» Thyme






Linalool-rich thyme. Thyme or Thymus vulgaris is a sub-shrub of the Lamiaceae family, like mint, lavender, lemon balm and oregano. It is found in the wild all around the Mediterranean and is cultivated all over the world. It appreciates rocky soils and sunshine. It has been used for centuries for its healing properties.

In fact, since ancient times, it was burned to clean the air, perfume the water and ward off pathogens. Its name comes from the Egyptian tham a plant used to embalm the body and from the Greek root thy meaning to exhale an odor. Thyme essential oil is one of the most recommended and used remedies for respiratory ailments and coughs. The German Commission E recognizes its effectiveness in the treatment of bronchitis, whooping cough and inflammation of the respiratory tract. The EMA (European Medicines Agency) has ruled that by virtue of thyme’s ancestral use, thyme preparations may be indicated during productive coughs in the context of a cold.


Its chemical composition varies depending on the terroir. The most abundant component is thymol which represents up to 30%. It also contains carvacrol, para-cymene, 1,8-cineol, citral, monoterpenes and linalool. Linalool is a terpene alcohol that is found in the majority of essential oils. It is an aromatic compound often used in the cosmetics industry. Linalool-rich thyme, richer in this molecule, is traditionally recognized for its immune stimulating, anti-infectious and anti-septic properties by inhalation. It is frequently used to treat ailments of the ENT sphere.


  • Anti bacterial effect:

The anti-bacterial effect of thyme essential oil in liquid and spray form has been tested against Haemophilus influenzae, Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pyogenes. It shows efficacy against all three bacteria. It is more efficient in vaporization than in liquid form. This activity increases with its concentration. The bactericidal action is exerted mainly by thymol and carvacrol. The different components of the oil act in synergy (ANTIH & al., 2021 ; BORUGA & al., 2014).

The anti-bacterial effect of thyme essential oil spray has also been proven against MRSA and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (ACS & al., 2016).

A study carried out in 2000 on the antibacterial effect of five essential oils, demonstrated that thyme essential oil had the strongest inhibitory activity and was among the only ones to have an inhibiting effect on Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia Coli. It was also active against a strain of penicillin resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae, methicillin resistant de S. aureus and vancomycin resistant Enterococcus faecium The linalool tested alone also had an inhibitory effect on these bacteria (INOUYE & al., 2000).

A retrospective analysis performed in 2020 reported the efficacy of thyme essential oil against Bacillus cereus, S. epidermidis, Salmonella enteritidis and S. thyphimurium. Its activity is associated with the disruption of the permeability of the bacteria plasma membrane (DO NASCIMENTO & al., 2020).

Among several essential oils tested in a study in 2017, thyme essential oil showed the best ability to eradicate biofilms formed by Klebsiella pneumoniae. It is indeed capable of eradicating 80.1 to 98% of biofilms. Thymol enhances the anti-bacterial effect of ciprofloxacin (MOHAMED & al., 2017).

  • Anti viral effect:

In vitro, thyme essential oil significantly inhibits the replication of the feline coronavirus, which causes infectious feline peritonitis. This inhibition is dose and time-dependent. At the highest concentration, up to 92% inhibition is observed. This effect could be explained by the damage caused to the membrane of the virus, preventing its absorption and penetration into the host cell (CATELLA & al., 2021).

Thyme has also shown anti-viral effects against Herpes simplex virus, Influenza virus, New Castle disease virus and IBV, an avian coronavirus (CATELLA & al., 2021).

  • Antioxidant effect:

Thymol and carvacrol have been found to inhibit 35% and 33.9% respectively of DPPH free radicals (DO NASCIMENTO & al., 2020).

  • Anti-inflammatory effect on the respiratory tract:

Thyme essential oil decreases the presence of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-8, IL-17 in bronchoalveolar washings (DO NASCIMENTO & al., 2020).

Do not wait any longer to enhance your dishes with these herbs, symbol of courage, lasting love, creativity and physical resistance.