1. Potent Antibacterial
Basil oil has shown impressive antimicrobial activity against a wide range of food-borne bacteria, yeasts and mold. Researchers have shown that basil oil is effective against a common food born pathogen known as E. coli. Another study has shown that Ocimum basilicum oils can decrease bacteria due to spoilage and food-borne pathogens when it’s included in the water used to wash fresh organic produce. You can use basil oil in your home to remove bacteria from kitchens and bathrooms, prevent surface contamination and purify the air. Try diffusing or basil oil or combining it with water in a spray bottle to rub down surfaces in your home. You can also use the spray to clean produce.
2. Cold and Flu Treatment
Don’t be too surprised if you see basil on a list of essential oils that can help relieve cold and flu symptoms. Reader’s Digest, for example, recently included basil essential oil on that exact type of list and highlighted its “anti-spasmodic qualities that work best if you do a steam inhalation or drink tea made with this.” So how can basil oil help with a cold or flu case? Both the common cold as well as the flu are caused by viruses and research has shown that basil oil is a natural anti-viral. So it may be surprising but true that basil oil can be used as a natural cold remedy.If you’re sick, I recommend diffusing the oil throughout your home, add one to two drops to a steam bath, or make a homemade vapor rub using eucalyptus oil and basil oil that can massaged into the chest to open up your nasal passages.
3. Natural Odor Eliminator and Cleaner
Basil is capable of eliminating odor-causing bacteria and fungus from your home, car, appliances and furniture thanks to its antibacterial and antifungal properties. In fact, the word basil is derived from the Greek sentence that means “to smell.”Traditionally in India, it’s been used for many culinary applications, including to eliminate odors and clean kitchen equipment. Run several drops through your kitchen appliances; combine it with baking soda to remove stains and bacteria from pots or pans; or spray it inside your toilet, shower and garbage cans.
4. Flavor Enhancer
You’re probably familiar with how just a couple of fresh basil leaves can majorly enhance a dish. Basil oil can also infuse a wide variety of recipes with its signature aroma and flavor. All it takes is adding one or two drops to juices, smoothies, sauces or dressings in place of using fresh torn basil. In the process, you’ll make your kitchen smell great and reduce the risk for food contamination, too! Now, there’s a win-win situation.
5. Muscle Relaxant
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, basil oil can help with aching muscles. Useful as a natural muscle relaxer, you can rub a few drops of basil essential oil along with coconut oil into painful, swollen muscles or joints. To further help relax tense areas and feel immediate relief, try soaking in a warm bath with Epsom salts and a couple drops of lavender oil and basil oil.
6. Ear Infection Remedy
Basil oil is sometimes recommended as a natural ear infection remedy. A study published in The Journal of Infectious Diseases used an animal model to look at the effects of putting basil oil into the ear canals of subjects with middle ear infections. What did they find? The basil oil “cured or healed” over half of the animal subjects with ear infections due to H. influenzae bacteria compared to about a six percent heal rate in the placebo group. Rubbing a a couple drops of antibacterial basil oil diluted in a carrier oil like coconut or almond behind the ears and on the bottoms of the feet may speed up the time it takes to recover from ear infections while also reducing pain and swelling.
7. Homemade Toothpaste and Mouthwash
To remove bacteria and odor from your mouth, you can add several drops of pure basil oil to your mouthwash or toothpaste. You can also include it in a homemade mouthwash or homemade toothpaste recipe. With its natural antioxidant and antibacterial abilities, I love basil oil as dental health boosting ingredient to help protect my teeth and gums.
8. Energizer and Mood Enhancer
Inhaling basil can help restore mental alertness and fight fatigue since it’s naturally a stimulant that works on the nervous system and adrenal cortex. Many people find it beneficial for reducing symptoms like sluggishness, brain fog and poor moods that accompany adrenal fatigue or chronic fatigue.Diffuse basil essential oil throughout your home or inhale it directly from the bottle. You can also combine a couple drops of basil oil with a carrier oil like jojoba and put it on your wrists for an instant pick-me-up.
9. Insect Repellent
Similarly to other essential oils, including citronella oil and thyme oil, research has shown that the volatile oils found in basil can repel mosquitoes and help to prevent bug bites. To make a homemade bug spray or lotion, dilute several drops of basil essential oils with carrier oil and massage into skin or swollen bites as needed.
10. Acne and Insect Bite Remedy
Since skin breakouts are mainly caused by a built-up bacteria, excess oil and small areas of infections, basil essential oil can act as a home remedy for acne. Basil essential oil is one of several essential oils that can effectively kill skin pathogens that lead to acne breakouts. When it come the skin, it’s also used for natural treatment of insect bites and wasp stings. Human research also demonstrates that basil essential oil can help to clear up acne lesions with little little discomfort or side effects after application. If there was any burning or redness, it disappeared within a few minutes of application. Using a clean cotton ball, apply one to two drops of basil oil along with coconut or jojoba oil to the affected area once or twice daily.
11. Digestive Booster
Basil essential oil is known for helping to stimulate digestion and naturally relieving constipation. Pure basil oil can be taken internally by adding one to two drops to warm water or tea, or you can inhale it and massage it directly into painful areas such as the abdomen and lower back.
Basil oil is known to be uplifting and renewing, which makes it useful for lowering symptoms of anxiety, fear or nervousness. Used for aromatherapy for centuries to help people deal with racing thoughts and overwhelming feelings, you can burn basil oil at home to relax and unwind. This can also work quickly for natural headache relief. Massage one or two drops with a carrier oil into your feet or over your adrenals nightly to reduce stress.
13. Hair Booster
To strip away excess grease or buildup on your hair while adding shine, add a drop or two of basil oil to your shampoo. You can also try mixing it with baking soda and apple cider vinegar to balance scalp pH while removing grease and residue from hair naturally.