Basil Essential Oil
Botanical binomial: Ocimum basilicum
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Other names: Sweet basil
Country of Origin: India
Part of plant used in production: Flowering top and leaf
Methods of production: Steam Distillation
Description: A tender annual herb with dark green, ovate leaves and a powerful aromatic scent.
Characteristics: A colourless to pale yellow essential oil with a pleasantly sweet, refreshingly herbaceous odour.
Properties: Analgesic, antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cephalic, diaphoretic, digestive, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, nervine, sudoforic.
Constituents: Linalool, methyl chavicol and small amounts of eugenol, limonene and citronellol.
Uses: A popular addition to baked goods, meat, vegetables, sweets, soups, beverages, chewing gum, and dental products. Basil oil is said to stimulate the mind, giving it strength and clarity. It is good for the respiratory system, for the relief of sinus congestion, asthma, bronchitis, influenza, and whooping coughs. It supports the bodies yang energy and is good for digestive disorders.
Blends well with: Bergamot, black pepper, cajeput, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, ginger, hyssop, lavender, lemon, marjoram, neroli, rosemary, peppermint, pine, thyme and tea tree.
Interesting Facts: Basil was considered the king amongst plants and is therefore named for a royal 'Basileum.' In Ayurvedic medicine, basil opens the heart and mind, bestowing the energy of love and devotion. It is considered the sacred herb in India, dedicated to Krishna and Vishnu. It is said that basil strengthens faith, compassion and clarity.
Safety: Dilute at 4%. Generally non-irritant, non-sensitizing and non-toxic. Do not use if pregnant due to emmenagogue properties. May be irritating and sensitizing to people with sensitive skin.