It is known as Holy Basil in English and Tulasi in Sanskrit. Other names used for the Tulsi are Manjari, Krishna Tulsi, Trittavu, Tulshi and Thulsi.
Tulsi is a heavy branched having hair all over. It attains the height of about 75 – 90 cm. It has round oval shaped leaves which are up to 5 cm long. The leaves are 2-4 cm in length. Its seeds are flat. Its flowers are purple – creamish in colour. The Tulsi with the green leaves is called the Shri Tulsi and one with the reddish leaves is called the Krishna Tulsi. Its seeds are yellow to reddish in colour and the leaves contain very essential oil.
Other species of Tulsi namely Ocimum Canum (Ram Tulsi or Kali Tulsi), Ocimum Basilicum, Ocimum Kilmand, Ocimum Scharicum are the other related species of the Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum).
Kingdom : Plantae
Division : Magnoliophyta
Class : Magnoliopsida
Order : Lamiales
Family : Lamiaceae
Genus : Ocimum
Species : O. tenuiflorum
Scientific Name : Ocimum Sanctum
Tulsi is widely grown in the Gir Wildlife Sanctuary and Sasangir National Park in India. Tulsi grows wild in tropics and warm regions.
Tulsi seeds germinate easily. The seeds are mainly sown in the spring season. They are watered from time to time and germinated in one to two weeks. Tulsi prefers rich soil for its growth. It requires full sunlight. It is mainly grown in the temperate climate.
Tulsi has great medicinal properties; it can be taken as herbal tea. The oil extracted from the Karpoora Tulsi is mostly used in the herbal toiletry. Its oil is also used against the insects and bacteria. The Rama Tulsi is an effective remedy for severe acute Respiratory Syndrome. Juice of its leaves gives relief in cold, fever, bronchitis and cough. Tulsi oil is also used as the ear drop. Tulsi helps in curing malaria. It is very effective against indigestion, headache, hysteria, insomnia and cholera. The fresh leaves of Tulsi are taken by the millions of people every day. For over the centuries Tulsi (the queen of herbs) has been known for its remarkable healing properties.
Many people wear the Tulsi beads, which is said to have certain physical and medicinal properties. Its wood is considered as more powerful than any other gem that helps in protecting one from the negative influences. One can also buy several handicraft jewellery items made of Tulsi wood.
In India and neighbouring Nepal, Tulsi is regarded as a sacred plant dearer to the Lord Vishnu. Tulsi symbolises purity. It is considered as the holy plant in the Indian Subcontinent. Tulsi got its name from Tulasi Devi, who was one of Lord Krishna’s eternal consorts. In India people grow Tulsi as the religious plant and worship it. Its leaves are used in temples for the worship purposes and also on several other occasions such as marriages.
A Hindu house is considered incomplete without the Tulsi plant in the courtyard. Tulsi is believed to promote longevity and lifelong happiness. Hindus perform special Tulsi puja in the Kartik month which starts after Sharad Poornima. It is the time of the Tulsi vivah (marriage). On this day Tulsi is decorated and coloured as a bride. Even today people in India maintain a potted Tulsi plant. The woman water the plant, light up the diya near it and worships it daily. The stems, leaves, seeds and even the soil are considered as holy. According to the ancient texts, Tulsi is glorified as the one who helps in bringing people closer to the divine.
A Tulsi drop is rich in Anti Oxidant, Anti Ageing, Anti Bacterial, Anti Viral, Anti Septic, Stimulant, Demulcent, Diuretic & Carminative. It helps to restores the natural suppleness of all skin types. Keep your whole family healthy by using Tulsi Drops.
It increases the immunity and kills diseases. It is Natural Immunity Booster without any side effects. If you take few drops of Tulsi Drops daily you may feel relief from several Diseases. Tulsi Drops balances the refining touch of Tulsi and other herbal ingredients, to calm the skin and the senses.
Tulsi Increases your Stress Resilience. The best part of Tulsi is that it is one of the most effective adaptogens (an agent that helps the body adapts more efficiently to stress) ever known. Tulsi reduces the intensity and negative impact of stress caused by mental tension, Emotional difficulties, and poor lifestyle habits naturally.
Tulsi has all the vital nutrients that are required for the body. It has excellent antioxidant properties and help in strengthening cells, tissues, organs of the body. It helps maintain the vitality, stamina on a regular use of Tulsi drops and in maintaining the sexual strength.
Daily intake of Tulsi drops may delay process of ageing by strengthening the cells of the body. The list goes endlessly and some of its best uses are defined as under.
