Scientific name: Ocimum tenuiflorum. Name in different languages:- English: Holy basil, sacred Basil. Spanish: Slbahaca cimarrona, albahaca morada criolla. Sanskrit: Suvasa tulasi. Hindi: Tulsi तुलसी. Marathi: Tulshi. Telugu: Tulasi. Tamil: Nalla thulasi. Malayalam: Thulasi.
Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi) is a highly revered plant since ancient times, and is an important factor in ayurvedic medicines. Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi) is botanically named Ocimum sanctum and belongs to the Lamiaceae family. It is called Suvasa tulasi in Sanskrit. It is an excellent medicine for respiratory illness, stomach ailments, cardiac disorders, fever etc. Its leaves are an excellent antidote against the poisons of snake, spider, scorpion etc. and also can cure diseases relating to the excretory system and jaundice. It has the unique ability to purify air. It contains an essence called Basil camphor. It is an important ingredient in many ayurvedic decoctions (kashayams). Inhaling the vapours of Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi) is a good remedy for respiratory ailments like cough, chest congestion, blocked nose and also body pain.
The juice extract of Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi ) can be mixed and with honey and given to patients suffering from chicken pox, small pox, high fever etc. Also the juice of it is a good medicine for malaria and jaundice. To cure the skin irritation and inflammation due to poison, Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi ), asafoetida, betel leaf and turmeric are ground to a paste and applied. Also to nullify the poison due to spider and scorpion, its leaves along with the inflorescence is ground with turmeric and applied on the affected area. To cure cold, the leaves of it are dried in shade and made in to a choornam and inhaled. It is believed that the leaves of it are ground in buttermilk and consumes can cure cancer. To cure the worm infestation, a paste made from its leaves and lemon juice is applied. Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi) leaves made in to a paste in cow’s urine can cure the allergic reactions due to mosquito bite. Its leaves are sprinkled on the pillow to ward off lice from hair. Altogether, Holy Basil (Thulasi or Tulsi) is a very valuable ayurvedic medicine.