Ocimum Tenuiflorum, commonly known as Holy Basil or Tulsi, is an aromatic perennial plant in the family Lamiaceae. It is native to the Indian subcontinent and widespread as a cultivated plant throughout the Southeast Asian tropics.
Tulsi is cultivated for religious and traditional medicine purposes, and for its essential oils. It is widely used as a herbal tea, commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine, and has a place within the Vaishnava tradition of Hinduism, in which devotees perform worship involving holy basil plants or leaves.
Holy basil differs from the basil used in Italian dishes or Thai basil used in curries in Southeast Asia. Holy basil or tulsi has a pungent and bitter taste and it is not usually used for cooking. It is however used to make tulsi tea which has adaptogenic properties. Holy basil is highly nutritious and according to USDA, it is a good source of potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and vitamin C. It also contains iron, sodium, zinc, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, and vitamin B6, A, and K.