Fever and Common Cold: Tulsi drops are also having a good germicidal agents and a disinfectant and protects the human body from all types of viral infections, fever, malaria and dengue.
Cough and Respiratory Problems: It helps to mobilize mucous in bronchitis and asthma attacks. It is an effective remedy against bronchitis, asthma, influenza, cold and sore throat. Tulsi drops also cures cough and flu.
Kidney Stone: In case of renal stones, the consumption of Tulsi drops mixed with honey, helps removes these stones through the urinary tract. Tulsi have also strengthening effects on the kidneys.
Uric Acid: Tulsi being a detoxifying agent can also helps to reduce uric acid levels.
Heart Problems: Tulsi also contains Vitamin C and other anti-oxidants such as Eugenol which protects the heart from harmful effects of free radicals, maintain blood pressure, and reduce cholesterol.
Children’s ailments: Common paediatric problems like cough, cold diarrhoea and vomiting respond favourably to Tulsi drops. If a baby is given Tulsi drops regularly before teething, it helps grow teeth easily without any of the usual teething troubles. Massaging the gums with a mixture of Tulsi drops and honey will also help. Giving children a mixture of Tulsi drops and honey helps bring relief to cough and sore throat too. Warm Tulsi drops gets rid of the worms in the stomach.
Teeth disorder: The drops are also useful in treating teeth disorders. When mixed with mustard oil it can be used as a tooth paste. It maintains the health of the gums and helps to counteract bad breath, pyorrhoea and other dental problems. This tooth paste can also be rubbed on the gums to hinder gum inflammation. Tulsi is also used as a mouth wash to relieve tooth ache. Tulsi is an excellent mouth freshener and oral disinfectant and destroys 99% of germs and bacteria found in the mouth.
Stomatitis: These drops mixed with water by doing gargles are quite effective for several mouth infections like ulcer.
Headache: Tulsi drops are a good medicine for headache. Drops mixed with sandalwood paste can be applied on the forehead for relief from headache.
Eye disorder: Tulsi drops are an effective remedy for sore eyes. Two drops of Tulsi can work wonders for the eyes. It soothes eyes and reduces stress. Also it can protect from conjunctivitis, boils and other problems of the eyes which are caused mainly due to bacterial and fungal infections by washing eyes with water mixed with Tulsi drops.
Stomach problems: Several stomach problems like acidity, constipation and flatulence can also be treated with Tulsi drops. Tulsi supports digestive system and makes you feel less bloated and more comfortable. It also helps people suffering from vomiting and lack of appetite.
Diabetes: Tulsi is one of the many herbs that help to control blood sugar level in a person. It helps in reducing the blood sugar level.
Pain relief: Tulsi plant acts as COX-2 inhibitor that aids in painful medical condition. Some Compounds found in Tulsi helps to ease inflammatory and neurological pain. Tulsi is also used in the treatment of skin ulcers, cuts and wounds because of its beneficial antiseptic and healing properties.
Lung disorder: Several compounds present in Tulsi like Vitamin C, camphene, Eugenol are beneficial in lung congestion. They have proven to be effective in healing damage caused by smoking, tuberculosis etc.
Insect bite: This herb also prevents insect stings and bites. Drops should be applied on the affected areas and repeated after a few hours. Drops are also effective in case of bites of insects and leeches. It will completely eliminate the effects of poison. Apply it on the area of the sting and it will cure the problem. The pain caused by the sting can be reduced by drinking Tulsi drops and also by applying it on the sting.
Quit smoking: Tulsi drops immensely support if you are trying to quit smoking. It is more helpful than nicotine gums and candies which claim to keep you distracted from your need of smoking. Keep Tulsi drops in your pocket and munch (chewing), whenever you feel the urge to smoke. The Tulsi drops will cool your throat just as the mint drops do and chewing will distract you. The anti-oxidant will actually help you to undo the damage done by years of smoking.
Hair Care benefits of Tulsi: One of the major causes of dry & damaged hairs, hair loss, dandruff and dry scalp. Add a small quantity of Tulsi drops to regular carrier oil like coconut oil and massage well on your scalp. Tulsi helps to improve the blood circulation and keeps your scalp cool reducing itchiness and dandruff and promotes hair growth, Tulsi drops is a wonder herb which works well as hair moisturizer for shiny hairs and to achieve lustrous shiny and healthy hair.
Skin care benefits of Tulsi: These wonder drops have proved themselves to be one of the best medicine for its Antiseptic, Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal compounds and purifying qualities, which help to prevent skin diseases. It helps in maintaining a healthy skin and shiny hair.
