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The Many Things Thyme is Good For

There are so many things thyme is good for such as its use in skincare products like deodorants, as medicinal preparations for coughs and colds, and for its delicious flavor in culinary recipes just to name a few. This herb should be included in every home herb garden. Below, you’ll find some of the many things thyme is good for.

1. As a Culinary Herb

Thyme is a Mediterranean herb often used in cooking. The flavor of fresh thyme has a concentrated herbal flavor that can best be described as earthy, minty, and slightly lemony.  As a culinary herb thyme is good for its flavor in savory dishes such as braised or roasted beef, onions, or fish. It may also be added to soups, cocktail ingredients, and teas to add taste and depth.  Thyme has remained a cooking favorite to this day due to its distinct and delicious flavor.

thyme is good for

2. As a Cough Remedy

Thyme is packed with vitamin C and is often a common ingredient in herbal formulations used for for coughs, respiratory infections, bronchitis and whooping cough.  If you feel a cold coming on, thyme can help get you back in good health. 

Simple Thyme Cough Syrup

Try this simple cough syrup to get the healing benefits of thyme. Boil 1 cup water, remove from heat, add thyme and let sit, covered, for 15 to 20 minutes. Strain, and whisk in 1/2 cup honey and 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon until combined. The cough syrup can be refrigerated in a glass jar for up to two months.

3. As a Source for Essential Vitamins

In addition to be packed with vitamin C, thyme is also a good source for vitamin A.  It’s also has  potassium, copperfiberiron, selenium, and manganese… all good reasons to include thyme in your diet!

4. For Hair and Scalp Health and Support

Thyme has antiseptic and antifungal properties that cleanse, heal, and soothe the scalp. Thyme is often used in deep cleansing shampoos because it helps ease dandruff and stimulates hair follicles to help with hair loss, which makes it the perfect ingredient in hair treatments and herbal shampoos.

Thyme is rich in potassium, magnesium, and selenium which can help to stimulate hair follicles resulting in hair re-growth.  

Hair Re-growth Recipe: Mix some thyme oil with lavender and apply a few drops to hair or mix thyme with a carrier oil such as sweet almond oil and massage the mixture into your scalp.

You can also make an herbal hair rinse by brewing a strong tea with thyme and rosemary and letting it cool. Then strain and rinse hair with the infusion. 

Thyme & Rosemary Hair Rinse Recipe: Combine 1 tablespoon fresh (or 1/2 tablespoon dried) rosemary leaves and 1 tablespoon fresh (or 1/2 tablespoon dried) thyme leaves in a bowl and pour 2 cups boiling water over the herbs. Steep until cool, and strain into a clean container. Use after shampoo in the shower as a leave-in rinse.

thyme is good for

5. For Acne Healing

Thyme has antifungal and antiseptic properties, making it a great herb for acne prone skin.  Thyme Essential Oil inhibits the growth of surface bacteria, keeping the skin from being an ideal place for acne.  In fact, a study conducted by researchers in the UK found that thyme fought pimples better than antiacne products, which included benzoyl peroxide.

6. For Lowering Blood Pressure

According to the journal Plant Foods for Human Nutrition, drinking thyme tea has heart support benefits and can help treat hypertension. It was reported that the antioxidative properties of thyme can help lower blood pressure.

7. For Eliminating Mold

Thyme essential oil has fungicidal properties, making it a good choice for homemade cleaning products and disinfectants in your home. These are especially good at combating low concentrations of mold growth that you commonly find in moist rooms like bathrooms. 

thyme is good for

8. As Insecticide

One of the active compounds in thyme oil is thymol which is an ingredient found in many insecticides and natural bug repellants. 

If you’re an organic gardener like myself, then you’ve likely encountered unwanted insects in your garden.  Here is an excellent recipe to keep many harmful garden insects at bay. 

Insecticide Recipe:

  • Mix equal parts (about 10 drops) peppermint, thyme, and rosemary essential oil in a spray bottle filled with water

  • Spray around garden

  • Repels (doesn’t kill) flies, fleas, mosquitoes, cabbage looper caterpillars, aphids, squash bugs, white flies, ants, beetles, spiders, chiggers, ticks, and roaches.

Homemade Bug Repellant:

For camping trips or for when you’re just spending time outdoors, you can make a homemade bug repellant by mixing four drops of thyme oil to every teaspoon of olive oil, or mixing five drops for every 2 ounces of water.

9. As a Mood Booster

Thyme is good for boosting moods. Thyme essential oil contains carvacrol, an active substance shown to increase neural activity in a way that boosts feelings of wellbeing.

If you don’t yet have an essential oil diffuser, I’d suggest getting one, along with some thyme essential oil and give yourself a helping hand if you experience low mood.

10. As a Digestive Aid

Thyme is good for digestive issues. It has an antibacterial and antimicrobial effect, which aids in the reduction of bacteria in food and can help improve gastrointestinal and intestinal health. 

Consume it fresh in a salad or steeped in a tea for these digestive benefits.

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11. In Homemade Mouthwash

Thyme is an oft present ingredient in homemade mouthwash due to its antiseptic and antifungal effects. 

Thyme Mouthwash Recipe: Makes 4 cups

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of water
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh thyme 
  • 1 tablespoon of kosher salt

    Directions:
  • Chop thyme coursely (stems and leaves) and place in a pot of water.
  • Bring the water to a boil.
  • Reduce it to a simmer add the salt and put a lid on the pot.
  • Simmer for 10 minutes then let the thyme steep for an hour.
  • Strain the chopped thyme from the liquid using a cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer.
  • Pour the mouthwash into a jar with a lid.
  • Use as your would store-bought mouthwash. 
  • Store in refrigerator. The salt and antimicrobial properties helps it to keep for about a month. 

12. In Natural Deodorants

Thyme is good for its intifungal and antimicrobial properties and is often added to natural deodorant recipes because of it. 

Homemade Thyme Deodorant Recipe:

Here is a simple, yet effective recipe for natural deodorant. 

Ingredients

 Method

  1. Mix all dry ingredients into a bowl.
  2. Combine the Coconut Oil and Thyme Essential Oil and mix together thoroughly with dry ingredients.
  3. Store in an airtight container.
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Storing and Preserving Thyme

Thyme is available year-round. Thyme herbs are more aromatic when eaten raw, but they are often less accessible and do not last as long. It will last a week or two in the refrigerator if purchased fresh. Dried thyme should be kept in a cold, dark spot and used within six months of purchase.  
 
To Freeze Fresh Thyme:
Here’s how: Wash the herbs (still on their branches) and put them in labeled plastic zipper-type freezer bags.  Press out all the air, seal and freeze.
 
To Dry Fresh Thyme :
Tie several stems together into little bundles with a string and hang the upside-down in a room with low humidity. Will dry within a week or two.  You’ll know whenthey’re dry when the leaves feel crunchy. 

Risk and Side Effects

There isn’t enough objective evidence to determine whether or not thyme oil is safe to use as medication or the potential side effects. It has been reported that it can cause stomach problems, headaches, and dizziness in some people. Thyme should not be utilized holistically or homeopathically in children, pregnant women, or lactating mothers.

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