Taste (Rasa): Sweet, Pungent, Bitter
Energetics (Virya): Heating
Doshic Effects: Balances Vata and Kapha
Benefits & Use: In addition to being a rich source of vitamin K, beta carotene, and iron, this plant is known to harness anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. The majority of the great benefits of basil can be attributed to its volatile oils and flavonoids – powerful, plant-based antioxidants that reduce inflammation, help fight aging, and promote healthy arteries. It also increases immune function, detoxifies the blood, and helps regulate blood sugar levels.
Additional Uses: Stomach cramps; nausea; fever; headaches; uterine cramping; cough
In the Kitchen: The easiest way to use basil is to eat it. It’s delicious and has a sort of spicy-sweet licorice flavor. While sweet basil is most often included in cooked meals, it’s more beneficial to health when eaten raw, though combining it with other foods won’t lessen its impact.