A holy basil tincture, how to make and use it properly

It is a plant known under many names, appreciated for its valuable pro-health properties. Asian basil, holy basil, tulsi basil – if you’ve ever come across one of these names, know that it’s still the same variety of basil – ocimum tenuiflorum in latin, तुलसी in devanagari. 

Fastest way to make a holy basil tincture is to put leaves to a glass jar, add alcohol (not stronger than 70% alc/vol – 140-proof) – enough to cover up all the leaves. Seal the jar tightly and keep holy basil in alcohol for minimum 2 weeks up to 1 month. Later strain and store tincture in a dark bottle. 

It is a herb with beautiful, intensely fragrant, purple flowers. In India, its health benefits have been used for over five thousand years and can be found in virtually every home.

Fresh holy basil leaves

Do you want to know more about holy basil tincture? Keep reading 🙂 I will cover uses, benefits, dosage and at the end of article you can also find a list of equipment that might be useful when you will be making a holy basil tincture by yourself.

supplies to make tincture nalewka at home
List of supplies to make tinctures at home

I’m making tinctures from 2001 and have gathered and read dozens of books about them, so information that you will find in this article should be helpful 🙂

If you are looking for more recipes you can check full list of tinctures that I have on my blog – here is link to updated list in alphabetical order.

More recipes – check on my blog

If you are passionate like me and would like to look for more recipes, I have almost 100 others described on my blog, use the search option below and you might find what you are looking for:

What type of alcohol should you use for holy basil tincture?

When making tincture from holy basil with fresh herb the best would be vodka or other grain alcohol that is at least 40% alcohol by volume (80-proof).

holy basil tincture what alcohol use
You can use strong spirits for holy basil tincture, for example
190, 151 or 120-proof Everclear when using dried herbs

If you are using dried holy basil it would be better to use stronger spirit, 80-90% alc./vol (160-180-proof). Dried herbs don’t have a lot of juices left, and it is best for extracting any water that’s left in the herbs out of them to use strong spirit. 

You can also make your own recipes using gin, rum, whisky or any other strong alcohol, this is the fun in tincture hobby to make such experiments.

What is holy basil tincture good for?

Fresh holy basil is very nutritious, it’s a good source of:

  • potassium,
  • calcium,
  • magnesium,
  • phosphorus,
  • vitamin C.
holy basil tincture benefits

It also contains iron, sodium, zinc, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folic acid, and vitamins B6, A, and K.

It helps to ease inflammation and joint pain, gives relief for anxiety. Holy basil is an adaptogen with strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Should I take holy basil tincture at night or morning?

Taking holy basil tincture 2-3 times a day may help you with symptoms of stress, including forgetfulness and exhaustion. Last dose, taken in the evening can help with sleep disorders.

what should be dosage of holy basil tincture nalewka

What are other beneficial properties of holy basil tincture? 

Holy basil is extremely beneficial to human health, mainly due to the unique composition of essential oil, containing eugenol, camphor, flavonoids, nerol and various terpenes. 

12 benefits from using holy basil tincture

This rich blend of organic compounds provides a number of health benefits and can help treat, among others acne, asthma, inflammation, respiratory problems, and reduce the risk of heart disease and atherosclerosis.

What holy basil tincture can help you for:

  1. Stress reduction.
  2. Lowering the fever.
  3. Hair and skin.
  4. Digestive system.
  5. Stimulating properties.
  6. Respiratory disorders and asthma.
  7. Lung diseases.
  8. Heart diseases.
  9. Breath refreshing..
  10. Teeth protection.
  11. Prevention of kidney stones.
  12. Headaches.

Stress reduction

stress reduction with holy basil tincture nalewka

Holy basil fights stress because it helps maintain the correct level of cortisol in the body.

Thanks to its properties, it regulates blood circulation, relieves tension and effectively eliminates free radicals released during stress reactions.

Especially in Ayurvedic medicine, it is considered an excellent antidote to stress and a way to achieve mental balance – by chewing fresh holy basil leaves during the day to calm the body down.

Lowering the fever

lowering fever with holy basil tincture

It is an old practice in India to give a decoction of holy basil leaves and flowers to people suffering from fever.

Fever attacks us mainly due to infections caused by protozoa (malaria), bacteria (typhus), viruses (flu), and even allergic substances and fungi. Fever is not a disease in itself. This is just a symptom that shows that our body is struggling with less visible infections. The tremendous disinfecting, bactericidal and fungicidal properties of holy basil destroy all the pathogens mentioned above and help to lover the fever.

The healing properties of holy basil come mainly from its essential oils and the nutrients it contains. Holy basil is an excellent antibiotic, bactericide, fungicide and disinfectant and very effectively protects the body against various types of bacterial, viral and fungal infections.

Hair and skin

Holy basil works against dandruff and heals irritated, itchy skin. Its use is also recommended for people who want to strengthen weak, falling out hair.

hair and skin protection with holy basil tincture nalewka

Basil has strong cleansing properties, thanks to which the skin of people eating fresh leaves becomes healthy and radiant.

