21 Incredible Health Benefits of Thyme Essential Oil

by Meenakshi Nagdeve last updated -

The health benefits of thyme essential oil can be attributed to its potential properties as an antispasmodic, antirheumatic, antiseptic, bactericidal, bechic, cardiac, carminative, cicatrizant, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, hypertensive, insecticide, stimulant, tonic, and a vermifuge substance.

Thyme is a common herb and is generally used as a condiment or spice. Besides that, thyme is also used in herbal and domestic medicines. It is botanically known as Thymus vulgaris.

The medicinal properties of thyme come mainly from its essential oils which are extracted through steam distillation of fresh flowers and leaves. The chief constituents of its essential oil are alpha-thujone, alpha-pinene, camphene, beta-pinene, para-cymene, alpha-terpinene, linalool, borneol, beta-caryophyllene, thymol, and carvacrol.

Health Benefits of Thyme essential oil

Thyme essential oil has many benefits and people may use it for improving their skin, blood circulation, and strengthening the immune system. The amazing health benefits of thyme essential oil are explained below.

May Increase Circulation

One of the stimulating components of thyme essential oil can help to possibly improve the circulation in your body, which increases healing and blood flow to extremities and areas that need oxygenation. This can also protect the heart and lower your chances of blood clots, while also helping to keep you active. [1]

May Boost Immune System

Some of the volatile components of thyme oil, such as camphene and alpha-pinene, are able to strengthen the immune system with their antibacterial and antifungal properties. This makes them effective both inside and outside the body, protecting the mucous membranes, gut and respiratory system from potential infections. The antioxidant properties of this oil also help to reduce free radical damage. [2]

Potential Cicatrizant

This is a tremendous property of thyme essential oil. This property may makes scars and other ugly spots on your body vanish. These may include surgical marks, marks left by accidental injuries, acne, pox, and sores.

Bottles of thyme oil with fresh thyme leaves on a wooden table

Thyme oil Photo Credit: Shutterstock

May Aid in Skin Care

Topical application of thyme oil is very popular on the skin, as it can heal wounds and scars, may prevent inflammatory pain, moisturize the skin, and even minimize the appearance of acne. The mixture of antiseptic properties and antioxidant stimulants in this oil can keep your skin looking clear, healthy, and young as you age! [3]

Potential Antispasmodic

Millions of people around the world suffer from coughs, cramps, and aches due to spasms. Spasms are unwanted and excessive involuntary contractions that may take place in the respiratory tracts, nerves, muscles, intestines, or other organs and may result in coughs, convulsions, epileptic or hysterical attacks, cramps and muscular aches, abdominal and intestinal aches.

Potential Antirheumatic

There are two main reasons behind rheumatism, arthritis, and gout. The first is improper or obstructed circulation and the second one is an increasing concentration of toxins like uric acid in the bloodstream. Thyme essential oil can sort out both of these problems. Since it is a diuretic, it may increase urination and may help in the removal of toxins from the body. Being a stimulant, it may activate circulation and thereby sorts out this problem in a separate way. The possible anti-inflammatory properties of thymol are well known, and in some varieties of thyme oil, up to 70% is thymol. This powerful compound can help to ease the pain of your joints and promote a better range of motion, while also promoting blood flow to those areas, making you feel stronger and more in control of your arthritic symptoms. [4]

May Kill Bacteria

The same caryophyllene and camphene, along with a few other components, give thyme essential oil antibacterial properties. This may inhibit bacterial growth within and outside of the body by killing the bacteria as well as keeping them away from the organs in the body. This is particularly beneficial in curing bacterial infections like B-Colitis, renal colic, bacterial infections in the genitals and urethra, intestines, and respiratory system as well as the external exposure of wounds. Thyme essential oil is a good antiseptic and safeguards wounds and sores against infections.

Potential Tonic

Thyme essential oil also tones up the circulatory system, heart, digestive system, nervous system, muscles, and skin while fortifying them and boosting immunity.

May Protect Heart Health

This is a very important and useful property of thyme essential oil in today’s context when heart troubles are growing at an alarming rate. This oil is very beneficial for the heart. It may keep the valves functioning properly while being a potential antispasmodic, it may relax the arteries and veins and thereby reduces stress on the heart. Furthermore, it strengthens cardiac muscles and tones up the heart, since it is a tonic. Basically, thyme essential oil is good for every part of heart health.

Potential Carminative

Gases that build up in the stomach and intestines are not as innocent as they appear. Their effect is not limited to unpleasant odors alone. They can rob you of your appetite and sleep, raise your blood pressure, pose a threat to your heart, give you severe stomach aches, cramps, vomiting, headaches, and nausea. In extreme cases, excessive gas can even put your life in danger too. Therefore, the gas must be handled with care and treated in a timely manner. Thyme essential oil, being a potential carminative and a possible antispasmodic, forces the removal of gases through downward movement (upward movement is very dangerous) and does not let them build up again.

