Thyme is an aromatic herb of the mint family with many beneficial and wholesome properties. From reducing blood pressure, to treating respiratory infections, to easing anxiety, there are myriads of other reasons why you should always have thyme lying around your home.
It is an all-round plant which you can use to make thyme tea, steep its leaves in alcohol to make a thyme tincture, add thyme essential oil to carrier oil to treat your skin.
No matter how you decide to use it, thyme will always be both medicinal and tasty.
According to the Journal of Applied Biology & Biotechnology, thyme is rich in antioxidants and other nutritional content such as vitamins A, C, E, and K, and minerals that include potassium, phosphorus, iron, and calcium.
Due to its countless healing properties, some people use thyme to treat mouth infections, respiratory issues, and problems with digestions, and its high levels of vitamin C will help bolster your immune system.
Thyme essential oil
The primary component of thyme is thymol, a powerful antioxidant, and the herb itself has potent antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial qualities.
Thyme tea provides many of the abovementioned medicinal properties, is tasty, refreshing and quite soothing. Studies have found that drinking of thyme tea improves your respiratory system, alleviates sore throats, and treats coughs and bronchitis.
Making Thyme Tea
Put one teaspoon of dried thyme (if fresh use thrice as much) in a mug of hot water. Cover the mug and leave to infuse for about 10 minutes.
Strain the leaves and add a teaspoon of honey to add both to the tea’s taste and nutritional value. Consume two to three times a day to strengthen your immune system, treat intense coughs.
You may also apply cooled thyme tea on the skin to prevent infections and treat minor wounds.
Health Benefits of Thyme
Let’s look at some of the many benefits of drinking thyme tea, inhaling thyme vapors, or using thyme extracts as a skin tonic.
1. Use Thyme Tea to Treat Allergies
As mentioned above, thyme improves your respiratory system and helps avert and treat allergic reactions like wheezing, coughing, sneezing, etc.
Thyme is especially effective in lessening asthma symptoms as it relieves inflammation in the airways and facilitates your breathing.
Either directly breathe in the scent of thyme essential oil from the bottle or use it in a diffuser to treat inflammation in the airways, alleviate symptoms of asthma fits, and relax the muscles in your respiratory system.
2. Thyme Can Treat Food Poisoning
Food poisoning is caused by bacteria or germs are ingested and can lead to inflammation, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach cramps. Drink a mug of thyme tea to relieve food poisoning symptoms like abdominal cramping and eliminate the bacteria causing the poisoning.
Thymol and carvacrol, compounds found in thyme, eliminate bugs that can cause gastroenteritis i.e. abdominal irritation caused by bacterial or viral infections.
Thyme also has potent antimicrobial properties and are effective against pathogens that can cause food poisoning. That is why seasoning your food with thyme can delay food spoilage and contamination.
3. Treat Common Cold and Flu with Thyme Tea
As we already mentioned, thyme is loaded with antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antispasmodic properties, which makes it a potent natural cure against infections.
The antibacterial qualities of thyme will help treat and prevent respiratory infections and diseases, and will help against drug-resistant bacteria. Research has found that thyme eliminates bacteria in the mouth, airways, and stomach.
Moreover, thyme helps alleviate one of the most common and vexing symptoms of cold, coughing, as it is a natural expectorant and drinking thyme tea will eject excess mucus and help soothe your throat.
4. Thyme Helps Treat Strep Throat
You may gargle thyme tea to treat sore throat caused by a “strep” infection, or inhale its vapor to ease cure throat infections and eliminate bacteria. Some studies have found that thyme eliminates oral pathogens that can lead to infections.
Put 2 teaspoons of dried thyme leaves in a mug of hot water and cover it till it cools down. Drink a mouthful of thyme water and gargle for about 2 minutes. Repeat 3 to 4 times a day and it should help make your throat better.
5. Thyme Herbal Treatments for Yeast and Fungal Infections
Among many other things, thyme kills fungi and yeast pathogens that can result in infections. Studies have found that thymol and carvacrol found in thyme are effective in combating fungal pathogens that can cause tuberculosis and other lung diseases.
