Basil, which you may also know as St. Joseph’s Wort, is a fragrant herb that goes well with other herbs, such as thyme and rosemary as well as with foods that feature meats, fish, cheese, soup, eggs, and vegetables.
With just a few leaves, you can transform your simple dish into something that will please your taste buds. Aside from the flavor and the aroma, basil is rich in health benefits, which include the following:
1. Vitamin K: Basil is rich in vitamin K, which is a vitamin needed for blood clotting. You only need two tablespoons of the herb to meet almost 30% of the daily recommended value of vitamin K.
2. Vitamin A: The vitamin A in basil is beta-carotene, which is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body’s cell lining as well as blood vessels, so that no free radical damage will happen. This antioxidant is also useful in preventing oxidation of cholesterol in your blood and reduces the risk of developing atherosclerosis, stroke, and heart attack.
3. Mineral-Rich: Basil also contains minerals, including iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. All these are essential in your wellbeing.
4. Flavonoids: Basil contains flavonoids, which help protect your DNA, meaning you are protected on a cellular level.
5. Antibacterial: Basil has volatile oils that come with antibacterial properties, allowing the herb to restrict the development of harmful bacteria in the body, such as:
- E. coli
- Pseudomonas aeruginosa
- Yersinia enterocolitica
6. Anti-Inflammatory: Basil has been proven to reduce swelling by almost 75% of the affected area within 24 hours of treatment.
7. Anti-Aging: The British Pharmaceutical Conference has confirmed that basil contains properties that can remove the elements that can make you look older. Using the herb’s extracts, you can effectively kill the molecules that can damage your skin and other parts of the body, including your heart, brain, and liver.
8. Heart-Friendly: As mentioned, basil has vitamin A, along with nutrients, such as magnesium, which when combined can aid in keeping your heart healthy. Regular consumption of basil can help protect the walls of your cells, so that free radical damage can be prevented in the blood system as well as in other structures in the body. Aside from this, basil can help improve the flow of your blood and can help reduce your cholesterol levels.
Basil is a favorite herb because it can be used in many recipes. You can add this herb to your sandwiches and soups, making them more pungent and fresh. The health benefits are definitely a huge bonus, which makes basil a healthy addition to your meals.