Thyme is a part of the mint family. It is considered highly beneficial for curing a number of ailments caused by respiratory tract infections. It works as an effective home remedy for whooping cough and chest congestion.
Apart from therapeutic purposes, this aromatic herb with pleasing fragrance is also used in certain culinary preparations.
This herb has several varieties such as lemon thyme, lime thyme, orange thyme, caraway thyme, basil thyme, lavender thyme, woolly thyme, wild thyme, and so on.
Some varieties (like silver lemon thyme, white creeping thyme, red creeping thyme, etc.), in particular, are used as ornamental plants for landscapes.
Scientific Name: Thymus vulgaris
Other Names: French thyme, English thyme, common thyme, garden thyme, tomillo, zaatar
This herb originated in the Mediterranean regions of southern Europe. It belongs to the Lamiaceae family.
Thyme has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, stimulant, carminative, antimicrobial, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, expectorant, diuretic, and vermifuge properties.
The herb contains potent antioxidants and essential vitamins and minerals. It is rich in iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, etc.
As already mentioned, this herb assists in alleviating respiratory infections. It benefits in the natural treatment of issues like chronic bronchitis, whooping cough, laryngitis, tonsillitis, and so on.
In addition, thyme helps relax the muscles of the gastrointestinal tract. Thus, it is useful in curing indigestion, upset stomach, chronic gastritis, irritable bowel syndrome, bloating, flatulence, and other similar diseases.
Another health benefit of thyme is that it provides relief from scabies and lice infestation. Plus, it works as a good natural cure for muscle cramps, gout, and arthritis. Moreover, thyme boosts the lymphatic system and strengthens immunity.
Furthermore, thyme oil assists in reducing blood pessure, improving heart rhythm, and lowering arterial pressure. It is believed that this herb contains terpenoids that prevent cancer.
Medicinal Uses of Thyme
- • Having a thyme infusion assists in healing cough, cold, asthma, bronchitis, and so on. To prepare this herbal tea, steep two tablespoons of this herb in a cup of boiling water for about ten minutes.
Follow this simple therapy three times in a day. You can also add lemon juice and honey in it. Plus, you can add a few drops of thyme essential oil in the humidifier.
- • To cure conditions like laryngitis, sore throat, and tonsillitis, you can gargle with lukewarm infusion prepared from thyme herb.
- • Another thyme remedy for sore throat and cough involves steeping two tablespoons dried thyme leaves in two cups of boiling water till it cools down.
Next, you need to strain the liquid, add a cup of honey in the solution and then shake it so that it develops a syrupy consistency. Take one tablespoon of this home medicine almost six times in a day.
- • Boil some water, add a few drops of thyme oil in it and then inhale its steam (keep a towel over your head) to help clear chest congestion.
- • Using a decoction prepared by boiling six tablespoons of thyme in about three liters of bath water for 15 to 20 minutes on the body improves immunity.
Follow this procedure just a couple of times in a month. Another simple way to incorporate this therapy is to add three to five drops of thyme essential oil in 200 g bath water.
- • Applying a combination of thyme and honey on wounds reduces the chances of developing infection on the affected area.
- • Drinking thyme tea prepared by steeping this herb in hot water for 2-3 minutes helps reduce menstrual cramps. You can also soak in a warm sitz bath mixed with thyme essential oil.
- • Sipping thyme tea several times in a day relieves indigestion and heartburn. When having gassy foods in your meal, sprinkle this herb on the food to avoid flatulence.
- • When dealing with rheumatism, massage the aching joints with a combination of two drops juniper essential oil and thyme oil mixed in three tablespoons of carrier oil (for instance, olive oil).
- • Rinsing the mouth with a decoction prepared from thyme leaves, or thyme oil (one drop diluted in a cup of lukewarm water) works as an antiseptic mouthwash for gingivitis, gum inflammation, mouth sores, and bad breath. You can also add two drops of clove oil in it.
- • Steep half an ounce of dried thyme leaves in a pint of boiling water and rinse itchy skin with this solution to get rid of itching.
- • Application of diluted thyme oil on the forehead and temples is useful for curing headache.
- • Applying thyme tincture on skin clears acne and blemishes. Besides, you can steep three to four tablespoons of dried thyme leaves in one and a half cup of water for 20-30 minutes. Regularly rinse your face with this solution.
Here’s a video explaining about thyme health benefits.
- • Boil a pint of water and add four to five tablespoons of thyme in it. Leave the mixture for about 15 minutes. Strain and cool the solution. Finally, use this herbal liquid as the final rinse on your hair after washing them in order to control dandruff. Follow this treatment three to four times in a week.
- • Regularly massaging the scalp with a combination of thyme oil and coconut oil/olive oil stimulates circulation and promotes hair growth. To derive the health benefits of this herb, you can add it in your shampoo as well.
Apart from these medicinal uses, thyme helps in food preservation, too. Besides, when combined with certain other herbs, it works as an effective insect repellant.
Thus, you can prepare a solution by mixing 15 drops of thyme tincture, 10 drops of eucalyptus oil tincture, and about two ounces each of olive oil and distilled water.
Apply this home medicine to protect against insect bites. In ancient times, the Romans used this herb as a disinfectant and deodorant.
It is usually not recommended for pregnant women. When using thyme essential oil, it is suggested to avoid using it in undiluted form otherwise it can irritate the skin or cause headache as the oil is extremely strong.