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15 Great Uses for Sweet Basil Essential Oil

Sweet Basil Essential Oil

Sweet basil essential oil (buy it here) is an herbal oil made from, you guessed it, the basil plant. The same herb you use in salads and Italian dishes. The best basil essential oil is made from Ocimum basilicum. There are many different types of basil and hybrids, but the best oil, the one that is high in wonderful, healing properties, is made from O. basilicum. I am so thrilled to find out about all of the great uses for this oil. I absolutely love basil for its taste and wonderful health benefits and now we can use its essential oil, too.

1. Improve Digestive Tract Health

Use the sweet basil essential oil/carrier oil blend to treat digestive problems. Massage it into the abdomen, starting over your liver (upper right) and working your way down over your entire belly. Rub it into your lower back, too, if you like. You can use any type of carrier oil. Coconut oil has a great consistency for massage but it can be hard on elastic.

A lighter oil like jojoba, sweet almond or argan might be better. I like to mix a little of the lighter oils like argan into my coconut oil before adding essential oil. It seems to help everything absorb faster. You can also take sweet basil essential oil orally; however, make certain it is 100% food-grade essential oil. Sometimes the processing isn’t quite up to snuff for ingestion or the basil oil is mixed with another oil. Only take one drop once or twice a day. You can mix it in water, honey or a smoothie.

2. Expel Excess Water Weight

Massage the sweet basil oil/carrier oil blend into your abdomen, back, legs or ankles to get rid of excess water weight. You can use it wherever you tend to retain fluids. It is a natural diuretic.

Important Note: Whatever you choose for an oil, make sure that the oils you purchase are high quality. Remember, you're breathing this oil into your lungs so essential oil quality is a terrible place to cut corners.

3. Treat Urinary Tract Infections

Mix sweet basil essential oil with a carrier oil and use it to treat urinary tract infections. Its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and disinfectant properties work wonders. Start out with 2 to 3 drops of sweet basil oil with 1 teaspoon of carrier oil. You can gradually increase the dilution rate to as much as 50/50, if necessary.

Massage the blend into your lower abdominal area over the bladder, up to your stomach, around your waist and your back, over the kidneys from the waist down. You can use the 50/50 dilution rate for up to two weeks. The 2 to 3 drops per teaspoon is fine for everyday use. Don’t put the essential oil in the vagina or directly on the urethra. You want to avoid the mucous membranes. Sweet basil aromatherapy can also help treat urinary tract infections.

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4. Treat Ear Infections

Mix up a 50/50 sweet basil essential oil/carrier oil blend and gently massage it around and on your ear to treat an ear infection and reduce ear pain. Its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and disinfectant properties will help clear the infection right up.

*Stronger dilution rates should only be used for 10 days to 2 weeks at a time. The 1% to 3% dilution rate (1 to 3 drops per teaspoon) is fine for everyday use.*

5. Treat Bronchitis

Practice sweet basil EO aromatherapy to treat bronchitis and other bronchial problems. Just add 2 to 3 drops of sweet basil oil to 1/2 to 1 cup of distilled water in a diffuser and run it for 30 to 60 minutes. You can add 2 to 3 drops of eucalyptus oil, too, for a stronger treatment. Add a few drops to a warm bath for all-over relief. Mix up an effective vapor rub with 4 drops each of sweet basil and eucalyptus oil (buy it here) and a tablespoon of coconut oil.

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6. Soothe and Relax Sore Muscles

Massage sore, achy muscles with a 1% to 3% sweet basil oil/carrier oil blend. It will reduce the inflammation and soothe the pain away.

7. Fight Viral Infections

Use sweet basil EO to fight viral infections. As soon as you feel a cold or the flu coming on, add 2 to 3 drops of basil oil to 1/2 to 1 cup of distilled water, put it in your diffuser and run it for 30 to 60 minutes off and on throughout the day. You should really only run a diffuser for up to 60 minutes then shut it off.

You can do this four to six times a day, though. You might want to start using this as soon as cold and flu season starts as a pre-emptive measure. Its antiviral and disinfectant properties will kill the virus before it can infect you. You can also use a 1% to 3% sweet basil oil/carrier oil blend as a hand lotion when you are away from home.

*Do not use sweet basil oil on babies or young children.*

8. Prevent or Cure Bacterial Infections

Apply the 1% to 3% sweet basil oil blend to cuts and sores to kill bacteria and speed healing. You can use the stronger blend, if you feel the likelihood of infection is high.

