Although the Bible mentions the hyssop plant as a symbol of purity, it is likely to speak about another species since the one we currently known as hyssop does not grow in Palestine. The great Greek physician, pharmacologist, botanist, and author Pedanius Dioscorides talks about it, and the plant has always been appreciated for its many virtues.
Healing Properties and Warning
The hyssop leaves and flower clusters contain a bitter component called marrubiin, which has mucolytic (makes the bronchi secretions more fluid) and expectorant properties, an aromatic essence that stimulates digestive secretions and also has antiseptic properties; as well as several flavonic substances and tannin.
The hyssop plant is recommended for bronchial catarrh, chronic bronchitis, and asthma. It makes the mucous more liquid, preventing its infection and promoting its expulsion. It is also used as a carminative (eliminates the gas from the digestive system), a digestive, and a vermifuge (expels intestinal parasites).
In external applications, it is used as a vulnerary (heals wounds and bruises). Gargling with hyssop water renders good results with tonsilitis.
WARNING! The recommended dose for its essence intake must not be exceeded since it can produce convulsions in high doses.
Hyssop Plant Scientific Facts
- French: Hysope.
- Spanish: Hisopo.
- Environment: Native to Mediterranean countries, it is grown as an ornamental plant in gardens of Europe and America. It can be found growing wild, although it is rare. It grows on sunny, dry slopes.
- Description: Shrub of the Labiatae family, growing from 30 to 60 cm high, with blue or violet flowers growing in a terminal spike.
- Parts of the plant used medicinally: The leaves and the flower clusters.
How to use Hyssop
- Infusion with 50-60 g per liter of water. Drink three or four hot cups daily, sweetened with honey for bronchial catarrh.
- Essence: The recommended dose is from one to three drops daily, three times a day.
- Baths with the same infusion employed for internal use.
- Garlges with this infusion.
George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. “Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants.” George D. Pamplona-Roger, M.D. Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants. Ed. Francesc X. Gelabert. Vols. 1 San Fernando de Henares: Editorial Safeliz, 2000. 312. Print. [hyssop plant]