Thyme oil may be one of the oldest oils in existence. It was used by the ancient Egyptians for embalming the dead and the Greeks used it to burn in their temples and in their baths. The Greeks thought it symbolized courage. The Romans are credited with spreading it throughout the Europe. They used it to it to purify their rooms and to “give an aromatic flavour to cheese and liqueurs”. In the Middle Ages it would be put under pillows to help people sleep and ward off nightmares. A real superstitious use in the Middle Ages.
Thyme oil is said to be able to keep multiple body systems working at one time despite the fact that it is a simple herb. It may be able to treat many diseases and it contains one of the world’s most powerful antioxidants. The herb itself is multifunctional, and can be used in cooking, aromatherapy, potpourri, and even mouthwashes. It has just recently been introduced in Western stores and in the Mediterranean it has been used to treat ailment for thousands of years.
Thyme is an evergreen herb with culinary, medicinal, and ornamental uses. The most common variety is Thymus vulgaris. Thyme is of the genus Thymus of the mint family (Lamiaceae), and a relative of the oregano genus Origanum.
Thyme can eliminate sore throats and coughs. This is due to its Due to its expectorant properties and antibiotic and antiseptic compounds, thyme can provide relief from respiratory conditions like colds, coughs and a sore throat.
- Add 2 teaspoons of crushed thyme leaves (fresh or dried) in 1 cup of boiling water.
- Cover, let it steep for 10 minutes and strain it.
It can also eliminate mucus by making it thinner and easier to remove from the body. This in turn will relieve congestion. A 2006 study published in Drug Research found that the efficacy and tolerability of a fixed fluid extract combination of thyme and ivy leaves is higher as compared to a matched placebo in patients suffering from acute bronchitis with a productive cough. Follow the above thyme tea recipe and drink some the next time you have an irritation cough or sore throat.
2. Blood Pressure deflater
Thyme has a natural antihypertensive element that can help lower the blood pressure. Its diuretic properties help the body get rid of excess salts, water and other toxins by increasing urination. Also, the herb contains a good amount of potassium, which is essential for your body fluids and cells. Potassium helps regulate the blood pressure levels and promotes hardy heart health. A 2013 study published in “Plant Foods for Human Nutrition” found that an aqueous extract obtained from wild thyme reduced blood pressure in laboratory rats. This could hold promise for humans suffering from high blood pressure. This could eliminate several potential health issue that can be caused by blood pressure. A study published in 2014 in “Acta Poloniae Pharmaceutica” says that thyme contains certain active compound(s) that are possibly responsible for the antihypertensive activity. The compounds have not yet been identified.
- Use thyme as a substitute for salt in your cooking to help lower your blood pressure.
- You can also drink thyme tea regularly.
3. Immune Booster
You can stay healthy year round if you incorporate thyme oil into your regular diet it can help enhance the functioning of the immune system. Thyme is high in thymol, which gives it amazing antimicrobial properties that help shield you against bacteria, viruses and fungi. Also, being rich in antioxidants, thyme blocks oxidative damage to DNA in human lymphocytes. A 2011 study published in “Medicinal Chemistry “ found that thyme oil is effective against the following strains of bacteria: of staphylococcus, enterococcus, Escherichia and pseudomonas bacteria.
Thyme essential oil is loaded with essential vitamins that support the immune system functioning. The vitamins are A and C which effectively support the immune system function and enhance it to perform more effectively. Plus, thyme is a good source of copper, fiber, iron and manganese, which are needed for good health.
- Use this herb as a culinary spice or as a tea to boost your immunity.
- You can also take this herb in supplement form, but only after consulting your doctor.
4. Oral Health Enhancer
Thyme oil is loaded with antibacterial elements that will go a long way in fighting and preventing oral infections. Thymol, which is a natural compound of thyme essential oil is used in many dental products. This is because of its ability to prevent tooth decay and various gum problems. A 2011 study published in Journal of Basic and Applied Pharmaceutical Sciences found thyme essential oil to be effective against Streptococcus mutans bacteria that contribute to dental caries and tooth decay. Thyme also works against common oral health issues such as gum inflammatory and gum sores.
