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The healing power of wild thyme

  1. Wild thyme crawls over the ground and then points upwards with a number of stems. The stems rarely reach higher than seven centimeters above the ground and are decorated with pink or violet flowers during flowering. This evergreen plant, which is related to the mint, originates in Europe and North Africa and is widely used in cooking. Wild thyme is more commonly known to many people as little thyme. This plant belongs to the host plants. As a host plant it mainly attracts the butterflies Pempeliella dilutella and thyme blue. For humans it is more important that it is an edible herb with healing power. Dried, pulverized thyme leaves can be added to herb salt. In phytotherapy, the science-based form of modern herbal medicine, wild thyme is used for respiratory problems and digestive problems.


  1. Traditional use of wild thyme Wild thyme on your plate Naming Active substances Wild thyme for digestion Wild thyme, good for the respiratory tract Other medicinal effects Dose and safety Visit a doctor or herbalist

Traditional use of wild thyme

  1. Thyme is associated with the thymus, an organ that is located close to the heart and produces the white T cells that stimulate the immune system. The namesake who gave the same name to thyme and thymus apparently knew that thyme activated the thymus. In the past, wild thyme was put in herb pads, alone or together with rosemary and lavender. That was good for headaches, insomnia, chest tightness and asthma. In addition, in traditional folk medicine, people drank thyme tea for stomach complaints. In Tyrol and Switzerland, thyme was used to break through sorcery. Toads like to make their holes under a thyme plant and toads belonged to witches according to popular belief. That's why not everyone believed that thyme would protect you from spells.

Wild thyme on your plate

  1. Wild thyme can be added to a salad. The leaves can also be used to make a tea. If a tea is made from it, it is advisable to pick and dry the leaves just before flowering. In general, the taste of a tea herb is better when you dry it because a fresh herb is more difficult to impart its flavor to the tea water. Wild thyme is an excellent spice which can be used in the preparation of real foods that are slow cooked as it retains its flavor for a long time.


  1. In Latin, wild thyme is called Thymus serpyllum. In Dutch we know some alternative names: Kleine thyme, Veldtijm, Kwendel, Sadonie. In the past it was also given the following names: Wild marjoram, lemon grass and Onze-Lieve-Vrouwe-Bedstro. This is confusing because other plants also bear these names.

Active ingredients

  1. Wild thyme is used for phytotherapeutic purposes all the above-ground herb, with the exception of the woody parts. It contains the following important active ingredients: essential oil with the phenols carvacrol and thymol, the monoterpenes alfapinene, gamma-terpene and paracymene, the monoterpenols linalool, borneol, geraniol. alfapterpineol and terpinene-1-ol-4, tannins, the bittering agent serpylline, flavone glycosides such as luteolin-7-glycoside and the triterpenic acids oleanol saponin and ursolic saponins.

Wild thyme for digestion

  1. Wild thyme is an aromatic bittering agent that stimulates appetite. This is mainly due to the serpylline and the essential oil it contains. It has a digestive stimulant, antispasmodic and carminative. Phytotherapists may advise people to eat plenty of thyme if they suffer from one or more of the following indications:

Wild thyme, good for the respiratory tract

  1. The essential oils carvacrol and thymol in wild thyme have an antiseptic effect. They promote the coughing up of mucus. In addition, there is a decramping effect on the respiratory tract. Wild thyme is prescribed in herbal medicine for the following indications:

Other medicinal effects

  1. In aromatherapy essential oil of wild thyme is used for fatigue, neurovegetative dystonia or weak nerves and cystitis or cystitis. Wild thyme is used externally by taking a bath. Sometimes it is used as a liniment; a means to apply such as an ointment. These treatments are done because they are said to help with rheumatic conditions such as osteoarthritis, lumbago or low back pain and sciatique or sciatica. Nasal congestion with a cold can be reduced by wild thyme. Wounds can be treated with wild thyme. Wild thyme is used as a rinse agent to treat mucosal inflammation in the throat and mouth.

Dose and Safety

  1. There are a number of ways to use this medicinal plant.

Visit a doctor or herbalist

  1. Much of the information about the medicinal plant referred to in this article comes from Geert Verhelst's book Great Handbook of Medicinal Plants. That is a handbook in phytotherapy. However, it is not suitable for self-healing. Anyone who is bothered by something should visit a doctor or phytotherapist for a proper diagnosis and choice of the best remedies, tailored to your personal situation. The knowledge and science mentioned here is of a purely informational nature.

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