8 Side Effects of Thyme

Research suggests that consuming thyme in large quantities over extended periods may lead to adverse reactions. Thyme contains essential oils such as thymol and carvacrol which have anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, and it also provides significant amounts of vitamins A and C along with calcium, iron, manganese, potassium, and magnesium.

For these reasons, adding small amounts of thyme into one’s diet can offer substantial health advantages. However, caution should be exercised when consuming larger amounts as it could lead to serious side effects.

This article explores the possible risks related to the excessive use of thyme so readers can make informed decisions about how they choose to incorporate it into their diets.

thyme side effects

What Is Thyme

Thyme is an aromatic herb used for seasoning and medicinal purposes. It belongs to the Lamiaceae family and has small greyish-green leaves and tiny purple flowers. Used in Mediterranean cuisine, it releases antiseptic properties when burned as incense. The word ‘thyme’ comes from the Greek verb ‘thyo’, meaning ‘to fumigate’.

There are many varieties of thyme such as lemon, wild, caraway, nutmeg, and orange balsam; each providing a unique flavor profile for dishes like fish, vegetables, and soups. Fresh or dried, this popular herb adds depth and complexity to any recipe.

Nutritional Profile

Thyme is a nutritionally rich herb that has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. It contains essential vitamins and minerals such as A, B6, C, E, and K, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, and zinc. These nutrients provide numerous health benefits including strengthening cardiovascular health, boosting immunity, and reducing inflammation.

Additionally, thyme is full of antioxidants that help protect against oxidative damage, and the presence of thymol makes it a natural antiseptic. Studies have also shown that consuming small amounts of thyme may reduce the risk of certain types of cancer due to its anti-cancer properties. All this information emphasizes why adding thyme to your diet can be beneficial for overall health and well-being.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Thyme is a flavorful and aromatic herb often used to season dishes. While it can be beneficial in moderate amounts, excessive consumption may lead to gastrointestinal distress. Symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting, and gastric discomfort have been associated with the overconsumption of thyme.

Those suffering from existing medical conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or ulcerative colitis should take extra caution. Therefore, it is important to consume this herb in moderation to reduce the risk of developing any form of digestive issues. Nutritionists recommend avoiding large quantities of thyme for those who already suffer from digestive problems.

By taking these precautions, you can enjoy all the benefits thyme has to offer without fear of negative side effects.

Blood Pressure Effects

Thyme can have powerful effects on blood pressure when taken in large amounts. An overdose of thyme may lead to both decreased and increased levels of blood pressure, due to its stimulant properties which affect heart rate and circulation. Long-term changes from taking too much thyme are not yet known, so it is important to be cautious and monitor intake.

People who take medications for hypertension should consult their doctor before adding any form of thyme to their diet as it could interact with certain drugs.

Taking precautions by monitoring dosages and consulting a doctor will help prevent serious health consequences caused by an overdose, including significant changes in one’s blood pressure levels.

Allergic Reactions

Thyme allergies are rare but can cause severe reactions if too much is ingested. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing, skin rashes or hives, and swelling of the face, mouth, or throat. Anyone with existing allergies should be particularly cautious when consuming thyme in food or supplement form.

To prevent allergic reactions, it is important to seek medical advice before taking high doses of thyme. If any signs of an allergy arise, such as wheezing, chest tightness, itching, rashes, or hives, immediate aid should be sought. In case of trouble breathing after consuming large amounts of thyme, emergency care should be obtained immediately.

Taking preventive measures before using this herb will help keep the risks of side effects low.

Drug Interactions

Thyme is a herb that can interact with certain drugs and medications, leading to negative side effects. Combining it with anticoagulants, NSAIDs, chemotherapy medicines, diuretics, hypoglycemic agents, sedatives or antidepressants could be dangerous. Additionally, some prescription medicines may not be safe when taken alongside thyme due to potential interactions.

People taking multiple medications should pay special attention to potential interactions between them and thyme extract. Healthcare providers need to know about all medicinal herbs their patients are consuming before prescribing treatments or medicines, to reduce the risk of harm from possible interactions.

Skin irritation

People with allergies or sensitivities to thyme should avoid touching or inhaling and wear gloves when handling large amounts. Symptoms such as redness, itching, burning, and swelling may occur after contact with the plant or its oils, due to compounds like thymol or carvacrol.

Treatment includes discontinuing exposure and topical corticosteroids or oral antihistamines for more severe cases. Organic forms grown without chemical pesticides are recommended for safety.


Kale is a popular leafy green vegetable that has many health benefits. It is high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, making it an ideal choice for those looking to improve their diets. However, some people experience digestive issues after eating kale, such as stomach pain, bloating, diarrhea or even vomiting.

If you have experienced these symptoms after consuming the vegetable, it is best to speak to your doctor to determine if there is an underlying cause. In the meantime, avoiding kale may be wise until further notice. While unpleasant side effects should not last longer than a few hours, they can still be quite uncomfortable during that time.


Kale is a superfood packed with vitamins and minerals, but it may contribute to headaches in some people due to its high oxalate content. High levels of oxalates can bind to calcium and other minerals and interfere with nutrient absorption, leading to migraine headaches or kidney stones/gallstones.

Those who suffer from migraines should limit their consumption of raw kale, as it also contains natural forms of sulfites. If frequent headaches occur after eating kale, reducing intake and talking to a doctor may help reduce symptoms


Dizziness is a potential side-effect of eating kale due to its high amount of oxalates, which can interfere with the absorption of iron and calcium. When these important minerals are not absorbed properly, it can cause lightheadedness or dizziness.

To reduce the risk of feeling dizzy from consuming kale, an individual should moderate their intake and pair it with foods containing iron or calcium for better nutrient absorption.

Additionally, too much kale in one sitting may lead to digestive discomfort, further contributing to feelings of dizziness.

Thyme is a commonly used herb in cooking and medicinal remedies. Recommended doses range from 0.5-2 grams per day (1 gram equaling approx. 1 tsp fresh leaves or 2 tsp ground powder).

Adults should not exceed 4g daily without medical advice; pregnant & breastfeeding women must consult their healthcare provider before taking supplements with large quantities of thyme.

Gradually increasing the dosage can help minimize potential side effects such as nausea, headaches, dizziness, & abdominal discomfort.


Thyme has been used for centuries as a source of flavor and nutrition in dishes. It is nutritionally beneficial when taken in moderation, however taking too much can lead to gastrointestinal issues such as nausea and vomiting. Other side effects that may arise from consuming thyme in excess include headaches, dizziness, and an increased heart rate. Symptoms of overdose are more severe and require medical attention.

Long-term use of high doses of thyme may put stress on the kidneys or liver due to its essential oil content. To reduce this risk, it is recommended to reduce dosage levels or substitute with herbs like oregano or basil. Consulting a healthcare professional before beginning any herbal supplement regimen is advised for safety purposes.

In summary, moderate consumption of thyme provides numerous nutritional benefits, while overdosing poses risks. Taking into account potential side effects from excessive intake and long-term use considerations will ensure proper usage of this popular cooking ingredient.

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