Latin: Hyssopus officinalis
Parts Used: Aerial
Properties: Astringent, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant. anxiolytic, antispasmodic, vulnerary, circulatory stimulant
Actions: Hyssop’s species name is officinalis, a term that means that it has long been part of medical practice and indeed its origins as a healing herb go back to the time of the early Greeks. Hyssop is often used as a “lung herb” for infections and bronchitis. Its antispasmodic and antimicrobial properties make it helpful for soothing asthma, hacking coughs and healing respiratory distress conditions. Its relaxant quality make it useful for cramping and griping in the gut. Hyssop can also be offered to ward off colds and the flu due to its sweat inducing “diaphoretic” properties. Hyssop moves and stimulates circulation, helping to strengthen digestive, nervous system, endocrine and excretory systems to function better.
In terms of mental health, it used to be quite common to offer hyssop in cases of “hysteria”, or what we would call severe cases of anxiety and panic. This is an herb I would use in the short term for a day or two to help with acute anxiety, tight wound up anxiety, a feeling of wanting to scream and feeling tight and blocked up.
Dosage: As tea its pretty nasty 1-2 tsp standard infusion in cup of hot water for 10 minutes. In tincture, either as energetic dose of a few drops, or for more gross effect 1-2 ML as needed until symptoms reside. This is a fairly common essential oil to use these days with good effect as an aromatic agent. As an essential oil, standard use.
Contraindications: As an emmenagogue, avoid in pregnancy
Hyssop monograph by Rosalee de la Foret
Hyssop monograph by Lindsey Hesseltine