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The Synergistic Effects of Holy Basil Herb and CBD

Holy Basil and CBD
Introduction: What is the Synergistic Effect?

By enhancing the therapeutic potency of CBD with other natural plant extracts or nutrients which act synergistically with CBD, you can enable your endocannabinoid system to achieve an optimized state of homeostasis. In this article, the experts at Modern Nature (MoNa) will take a look at the powerful synergistic effect of combining our vegan-friendly naturopathic CBD extract with holy basil, a revered plant well known in traditional Eastern medicine as "the Queen of Herbs". 

In physiology, the term "synergism" is defined at thefreedictionary.com:

"Also called 'synergy', the working together of two or more drugs, muscles, etc, to produce an effect greater than the sum of their individual effects".

When the synergistic effect comes into play, each compound enhances the performance of the other, increasing therapeutic potency well beyond the effectiveness of either substance when taken individually. The synergistic effect of combining other plant extracts and herbs with MoNa CBD products can play a significant role in your daily CBD fitness regimen. Synergy, with what many in the therapeutic cannabis field refer to as "herbal allies", can affect the amount of CBD you need to achieve the fitness goals you've set.  CBD exhibits a synergistic effect with many other natural therapeutic herbs to alleviate symptoms of stress, anxiety, pain, or sleeplessness to maintain the healthiest mind and body for athletic performance.

What is Holy Basil? 

Holy basil is a plant which originated in India. The ancient herb is highly revered by the Hindu religion and is an essential staple of India's Ayurvedic medicine, a holistic healing practice considered to be the world's oldest healthcare system. Ayurvedic means "the science of life". The Hindu name for holy basil is "Tulsi" which translates to "the incomparable one". Ayurvedic practitioners classify holy basil as an "adaptogen", useful for countering life's stresses, as well as alleviating anxiety, pain, and inflammation. Holy basil is also known by many other names (to list just a few) including:

  • Ocimum sanctum
  • Ocimum tenuiflorum
  • Sacred Herb
  • Rama
  • Krishna
  • Vana (white)
  • Indian Basil
  • Green Basil
  • Hot Basil
  • Tulsi
  • Sacred Purple Basil
  • Shyama Tulsi

The plant found so frequently adorning places of honor around Hindu temples is now also grown in Australia, Africa, and the Middle East. Its peppery taste makes it a popular ingredient for stir-frying and spicy soups where it earns the name "hot basil". Many of holy basil's therapeutic characteristics parallel those found in CBD from hemp oil.

Both CBD and Holy Basil exhibit a wide range of beneficial actions including:
  • Anti-inflammatory- Controlling response to injury or infections in the form of rashes, pain, or swelling. This is especially important for injury recovery, concussive head trauma, and alleviating symptoms caused by arthritis, as well as for managing distress caused by bronchitis.
  • Neuroprotective- Protecting brain and nerve cells while fostering the growth of new cells to alleviate symptoms of stroke, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's epilepsy, and other neurodegenerative conditions. Regular use of holy basil is believed to strengthen nerve and brain tissue. CBD in the form of epidiolex is an FDA approved treatment for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome, two rare forms of childhood epilepsy.
  • Antioxidant- Research points to both CBD and holy basil as powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants can reduce free radicals which are responsible for cell damage caused by smoking, environmental pollution such as smog, or poor diet with excessive amounts of fried foods or charbroiled meat. 
  • Anti-cancer- CBD and holy basil both exhibit "apoptosis" actions, which is the medical term for inducing cell death and inhibiting the growth of harmful cancer cells and tumors. Both plant extracts also have the knack of protecting healthy cells to prevent metastasis, the spread of cancer to different parts of the body.

As we'll see these are just a sampling of the therapeutic actions found in both CBD and holy basil. Below, we'll take a look at the individual healing characteristics of holy basil itself and begin to understand how these properties complement the therapeutic actions of CBD with the synergetic effect. 

