What is Basil Seeds?

Sabja seeds, also known as basil seeds, are black seeds that resemble chia seeds and are incredibly beneficial for your health. They originate from India but are distinct from holy basil, commonly known as tulsi. Sabja seeds are a great source of fiber, healthy fats, and protein. Unexpectedly, they have no calories. Due to their extreme hardness, sabja seeds cannot be eaten fresh. Therefore, soaking them in water to make them more gelatinous is the ideal way to eat them.

Basil Seeds

Basil is a versatile herb that is used in a variety of cuisines. In addition to having a distinctive flavor, basil is a fantastic food source. Basil plant seeds can also be consumed, and they are frequently combined in drinks and desserts in India and Southeast Asia, and basil seeds are now increasingly popular elsewhere.

What are Basil Seeds?

Sweet basil (osmium basilica) is a basil indigenous to tropical regions of Africa and Asia, from where basil seeds are derived. These seeds are also referred to as tukmaria seeds, sabja seeds, and sweet basil seeds. They have an oval shape, are black, and when submerged in water, they swell and form a gelatinous mass.

Throughout antiquity, Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine practitioners have used basil plant seeds in herbal medicines. In Western society, eating basil seeds is growing in acceptance.
According to a preliminary study, the seeds may aid weight control and digestive health and prevent malignancies and disorders like cardiovascular disease. Current research is sparse and in its early phases, despite being hopeful.

How to Consume Basil Seeds?

Typically, sabja seeds are soaked in water for around 30 minutes before eating. These naturally gelatinous seeds swell in water and become touchable soft, and translucent. Each seed becomes entirely coated in a white film and begins to release antioxidants and digestive enzymes after expanding entirely to at least twice its original size.

Sweet basil seeds, which have a light fragrance, can be added to various beverages or used as a garnish on ice cream and sweets. These tiny seeds can be added to soup or packed as a snack. Sabja is the most sought-after component for people on diets for weight loss because it contains relatively few calories. Despite being abundant in carbohydrates, these tiny seeds are a good source of protein, fiber, and other essential elements.

Precautions for Using Sabja Seeds

  • Children could choke on the seeds if they are not swollen well in water before administering.
  • Pregnant women should consume sabja seeds only under the guidance of a healthcare provider, as it tends to increase the estrogen levels in the body.
  • Sabja seed oil and extracts can slow blood clotting. Hence, it is not recommended for consumption if you have recently had surgery or are wounded.
  • If you have a scheduled surgery, stop using sabja seeds at least two weeks before the surgery.

What are the Health Benefits of Basil Seeds?

Here are some health benefits of basil seeds:

Acts as a Natural Body Coolant

Drinks with sabja seeds offer excellent comfort from the sweltering summer heat. Sabja seeds are well known for lowering body temperature and calming the stomach. These seeds can be added to a wide range of beverages, including milkshakes, smoothies, yogurt, coconut water, coconut milk, and lemonades.

Reduces Blood Sugar Levels

Sabja seeds have an anti-diabetic solid potential, according to research. Sabja seeds contain a lot of fiber. Diabetes patients were frequently given sabja seeds before meals, preventing blood glucose surges. Sabja seeds were discovered to help preserve blood sugar levels in individuals with type 2 diabetes.

Good for Diabetes Management

People with diabetes must be extremely picky about their consumption to maintain stable blood sugar levels. It has been discovered that Saba seeds contain anti-diabetes effects. According to various studies, those who eat Sabja seeds right before a meal do not experience a spike in blood sugar afterward. Sabja seeds can improve diabetes management by maintaining constant blood sugar levels after meals.

Relieves Constipation & Acidity

Soluble fiber is abundant in Saba seeds. These seeds absorb water when introduced to our diet together with a significant amount of water, which aids in pulling water to our gut. This causes feces to soften and encourages regular bowel movements. By including sabja in their daily diet, constipation sufferers experience a great deal of relief.

Pectin is one of many soluble fibers found in sabja seeds. Prebiotic advantages of pectin have been demonstrated. As a result, it plays a crucial role in regulating the complex gut micro biota’s metabolism and composition, boosting the number of healthy bacteria there.

Useful in Weight Loss

Sabja seeds have a lot of soluble dietary fiber, which makes one feel full and content. Additionally, they control our bowel movements, aiding in removing pollutants from our bodies. While on a high-fat diet, the soluble fermentable fiber pectin helps to increase satiety while lowering calorie intake and adiposity. It also creates a fermentation environment that is more likely to support the health of the hindgut. Thus, cutting calories helps people lose weight.