- Rinsing for 30 seconds with a thymol solution can get rid of the mouth bacteria that could have led to further medical problems.
- Mix 1 or 2 drops of thyme oil in 1 cup of lukewarm water. You can also add a few drops of peppermint oil as well. Rinse your mouth with it for 30 seconds, twice daily.
- You can also rinse your mouth with thyme tea a few times a day.
5. Improves The Mood
Thyme oil supposedly has a positive effect on the mood. It contains a compound called carvacrol which as as a natural memory booster and antidepressant. A 2013 study published in “Molecule” reports that thyme oil found that carvacrol is a brain-active molecule that clearly affects neuronal activity through the stimulating of neurotransmitters. If regularly consumed in low concentrations, carvacrol influences feelings of well-being.
6. Acne Fighter
Again, because ot its powerful antibacterial properties thyme can kill bacteria that causes acne. A study conducted in 2012 by “the Society for General Microbiology” implies that a herbal preparation of thyme oil may effectively kill acne better than acne prescription medications. This seems to be a common discovery with thyme essential oil If this treatment is found beneficial it would be much more cost-effective than acne medications. But further testing is needed to find a gentler method using thyme oil to treat acne skin conditions. It may reduce scars and marks left on the skin by the acne infecting bacteria. Plus, thyme has yeast-inhibiting properties that help treat candida and many other yeast infections.
- Add 2 or 3 drops of thyme essential oil in 2 tablespoons of aloe vera gel.
- Apply on your skin and leave it on for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Do this once daily for a few days to treat acne and blemishes.
- The oil is gentle, so it is fine to use on all skin types.
7. Whoosh those Mosquitoes Away
As strange as it sounds thyme can be used as a natural bug repellent. This may be a unique health benefit of thyme essential oil because there are not a lot of oils out there that can act as natural bug repellents. It can keep such pests as fleas, lice and moths. A big one is it is an effective deterrent against annoying mosquitoes. The phytochemicals in the oil can offer insect repellent abilities which can guard you against mosquito induced diseases. Thymol found in thyme oil is able to repel mosquitoes quite effectively. A 2002 study published in “the Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association” discovered that 5 percent thyme oil applied to hairless mice gave them 91 percent protection rate against mosquitoes. Despite the promising results on the mice it remains to be seen the effect it would have on humans.
- Rub thyme leaves between your hands to release the essential oil.
- Rub the bruised leaves on your skin to repel mosquitoes.
8. Odor Free Breath
Thanks to thyme’s antiseptic and antibacterial properties it is an effective agent to fight bad breath. It works so well it is used as an ingredient in many mouthwash products. Bad breath is usually caused by harmful bacteria multiplying in the mouth, and thyme can destroy the bacteria. You can make your own thyme mouthwash to fight bad breath.
- Boil 1 teaspoon of dried thyme leaves in 1 cup of water for 5 minutes. Strain and allow the liquid to cool down. Use it for gargling, 2 or 3 times a day.
- Alternatively, add 1 or 2 drop of thyme essential oil to a cup of warm water. Use this solution twice daily as a homemade mouthwash.
9. Muscle Relaxer
Thyme contains magnesium which is crucial nutrient to sustain normal nerve and muscle function. It also contains flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory properties.
- Thyme tea is often recommended for treating premenstrual syndrome (PMS) as well as menstrual cramps. You can drink 1 to 4 cups of thyme tea a day.
- You can also mix 2 or 3 drops of thyme oil with 2 tablespoons of sesame oil or olive oil, and use the oil blend to massage the affected area and ease spasms.
10. Cancer Fighter
Thyme may have properties that give it the ability to fight cancer especially colon and breast cancer. These cancers kill thousands of people every year. Apart from its antioxidant properties, the compound carvacrol in thyme has antitumor properties, making this herb a potential cancer-fighting food. A 2015 study published in “AntiCancer Drugs” suggests that carvacrol ,found in thyme, prevented the proliferation and migration of two colon cancer cell lines. These findings suggest that carvacrol could be a potential effective agent in fighting and curing colon cancer. There has to be more research done to verify this promising conclusion. Earlier, a 2012 study published in “Nutrition and Cancer” reported thyme essential oil to be a promising candidate in the development of novel therapeutic drugs for breast cancer treatment.
