The ancient Egyptians and Romans used thyme essential oil. In medieval times, people even used thyme to ward off the black death. Thyme essential oil certainly has a long history from ancient times to the present day.

While morticians no longer use thyme in the embalming process, it is still a favorite essential oil. Its long history has led to today and the various uses of thyme essential oil. Even with this long history, and scientific research, thyme may be an ignored essential oil in your cupboard.

A Brief History of Thyme

Thyme plant

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Thyme has been used throughout history for many purposes, from curing diseases to embalming bodies. Ancient Egyptians used thyme for mummifying and preserving bodies. The people of Ancient Greece used thyme as an incense, and they also added it to bathwater.

In Rome, thyme was used to add flavor to cheese and alcohol. They also believed thyme was a cure for melancholy or shyness. The Romans also played a role in spreading thyme across the globe; they brought thyme with them to the British Isles.

The famous physician Hippocrates is believed to be "the father of Western medicine," and he suggested people use thyme for respiratory conditions. In the 14th century Europe, people wore thyme with the belief that it would keep them safe from the Black Death. More recently,  people use thyme in cooking meals and teas. Its essential oil is sometimes called "oil of thyme." The oil contains between 20 and 60 percent thymol, an extract from thyme.

Benefits of Thyme Essential Oil

Oil in a bottle

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Thyme essential oil can help ease many health issues. From chronic pain to the common cold, there are multiple ways in which the oil of thyme works to improve health.

Better circulation

Thyme may improve circulation by stimulating blood flow in some people. Better circulation leads to less stress on the heart which can then reduce the risk of other heart problems. Since the heart sends blood to other organs in the body, it is important to have a healthy heart and good circulation.

Improve skin

When applied to the skin, thyme essential oil can heal scars, wounds and other marks left on the skin. Thyme essential oil can leave you with healthier, younger looking skin. Thyme essential oil can help improve acne, acne scars, and a plethora of other skin conditions.

Flush out toxins

Thyme stimulates urination, and that can help flush out toxins that are problematic for the body. One such toxin is the uric acid which causes gout, a form of arthritis. Toxic waste builds up in the body, and too much of it can cause health problems that are otherwise avoidable.

Reduce blood pressure

study conducted by the University of Belgrade in Serbia found that thyme extract lowered blood pressure in rats. Consistent high blood pressure can lead to hypertension, and decreasing blood pressure will thus lower one's risk of hypertension and similar complications.

Medicine associates high blood pressure with many health conditions, so using thyme essential oil could help maintain healthy blood pressure in some people.

Support and increase urination

Reduce the accumulation of water in the body by using thyme essential oil. Thyme stimulates urination and thus removes excess water, salt and toxins. Removing excessive water and toxins can result in weight loss and improved digestion. In this instance, the benefit of increased urination leads to even more health benefits.

While there urinating too frequently is a nuisance, it is important to urinate often enough so that the kidneys can continue to do their job of flushing out excess waste from the body.

Effects on cancer

In the case of colon cancer, thyme has been found to protect people from various colon cancers. Thyme can also help breast cancer patients by killing cancer cells. Cancer is known to be deadly for many, and while there are many treatments in existence today, most require a visit to the hospital.

Cold remedies

Many products on the market help relieve a stuffy nose and throat. If you are looking for a more natural option, give thyme essential oil a try. It can cure infections and allow congestion to drain, curing common symptoms of the common cold.

Cold and flu season is approaching, and that means that expectorants such as Mucinex will be in high demand. Keep a stash of thyme essential oil on hand so that you can treat a cold or stuffy nose without having to run to the pharmacy.

Increase energy

Not only does thyme essential oil stimulate circulation (see the first point), it also boosts the metabolism. These two benefits combined lead to more energy. Simply inhaling aromatic compounds can help give an energy boost to patients suffering from fatigue. Avoid the loss of productivity that comes with lack of sleep. Use thyme essential oil to increase energy.

Relieve anxiety

Through aromatherapy, thyme essential oil can help relieve anxiety and stress. It can help turn anxious energy into positive energy. Along with fennel and vanilla, thyme is a key component in MONQ's "Happy" oil diffuser.

