I have been taking holy basil for a while now, and I have even recently raised my dose. Reason being the more I find out about this herb the more I’m realizing that it is somewhat of a herbal panacea.
I knew it was good for stress and this was the initial reason that I personally started taking it. From some due diligence I have discovered more benefits than I can cover in a single blog post. I would say the top 5 benefits are stress relief, its hormonal effects (esp. testosterone), its antimicrobial properties, how protective it is against toxins, and how beneficial it is for beauty care. I am now convinced that just about everyone could benefit from this sacred herb (holy basil is actually worshiped in Hinduism).
First off I would like to point out that holy basil is extremely beneficial in resolving anxiety. So much so that it is comparable in effectiveness with diazepam or name brand Valium. It has also shown great benefit for symptoms of depression. Psychology Today referred to the stress related hormone cortisol as public enemy number 1, just to put into perspective how dangerous chronically elevated cortisol is. In the same article they point out that elevated cortisol levels: interfere with learning and memory, lower immune function, decrease bone density, increase weight gain, blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease… The list goes on and on”(1).
Some things they left off their list are sleep and sexual function to name a couple. Luckily for us Holy Basil not only lowers the “stress hormone”, but also protects from physical stress and metabolic stress.
Holy Basil’s Effect on Cortisol
One double blind, placebo controlled human study on holy basil’s ability to manage stress looked at conditions known to be effected by elevated cortisol. They found that “after six weeks of intervention, scores of symptoms such as forgetfulness, sexual problems of recent origin, frequent feeling of exhaustion, and frequent sleep problems of recent origin decreased significantly”(2). It was extremely beneficial in solving stress related sexual problems with the study stating “our findings showed that O. tenuiflorum (holy basil) extract remarkably reduced the symptom scores of sexual problems by 87.5% in comparison to patients of placebo group”(2). By lowering cortisol holy basil indirectly helps memory/cognitive function, sleep, and sexual function.
We mentioned how holy basil lowers the “stress hormone” cortisol, but I would like to point out that there is an almost inverse relationship between cortisol and DHEA. When cortisol is high DHEA is low and visa versa. DHEA is a precursor to the sex hormones estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Elevated cortisol does a number to your sex hormone levels and many other hormones. Thyroid hormone is down regulated and this is probably the reason why holy basil is so beneficial for thyroid. Male individuals who are stressed tend to have a lower level of free testosterone to bound testosterone (bound testosterone is not usable by the body).
Holy Basil and Testosterone
Speaking of testosterone, one night I was researching holy basil and came across a forum on bodybuilding.com that claimed that holy basil boosted “testosterone levels off the scale” (https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=136755071). As it turns out there is an androgenic analogue in holy basil that acts similarly to testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). In one rabbit study it literally took their testosterone levels higher than could be measured by the equipment being used. Just like TRT, this did shut down the bodies own natural production of testosterone. It also lowers sperm levels and is used as an contraceptive in India. Discontinuing its use will cause testosterone levels to normalize and the body’s production to turn back on and raise sperm levels.
Holy basil has been used in India for centuries to purify water. There are a few reasons for this, and one is what this section is about. The next section is the other. Holy basil has been shown to have antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, antiprotozal, antimalarial, and anthelmintic (destroys parasitic worms) properties. When you are living in a place where they don’t sterilize the water this could be very useful. I am a big proponent of preventative medicine and taking something that has this much antimicrobial protection is a no brainier. With these antimicrobial compounds in the body it will be much harder to develop an infection.
Toxin/Heavy Metal Protection
Going back to the purification holy basil is extremely beneficial when it comes to dealing with heavy metals and other toxins. Numerous studies have shown holy basil’s protective effects to the brain, liver, kidnys, and other organs against pestisides, pharmicuticals, and other industrial chemicals. There are also a host of studies that show holy basil’s protective effects from heavy metals. Some of the heavy metals holy basil has been shown to protect against include lead, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, and mercury. If you live in a heavily populated area you are in For those of us that are a little iffy about fluoride in tap water, holy basil has been shown to lower its levels in water and offsets some of the negative effects in the body.
To start off with we have already mentioned the antimicrobial effects of holy basil and I will mention it again as for this reason it is a good treatment for acne. Holy basil has been shown to be effective against multiple strains of bacteria that are associated with acne. For this same reason it is a great treatment for blackheads. It has also been noted that it opens pores, tones the skin, and reduces scar marks. Some cosmetic companies have taken notice of this and have even started adding holy basil to their products. If you are looking for a solution to dandruff look no further as holy basil helps with dry and itchy scalp as well. Just like the cosmetic companies took notice, holy basil has also been added to hair care products. With all these beauty and hygiene benefits holy basil will make you feel and look great.
Visit Holy Basil Page to learn more!
Order Now: CLICK HERE
Or stop by and see me at the Crucial FOUR Wellness Center in Addison, TX. You will not regret it! This is something that just about everybody will benefit from.
As always say yes to your health!
- https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-athletes-way/201301/cortisol-why-the-stress-hormone-is-public-enemy-no-1 (1)
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4296439/ (2)
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3185238/ (3)
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18492147 (4)
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