Health benefits of scent leaves (Ocimum gratissimum)

SCENTS leaves (Ocimum gratissimum),  is a common culinary herb in West Africa and goes by many names including clove basil, African basil amongst others. The medicinal values of this herbs has been explored from ancient time for the prevention and  treatment of various ailments and diseases.

The plant has a characteristics sharp, bitter and slightly sweet taste when eaten fresh. The leaves, stems and roots are commonly used to prepare traditional delicacies like porridge, nkwobi, ugba, isi ewu and most times, soup.

Despite the rather unpleasant taste of the plant, the medicinal values has made it one of the most sort after herbs. Research has shown that Ocimum gratissimum is rich in essential oils (Glycosides, alkaloids, tannins and saponins), essential amino acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. these properties of the herbs gave it the ability to exhibits the following actions;
Analgesic, antimicrobial, antitumor, antipyretic, anti-inflammation, anti-sickling, laxative properties, digestive tonic, anti-asthma, hypoglycemic, hepatoprotective, hypolipidemic, antiulcer, amongst others.
Some of its numerous medicinal benefits includes;
  • Actions against bacteria: Ocimum gratissimum due to its antimicrobial activities, has been found to have bactericidal and bacteriostatic effects on bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella enteritidis, Salmonella choleraesuis, Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus sp,. Shigella sp., Klebsiella pneumoniae, amongst others.
  • Ability to treat and prevent cancer: This herbs possess antioxidants properties and zinc. Antioxidants which are also referred to as free radical scavengers, prevents cell aging, repair damaged cells, boost the immune system and helps to neutralize free radicals from the body thereby preventing them from causing cancerous cells. While zinc on the other hand, has been to have the ability to overactive calcium signalling in the body thereby preventing or stopping the growth of esophageal cancer cells.
  • Ability to protect the liver: Ocimum gratissimum, protects the liver from damage by promoting detoxification actions of the liver. In alcoholic individual where the liver has been found to be at the receiving end since it gives preference to alcoholic digestion to the food consumed by the individual, Ocimum gratissimum plays a huge role by detoxifying the alcohol in the bloodstream thereby protecting the liver from the stress of breaking down the alcohol which in actuality is not required by the body and in return, helps the liver focus on breaking down the food which is required by the body to generate energy needed for active functioning of the body.
  • Stimulates appetite and aid in digestion: Ocimum gratissimum helps in stimulating the digestive system  especially in people that eats late at night and always end up suffering from indigestion and bloating. It does this by promoting the production of digestive juice and increasing the flow of bile which leads to faster digestion of food. In addition to that, it also helps in making bower neither too hard or soft for easier and faster evacuation. It can also be used in treatment of digestion related conditions such as indigestion, constipation, dysentery, intestinal warm problems, amongst others.
  • Post natal care: Ocimum gratissimum can be used by lactating mothers to increase their body weight to a normal level as well as in cleansing of the womb from abdominal pain after childbirth.
  • Maintenance of blood-glucose level: Diabetes can be treated or prevented with Ocimum gratissimum. This herbs is rich in vitamins such as vitamin D and magnesium which has been found to have the ability to control or prevent type 2 diabetes.
  • Ability to relieve pain: Ocimum gratissimum has an anti-inflammatory property which can be employed in reducing pain from cur, bruises, boil, rashes, amongst others. 
This herb can also be used to control weight loss, conferring immunity, treatment of bacteria, fungi and viral infections as well as improving appetite. But it is advisable to consult you doctor before subscribing to any form of medications especially when you are currently on prescriptions…
Health is wealth…. be in control of yours…..
izekor osayawemwen miracle
I'm Izekor Osayawemwen Miracle, a microbiologist. Loves playing guitar and drum.

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