Moreover, thyme essential oil kills off Candida albicans yeast which can infect the gastrointestinal tract. One research even showed that thyme oil was as potent as tea tree oil in eliminating detrimental yeast infections.
6. Thyme Tea Can Help Treat Bronchitis
As with other infections, the antispasmodic, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties of thyme effectively prevent and treat bronchitis and bronchial infections. One study has found that natural thyme helps lessen the intensity of coughing bouts and expels mucus in people with bronchitis.
Drink 3 to 4 cups of warm thyme tea each day to ease bronchitis symptoms. The healing qualities of thyme destroy mucus, relieves coughing, and you’ll feel better in no time.
7. Thyme Helps Reduce Blood Pressure
If you have high blood pressure, consume 2-3 cups of thyme tea daily to help control hypertension.
The antioxidants thyme is rich in can lower high blood pressure and treats hypertension. According to one research, consumption of thyme helps reduce heart rate, LDL cholesterol, and helps against other cardiovascular diseases.
8. Thyme Helps Treat Diarrhea
According to the journal Mediators of Inflammation, essential oil from thyme has potent anti-inflammatory effects on the colon, and in some instances thyme’s medicinal properties can help ease abdominal pain and relieve diarrhea symptoms.
Also, since thyme tea is quite effective against food poisoning, it can also prevent diarrhea caused by contaminated and rancid foods.
9. Thyme Has Anticancer Properties
Some laboratory experiments have found that potent compounds found in thyme can shrink or completely terminate cancer cells. According to the journal Molecules, thyme essential oil can help prevent and alleviate symptoms of breast, lung, and prostate cancer.
However, there is no conclusive proof that thyme can be used as treatment for cancer in humans as further research is required.
10. Thyme to remove mold from rooms
Mold, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, can be detrimental to your health as it can trigger allergies, asthma, block airways, and cause lung infections.
One research has found that thyme essential oil can disinfect walls from mold spores. Make an anti-mold spray by mixing 25 drops of thyme essential oil with white vinegar or 3% hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle and spray it over moldy areas. Leave it for about 20 minutes and wipe with a moist towel to remove spores and kill the mold.
You can even use thyme essential oil to avert the formation of mold in a room by just adding several drops of thyme essential oil in a diffuser.
11. Thyme Relieve Anxiety
Thyme’s soothing effects can help ease pressure and anxiety. According to one animal research, intake of thyme extracts reduced stress in rats, and this led researchers to theorize that thyme tea can be used as a natural herbal treatment for anxiety and stress in humans.
Just drip several drops of thyme essential oil on a tissue and inhale deeply, or simply make thyme tea to relieve stress. Substances like carvacrol found in thyme may relieve stress and anxiety.
12. Thyme Tincture Averts Appearance of Acne
Thyme tea or thyme steeped in alcohol can be an effective treatment for pimples and acne on your face, and according to some studies, it can even be more effective than some over-the-counter medications or remedies for acne as it eliminates the Propionibacterium acnes strain of bacteria.
Thyme tincture, made by steeping thyme leaves in alcohol, can even prove more potent than benzoyl peroxide – a common cure for acne.
Additionally, you can soak a cotton ball in some cooled thyme tea and apply it on affected areas. You can even add several drops of tea tree oil to your thyme tea to make it an even more potent acne treatment.
Stir the concoction nicely before each application. Apply to your face and leave it for about 20 minutes and it will have eliminated the bacteria triggering the acne. Do this twice a day to both treat and prevent appearance of acne.
Precautions When Using Thyme
There are, however, certain things to take into consideration before using thyme as a medicine. For instance, individuals who are allergic to any plant in the Lamiaceae family (which, along with thyme, includes rosemary, oregano and basil) should avoid using thyme for its medical qualities.
Mixing thyme with blood-clotting medication can cause excess bleeding following a surgery. So, make sure to stop taking thyme at least 2 weeks prior any surgery.
In addition to this, physicians say that thyme can have an estrogen-like effect, so to any woman who is liable to hormone-sensitive conditions like uterine cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, or endometriosis, try not to take thyme as a medicine or use in moderation.