The Health Benefits of Holy Basil (Tulsi)

According to this scholarly article at the NCBI (National Institute for Biotechnology Information), "There is mounting evidence that Tulsi can address physical, chemical, metabolic and psychological stress through a unique combination of pharmacological actions." These pharmacological actions are so wide and varied that it becomes obvious why holy basil is referred to in Aryuveda medicine as "the Incomparable One", as well as "the Mother of Medicine" and "the Queen of Herbs". (Could CBD be the king? At MoNa, we think so, but every king needs a queen.)

While holy basil has been the revered essential in the holistic lifestyle approach of Aryuveda wisdom for centuries, modern research is now beginning to confirm historical claims concerning the amazing healing properties of the herb many in the East call "the elixir of life." Like CBD, holy basil offers natural therapeutic solutions to many modern health problems of the mind and body. Daily use of holy basil is given credit in the East for promoting wellbeing and longevity, enhancing glowing complexions, giving sweetness to the voice, and "fostering beauty, intelligence, stamina, and a calm emotional disposition". 

Different Ways to Use Holy Basil

Holy basil is a green leafy plant, and the entire plant is used for a variety of purposes, from the leaves to flowers, oils, and seeds. Recommendations from Healthline break down some of the ways to use the holy basil plant:

  • Fresh tulsi flowers are used to treat bronchitis.
  • Holy basil leaves and seeds, combined with black pepper, is a treatment for malaria.
  • The whole plant is used in treatments for diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
  • Pill and topical ointment forms alleviate symptoms of eczema.
  • Essential oil made from holy basil leaves is used for insect bites.

Holy basil is often used for cooking and has a strong cinnamon or clove aroma due to its high concentrations of eugenol, rosmarinic acid, and linalool. Leaves and flowers can be sauteed in oil before using. Leaves can be steamed or placed in soups. DIY Natural has a recipe for holy basil tea which can also double as an insect repellent simply by pouring the tea into a spray bottle.

Aside from promoting optimized homeostasis, holy basil is used to treat a plethora of ailments and disorders, much like cannabidiol. In the Aryuveda tradition a long list of disorders and symptoms are indications for holy basil including:

  • anxiety
  • cough
  • asthma
  • diarrhea
  • fever
  • dysentery
  • arthritis
  • eye diseases
  • otalgia- (ear pain)
  • indigestion
  • hiccups
  • vomiting
  • gastric disorder
  • cardiac problems
  • genitourinary disorders
  • back pain
  • skin diseases
  • ringworm
  • insect, snake, and scorpion bites
  • malaria.
Holy Basil's Antioxidant Action

According to the NCBI research, the vast array of the pharmacological actions of holy basil can be attributed to its ability to assist the body with "internal housekeeping". Holy basil has a very high phenolic content which provides the powerful antioxidant property. Krishna Tulsi, the blackish purple variety of holy basil, has a higher phenolic content and resulting antioxidant capacity than white Vana Tulsi which grows in the wild. This helps the body clean up free radicals and protects against toxic, chemically induced injuries. Laboratory studies have shown that holy basil can raise the body's natural levels of antioxidant molecules such as glutathione to enhance the activity of important antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase and catalase. 

Toxicant Stress Protection With Holy Basil

Toxicant stress from chemicals, heavy metals, and radiation can cause genetic, immune, and cellular damage. Holy basil has been documented to protect against liver, kidney, and brain damage caused by toxicant stress. Tulsi also alleviates the toxic effects of many pharmaceutical drugs including acetaminophen, meloxicam, paracetamol, haloperidol, and anti-tubercular drugs. Its "internal housekeeping" action also protects in cases of exposure to toxic heavy metal hazards such as lead, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, and mercury.

Holy Basil to Alleviate Physical Stress

Many of the toxic stressors caused by environmental hazards can also be triggered by physical stress in the forms of extended physical exertion, physical restraint, excessive noise, and even prolonged exposure to cold. All of these stressors can cause disruptions to homeostasis by inducing physiological and metabolic stress which result in damage to organ function and health.