Continued oral consumption of Tulsi drops is believed to cure all skin diseases. Tulsi also works very well on scabies, eczema, acne and pimples, when applied directly on face and taken orally, it purifies the blood from toxins and prevents appearance of acne, pimples and also removes dark spots from the face. This remedy will not only help eliminate pimples but will also impart an instant glow to the skin. It will smooth & tone the skin which makes you look younger and fresher with a radiant glow.
Tulsi drops and Besan is a popular pack to get rid of scar marks. Skin whitening effects of besan lightens the appearance of scars and black spots and Tulsi kills the bacteria that lead to acne.
A paste made of Tulsi drops along with sandalwood paste and rose water can be applied on the face as it helps to prevent inflammation.
Skin with blemishes can also be benefited with Tulsi drops. Make a face pack using one egg white and Tulsi drops paste. Then rub the mixture gently on the face particularly on the infected areas of the skin. Wash off the face pack after 20 minutes scrubbing it gently. The egg white used will tighten the pores while the Tulsi drops will disinfect the skin and prevent infections which cause pimples and acne.
Application of Tulsi drops on the boils is beneficial and gives relief too. This promotes quick healing.
Apply Tulsi paste for relief from skin irritations caused due to plucking of the hair. Rubbing Tulsi drops on areas of itching gives quick relief. Itching, ring worms can also be soothed by applying a mixture of Tulsi and lemon juice.
Apply the Tulsi drops on wounds and cuts. Pains due to burns can be alleviated by applying equal amounts of Tulsi juice and coconut oil mixed in it.
Well; so far so good, Tulsi does benefit our health in some amazing ways. It is an herb that comes right from the laps of Ayurveda, and one should know about its health boosting qualities. But then, there is something else you may not know. This plant that garnered all the praises in the world does have some side effects too if not followed properly.
As the saying goes; in every seed of good, there is a piece of bad and one can’t deny this universal truth. From ages, we have been thought of this magical herb which cures all diseases and often we have regarded this wonderful herb as mother of all herbs and the vast array of health benefits it has been giving us. But, there are unexpected side effects of this wonderful herb if taken carelessly.
Let’s have a look at the unexpected side effects of Tulsi:
Eugenol is the primary constituent of Tulsi. It was found that excess consumption of Tulsi can lead to eugenol overdose. There is a possibility to consume too much of eugenol that might even lead to poisoning. Eugenol is found in clove cigarettes and some food flavourings.
And the symptoms vary from blooding during coughs, rapid breathing and blood in urine.
Might Impact Fertility:
Tulsi might cause infertility in males. Tests were conducted on male rabbits. The rabbits were divided into test and normal groups. Test group rabbits were two grams of Tulsi leaves for over a period of 30 days. A significant decrease in the sperm count of test group rabbits was noted.
Tulsi has the property to thin the blood in our bodies. And hence it should not be taken along with other anti-clotting medications. People who already are taking blood-thinning medications like warfarin and heparin should restrict the consumption of Tulsi. Tulsi can intensify the blood thinning properties of the prescribed drugs and lead to more severe complications.
And the symptoms vary from bruising and prolonged periods of bleeding.
Hypoglycaemia is a condition of abnormally low levels of blood sugar. Though it is not a disease, it is a sign of health problem. Tulsi is taken by people with high blood sugar to lower their blood sugar levels. But if people who are suffering from diabetes or hypoglycaemia and are under medication, consuming Tulsi, it might lead to excessive reduction in blood sugar. This is one of the most dangerous side effects of Tulsi that one should be aware of.
And the symptoms vary from paleness, dizziness, hunger, weakness, irritability.
Reactions in Pregnant Women:
Excessive consumption of Tulsi by pregnant women may have long term effects both on the mother and the baby. Tulsi might also trigger reactions in pregnant women.
One of the holy basil side effects also includes increase in uterine contractions in pregnant women. This side effect of Tulsi can lead to complications during childbirth or menstruation.
And the symptoms vary from backache, cramps, diarrhoea and bleeding.
Tulsi might interfere with the way how our body processes certain drugs. This is done by using ‘cytochrome P450’ – the liver’s enzyme system. As a result of this, the levels of drugs in the blood might increase or decrease.
Diazepam and scopolamine are two drugs which help reduce nausea, vomiting and nervousness, anxiety respectively. Tulsi might reduce the amnesic effect caused by these two drugs.
And the symptoms vary from Heartburn, light-headedness, headache and nausea.
Any substance, however natural it is, has side effects. It might come as a cure for a certain disease. Or it might possess very good healing properties. But that doesn’t make it devoid from side effects.
So the next time you are thinking of taking Tulsi, you can take it. But make sure you consume it in moderation!