How does it feel?
Tulsi is a prolific shrub that can grow up to 4m in height. Tulsi can naturally be found throughout the lowlands of India but also across Sri Lanka, China and Thailand. Its stems are tall and hairy with opposite green or purple toothed leaves which carry a strong scent. Tulsi flowers are purple and elongated, manifesting in close whorls. There are at least three different varieties of this herb; Sri or Ram Tulsi is the green variety, Krishna Tulsi is the red type and Vrina Tulsi is the larger variety. It is the scented leaves which are medicinally valued in this plant.
All around the world the actions of traditional medicines were understood by their immediate sensory impacts. Click on each of tulsi’s key qualities below to learn more:
What can I use it for?
Tulsi stimulates the cerebral circulation whilst also relaxing the central nervous system. This unique quality enables tulsi to awaken the mind bringing mental clarity whilst also calming any nervous tension. Tulsi will restore exhausted adrenal glands, particularly where these have become weakened by trauma, depression and anxiety. It also directly influences the stress response and modulates the release of stress hormones. The pungent and fragrant volatile oils present in this plant support the removal of stuck congestion throughout the body but particularly within the respiratory system where it is an effective expectorant. Tulsi contains two strong antioxidants, superoxide dismutase and superoxide catalase, that provide excellent protection against oxidative stress, particularly in the brain.
Into the heart of tulsi
Tulsi is a fantastic rejuvenative to the brain and spirit. It will improve the circulation to the brain but also provide oxidative protection to the brain cells, protecting them from chronic degeneration and inflammation. It is an excellent neuro-protective, moderating the inflammatory pathway and also regulating nervous cell growth in the brain. The antioxidants in this herb also influence apoptosis in inflammatory tumours.
Tulsi is classed as an adaptogen because it has a direct nourishing effect upon the adrenal glands and prevents increased corticosterone levels. It’s ability to nourish the adrenal glands whilst also calming the central nervous system make it excellent for dealing with emotional trauma and helping the individual to ‘move on’ and achieve a sense of clarity. It has a significant impact upon conditions that are exacerbated by stress and anxiety such as high blood pressure, tension headaches and fatigue. The pungent volatile oils in this herb make it superb at relieving stagnant and chronic forms of depression.
The pungent volatile oils in tulsi are incredibly powerful and act as excellent rejuvenatives to body systems that can become affected by chronic congestion such as the respiratory and digestive systems. In both systems, tulsi will increase the blood flow and enhance antibody production, helping to fight chronic and stubborn repetitive infection.
Did you know?
Tulsi is sacred to the Hindu god Vishnu and is used in morning prayers to ensure good personal health and wellbeing. It is commonly found in Hindu courtyards and is used as part of the daily ritual to Vishnu, the Lord of Preservation. Meditation beads are also often made from the wood of the Tulsi plant.
No drug herb interactions are known although there is theoretical evidence that its eugenol content may deplete glutatione from the liver and so caution should be observed in patients using glutathione depleting medication such as paracetamol.
Traditional Ayurvedic characteristics are
- Jwarahara Alleviates fevers.
- Svedala Diaphoretic.
- Shwasakasahara Benefits breathing and alleviates coughing.
- Deepana Enkindles the digestive fire.
- Hridaya Specific affinity for the heart.
- Kushta Alleviates skin disorders.
- Krcchraghna Alleviates dysuria (seed).
1–9g/day dried or 5–15ml/day of a 1:5 @ 25% tincture