May Stimulate Urination

Those who are suffering from an accumulation of water in the body due to chronic renal failure or from the growing concentration of toxins and salts in the blood are sure to benefit from this essential oil. It increases urination and helps in the removal of excess water, salts, and toxins from the body. This helps to reduce weight, lower blood pressure, reduce fats, and improve digestion as well.

Potential Emmenagogue

Women should be very interested in this property of thyme essential oil. They are always searching for something that can give them relief from obstructed and painful menstruation, irregular periods, and premature menopause. Thyme essential oil is the answer to this problem. It opens obstructed menses, gives relief from the symptoms like abdominal pain, fatigue, nausea, and low blood pressure associated with menstruation. It can also delay menopause, thereby keeping women healthy, happy, and fertile. Thyme oil is known to have certain hormone-balancing properties and can stimulate the production of progesterone. For women who are going through menopause or have already experienced the change, regular use of thyme oil can help them keep their hormonal levels under control. [5] [6]

Possible Expectorant

When you are suffering from colds and coughs, you need to find an expectorant, and thyme essential oil is a great one! It may help to cure infections that cause a cough and cold and drains congestion, thereby giving relief from a cough and cold.

May Regulate Blood Pressure

You might raise your eyebrows about this medicinal property and may not see it as a benefit. However, this property is very beneficial for those who are suffering from low blood pressure. These people run the risk of falling unconscious at any time and feeling sluggish. This oil can normalize their blood pressure by raising it, which is just as important sometimes as lowering it.

Possible Stimulant

It stimulates circulation, digestion, nervous responses, and the secretion of hormones, thereby stimulating the whole metabolism.

May Boost Energy

The stimulation of circulation and the metabolic boost provided by thyme oil adds up to a noticeable energy boost. If you regularly suffer from fatigue during the day, even if you have a good night’s sleep, even inhaling the aromatic compounds of thyme oil can give you an energetic push.

May Detoxify the Body

Linalool is one of the most common components in thyme oil, and it also has a number of antioxidant and detoxifying effects on the body. Most importantly, it can stimulate healing and regeneration in the liver and helps to detoxify the liver rapidly. [7]

May Relieve Anxiety

Thyme oil is a popular aromatherapy oil for numerous reasons, but primarily due to its stress-relieving abilities. Inhaling thyme oil or topically applying some diluted oil to your temples, chest or neck can help lower your overall stress levels and leave you feeling energized in a positive way, rather than an anxious one. [8]

Possible Bechic

If you have been suffering from coughing symptoms for a long time and antibiotics cannot help you anymore, then you might want to give this essential oil a try. Unlike when using potent antibiotics, you need not risk your kidneys, heart, liver, stomach, and eyes with this oil. It is capable of curing infections in the chest (lungs, bronchi, larynx, and pharynx) and stopping coughs.

Potential Vermifuge

Thyme essential oil kills worms. You can try it on intestinal worms like roundworms and tapeworms, as well as maggots in open sores and hookworms, which are notoriously difficult to eliminate.

Can Act As An Insecticide

It can keep away insects and pests and also eliminate them if it becomes necessary. It can be effectively used to keep away parasites that feed on the human body like mosquitoes, fleas, lice, bed-bugs, and flies, as well as insects that attack food grains and clothes like beetles and moths.

Other Benefits

It can act as a memory booster and an antidepressant. It may help to increase concentration and cure sinusitis, bronchitis, anorexia, cellulite, eczema, athlete’s foot, dermatitis, insect and animal bites, stings, laryngitis, pharyngitis, and other infections. Finally, it can be used to eliminate bad breath and body odor.

Word of Caution: It is an irritant to some people and may cause allergic reactions in some cases. It is also a hypertensive substance that increases blood pressure, so those with high blood pressure should use it after consulting a doctor. It is an emmenagogue, therefore, it should be avoided during pregnancy.

Blending: The essential oil of thyme blends well with the essential oils of Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lavender, Rosemary, and Pine.

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About the Author

Meenakshi Nagdeve, Co-Founder, Organic Facts is a health and wellness enthusiast and is responsible for managing it. She has completed the Nutrition And Healthy Living Cornell Certificate Program, Cornell University, US. She holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from IIM Bangalore and B. Tech in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science from IIT Bombay. Prior to this, she worked for a few years in IT and Financial services. An ardent follower of naturopathy, she believes in healing with foods. In her free time, she loves to travel and taste different types of teas.

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