Digestive system

holy basil tincture supports metabolism

It increases the secretion of intestinal, pancreatic and gastric juices, and also stimulates the secretion of bile. Supports metabolism and helps to get rid of unpleasant smell from the mouth.  

Stimulating properties

holy basil tincture similar to coffee

Holy basil is also known for its stimulant properties. It can replace energy drinks or morning coffee. It tastes great in combination with traditional black tea. It helps to revive the mind and body, keeps you on your feet and gives you energy.

Respiratory disorders and asthma

holy basil tincture helping to fight asthma

Thanks to the presence of ingredients such as campen, eugenol and cineole in essential oils, holy basil is very effective in the treatment of almost all respiratory disorders, including bronchitis, both chronic and acute. It is also very helpful in treating asthma as it soothes congestion and facilitates smooth breathing.

Lung diseases

holy basil tincture helps with lungs

Compounds such as vitamin C, eugenol, and cineol present in holy basil essential oils not only treat pulmonary infections, but also heal congestion.

Some studies also show that they are effective in healing lung damage caused by smoking.

Heart diseases

holy basil tincture for hearth diseases

Holy basil contains vitamin C and other antioxidants, such as eugenol, that protect the heart from the damaging effects of free radicals. Additionally, eugenol is very beneficial in reducing blood cholesterol levels.

Breath refreshing 

holy basil tincture breath refreshing

Holy basil is an excellent breath freshener and mouth disinfectant, and its freshness is kept for a very long time. Holy basil destroys over 99% of germs and bacteria in the mouth, and this effect can last all day. It also helps to heal sores in the mouth.

Teeth protection

holy basil tincture teeth protection

Holy basil destroys bacteria responsible for cavities, plaque, tartar and bad breath, while protecting teeth. It also has astringent properties that make the gums hold the teeth more tightly, preventing them from falling out.

However, tulasi also has certain compounds, such as mercury, which can be harmful to the teeth if kept in direct contact for too long. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid chewing these leaves. Instead of chewing the leaves – it is much better to rinse your mouth with the decoction.

Prevention of kidney stones

holy basil tincture for kidney stones protection

As a detoxifying and mildly diuretic plant, holy basil helps reduce uric acid levels in the body, which is a major factor in the formation of kidney stones. It also helps to clean the kidneys through increased frequency of urination. Holy basil also has a mild analgesic effect and helps withstand the pain caused by stones as they pass through the tubules.


holy basil tincture helps with headaches

Camphene, eugenol, cineole, carvacrol, and methyl-chavicol in holy basil have excellent analgesic, sedative, anti-inflammatory and disinfectant effects.

Headaches caused by migraines, sinus pressure, cough and colds, or high blood pressure can be effectively controlled with holy basil tincture.

How to use holy basil tincture?

Use it dissolved in glass of water, not more than 2-3 times a day, each time use around 15-20 drops of tincture for a glass of water. 

dosage of holy basil tincture

How long can holy basil tincture last?

When stored in a cool, dry place, holy basil tinctures can last for years. If you use dark glass bottles, tincture will will last longer because the light will not damage it. 

Recommened edequipment – what you may need to have to make such tincture at home

I hope that you have found my article useful. Below I’ve gathered all items that I am using when making my tinctures, some of them, like airtight jars, are necessary, some are just handy, you do not need to have them all to be able to make a good tincture.  

recommended tincture equipment
Tincture equipment examples
  1. Airtight jars.
  2. Mortar for herbs – granite.
  3. Mortar for herbs – stainless steel.
  4. Funnels for filling bottles.
  5. Large bottles, dark glass.
  6. Medium bottles, dark glass.
  7. Small bottles with dropper, dark glass.
  8. Cloth for tincture filtering.
  9. Coffee filters for tincture filtering.
  10. Alcohol meter to check how strong is your vodka/spirit.
  11. Tincture press for better extraction.

    Here you can also find a more detailed post with list of equipment that might be useful.

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Damian from PolishTinctures
Best regards from Kraków!

If you are looking also for other recipes, check out my blog – I have written about almost 100 other tinctures, use the search option below and you might find what you are looking for:

How is holy basil also called in other languages?

If you are not sure if the herb that you have is the same as described in this article, check the name that you have on package – according to webmd.com holy basil is also called:

Ajaka, Albahaca Santa, Bai Gkaprow, Baranda, Basilic Indien, Basilic Sacré, Basilic Sacré Pourpre, Basilic Saint, Brinda, Green Holy Basil, Hot Basil, Indian Basil, Kala Tulsi, Kemangen, Krishna Tulasi, Krishna Tulsi, Manjari, Ocimum sanctum, Ocimum tenuiflorum, Parnasa, Patrapuspha, Rama Tulsi, Red Holy Basil, Sacred Basil, Sacred Purple Basil, Shyama Tulsi, Sri Tulasi, Suvasa Tulasi, Tulasi, Tulsi, Tulsi Patra.

Sources: www.webmd.com / Holy Basil: Uses, Side Effects, Interactions, Dosage

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