The word "mint" may bring to mind the refreshing aroma coming from the herbs in the food  cooking in the kitchen. However, the mint family is huge and includes a number of herbs, small shrubs, and even trees. It is particularly noted for its aroma but not just for minty fragrances like peppermint, but also chocolate, ginger, apple, orange, pineapple, and banana etc.

This blog is about two members of this family that have distinct flavors- one that has a spicy and fresh aroma and the other that has a flavor similar to that of the citrus family. It will amaze you how versatile its properties can be and and how conveniently you can use them to your benefit, and yeah, as cherry on top we will also give you a short cut to where you can find it. Continue reading to discover more about these ‘minty’ members.

Have you heard of Basil? Probably Yes, but that must be Holy Basil or Tulsi as we call it in India which is associated with Ayurveda and Hindu religion as the goddess of wealth, health and prosperity. There is another type called as Sweet Basil which is the most consumed herb worldwide and known by several common names such as king of herbs, royal herb, great basil etc. Both of these herbs are sought out by many people not only because it is a culinary must have but also for it’s numerous benefits to human health.  

In ancient Rome, basil was known to be an aphrodisiac and antidepressant, and was used for epilepsy and jaundice, the French have historically used basil to help aid migraines, mental fatigue, and menstrual periods. This brings us to the central point of the topic that Basil has properties capable of healing and treating medical ailments. Today, it is being used in the form of an essential oil to not only treat medical conditions but also for some alternate uses as well.

In a nutshell Basil has antibacterial, antidepressant, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antispasmodic (powerful), antiviral, decongestant (veins, arteries of the lungs, prostate), diuretic, disinfectant (urinary/pulmonary), energizing, stimulant (nerves, adrenal cortex), and uplifting health properties.

Hence, the scope of its usage ranges from treating respiratory problems, digestive and kidney ailments, fevers, epidemics, poisonous insect, bee/hornet stings or snake bites, epilepsy, and malaria. It also affects the cardiovascular system, muscles, and skeletal system.

Today basil is most commonly used for autism, bronchitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, cramps (abdominal), earache, hiatal hernia, incisional hernia, infertility, mouth ulcers, muscular dystrophy, ovarian cyst, and viral hepatitis. Other possible uses of basil oil include anxiety, chills, concentration, digestion, fainting, insect repellent, chronic mucus, vomiting, and whooping cough.

Basil essential oil blends well with Bergamot, Geranium,  Lavender,  Citronella, Ylang ylang to name a few.

Bergamot, another member belonging to the flavorful and aromatic mint family, neither looks anything like it and rather imparts a flavor much like that of the citrus family.  It looks like a lemon that is the size of an orange. It’s peel is used to extract bergamot essential oil. The aroma of this oil may remind you of orange but it is mysteriously more complex yet wonderful.  If you are a drinker of Earl Gray tea you must be familiar with the flavor and aroma of this oil is used to flavor the tea.

Bergamot Essential Oil is full of beneficial nutrients. It is known for its Vulnerary, Vermifuge, Antiseptic, Antispasmodic, Sedative, Analgesic, Disinfectant, Febrifuge, Cicatrizing, Relaxant, Digestive, anti-congestive properties. It is helpful for people suffering from high BP, insomnia, and depression, infections like influenza, malaria, and typhoid including those of the skin, in the colon, intestines, urinary tract, and kidneys, chronic coughing, respiratory conditions or asthma, Gastrointestinal complications and constipation, headaches, sprains, muscle aches, helps heal scars and other marks.

Bergamot essential oil gives an uplifting aura to the air, can induce feelings of relaxation, which is why it is so popular in diffusers.  When used in massages it can provide quick relief from cramps, convulsions, and painful muscle contractions. It also stimulates metabolism and perspiration helping the body throw out toxins which is quite helpful for the skin and in reducing fever.

It is indispensable to store this oil in dark bottles in dark places as its components becomes poisonous if exposed to sunlight. Exposure to sunlight should even be avoided after it is applied to the skin, at least until it gets absorbed into your skin. Nevertheless, Bergamot essential oil be blended with Geranium , Ylang-Ylang, Orange, Sandalwood, Jasmine.  It is infact particularly complementary with other citrus oils.

Basil essential oil and Bergamot essential oil are major all-rounders, there is no challenging that. However, it is important to use such oils carefully under the guidance of a medical practitioner especially for a specific medical condition. The information provided in this blog is not a substitute for a face-to-face consultation with a healthcare provider, and should not be construed as medical advice.