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Ocimum basilicum Linn.

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Ocimum basilicum Linn.

Ocimum basilicum Linn.

Synonyms:

O. caryophyllatum Roxb., O. minimum Linn., O. pilosum Willd. (Khare, 2007)

Family:

Labiatae; Lamiaceae. 

Common Name:

Krishna Tulasi, Sweet Basil, Hoary Basil, Mang Lak

Habitat:

It is shrub type annual, herbaceous, white-purple flowering plant growing upright about 3 feet in height which come from India and Iran (Musa et. al., 2005) found in lower hills of Punjab, cultivated throughout India (Khare, 2007). It is also planted in the gardens or at home of majority of Hindus.

Propagation:

Basil is cultivated in Mediterranean countries and in various regions with temperate and hot climates (Musa et. al., 2005). It grows its own in forests, gardens provided that seeds should be there. The sprouted plants are also be transplanted. It should be grown in rich, light, well-drained or dry soil. It needs a warm, sunny state in the garden but can also grown in a pot on a sunny windowsill, (Reader’s Digest, 2012).

Flowering Time:

Mid to late summer. 

Fruiting Time:

Summer

Harvesting Time:

Most favouable when fresh well before flowers bloom.

Storage:

To maintain the flavor it should be freeze dried which can be packed as whole with twigs with air pressed out. Pinched out the leaves and dry them under shadow in well ventilated area. When the leaves crumble after 3 to 4 days finish the drying in oven to minimize the moisture content, otherwise, they turn brown or black. A linear decrease in the content of essential oil, in the chlorophyll content and in the number of mold and yeast colonies during storage. There is no effect of cropping season or harvest hour on essential oil composition, but the eugenol and linalool content increased during storage, (Franceli et. al.  2005).

Pests:

Aphids, flea beetles, Japanese beetles and slug.

Diseases of the plant:

Fusarium wilt, bacterial rot,

Parts Used:

Flowers, seeds, juice of plant

Organoleptic properties

Odour: characteristic, aromatic

Taste: slightly pungent

Phytochemical Constituents:

It contains linalool, estragole, eugenol, caffeic acid derivatives, flavonoids, thymol and xanthomicrol, aesculetin, p-coumaric acid, eriodictyol, 7-glucoside and vicenin-2, phenolic compounds viz. rosmarinic acid

Pharmacological activities:

Alexeteric, analgesic, antacid, anti-alzheimeran, anti-arthritic, anti-asthmatic, anti-cancer, anti-coagulase, anti-complementary, antidote, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anti-oxidant, anti-plaque, anti-pyretic, anti-septic, anti-spasmodic, anti-tumor, anti-ulcer, aperitif, aphrodisiac, aromatic, bradycardic, carminative, COX-2- Inhibitor, demulcent, deodorant, diaphoretic, diuretic, emmenagogue, enterotonic, expectorant, fungicide, gastrotonic, glutathionigenic, hypoglycaemic, immunostimulatory, insecticide, insectifuge, galactagogue, larvicide, laxative, narcotic, pactoral, parasiticide, sedative, sternutator, stimulant, stomachic,  tranquilizer, vermicide, vermifuge.

It significantly decreases serum thyroxine concentration, cholesterol concentrations, hepatic lipid peroxidation and hepatic glucose-6-phosphate activities.

It potentiates neurolepsis, superoxide dismutase and superoxide catalase activities.

Traditional Uses:

Flower – stimulant, carminative, antispasmodic, diuretic, demulcent.

Seed – antidysenteric.

Leaves act as an insect repellent externally; bring relief to insect bites and stings. The fresh mature leaves are used to treat haematuria, inflammation and congestion of kidney.

Juice of the plant – antibacterial.

Essential oil – antibacterial, antifungal, insecticidal.

It is also used for the treatment of can be arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, common cold, diabetes, fever, influenza, peptic ulcer and rheumatism.

As per folk medicine it is used as remedy for earache, epilepsy, heart disease, malaria, sinusitis, snake bites, stomach ache and vomiting. Also as an anthelminthic, to stimulate lactation, to prevent hair loss, and as a tonic.

Due to spicy and aromatic property the dried and ground basil leaves are used in bakery products, confectionary, ice creams, vinegars, meat and flavor products (Musa et. al., 2005).

Recipes:

Fresh basil is used in kitchens such as tomato products, vegetables, salads, pizza, meat, soups, tea, salads and marine foods.

Adverse reactions:

No adverse reactions have been reported in clinical trials.

Dosage forms: 

Crude drug and preparations.

Posology:

Seed – 1 to 3 gm as powder (Khare, 2007).

Daily dosage: 6–12 g crude drug as a decoction (WHO, 1999)

Contraindications:

Pregnancy, lactation or over extended periods of time. It is also not recommended in infants.

Astrology:

An herb of Mars and under the Scorpion, and therefore called Basilicon. It is no marvel if it carries a kind of virulent quality with it. 

The other species of Ocimum sp. O. album Blanco. O. anisodorum Muell., O. brachiatum Hasskarl, O. canum Sims., O. flexuosum Blanco, O. frutescens Burm., O. gratissimum Linn., O. inodorum Burm., O. kilimandscharicum Guerke., O. minimum, O. monachorum L., O. nelsonii Zipp ex Span., O. pilosum, sanctum Linn., O. tenuiflorum L., O. virgatum Blanco, O. viride Willd.

Mineral content of fresh, oven dried and sun dried basil

Minerals

Fresh basil

Oven dried

Sun dried

Al

63.50±6.91

294.86±60.90

235.23±14.15

B

13.76±2.83

29.63±1.93

27.77±0.93

Ba

15.73±1.72

12.88±0.23

Ca

4530.93±356.94

19,325.07±185.83

17,590.45±337.95

Cd

Cu

4.34±1.36

4.98±0.10

Fe

85.98±10.51

282.43±54.32

225.68±21.15

K

6399.78±460.46

40,025.85±1140.24

40,163.56±147.36

Li

2.88±0.05

4.39±0.14

3.97±0.17

Mg

3594.98±195.02

4788.90±674.11

4936.69±186.91

Mn

13.85±0.12

68.81±0.01

63.07±1.47

Na

81.34±26.94

176.39±29.09

151.72±17.18

Ni

0.96±0.08

2.33±0.33

1.90±0.14

P

1961.05±10.05

8339.90±149.95

8430.36±22.68

Pb

0.28±0

0.82±0

0.70±0.35

S

397.85±118.83

2163.42±44.03

2064.81±5.06

Sr

37.95±3.86

153.55±1.30

145.0±3.42

Ti

V

15.09±1.74

77.77±0.39

71.84±1.13

Zn

9.82±1.39

8.89±0.36

All values in ppm, Source: Musa et.al., 2005. 

 

References:

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