When it’s time for tea, do you ever consider reaching for thyme tea?
While you may be used to utilizing thyme as an herb that adds delicious flavor to soups, stews, and poultry, and is prominently featured in Italian and French cooking, you may not have made the transition to drinking thyme tea. Or, maybe you’re a fan of the flavor of thyme tea, but you’re wondering what potential health benefits it could have.
First, let’s talk about thyme.
What Is Thyme?
Thyme is a shrub that has been used in cooking and in natural medicine for thousands of years. Its sprigs or flowers can be used in cooking. It is native to the Mediterranean region, extending into parts of Africa. Thyme is best known for its presence in the culinary world. Its stems and leaves can be used fresh or dry, and it can be used to flavor meats, beans, and sweet vegetables; perhaps most famously, it is, along with parsley and bay leaves, part of the French herb combination bouquet garni, which is used as a seasoning base for stocks, soups, and stews.
What are the Potential Health Benefits of Thyme?
Ancient Egyptians used thyme as part of the mummification process. Through its thousands of years of use, thyme has been used to treat everything from “toothaches and nightmares, to leprosy and lice.”
Today, we know that thyme contains thymol. Thymol is an “antiseptic (antibacterial or antifungal) agent.” PubMedCentralCanada explains that thyme oil possesses “some antiseptic, bronchiolytic, antispasmodic and antimicrobial properties that make it popular as a medicinal herb and as a preservative for foods.”
Thyme also has a high concentration of antioxidants; in fact, it has the highest antioxidant concentration of any herb. We also know that, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center, thyme is sometimes administered in patients with respiratory disorders.
How to Make Thyme Tea
Since one of the most effective uses of thyme is to support respiratory health, it makes sense that thyme tea would be a popular way to utilize thyme. After all, what’s better on a sore throat that results from coughing than a soothing cup of tea?
All you need to make thyme tea is lemon, honey, water, and thyme. You can either buy dry thyme or dry it yourself. Once you have dry thyme leaves, you can either crush them into a powder or use the dry leaves in your tea whole.
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil, and then lower to a simmer. Add the thyme and cover the pot. After five minutes, strain the tea, and add whatever sweetener you like. A slice of lemon and honey is delicious, but you can use whatever sweetening method you prefer.
Steeping herbs in tea allow you to access all of the potential health benefits of the herb in a delicious, soothing drink. If you’re someone who doesn’t drink caffeine, or is looking to cut down on a coffee habit, warm herbal teas offer a tasty alternative.
If you don’t want to go to the work of drying and crushing your own thyme leaves, Natural Healthy Concepts offers tea blends containing herbs like thyme that support respiratory health. Try Bronchial Wellness Herbal Tea or Sinus Comfort tea for a delicious way to get through allergies, colds, and respiratory flare-ups.
Have you made your own Thyme Tea? What’s your favorite way to drink it?