Bay leaf is leaf of the Bay Laurel leaf and has a strong aroma. The tree is grown in the Mediterranean region. The leaves are pointed smooth and with a sharp fragrance. The scientific name is “Laurus Nobilis”. These leaves are used widely in various cuisines like Indian, Nepalese etc. The leaves can be used as it is in coking or they can be roasted and ground and used as a spice. Besides culinary benefits bay leaves have several therapeutic uses.
Bay leaves have a positive effect on the digestive system. Bay leaves are diuretic in nature and hence help in the removal of toxic substances from the digestive system by way of urination. They also vomit out toxic substance that is eaten. It has enzymes which help in the digestion of complex proteins and is also very useful against irritable bowel syndrome, upset stomach, celiac disease etc.
The compound rutin found in bay leaves help in fortifying the walls of the capillaries. The compound caffeic acid helps to remove the bad cholesterol from the body and help in keeping the heart healthy.
Free radicals are responsible for converting the healthy cells into cancerous cells. Bay leaves are a rich source of antioxidants and phytonutrients which help eliminate the free radicals and help protect the body against cancer.
Bay leaves help in maintaining the blood glucose levels and also help in maintaining the insulin levels. Bay leaves thus help in controlling diabetes and are useful for diabetics.
Bay leaves have several compounds which are useful in curing acne. Crush bay leaves and add it to water. Boil the mixture. Strain and splash the water on the face to get relief from acne.
Bay leaves have compounds which help in whitening the teeth naturally. Crush bay leaves to fine powder. Rub teeth with this powder to keep your teeth sparking white. Follow the remedy twice in a week for best results.
Bay leaves have a calming effect on the mind and have mild sedative properties and help induce sleep. Therefore bay leaves can be used in the treatment of insomnia.
Bay leaves compounds which help in fighting respiratory tract infections. In case of colds, coughs, sneezing simply add few bay leaves to water and boil it. Strain and drink this tea. Bay leaf tea is also useful in the treatment of fever.
Drinking bay leaf tea is found to give relief from headaches. The oil extracted from bay leaves has analgesic and anti inflammatory properties and is found to be useful in giving relief from headaches, migraines, arthritis, joint pains etc.
Bay leaves are rich in folic acid. Hence they are good for pregnant women as they protect the fetus from birth defects. Bay leaves are also believed to be beneficial in inducing pregnancy.