Laurus nobilis or bay leaf comes from the bay laurel tree and it is a musky leaf. People have cherished bay leaf for many centuries and it grows in the Mediterranean. It has been considered as a sacred tree and many winners and poets have received bay branches as a sign of honor and glory.
Bay leaves have many purposes and some of them are for making perfumes and cooking too. Bay leaves are very abundant in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and it also has anti-bacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties.
Here is a list of the health benefits of bay leaf:
1. Protects the heart
Bay leaves are full with organic compounds like caffeic acid and rutin which have the ability to protect the heart. Caffeic acid can be very helpful in eliminating the bad cholesterol from the cardiovascular system and rutin strengthens the capillary walls.
Bay leaf tea can offer you a big relief if you frequently have headaches. This is because the oil from bay leaves contains analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. These beneficial properties can also help with arthritis, joint pains, headaches, migraines and many more types of pain.
3.Strengthens the immune system
Bay leaves are abundant wit vitamin A, vitamin C and zinc which are the three most beneficial nutrients for strong and healthy immune system. Vitamin A is very helpful in protecting the mucous membranes which are situated at the level of mouth, throat, eyes, nose, lungs and digestive tract and are very prone to viruses and bacteria. If your mucous membranes are protected and healthy they will prevent the viruses and bacteria to get inside the body.
Bay leaves can also help you to get rid of dandruff and all you have to do is make a mixture of bay leaves and cold water and wash the hair with it after you have washed it with a shampoo. There is another solution for this problem; you can also remove dandruff if you put ten to fifteen drops of bay leaves essential oil in your shampoo.
Bay leaves can also help you to get a good night sleep and fight insomnia. They have the ability to calm your mind due to their mild properties. So try this out, and drink a glass of water with a few drops of bay leaf extract before you go to bed. This mixture will help you calm the nerves, relax your mind and body and will help you get deep sleep.
Bay leaves are highly efficient in the fight against diabetes type 2 due to their ability to reduce the levels of triglyceride, blood glucose and cholesterol. So if you want to reduce the level of blood sugar you need to consume bay leaves regularly and you will also regulate the work of the heart.
Bay leaves are so efficient in the diabetes treatment because they contain antioxidants and they make the body to process insulin more quickly and efficiently. So it is highly recommended to consume bay leaves especially for those who have diabetes and for those who have a high risk of getting diabetes, and they will protect your health and prevent diabetes.
Bay leaves contain a special combination of organic compounds and antioxidants like: phytonutrients, parthenolide, linalool, catechins, and because of this combination they have the ability to fight free radicals which transform healthy cells in cancerous cells.
8.Excellent for pregnant women
Bay leaves contain folic acid and that is why they are very good for pregnant women. So it is recommended to consume bay leaves in the periconception period, which is three months before conception and after it and also at the beginning of pregnancy. Folic acid prevents the fetus to form any type of defects, and bay leaves are also excellent for inducing pregnancy.
Bay leaves can also improve the digestion process. They have the ability to help the stomach and also to reduce the problems which can be caused by irritable bowel syndrome and celiac disease. Bay leaves are also very efficient in relieving flatulence and many problems related to gases. Because of their content high with enzymes, bay leaves can easily break down proteins and also improve the digestion of meat dishes.
10.Treat kidney stones
Bay leaves are very efficient in the treatment of kidney stones and kidney infections. You just need to make a cup of tea with 200 ml of water and 5 grams of bay leaves and boil them together. Leave them to boil until only ¼ of the water is left. After that strain it and consume this tea two times a day and you will hinder the formation of kidney stones.
You can use bay leaves in a completely different way other than consuming them
You can also burn them inside the house. Put a couple of leaves in a metal dish or an ashtray so you do not damage anything else. Light the bay leaves and exit the room and come back after ten minutes. After the fumes have spread in the room you can breathe all the healthy benefits.
So these are the health benefits of burning bay leaves in the room
1.Protects the respiratory system
Bay leaves contain eugenol and mycrene which have anti-inflammatory properties and they can dislodge the phlegm and mucus and the lungs and with that stimulate the respiratory passages. And you just need to inhale the steam from the burnt bay leaf.
Linalool is a compound contained in bay leaves and the American Association of Nurse Anesthetics conducted a study which showed that linalool has the ability to reduce anxiety and increase the desire to socially interact. You can feel the result after ten minutes of inhaling the smell.
Elemicin, pinene and cineol are all compounds of bay leaves. So when the bay leaf burns, these compounds release relaxing, calming and stimulating effects.