The increased awareness of mental health problems has also led to an increase in mental health patients. This is due in part to more awareness of these conditions. However, it is still important to treat any mental health problems, and thyme essential oil is one option, especially for undiagnosed patients.

Increase concentration

By stimulating blood flow and memory, thyme can increase concentration. Those who are extremely busy or tired can use thyme to help them concentrate even when their mind is on other things.

For this particular benefit, thyme serves as a stimulant. The oil revs up the circulatory system which helps boost concentration. Thyme also helps with memory, which is another factor in concentration.

Combat hair loss

Traditionally, thyme was used to fight hair loss, but only recently was it scientifically proven to work. A 1998 study looked into how different essential oils could help hair loss, and 44 percent of participants showed an improvement with thyme essential oil.

Aging Americans often worry about their hair loss, but hair loss can also affect young adults, be it by genetics or health conditions, like alopecia which attacks the hair follicles. Alopecia is an autoimmune disease, which means the immune system is also at work.

Uses of Thyme Essential Oil

Oil in a bottle

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Thyme essential oil serves many uses, from cooking to adding scents to commercial products. One big use for thyme is in health remedies. The many benefits listed above show multiple ways in which oil of thyme can help improve health and cure diseases.


Since thyme is an herb, it is a great choice for aromatherapy. The smell can increase happiness and boost mood. You can find aromatherapy tools online and in stores. Start using them at home and you may feel a change.


Add thyme to foods to add flavor. the Romans used it in their cheese and in alcohol. Teas are also a great place to use thyme leaves. At its core, thyme is an herb. Add it to chicken or a couple of sprigs to soup and taste the vibrant flavor.

Soaps, deodorants and hair products

Some companies use thyme as an ingredient in deodorants; thyme also adds scent to soaps. Thyme has a lovely smell, and that makes thyme essential oil a great choice for soaps and other scent-based products.

Since thyme can help with hair loss, some companies add it to shampoos and conditioners. These hair care products can help people avoid devastating hair loss. Thyme is also known for its scent, so it can serve as a shampoo or condition that smells good, too.


Peppermint and wintergreen oils can improve oral health, and thyme oil is no different. Thyme essential oil is another option for mouthwash, and it serves the same purpose as mint flavored mouthwashes. As with any mouthwash, it is important to use the product properly. Do not ingest thyme essential oil alone. Instead, combine it with another oil, like olive oil.


Thyme essential oil works well when used as an antibacterial. By applying thyme to the skin, it can help reduce the risk of infections and complications such as sepsis. Sepsis occurs when a body's response to an infection is harmful to different organs in the body. Avoid this by staying healthy when possible and receiving proper treatment when ill.

Insect repellent

Summer may be winding down, but insects pose problems year round. Oil of thyme can serve as an all natural insect repellent.

During the colder months, insects might want to sneak inside homes, and this is problematic for many people. Thyme essential oil can ward off insects while also providing the home with a pleasant smell. Consider thyme essential oil if you are looking for an all natural insect repellent.


Thymol is an extract of thyme, and butchers use it to preserve meat. Thymol can be combined with olive oil to preserve olives. Preservatives give products a longer shelf life, and while the word preservative is scary, preservatives do help to reduce food waste.

Stop Biding Time and Buy Some Thyme!

Thyme essential oil has many uses and benefits. Most of the benefits of thyme essential oil are related to health, and thyme can serve as a home remedy to multiple ailments. Thyme, in all its forms, works medicinally and around the home.

Some of the best benefits of thyme essential oil are better skin, reduced blood pressure and as a cold and flu remedy. Around the home thyme essential oil works perfectly in cooking and as an insect repellent. While neither of these specifically improve health, they can work toward that goal indirectly. In cooking, thyme can add flavor, and that flavor can make otherwise plain dishes more exciting.

With its affordability and multipurpose use, thyme is the ultimate herb and essential oil. It has something for everyone.

Featured image via Pixabay

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