Besides being one of the most loved herbs to cook with for its ability to infuse any savoury dish with its divine flavour, basil has a myriad of health benefits too. Concentrated in the essential oil, basil is packed full of minerals and vitamins such as magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium and vitamin A. It assists with stomach problems such as nausea, motion sickness, constipation and indigestion. Basil is good for cold, flu, influenza, coughs, fevers, respiratory issues and all the wintry ills. It improves circulation, relieves pain and is popular in aromatherapy and massage therapy.
For skin beauty, basil is often used in lotions as it enhances the skin’s natural lustre and glow. It can treat infections and can help with eczema. It can also improve uneven skin tone.
Use basil essential oil topically and diluted in a carrier oil (coconut oil is good) for skin. For respiratory ailments, make a chest rub or diffuse in a burner. You can add to your bath or a massage blend for muscles or flu symptoms. Simply inhaling the vapours is also highly effective.
Basil essential oil blends well with bergamot, clary sage, clove bud, geranium, lime, lemon, juniper, eucalyptus, neroli, marjoram, rosemary, and lavender.
Basil Vapour Rub
¼ cup olive oil
½ cup refined coconut oil
¼ cup grated beeswax or beeswax pellets
20 drops Peppermint essential oil
20 drops Eucalyptus essential oil
10 drops Lavender essential oil
10 drops Basil essential oil
10 drops Rosemary essential oil
10 drops cypress or pine essential oil (optional)
½ tsp Vitamin E oil (optional but is a natural preservative)
Glass jar or heat proof container
Pour the olive oil, coconut oil and beeswax into the jar. Place the jar in saucepan filled with water over low heat and allow the oils to melt. Stir to combine. Once combined, allow to cool slightly and add in the essential oils. You may make the rub stronger by adding more of the essential oils if desired. Pour mixture into glass or storage containers and allow to set.
Rub a small amount on chest before bed, or on feet and the cover with socks for a guaranteed good night!
Note: if you intend to use this on children younger than 10 years, leave out the eucalyptus essential oil and substitute in more peppermint, lavender and cypress instead. Or try roman chamomile if for babies.