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Thyme Oil

Thyme oil is extracted through the process of steam distillation of the fresh and dried leaves of the thyme plant. It stimulates the brain, and aids in memory and concentration. It can help prevent hair loss and is widely used for culinary purposes.
HolisticZine Staff
Thyme is a medicinal herb which is native to the Mediterranean region, particularly Italy and Spain. It is also found in Russia, Turkey, and Israel. The scientific name of this plant is Thymus vulgaris. It is an evergreen shrub that grows up to a height of 16 inches. This herb is highly fragrant, with small, oval-shaped, grayish-green leaves and pale purplish-pink flowers. The seeds are small and round and they have a slightly acrid taste. This herb gets its name from the Greek word thymos, which means perfume. It is a non-viscous oil with a slightly peppery taste. Some important varieties of this plant are:
  • Common or garden thyme
  • Citrus thyme
  • Caraway thyme
  • Wild thyme
Types of Thyme Essential Oil
There are two varieties of this oil. These are sweet thyme and red thyme essential oil. The former is pale yellow in color and very sweet to taste, whereas the latter is amber colored with a very spicy aroma. The content of thymol in the oil ranges between 20 and 54%.

Uses

Here are the list of its uses:
  • This oil can be used to boost the immune system and it helps in preventing cold, cough, and flu.
  • It is also helpful in combating sinusitis and nasal congestion due to cold.
  • Due to its antiseptic properties, it can be used as a skin cleanser.
  • Due to its anti-parasitic nature, it can be used for the treatment of lice and intestinal worms.
  • It can be used in gout, sprains, sciatica, and arthritis. It is also a good remedy for toothache and earache.
  • It is also helpful for curing respiratory problems, digestive problems, and urinary tract infections.
  • It is found to be highly beneficial in helping one recover from an illness. It aids in overcoming fatigue and lack of appetite.
  • This oil is also used for reducing stretch marks.
  • It also aids in promoting hair growth.
Hair Growth

Thyme essential oil is very useful in promoting hair growth. Its usage can be traced back to ancient times when Egyptian princesses applied it to their long lustrous hair. Other essential oils that are used as hair loss therapy are jojoba, lavender, rosemary, cedarwood, and lemon.

Mix together 2 drops of thyme essential oil, 3 drops of lavender oil, 3 drops of rosemary oil, 3 teaspoons of jojoba oil, and 20 ml of rapeseed oil. Massage your scalp with this hair tonic for at least half an hour and wrap a warm towel so that the oil is nicely absorbed into the scalp. Regular massage with this oil improves blood circulation in the scalp and imparts luster to hair.

Recipes

Infused Thyme Oil Recipe
Place the herb in a heavy saucepan and dry roast it. Add one cup of canola oil to the pan, heat it over low flame, and stir continuously for about 15 minutes. Cool this mixture by keeping it covered with a lid overnight. Strain this oil through a very fine wire mesh removing the herbs. This extract can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. The prepared oil can be used as a bread dip, for cooking pasta, or even for marinating meat for grilling.

Thyme and Lemon Infused Oil
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon zest
  • 10 sprigs of good quality thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2½ cups extra virgin olive oil
Method :
Add lemon zest, dry roasted thyme, and crushed garlic in a clean sterilized glass bottle. Store the bottle at a cool place for a few weeks before using. This oil can be used for flavoring soups and stews. It can also be used as an additive over salads and pastas.

Although thyme oil has many benefits, it is very potent due to the presence of thymol. Hence, it should always be used with a carrier oil. Carrier oils are used to dilute essential oils. Using it in an undiluted form can cause skin irritation in people with sensitive skin. It can cause irregularity of menstrual cycle, and can have a harmful effect on pregnant women. People affected by hyperthyroidism and epilepsy should avoid using this oil.