A delicate looking herb with a penetrating fragrance, Thyme has been used since ancient times for its culinary, aromatic and medicinal properties.
It belongs to the mint family. With about 400 subspecies, Thyme is not only great for cooking but its range of uses is impressive. Here are the reasons why we love Thyme:
- It is known for its antibacterial properties and might have a future as an acne-fighting ingredient. When steeped in alcohol for days or weeks, it turns into a solution known as a tincture. The natural herb preparation fought pimples better than anti-acne products, which include benzoyl peroxide.
- Thymus linearis Benth. is a species of thyme found in Pakistan and Afghanistan. A recent study found that an extract was able to significantly reduce the heart rate in rate with high blood pressure, and was also able to lower their cholesterol.
- Thyme essential oil, which is obtained from its leaves, is often used as a natural cough remedy. A study shows the combination of thyme and ivy leaves helped to alleviate coughing and other symptoms of acute bronchitis.
- Getting all the vitamins the body needs every day can be challenging. Thyme is packed with Vitamin C and also a good source of Vitamin A, copper, fiber, iron and manganese.
- Thymol is an ingredient of many pesticides – both in and outdoor – and is commonly used to target bacteria and viruses, and other animal pests. A recent study shows that thyme essential oil can repel mosquitoes.
- Thyme has antiseptic and antifungal properties. It is a common ingredient in mouthwash and deodorants.
- Thyme is often used for aromatic and therapeutic purposes due to its intensity of an active substance called carvacrol. Carvacrol was shown to affect neuron activity in ways that boosted the subjects’ feelings of well being.
A highly fragrant herb used as seasoning in many cuisines, Basil has become one of the most recognizable herbs ever since pesto become popular. There are more than 60 varieties of basil, all of which differ somewhat in appearance and taste. While the taste of sweet basil is bright and pungent, other varieties also offer unique tastes.
The name “basil” is derived from the old Greek word basilkohn, which means “royal”, reflecting ancient culture’s attitude towards herb and how they held it to be noble and sacred.
Here’s 10 reasons why we love Basil and why you should consider including it in your diet:
- The unique array of active constituents called flavonoids found in basil provide protection at the cellular level and
- The volatile oils of basil have anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It prohibits growth of numerous pathogenic bacteria and provide important healing benefits along with symptomatic relief for inflammation.
- A good source of beta-carotene, a more powerful anti-oxidant than vitamin A that protects the body from free radical damage and oxidizing cholesterol in the blood stream.
- A good source of magnesium which promotes cardiovascular healthy by prompting muscles and blood vessels to relax, thus improving blood flow and lessening the risk of irregular heart rhythms or spasms.
- Basil is also a very good source of Vitamin K manganese, copper, Vitamin C, calcium, iron and folate.
- Layer fresh basil over tomato slices and mozzarella cheese to create a traditional colorful and delicious Italian salad
- Add basil to healthy stir-fries or toss it into hot noodle soups just before serving like the Viet’s and Thai’s do.
- Puree basil with olive oil, onions and tomato to create a pesto
- Enjoy a warm cup of invigorating basil tea by infusing chopped basil leaves in hot water
- Basil is so versatile and it goes well with red meat. Use it as a garnish!