Basil essential oil (Ocimum basilicum) is obtained through steam distillation of flowers and leaves of the basilica or camphorum – Ocimum basilicum L. (family of clearing – Lamiaceae or labiate – Labiatae).
Origin of the plant
South Asia (India, Sri Lanka).
Distribution of the plant
The common basil is characterized by a large number of subspecies, variations and forms that have arisen as a result of natural hybridization (overexploration by insects) and growing in Asia, Africa and America. Cultivated in Western Europe, Asia, Africa, Canada, the United States and Latin America.
Basil essential oil properties
Colorless or pale yellow liquid with a pleasant strong tart, sweetish-spicy, herbaceous smell with a touch of camphor and tarragon.
The main components of the oil are α- and β-pinene, methylheptenone, limonene, γ-terpinene, terpinene-4-ol, linalool, camphor, borneol, methylhavicol, nerol, linyl acetate, eugenol, β-cariophyllene, α-humulin, germacren D There are several chemo-geographical types of basil oil that differ in the content of chemical components and in the smell.
Basil oil uses
Powerful antioxidant and antimicrobial broad spectrum (bacteria, viruses, fungi, mycoplasmas), anti-inflammatory, immunomodulating, antispasmodic, antisclerotic, desensitizing, adaptogenic, expectorant, antiallergic, wound-healing, diuretic, analgesic, anti-anxiety.
Basil essential oil increases the body’s defense reactions by increasing the synthesis of lysozyme, increasing the phagocytic activity of leukocytes, increasing the number of T-lymphocytes and their functional activity (cellular immunity), as well as increasing the number of antibody-forming cells (humoral immunity).
Activation of T-cell activity of lymphocytes promotes strengthening of immunological surveillance and elimination of somatic mutations, including clones of cancer cells. Local immunity of bronchopulmonary system is increased due to an increase in 4-5 times the amount of alveolar macrophages.
Along with the increase in the activity of the B-link of immunity, basil oil helps to reduce the amount of IgE immunoglobulin accompanying allergic reactions. Providing antiallergic effect, oil reduces hypersensitivity of delayed type and suppresses anaphylactic reactions.
The oil reduces the activity of lipid peroxidation, increasing the activity of catalase, the main enzyme of antioxidant protection.
Basilic oil tones, refreshes and rejuvenates the skin, reduces swelling and inflammation of the sebaceous glands. Strengthens hair, gives shine and improves their growth. Helps to eliminate warts (probably due to antiviral action).
Basil oil benefits
Bronchus, pneumonia, tuberculosis, viral-mycoplasmal infections, prevention of acute respiratory infections and influenza, long-term healing of infected wounds and ulcers, purulent inflammatory skin diseases, epidermophytosis, secondary immunodeficiency, flabby aging skin, dry eczema, insect bites, nervous exhaustion, insomnia , migraine, stomach and bowel cramps, whooping cough, gout, loss of smell in chronic cold, arthritis, otitis, toothache, to increase milk production in nursing mothers.
In the food industry, for flavoring candies, cookies, as an additive to sauces and condiments, and as an aromatic additive in the production of toothpastes and soaps. In small quantities used in perfume compositions.
Basil oil blends well with following oils
Basil oil blends with oils of bergamot, hyssop, lavender, marjoram, lemon balm, sage, geranium, neroli, santalum, limetta, citronella.
Side effects of basil oil
The oil can not be used in pregnancy and high blood coagulability. If excessive use can act depressingly on the nervous system. May cause skin irritation in people with sensitive skin.