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Scientific Name: Thymus vulgaris

Constituents:

  • Volatile oil (thymol & carvacrol, geraniol, borneol, linalool & cineol)
  • Phenolic acids (Caffeic acid derivatives: rosmarinic)
  • Tannins
  • Resin & Gums
  • Flavonoids (luteolin, apigenin, naringenin, cirsilineol, cirsimaritin, thymonin)
  • Triterpenes (ursolic acid & oleanolic acid)

Medicinal actions:

  • Anti-cancer
  • Anti-parasitic
  • Antimicrobial
  • Antispasmodic & Carminative
  • Astringent
  • Expectorant (Stimulating)

Mechanism of Action & Pharmacology:

  • VO (carvacrol & thymol) increases mucus secretion of the membranes in the lungs and a relaxant effect on smooth muscle (especially of lungs & digestive tract). Are also disinfectant and analgesic, and also contribute to a general reduction of inflammatory responses.
  • Antibacterial activity has been demonstrated against several strains of Gram-positive & Gram-negative bacteria including S. aureus & E. Coli as well as having anti-fungal effects against Candida, and anti-viral effects against HSV-2.
  • Rosmarinic acid has been shown to inhibit oxidation of LDL and scavenge hydroxyl radicals.
  • Note: Many constituents work synergistically to provide its anti-tussive, antispasmodic, and expectorant actions.

Pharmacy:

  • Infusion
  • Tincture
  • Capsules
  • Topical use of essential oil (best if diluted) or as steam inhalation/aromatherapy

Safety & Toxicity Concerns:

  • Topical use may cause dermatitis and mucus membrane irritation.
  • Avoid in pregnancy (above culinary amounts) and internal use of essential oil (may cause headache, vomiting, painful diarrhea, tinnitus, kidney damage, dizziness, convulsions, respiratory paralysis and death).

Interactions:

  • None known.

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