The present study investigated the in vitro hypoglycemic activity of basil (Ocimum basilicum) aqueous extract. Preliminary phytochemical screening of the extract revealed the presence of reducing sugars, cardiac glycosides, tannins, saponins, glycosides, flavonoids and steroids. The total polyphenols content (TPC), flavonoids content (FC), percentage diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH( · )) radical inhibition and total antioxidant status (TAS) were estimated. The FC was 41 ± 2.2 rutin/g dry extract, the TPC was 146 ± 5.26 mg catechin/g dry extract and the TAS was 5.12 ± 0.7 mmol/L. The %DPPH( · ) free radical inhibition was 60%, 54%, 49% and 43%, respectively, for different extract concentrations; 20, 18.2, 16.3 and 14.5 mg/ml, respectively. The extract elicited significant dose-dependent pattern against rat intestinal sucrase (RIS; IC(50) = 36.72 mg/ml), rat intestinal maltase (RIM; IC(50) = 21.31 mg/ml) and porcine pancreatic α-amylase (PPA; IC(50) = 42.50 mg/ml) inhibitory activities. The inhibition was greater against maltase compared with sucrase. These effects may be attributed to the high TPC and FC levels. The linear regression analysis revealed strong significant positive correlations between %DPPH( · ) radical inhibition and each of %RIS, %RIM and %PPA inhibiting activity. Also, strong significant positive correlations between %RIS and either %RIM or %PPA inhibition activity were observed. We concluded therefore that basil aqueous extract via antioxidant and possibly α-glucosidase and α-amylase inhibiting activities, offered positive benefits to control diabetes.