Basil Leaf(Tulsi) For Babies – When to Introduce, Benefits and Precautions

6 min read

Written by Aparna Hari

Aparna Hari

Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.

Basil Leaf For Babies

Basil leaves, also known as holy basil or tulsi have many health benefits.  These leaves not just restrict various diseases but also have many remedial powers which make it the best to cure several health diseases such as cold, cough, nausea, etc. Basil leaf for babies is excellent and can be safely added to their diet once the baby is ready for solids.

Basil belongs to the mint family and its fresh leaves bring freshness to your baby’s meal. This herb has trace amounts of vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, iron, and beta carotene. Apart from these nutrients, basil is also known to be rich in anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties. For the very same reason, tulsi has a significant role to play in traditional Indian medicinal sciences such as Ayurveda.

In This Article

Is Basil Leaf Safe For Babies?

Yes, basil is safe for babies. Basil can be introduced to your baby as soon as they are ready to start solids. The goodness of vitamin C, calcium, and vitamin K is essential for good bone health and kids’ growth are all present in basil. This herb also has beta-carotene which is an antioxidant and is necessary for good eye health and better vision. Basil improves your baby’s immune levels which in turn keeps diseases such as coughs, colds, and sore throats in babies at bay.

When Can You Introduce Tulsi to Your Baby?

You can safely introduce basil to your little champ once they are ready for solids, which for most babies is at around 6 months of age, while for some babies it may be 7 months too. Basil is a very easy herb to introduce and the best way to start is with basil infused water. The goodness of the leaf will infuse into the water and your baby will be able to enjoy the goodness of this herb.

Nutritional Value of Basil Leaves

Let us now take a look at the nutritional chart of basil leaves.

Nutrients Value(Fresh Leaves, Chopped) Value(Dried Leaves, Crumbled)
Calories 0.6 5
Vitamin A 3% of the RDI 4% of the RDI
Vitamin K 13% of the RDI 43% of the RDI
Calcium 0.5% of the RDI 4% of the RDI
Iron 0.5% of the RDI 5% of the RDI
Manganese 1.5% of the RDI 3% of the RDI

Amazing Top 5 Health Benefits of Holy Basil For Babies

Health Benefits of Holy Basil For Babies

Basil leaves have medicinal powers and help babies fight diseases like cold, cough and boost their immune levels. Let’s have a look at some health benefits of basil for babies below:

1. Good For Skin Ailments

The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of basil leaf make it ideal for the treatment of skin ailments. If your baby is suffering from skin problems, allergies or is having wounds on the skin, you can treat it with the help of basil leaves. You can apply the paste of these leaves to the affected area for quick relief from pain and inflammation.

[Read : 8 Common Skin Problems In Babies And Their Solutions]

2. Improves Digestive Health

When your baby consumes one or two basil leaves daily, digestive issues such as constipation and other diseases stay at bay. These leaves work as a good appetizer as they are a rich source of antioxidants. Consuming basil leaves regularly is known to cleanse the stomach and regularize the functioning of the digestive system.

3. Promotes Respiratory Health

Respiratory diseases affect the lungs which can get complicated. Regular intake of basil leaves can lower the chances of respiratory illnesses in babies and may act as a natural remedy if your child is suffering from asthma or other related problems. Supplementing these leaves along with regular medications can bring in quick relief to your baby.

4. Helps to Cure Fever

When your baby has a fever or is suffering from illness, you can give tulsi water or other forms of tulsi along with regular medication as suggested by the doctor. Due to its immune and disease-fighting properties, this herb acts as an excellent protectant for your little one.

5. Promotes Immunity

There is a reason tulsi has so much value in our culture. Every home in India has a holy basil plant which is worshipped every morning. The presence of the plant itself is believed to keep diseases at bay. Especially for babies who have an immature immune system, giving basil regularly can be beneficial in developing immunity and staying away from illnesses.

[Read : How to Increase Immunity in Babies?]

Precautions to Take While Introducing Holy Basil For Babies

Introducing Holy Basil For Babies

As with every food, it is important that you follow a few precautions when introducing basil leaf to your baby.

  • Prefer homegrown tulsi leaves. This way you know that they are safe and pesticide-free.
  • Basil water is a good way to introduce basil to your baby. Steep a couple of leaves in half a glass of water and give this water in small quantities to your baby, maybe half a teaspoon to start with.
  • Basil is a good remedy to treat the health issues in your baby. But this doesn’t mean that you start giving your baby too many leaves.
  • Start with half a leaf and see how your baby is reacting. You can slowly increase the intake. If you start giving excessive basil leaves to your babies, it’ll cause a burning sensation in your baby’s mouth.
  • Although basil leaves are the safest herb for your baby’s health, you must keep its consumption within the limits and not let your baby over consume them.
  • If your baby is suffering from nasal bleeding, restrict giving basil leaves to your baby.
  • Also, ensure not to give milk soon after making your baby consume basil leaves.

Are There Any Side Effects of Basil Leaf For Babies?

Basil is extremely safe and does not cause any side effects. But having said that, it is always good to keep an eye on your baby after feeding anything new. Burning in the mouth and stomach can happen due excess consumption of basil leaves in babies.

Top 3 Healthy and Tasty Basil Leaf Recipes For Babies

Tasty Basil Leaf Recipes For Babies

Here are a few ways in which you can feed basil to your baby

1. Tulsi Water

This extremely traditional and time-tested recipe is one of the best ways to give tulsi to your baby. Boil a few tulsi leaves with a cup of water. Let this water cool down, strain the leaves and give the water. You can start with a teaspoon of this water every day and slowly increase later on.

2. Adding Tulsi Water to Fresh Juices

When giving any juices to your baby, you can add tulsi water. It is a good way of providing seasoning to the juice and adding to the total nutritional intake.

3. Seasoning Over Fruit or Vegetable Salads

For older babies who are able to eat finger foods. you can sprinkle finely chopped basil over their finger foods or salads before giving them to eat.

Basil is among the best fresh herbs you can introduce to your baby. A basil plant in almost every house allows us easy access to these fresh leaves every day. Its medicinal, herbal, and nutritive properties make basil leaves for babies the best food that you can introduce once they are ready for solids.

[Read : The 3-Day Wait Rule For Babies To Introduce Solids]

FAQ’s

1. Is Tulsi Safe For Babies?

Yes, Tulsi is undoubtedly among the safest herbs babies can have. In fact, Indians have a tradition of giving tulsi in various forms to babies such as tulsi water, kashayam etc., to keep them safe from illnesses and sicknesses.

2. Can Babies Have Holy Basil?

Yes, babies can have basil. Basil water is the safest way to introduce this herb to babies. Moderation is the key. Choking basil leaves can carry risk of choking in babies who have just stated solids.

Read Also: Tomatoes For Babies – When to Introduce, Benefits, and Precautions

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Aparna Hari,MBA in Marketing,P.G. Diploma in Human Resource Management from IGNOU Bachelor of Sciences (Home Science) from Nagarjuna University

Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.

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