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9. Improve Circulation

Massage the 1% to 3% sweet basil blend into your chest and legs to help improve circulation. This is especially helpful if you tend to sit for long periods. You can massage it into your back and arms, too, if you like. Aromatherapy can also help improve circulation. Start up your diffuser and take a few deep inhales through your nose, deep into your sinuses and out through your mouth.

**Apply a small amount of a 3% sweet basil oil/carrier oil blend to an inconspicuous area and wait for at least a few hours to see if you get a reaction before you begin using it all over. A very small percentage of people tend to have an allergic reaction to sweet basil oil. **

10. Fight Breast Cancer

Run your diffuser with 2 to 3 drops of basil oil added to help fight breast cancer. It has been proven to cause apoptosis or cell death in breast cancer cells. You can run it for 30 to 60 minutes several times a day. You can also massage the 1% to 3% blend into your chest and breast tissue. Don’t use too much sweet basil oil, though. Very high doses of sweet basil extract have caused liver tumors in mice due to its high levels of estragole. More of this good thing is not better.

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11. Treat Acne

Use the 1% to 3% sweet basil oil blend to treat acne. Its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and disinfectant properties will help clear acne up quickly, leaving your skin smooth and healthy-looking. Wash your face with a mild facewash then moisturize with the blend. Use a lighter oil like jojoba or argan oil so your face doesn’t get greasy.

Jojoba oil is actually excellent for regulating the skin’s production of sebum, which is the oily substance that can cause acne. More mature people may need more sebum, which jojoba oil can also help with. It’s all about achieving the right balance.

12. Improve Oral Health

Add 2 to 3 drops of sweet basil oil to your favorite toothpaste or mouthwash to improve your oral health. It provides protection from mouth sores, ulcers and viral blisters. You can also make your own homemade toothpaste with a few drops of sweet basil oil, a few drops of peppermint oil, a tablespoon of coconut oil and a teaspoon of baking soda. If you don’t have mouthwash but want a cleansing, refreshing rinse, add 2 to 3 drops of sweet basil oil to 8 ounces of water. You can put a few drops of peppermint essential oil in that, too, for that minty fresh taste.

*Do not use sweet basil essential oil while pregnant or breastfeeding. It can have an effect on hormones.*

13. Treat Adrenal Fatigue

Practice sweet basil oil aromatherapy to treat adrenal fatigue. This can cause brain fog, bad moods, a sense of malaise and achy muscles. For a quick and dirty pick-me-up, just inhale the vapors right from the sweet basil essential oil bottle. Four or five deep inhales through the nose and out through the mouth may be all you need. You can also put a few drops of your basil oil/carrier oil blend on your wrists and chest.

14. Reduce Stress and Improve Your Mood

Add a few drops of basil oil to your diffuser and run it while you sit quietly and relax to reduce stress and anxiety. Your mood will quickly improve. If you can, massage a 1% to 3% blend into the back of your neck and shoulders to help you really relax after a stressful day.

15. Improve Your Hair

Put 3 to 5 drops of basil essential oil into your shampoo and conditioner for a clean, healthy scalp and shiny, manageable hair. I like to mix up about 1/4 cup at a time. Just put the shampoo or conditioner into a small container, add 3 to 5 drops of basil oil and mix it up with a spoon. I use small containers with lids to keep the water out while the shower is running. Lather up your hair, leave it sit for a few minutes then rinse. Do the same with the conditioner. The cleansing, disinfecting properties of the basil oil will improve your scalp health and strip old residue from your hair that has been left behind by hair products.

Was this list helpful to you? I was so happy to find out about all of these great uses for sweet basil essential oil. You can add a little of this oil to your Italian dishes, too. Just make sure you have good, food-quality sweet basil oil. You don’t need to use a lot. You may not even want to use a whole drop. It is that strong. Start out by dipping a toothpick into the bottle and stirring your food with it. That may be all you need. I hope you will give this essential oil a try. I think you will like it.

Please leave a comment to let me know if this list is helpful and share your own personal experiences. We can all learn from each other and continue to add to the on-going list of sweet basil essential oil’s great uses. Be sure to share, too, so that others can become aware of all the uses for this essential oil.

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About the author

Reannan Raine

Reannan worked in the non-profit sector for 30 years. Now she devotes her time to freelance writing and sharing knowledge about alternative ways to stay healthy. She believes we could all benefit from the use of fresh herbs and spices in our cooking, essential oils in our medicine cabinets and daily meditation.

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