Holy basil has been shown to enhance cellular and physiological functions to adapt to these physical stressors. Preclinical studies with animals in forced swimming, restraint, and cold exposure stress tests have shown that tulsi enhanced aerobic metabolism, improved swimming time, and normalized the physiological and biological extremes caused by the physical stressors tested. 

In noise-induced stress testing, holy basil enhanced neurotransmitter performance and improved oxidative stress levels in important regions of the brain. It also improved immune, ECG (electrical activity in the heart) and corticosteroid responses. Holy basil, like CBD, also reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol, to promote calmness, healthy sleep, and muscle recovery in high-performance athletic training.

Anti-Diabetic Action of Holy Basil

Preclinical trials with test tube experiments and animals, as well as clinical studies with human subjects confirm Tulsi's anti-diabetic activity. Studies with diabetic lab animals showed that holy basil can reduce blood glucose (sugar) levels to protect the kidneys and liver from high glucose damage. It also prevents weight gain, hyperglycemia, and lowers insulin resistance. In lab animals fed high-fat diets, holy basil protected the organs and blood vessels from atherosclerosis, which is the hardening or narrowing of the arteries. In human trials as well, holy basil decreased glucose levels, improved blood pressure, and reduced many of the symptoms in patients with type 2 diabetes.

Liquid Yoga? Holy Basil For Calmness and Enhanced Cognitive Thought

Regular consumption of holy basil tea is said to be "adaptogenic" according to Ayurvedic wisdom. While modern scientific research has yet to verify, (if ever it can) the cognitive and spiritual benefits of Tulsi, in the Eastern traditions holy basil is considered to be a liquid form of yoga. Like the practice of yoga, the "queen of herbs" is credited with similar calming effects that lead to clarity of thought, and a calmer, more relaxed disposition. Holy basil is also credited for enhancing memory.

In Hinduism, Tulsi is considered to be so divine it is worthy of worship, a literal goddess, and every part of the tulsi plant is revered and considered sacred, including the leaves, stem, flower, root, seeds, oil, and even the surrounding soil it grows in. The clove-like aroma links the Hindu household to the divine while repelling mosquitos and other insects. Holy basil is so integral to the Hindu lifestyle that no household is considered complete without the sacred tulsi plant. 

Synergistic Effects of Using Holy Basil with CBD

To this point, we've noted many parallel actions of CBD and holy basil, and many common therapeutic characteristics shared by the two natural plant extracts. It's easy to see how CBD and holy basil can work hand-in-hand to enhance each other as herbal allies to increase therapeutic actions in a variety of disorders and ailments.

CBD and Holy Basil for Healthy Digestion

Combining the antiemetic (anti-nausea) and the powerful anti-inflammatory effects of CBD with the anti-inflammatory and adaptogenic attributes of holy basil makes them a potent synergetic pair to alleviate digestion problems such as inflammatory bowel disorder. Holy basil also gives relief from gas, acidity, and exhibits ulcer healing properties. 

CBD and Holy Basil Extracts For Stress and Anxiety

Whole plant cannabidiol extract combined with holy basil extract can be a synergetic, two-pronged solution for alleviating stress and anxiety. Both CBD and Tulsi are high-performance stress reducers, alleviating stress which is the root cause of many dangerous conditions including hypertension, chronic fatigue, and insomnia. 

Using Holy Basil With Modern Nature (MoNa) CBD

If you're wondering how to take advantage of the synergetic power of holy basil and CBD, we at MoNa have some good news for you. You can begin a synergetic regimen with the proprietary blend of CBD and holy basil already incorporated as one of the essential ingredients with our Relaxed CBD capsules. All of our vegan-friendly, naturopathic CBD products are doctor endorsed, and Relaxed is formulated specifically to manage stress and anxiety.

At Modern Nature, we combine the ancient wisdom of the time-proven holistic Aryuvedic approach with modern scientific research to provide the PhD formulated products that combine the best of both worlds, allowing you to maintain an optimized state of homeostasis, that wonderful sense of wellbeing where everything with mind, body, and spirit is just right. If you have any questions about how our CBD products can enhance your active healthy lifestyle please don't hesitate to contact us.