What is Hyssopus Officinalis? Health Benefits, Uses, Side Effects of Zufa - An Informative Guide

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. What is Hyssopus Officinalis? 
3. Morphology
4. Ayurvedic properties of Hyssopus Officinalis
5. Health Benefits of Hyssop
6. Uses of Hyssop
7. Side Effects of Hyssopus Officinalis
8. Frequently Asked Question

1. Introduction

Hyssopus officinalis, commonly known as hyssop, is a versatile and aromatic herb that has been valued for its medicinal and culinary properties for centuries. This perennial plant belongs to the mint family and is native to Southern Europe and the Mediterranean region. Its distinctive fragrance and plethora of health benefits have made it a popular ingredient in traditional herbal medicine and culinary practices around the world.

In this post, we will delve into the fascinating world of hyssop and explore its many benefits for both health and culinary purposes. From its therapeutic uses to its role in enhancing the flavor of various dishes, hyssop has something to offer for everyone. Additionally, we will also shed light on how to utilize zufa effectively and discuss potential side effects to be aware of. So, let's embark on a journey to discover the wonders of hyssop and how it can enrich our lives in more ways than one.

2. What is Hyssopus Officinalis?

Hyssop botanical name is Hyssopus Officinalis, some other common names are zufa, yabis, Jupha Zanjibil, Zufa khusk. The plant is a native of the Mediterranean region and of temperate asai. It is found in the Himalayas from Kashmir to Kumaon at an altitude between 2700-3700m.  The word Hysoop comes from the Hebrew name Esob, Hippocrates, the father of medicine, prescribed this aromatic perennial herb for chest complaints.

The Hyssop contains volatile oil, fat, sugar choline, tannins, carotene, and xanthophyll. The tops contain ursolic acid. A glucoside diosmin which on hydrolysis yield rhamnose, glucose, and the aglycone diosmetin, have also been isolated.

3. Morphology


The leaves are opposite, shiny dark green, entire-edged, and lanceolate or oblong, obtuse to acuminate that are 2 to 4 cm long. Leaves are edible and used for Ayurvedic medicinal purposes or culinary. It is used as a flavoring in a variety of dishes, including soups, stews, and salads.

Hyssopus Officinalis leaves


Flowers are borne on long, narrow, one-sided whorls in terminal spikes and they are purplish-blue, and sometimes pink and white varieties are available. Flower buds are also used in cooking and in Ayurveda.

Hyssopus Officinalis flowers

Root and Stem 

The root of Hyssopus Officinalis is a strongly branching, multi-headed tap root, stem erect or decumbent dividing into many woody stems.

4. Ayurvedic properties of Hyssopus Officinalis

Hyssop is a medicinal herb that has been used in Ayurveda for its therapeutic properties. It is important to note that Hyssopus officinalis is not traditionally part of the Ayurvedic system but has been used in some formulations due to its potential health benefits.

Ayurvedic properties attributed to Hyssopus officinalis:

1. Rasa (Taste): Hyssop is believed to have a pungent (Katu) taste.

2. Virya (Potency): It is warming in nature (Ushna Virya).

3. Vipaka (Post-digestive taste): The post-digestive taste is pungent (Katu Vipaka).

4. Dosha Effects: Hyssop is considered to have a balancing effect on Vata and Kapha doshas, but it may increase Pitta dosha due to its heating nature.

Ayurvedic Uses:

  1. Respiratory Health: Hyssop is used to manage respiratory conditions like cough, bronchitis, and asthma due to its warming and expectorant properties.

  2. Digestive Support: It is used to support healthy digestion and manage digestive disorders due to its pungent taste.

  3. Antimicrobial: Hyssop is believed to have antimicrobial properties and may help in managing certain infections.

  4. Immune Support: It is considered to have immunomodulatory effects, supporting the body's natural defense mechanisms.

  5. Mood Balancer: Hyssop is used for its calming and relaxing effects, helping to manage stress and anxiety.

5. What are the benefits Hyssop?

Hyssop is a stimulant and a tonic; it increases the secretion and discharge of urine and removes any obstruction to the body by opening the natural passages or pores of the body. It also induces movement of the bowels. It is one of the most popular herbal preparations and has been used traditionally for medicinal purposes and generally. The health benefits of hyssop are largely based on folklore rather than on scientific substantiation.

It has antimicrobial and antioxidant, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial properties, it has a long history of medicinal use as a carminative, tonic, antiseptic, expectorant, and cough reliever. Hyssop has a slightly bitter taste but is often used as a minty flavor and condiment in cooking.

Here are some health benefits

For Digestive Disorders

Hyssop is useful in digestive disorders; it strengthens the stomach and promotes its action. It can be beneficial in dyspepsia and flatulence.

For Respiratory Disorders

Ayurvedic practitioners recommended hyssop for the treatment of respiratory disorders such as influenzas, cold, catarrh, and bronchitis. Hyssop extracts contain antiviral properties, especially against the herpes simplex virus that cause cols sores.  

For Round Worms

Hyssop is very useful to treat roundworms, infusion is beneficial to expels roundworms.

For Skin Disorders

Hyssopus Officinalis is a beneficial and effective remedy for bruises, wounds, and burns. It is also good for the black eye, sprains, and strains.

Other Disease

The herb is also useful in uterine and urinary disorders, infusion of the herb is useful for sore throat and for sore eyes.

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6. How to use Zufa?

The plant leaves are extensively used in the traditional system of medicine for various ailments like skin problems, constipation, digestion, weight management, and respiratory wellness.

Dosage and uses depend upon the health problems and conditions or as an Ayurvedic doctor recommends. The general recommended dosage is 3-6 grams of Hyssopus Officinalis daily once a day.

Here are dosages and uses of Hyssopus Officinalis

  • Make an infusion of Hyssop leaves and do gargle with that, helps to treat sore throat and wash for sore eyes.
  • Make a Hyssop leaves paste and applied externally to the affected parts of the skin, which helps to treat bruises, wounds, and burns.
  • Boil Hyssop leaves paste and uses it to foment contused wounds, black eye, sprain, and strains.
  • Take Hyssop leaves juice twice or thrice a day, helps to expel roundworms.
  • Take Hyssop leaves to paste and mix with honey, helps to treat dyspepsia and flatulence.
  • Take a Hyssop leaves infusion, which helps to treat coughs, asthma, sore throat, and chronic bronchitis.

7. Side Effects of the Hyssopus Officinalis.

All Ayurveda herbs are plant-based, and they don’t have any side effects but they may react with some allopathy or homeopathy medicine. It is better to consult the doctor if you are on any medications or have unique health issues.

Some side effects of Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis are mentioned below

  • Consult the doctor if you are breastfeeding.
  • Do not take Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis without a doctor’s prescription if you are pregnant.
  • Do not take Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis without a doctor’s prescription if you are on any kind of hormonal or sexual-related medication.
  • If you are on any health supplements, advise the doctor before starting Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis.
  • If you are on diabetes or on hypertension medication. Consult first the doctor before consuming Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis.
  • If you are on medication for asthma or any lung-related disorder, consult the doctor before starting Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis.
  • If you have hypersensitive skin, try a patch first of Hyssop / Hyssopus Officinalis, before applying it to the body.
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8. Frequently Asked Question

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