Health Benefits of Thyme:
Thyme is an herb from the mint family that you probably recognize from your spice set. But it’s so much more than an after-thought ingredient. In Lebanon is called Zattar, wild mint. Organic and natural skin care products can now be found at most retailers, and many contain thyme. Thanks to its antiseptic and antifungal properties, it is a common ingredient in mouthwash. Thyme is also a popular ingredient in natural deodorants and is often included in potpourri.
The aromatic thyme (Thymus Vulgaris) plant is a perennial and woody shrub harnessing square stems and attractive flowers. A member of the mint family, thyme is an herb that originates in the Mediterranean basin and has a number of varieties, each with its own distinctive oil composition. Thyme is a powerful herb, popular in aromatherapy – so it must be used with caution and care. Do know, though, that the health benefits of thyme are very real.
Thymus Vularis ct.linalooll is recommended by herbalists as an effective and safe beginner herb for children and the elderly. Other varieties are more potent, and their use should be reserved for qualified herbalists with experience in using them. The volatile essential oils in thyme are packed with antiseptic, anti-viral, anti-rheumatic, anti-parasitic and anti-fungal properties, which explain why thyme-based formulas are used as an expectorant, diuretic, fungicide, an antibiotic.
Thyme to disinfect
Mold is a common yet potentially dangerous air pollutant that can lurk in your home. Once you identify it, take the necessary steps to get rid of it once and for all. Thyme oil may be the answer for low mold concentrations.
Essential oil of thyme and Thymol hold many fungicidal properties. Researchsuggests that it can be used as a disinfectant in dwellings where there is a low concentration of mold.
Thyme to boost your immunity
Getting all the vitamins your body needs every day can be challenging. Luckily, thyme is packed with vitamin C and is also a good source of vitamin A. If you feel a cold coming on, thyme can help get you back in good health. Another health benefit of thyme: It’s a good source of copper, fiber, iron, and manganese.
Thyme to get rid of pests
Thymol is also an ingredient in many pesticides — both outdoor and indoor — and is commonly used to target bacteria and viruses, as well as rats, mice, and other animal pests. A recent study shows that thyme extract can repel mosquitoes, but growing it in your garden isn’t enough. In order to get the best pest-fighting results, rub thyme leaves between your hands to release the essential oil. You can also make homemade repellant by mixing four drops of thyme oil to every teaspoon of olive oil or mixing five drops for every 2 ounces of water.
Thyme is also a powerful detoxifying agent, making it one of many liver detox foods. What’s more, the herb is a great immune system booster that encourages white blood cell formation while increasing resistance to foreign organisms. With cold and flu season upon us, considering adding thyme-based formulas to the medicine cabinet is a great idea. There is a reason the health benefits of thyme has been experienced for all of the time.
History of Thyme
Its range of use is impressive, and it has over 400 subspecies. Ancient Egyptians used it in their embalming practices, while ancient Greeks used it as incense. Thanks to its distinctive taste, thyme has remained a culinary staple to this day. But thyme is also fast gaining a reputation for its medicinal qualities, such as its ability to help treat acne and high blood pressure.
- Both Hippocrates and Dioscorides discussed the medicinal use of thyme in their ancient writings.
- Civilizations in the Mediterranean were familiar with the health-promoting benefits of this easy to cultivate shrub which grew happily on sunny banks and in heaths.
- The Romans grew thyme for bee culture, the purification of rooms and to add flavor to liqueurs and cheese.
- Ancient Greek temples were scented with thyme incense and Egyptians favored the fragrant plant for embalming.
- Valiant knights were given thyme for courage in the middle ages and sprigs were placed in bedrooms and under pillows to ward off depression.
Long before the discovery of modern medicine, crushed thyme was placed on bandages to promote wound healing and ward off infection. Thyme is no stranger to a kitchen, past or present, and is a popular culinary herb. Prior to the invention of the refrigerator, thyme was even used to help keep meats from spoiling.
The Far-Reaching Health Benefits of Thyme
Thyme is effective against infections, most specifically respiratory and digestive. It can be taken for diarrhea, infections of the vagina including thrush and infections in the fallopian tubes. It has a relaxing effect on muscles in the bronchi and helps to relieve asthma, whooping cough, laryngitis, bronchitis and dry coughs. Mouth and gum infections can be treated with a solution made from as little as . 1 percent thyme oil. Inhalation therapy is useful for those who suffer from chronic sinus infections. As an antioxidant, thyme protects the body from the effects of aging. As a stellar digestive herb, thyme can enhance appetite and digestion while stimulating the liver.
Other Uses for Thyme
The health benefits of thyme are undeniable; thyme oil alone, or when used in a mixture of other natural health-promoting compounds, has been found to relieve the following conditions.
- Nail fungus
- Muscle pain
- Chronic fatigue
- Hair loss
- Skin problems
- Kidney problems
Methods of Use
Use caution when using thyme on the skin while it’s in a pure, concentrated form, as it can cause irritation. It is always best to mix thyme oil with other compounds such as lemon, lavender or pine before use. Try using thyme oil on the soles of the feet; it is very tolerable and travels through the body with ease. Thyme inhalation therapy is also considered safe using an aroma burner or humidifier.
Thyme is known for its antibacterial properties and it might have a future as an acne-fighting ingredient. When thyme is steeped in alcohol for days or weeks, it turns into a solution known as a tincture. Research in the UK has tested the effects of thyme tinctures on acne. In the one study done on thyme tincture, the findings were impressive. This natural herb preparation fought pimples better than antiacne products, which included benzoyl peroxide. Time will tell if this remedy is an effective acne treatment.
Thyme to lower blood pressure
A study found that an extract was able to significantly reduce heart rate in rats with high blood pressure, and it was also able to lower their cholesterol.
One sure way to use thyme to help lower your heart rate is to substitute it for salt in your foods.
Thyme to stop coughing
Thyme essential oil, which is obtained from its leaves, is often used as a natural cough remedy. In one study, a combination of thyme and ivy leaves helped to alleviate coughing and other symptoms of acute bronchitis.
Next time you’re faced with a cough ora sore throat, try drinking some thyme tea.
Thyme to boost your mood
Thyme essential oil is often used for aromatic and therapeutic purposes because of its active substance carvacrol. In a 2013 study, carvacrol was shown to affect neuron activity in ways that boosted the subjects’ feelings of well-being. So if you use thyme or thyme oil regularly, it might have a positive effect on your feelings and mood.