Both soluble fiber and protein are found in Saba seeds, and minerals spend a lot of time in your digestive tract. This implies that after consuming Sabja seeds, you won’t experience hunger for a long time. Without an appetite, there are no cravings for bad eats. By doing this, you can maintain or reduce weight.

Regularizes Bowel Movement

Regular bowel movements are also made possible by foods with high fiber content. Constipation occurs when the large intestine is forced to suck water out of the feces because you didn’t drink enough. However, soluble fibers pull water to the large intestines when you eat fiber and drink a lot of water, which softens the stool. High-fiber diets are especially advised for those with heart issues because straining while bowling puts pressure on the heart.

A Powerhouse of Minerals

Iron, calcium, and magnesium are abundant in Saba seeds. Muscles and bones need calcium and magnesium to perform at their best. Iron is required to keep hemoglobin levels, the protein that carries oxygen in the blood, healthy. In the event of a deficiency, sabja seeds are the most significant source to raise calcium and iron levels.

How to Include in the Diet?

Basil Seeds

Basil seeds are simple to incorporate into drinks and desserts because of their mild flavor and gelatinous texture after being soaked. This is a typical way people use basil seeds throughout most of Asia, and Falooda, a delectable dish immensely popular in India, is one example.

There are numerous recipes for various basil seed cuisines available online. Several of these dishes may be referred to as sabja seeds or falooda seeds.

People can begin by soaking basil seeds in water before using them in a recipe. While different recipes call for different amounts of flowing time, most call for soaking the ingredients for between 30 minutes and 2 hours before draining the water. After being strained, users can include the seeds into or top with:

  • Smoothies
  • Milkshakes
  • Lemonade and other drinks
  • Soups
  • Salad dressings
  • Yogurt
  • Pudding
  • Hot cereal like oatmeal
  • Whole-grain pancakes
  • Whole-grain pasta dishes
  • Bread and muffins

When using basil seeds in baked goods, you can grind them and use them to replace part of the flour rather than adding them soaked.

What are the Side Effects of Basil Seeds?

You can eat sabja seeds, but you should exercise caution because they could interact negatively with other drugs. Although almost everyone can tolerate these seeds, and they represent little to no risk, we advise that you speak with a doctor or nutritionist before consuming them.

  • These seeds pose no risk if you only eat a small amount. These seeds can have adverse side effects if consumed in excess. Although it may differ from person to person, the daily suggested dosage is not to exceed one tablespoon.
  • These seeds can cause various adverse side effects, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, acne, acid reflux, headaches, abdominal discomfort, and so on. Some people may get low blood sugar as a result of them.
  • Sabja seeds are generally not advised for consumption by pregnant women or even children because they might cause choking if not thoroughly dissolved in water. They are not recommended for pregnant women because they are thought to lower the body’s estrogen levels.
  • Basil oil and extracts shouldn’t be consumed if you’ve recently had surgery or are injured because they can impede blood clotting. Because the adverse effects of basil use vary from person to person, you must cease using basil at least two weeks before any scheduled surgeries. Before ingesting them, we advise you to speak with your healthcare physician.

Basil Seeds vs. Chia Seeds

Salvia Hispanic, related to basil in the mint, or Lamiaceae family, is the source of chia seeds. Chia seeds and basil seeds resemble each other in appearance, although chia seeds are larger, more oval-shaped, and available in a broader range of hues. They are frequently consumed raw and soaked, in contrast to basil seeds, typically consumed soaked.

Both have bland flavors, making them useful as ingredients in numerous cuisines. Both inflate when water submerges, while basil seeds do so more quickly. Chia seeds have high quantities of fiber, fatty acids, and bioactive substances, which may all provide many of the same health advantages as basil seeds.

It isn’t easy to compare the nutritional contents of the two seeds because the healthy makeup of basil seeds varies depending on their origin. Chia seeds tend to have a little more fat and calories per serving.

Although the two seeds have minor variations, a recent study indicates that chia and basil seeds may have similar health advantages. People can include both in their diets.


Basil seeds are a great source of fiber, minerals, plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, and healthy plant components. After soaking them in liquid, you can consume them. Drinks made from basil seeds have long been popular in Southeast Asia and India and are also becoming more popular in the United States.

The nutritional worth of basil seeds is advantageous and simple to add to many different cuisines. Even while research into further possible health advantages of basil seeds is still in its early stages, moderate use may support a healthy diet.

Sabja seeds are best consumed after soaking in a glass of water for around 15 minutes with a tablespoon. Sip the soaked seeds in water, or mix them with lemon water, buttermilk, milk, or your preferred juice. These seeds’ high dietary fiber content makes them beneficial for promoting satiety and fullness. The gelatinous seeds make you feel full and help you avoid cravings, which aids in weight loss.