Holy Basil, Ocimum sanctum
- Holy basil has a long history of use for the respiratory ailments due to its antiviral, antibacterial, decongestant, and diaphoretic actions. It is useful in the treatment of colds and flu, due to its ability to move congestion, stimulate circulation and perspiration to reduce fever, and kill microorganisms. In India, holy basil is also used as an expectorant tea for bronchial mucus due to its ability to warm and clear stuck congestion. As a tonic, it has been known to show beneficial actions for asthma and allergies. Holy basil is an immunomodulator, strengthening and balancing the immune system’s ability to respond to infection.
- Esoteric note: Basil is sacred to Vishnu, Tulasi, and Erzulie, masculine in nature, and associated with the element of fire and the planet Mars. Soak basil in water for three days and then sprinkle the water over the threshold of your place of business to bring in customers and keep away thieves.