Thyme has been known to resist harmful microorganisms that may spoil foods. Thyme is more than just a taste enhancer for various food dishes. It is supposedly used by major food producers to preserve food giving food a longer shelf life. This could be a very cost-effective way to preserve your food.
Nutritional Break down in one Teaspoon of Thyme oil
- Protein 0.1 g
- Fiber 0.3 g
- Calcium 10 mg
- Copper .01 mg
- Manganese .04 mg
- Magnesium 4 mg
- Iron 0.4 mg
- Phosphorus 15 mg
- Potassium 5 mg
- Riboflavin 17.7 mg
- Thiamin 0.117 mg
- Riboflavin .01 mg
- Zinc .04 mg
- Vitamin A .03 mg
- Vitamin B6 .008 mg
- Vitamin C 3.8 mg Zinc .04 mg
Grilled Chicken and Herbs
- 4 large skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat grill for medium heat and lightly oil the grate.
- Rinse chicken breasts, pat dry with paper towels, and pierce several times with a fork. Place chicken breasts into a large resealable plastic bag and pour in olive oil. Seal and shake bag to coat chicken with olive oil; add rosemary, thyme, oregano, garlic, salt, and black pepper to the bag, seal, and shake again to coat chicken with herbs.
- Grill chicken breasts on the preheated grill until the juices run clear and an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat reads at least 160 degrees F (70 degrees C, about 10 minutes per side.
Grilled Jamaican Jerked Pork Loin Chops
- 1/2 (12 ounce) bottle lager style beer 3 fluid ounces dark rum
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 1 scotch bonnet chile pepper, minced
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh marjoram
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 (6 ounce) pork loin chops
- kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste
- Pour the beer, rum, molasses, soy sauce, and lime juice into a bowl. Stir in the garlic, ginger, scotch bonnet pepper, thyme, and marjoram. Season with allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and bay leaves. Place the pork chops into a zip top bag, and pour in the marinade. Refrigerate overnight.
- Prepare an outdoor grill for medium heat. Take the pork chops out of the marinade, place on a plate, and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes as the grill heats.
- Season the chops to taste with kosher salt and cracked black pepper. Grill the chops on both sides until a thermometer inserted into the center registers 145 degrees F (63 degrees C). Allow the pork chops to rest for about 5 minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute.
Thyme-Rubbed Steaks with Sauteed Mushrooms
- 2 teaspoons paprika 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 pound New York strip steaks, cut 3/4 inch thick
- 1 (8 ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms
- 1/4 cup minced shallot
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons red wine
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a small bowl, mix together the paprika, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and thyme. Sprinkle onto each side of the steaks, pressing in so it adheres. Set aside.
- Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shallots; cook and stir for about 1 minute. Add the mushrooms, and cook for a few more minutes, until tender. Stir in the red wine, and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
- Heat the oil in a separate skillet over medium-high heat. Fry steaks for 5 to 7 minutes per side, or to your desired degree of doneness. Remove to a plate and let rest for a few minutes. Top with mushrooms and serve.
Cheddar-Thyme Flaky Biscuits
- 2 cups flour 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 tablespoons white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
- In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and cream of tartar. Cut in butter using a pastry cutter or a fork until it is the size of peas. Make a well in the center of the mixture and measure the milk, cheese and thyme into the bowl. Gently mix until a soft dough forms.
- Roll or pat out on a floured surface to 3/4 inch thick. Cut into circles and place on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the bottoms of the biscuits are golden brown.
We have truly discussed some amazing health benefits thyme essential oil has to offer. There were a couple of unique benefits thrown in there as well. We topped the article off with some recipes containing thyme essential oil. This oil is diversified and is one of the oldest oil dating back thousands of years when earlier civilizations took advantage of the oil’s many benefits.