinker. I have just realize how healthy some of these herbs are. Parsley is also very high in vitamin K. :)

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  8. @Ann, Hope you do try it! Thank you for your comment!

    @Hyosun, You are very welcome..i am glad you found it useful! Thanks sweetie!

    @Jennifer, Parsley is probably next on my list! it is also very good for bladder..don't you just love how helpful these are and we are only using them in the cooking!:) Thanks for your visit today!

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  9. I love herbal teas... I never thought to use basil! You've provided some great information today, thank you. I think I will give this a try! Oh, why can't I sweeten with sugar? For some reason I can't use honey to sweeten my teas - only to bake with.

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  10. Hi Lyn, thanks for your comment..sugar kind of kills the nutritional benefits in the tea, but if you must use it try stevia, or splenta! Hope that sounds better!:)

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  11. What a nice post, I love the herb basil and how it smells and taste, I shall have to try this one. Your photos are so good :)

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  12. With so many health benefits, no wonder Mum used to add a few leaves of basil to the everyday tea that was made at home! But I think I am going to like your version of the tea coz it is without milk. thanks for sharing :)

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  13. Sandra, this is my favourite herb of all of them but in a tea? This sounds so good - and healthy to boot. Cheers - or clink with that porcelain cup. Loving your creative photos.

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  14. I've never thought of basil tea, but it sounds delicious! Very informative post and beautiful pictures!

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  15. I never herd that basil could use for a tea before, and surprisingly a lot of advantage that we could get from it. absolutely try it soon! thanks for share it Sandra

    cheers

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  16. Oh, I love basil...and I can't wait till my garden is brimming with it again! I've never even contemplated basil tea...but it sounds marvelous~

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  17. Add me to the list of people who didn't know about basil tea. Lovely cup and saucer!

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  18. Basil tea does sound like something I need to try! Great nutritional information here also. Spring is in the air and basil plants do quite well around here, so this is a nice reminder to get planting. Happy Monday!

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  19. Never knew so much about basil. Love the idea of the tea!

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  20. Loving you wrote basil using basil :) And basil tea is one of my mother's favorite, so I guess now I'll know how to make it for her!

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  21. One of my favorite herbs. I am now only month away from having it grow right outside my back door... counting the days.

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  22. Oh how I love basil! I've never thought to drink it as a tea, I will have to try this.

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  23. Basil tea sounds interesting and good. I have never thought of it being used for anything other than cooking. Great post!

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  24. i have a basil plant too, the one herb plant surviving so far lol! glad to know it's got so many good properties! I should use it more often!

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  25. Wow, this is a great informative post! :) I love basil, but have never had tea from it. Very intriguing! :)

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  26. Sandra - Sorry to hear you are sick and you definitely need this tea right now! Take good care. By the way, comment works now. :-)

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  27. Thanks for all the tips on using basil - I really like it with strawberry so might try and make a strawverry basil tea :)
    Yum and thanks!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

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  28. I loooove basil so am excited to see all its health benefits! I've never thought of making tea with it, but it must be lovely. I love that photo of the dried basil with "basil" written in it - so cute!

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  29. I love basil because it just has a wonderfully unique flavour. I'm glad to learn that it also has so much health benefits. Thanks for this very informative post Sandra.

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  30. This was fascinating. I love basil...use it almost every day in cooking, but I didn't know anything about it.

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  31. Sandra, love the idea of tea made from sweet basil, thanks for sharing all the info on one of my favorite herbs;-)

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  32. I didn't know all this about basil--thanks for such an educational post, Sandra. :)

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  33. I love basil, but I've never had it in tea before. I bet it smells fantastic! I'll have to give this a try once my garden starts spitting out basil again!

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  34. What cute photos, Sandra! I've never made basil tea, but I think I'll have to make some tonight. Great informative post :)

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  35. A very interesting post and lovely tea! I love basil, whether fresh or dried.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  36. I've never heard of basil tea? I'll have to try some! Basil is my favorite herb, theres few things I make for dinner that I don't use it in (haha so yes... I pretty much eat Italian every night :) )I didn't know all of the health benefits behind it though, now I feel even better about eating my pesto!

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  37. Wow, Sandra, this is brilliant! I've never used basil in tea but it sounds fabulous. What a great, informative post about my favorite herb. Thanks for sharing!

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  38. What a very informative post on basil, Sandra! I love basil and this is such a good way to enjoy its wonderful flavor!

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  39. I love cooking with basil, but didn't know about all of its health benefits. Thanks for the information, and the tea looks wonderful.

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  40. I love to use basil in all sorts of dishes, but basil tea? Never heard before, but does sound fabulous! :)

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  41. Hi Sandra sweet lady, I like th idea of this tea, do you think you could use fresh basil (I have a bunch growing) and then take them out before drinking. The fresh herb seems more potent. I love basil and it does sound like it would be soothing. Hope all is well and you are feeling much better. Hugs.

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  42. @Suzi, Dry basil has different effect that the fresh one! I know it makes more sense to have full benefits from fresh basil but dry basil is much better and the tea gets stronger! Try drying them and you will see the difference!

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  43. Very informative post, Sandra! I have never heard of basil in tea before, but it sounds very interesting! Thanks :)

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  44. What a great post, I learned a lot about basil. It, along with thyme is one of my favourite herbs. I've never tried basil tea though. I will have to try this.

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  45. I love basil .. both fresh and dried but never really made tea with that. I am curious to give a try for sure.

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  46. Very informative post Sandra! Basil is one of my favourite herbs, I am using it fresh and dried but have never thought of making basil tea! I will have to try it!:)

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  47. This tea sounds so soothing and when I read about the nutritional/medicinal values of basil, I am more eager to try this tea. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post, Sandra! Have a wonderful day and happy cooking/baking. http://cosmopolitancurrymania.blogspot.com

    Warm regards: Purabi Naha

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  48. Hi Sandra! I don't know if I'd ever drink it in tea....but I love basil!

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  49. Great info!! I'll have to keep my eye out for Basil tea. I could use more mental clarity ;)

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  50. Great post on one of my favorite herbs! I have never tried basil tea before and I am sure it will work with fresh basil as well...sounds lovely!
    Hope you are having a great weekend!

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