Bay leaves (Laurus nobilis), also called tej patta in India, are among the most used herbs in Ayurvedic cooking. These are no ordinary leaves! Coming from the laurel tree, the aromatic tej patta has held an important place in traditional medicine for ages. That’s because they pack a bunch of health-boosting properties. Being warming in nature, they are great for those with Vata and Kapha aggravation. These are some of the other impressive bay leaf uses recognised in Ayurveda.
5 Bay Leaf Uses
1. Smoother Digestion
One of the most well known uses of bay leaves in India is for digestion. This herb has been found to soothe the stomach, improve bowel movement, increase digestive strength, and help recover from an upset stomach. Bay leaves might work rather well for those with irritable bowel syndrome since they help the body break down heavy foods. Simply add a few bay leaves to your food for smoother digestion.
2. Improves Cardiovascular Health
Did you know that tej patta is great for the heart? This herb, studies have found, reduces cholesterol – all thanks to the caffeic acid and rutin present in it. Bay leaves strengthen the heart’s walls and prevent the build up of plaque in the cardiovascular system. This goes a long way to help prevent serious problems like stroke. Here are other cholesterol lowering foods.
3. Helps Control Manage Diabetes (Type 2)
Next on the list of bay leaf uses is blood glucose control. These leaves influence the activity of insulin receptors in the body. This works to improve the way in which the body processes insulin, ultimately reducing blood sugar levels. So, adding bay leaves to your daily diet can both prevent the development of diabetes, as well as help manage it. Here are some more Ayurvedic remedies for diabetes.
4. Reduces Inflammation
Among the well-known bay leaves uses in Ayurveda is for inflammation. Studies have found that bay leaves contain the phytonutrient parthenolide that can fight inflammation fast and effectively. This is why bay leaves form a part of anti-inflammation formulations in Ayurveda that can be applied topically for conditions like arthritis. Moreover, bay leaves also relieve pain.
5. Busts Stress
Stress in low amounts isn’t a bad thing. But if you tend to suffer from excess stress on a daily basis, chances are that taking herbs (among other lifestyle remedies) can help. One such herb is tej patta. These leaves reduce the levels of stress hormones in the body, thus tackling chronic stress and conditions like anxiety. This is why bay leaves are used in aromatherapy treatment for stress-related disorders. Another wonderful anxiety busting herb is Ashwagandha.
Take Home Message
Bay leaves sure offer a range of incredible health benefits. Before you go, just one word of caution – there are various herbs that go by the name of bay leaves. And not all of them are safe. So when you buy bay leaves, always make sure that you buy ones that are called ‘laurus nobilis’ (that’s the scientific name).
Note: This article is solely for the purpose of sharing information. Please do not substitute it for professional medical advice. Before using anything as a medicine, always consult your doctor.