Thyme is for much more than just cooking. Thyme is an herb that is largely forgotten, but highly useful. Both the leaves and flowering tops of this herb can be used in the ways described below.
Benefits of Thyme
- Cough Suppressant/Respiratory Health – Thyme is very beneficial to respiratory health especially when bronchitis or congestion is present in the body. In addition, thyme can be used to reduce coughing for many people. This is in part because thyme contains plant phenols like thymol and carvacrol which are anti-spasmodic. The antibacterial and expectorant qualities of thyme thins mucus while soothing and healing the bronchial tract. The most common form of thyme for this benefit is thyme oil.
- Sore Throat Remedy/Antibacterial – One again, thyme essential oil is a powerful antimicrobial that fights different forms of bacteria and heals the throat. Scientists have shown that thyme oil can be effective against many antibiotic resistant strain s of bacteria.
- Wound Healing – A bit of thyme tincture has antiseptic compounds and will guard wounds against infections while speeding up the healing process.
- Heart Health – Since thyme has antispasmodic qualities, the essential oil can be used to help relax arteries and veins to ease stress on the heart. In addition, use of the essential oil in the required way can strengthen heart muscles while stimulating the circulatory system.
- Digestive Health – Thyme can be beneficial to the digestive system even when a problem does not exist. The active compound of thymol stimulates the peristaltic muscle movements so food does not rest in the stomach for prolonged periods of time. This can help to relieve intestinal cramping and reduce bloating that is caused by malabsorption. However, any stomach issues should first be discussed with a medical doctor before using thyme.
- Kidney Health – Thyme is great for promoting regular urination as it acts as a natural diuretic without messing up electrolyte balance within the body.
- Mood Enhancer – The carvacrol in thyme can exert a positive effect on overall mood as it increases the levels of serotonin and dopamine in your system. Consuming the herb regularly or simply diffusing it in an aromatherapy burner can create a relaxing environment that promotes well-being.
Thyme goes beyond the medical field as it has a rich history in folklore. Thyme was once burned as incense to restore clarity and strength and to clear the air of diseases. In addition, thyme has long had a reputation as a protector and healer while being associated with bravery and courage. Thyme was often gifted to soldiers preparing to go into battle who were expected to inhale it for courage and if they should perish, help lead them into a positive afterlife. Thyme has a rich history and multiple uses. It is also easy to grow in a windowsill garden or home planter. Experience the richness of thyme in your own life through the use of thyme herbal tea, essential oil, aromatherapy, or cooking. The possibilities are varied for this simple herb that is beautiful to look at and easy to grow.