Thyme is known not only as a culinary spice but also for its many medicinal purposes. This herb has been used for years to treat respiratory disorders because of its ability to release mucus, making it particularly effective in helping bronchitis sufferers. It is also an antispasmodic, so it helps relax the bronchial tubes and alleviates coughing fits. Thyme oil is used in many cough syrups as it has expectorant, antibacterial and antiseptic properties and is commonly used in Germany to treat whooping cough and emphysema.

Brew a cup of thyme tea to help treat your bronchitis cough. Place 2 tbsp. of fresh thyme (it is OK to use dried, but only use 1 tbsp.) into a tea cup and add boiling water. Let this infuse for at least five minutes before straining the herbs. To make your thyme tea more palatable, try adding honey, lemon or ginger.

Keep your airways open by breathing in hot, steamy air infused with thyme. Boil 2 cups of water and put into a small, glass bowl. Add 1 tbsp. of thyme oil and, covering your head with a towel, lean over the bowl and slowly breathe in the steam through your nose. As thyme is an expectorant, it may release mucus that makes you cough temporarily but after a few minutes the thyme and steam together should relax the bronchial tubes, clear the airways and prevent further coughing.

Make homemade thyme cough syrup. Boil 2 cups of water and add 1 cup of dried thyme. Let the water cool and drain, discarding the thyme. Stir in 1 cup of honey and pour into a glass container, then store in the refrigerator. Shake thoroughly before each use and take 1 tbsp. approximately three times a day.


When making your thyme tea or thyme cough syrup, try using a mesh tea ball infuser. This is much easier than having to drain the thyme from your water each time.

If the thyme tea or cough syrup isn’t appealing, try taking a thyme supplement, available online and at health-food stores.

Add thyme to some chicken soup; not only will you get the medicinal benefits from the herb but also the steamy vapors from a soothing food.


Only use the thyme oil in the steam bath and to inhale. Thyme oil is considered toxic so use only the fresh or dried herb in the tea or cough syrup.

Don’t use thyme if you are pregnant as it is a uterine stimulant.