Herbal Devotion: Oregano
CATEGORIES: Healing & Herbs Nutrition
Would you please welcome in a new, but soon to be regular series: Herbal Devotion!
These posts will hone in on all the amazing health benefits (and other wonders) of the humble herb. I am currently taking a herbalism course and am continually astounded by how many amazing things these little plants/weeds can do. Creation is a marvelous and mysterious thing!
Surely just used on pizza and tomato sauces? No no dear readers, you are about to be (microscopically) blown away…
The primary medicinal property of oregano (origanum vulgare) is the ingredient carvacol found in this tiny plant. It is thought that Hippocrates himself used oregano as an antiseptic and as a remedy for stomach and respiratory problems.
In recent years there has been a bit more of a spotlight on this wonderful plant, with scientists running various experiments and many human studies taking place. An example of this is a study done recently where they took people with high cholesterol and gave some of the patients oregano oil (along with a low fat diet) to take with each meal. The effects were quite remarkable as the levels of LDL cholesterol (the bad version) were lowered and higher antioxidant status (antioxidants are essential for fighting the dangerous free radicals produced in our bodies – potential causes of cancer and other diseases).
It is a Anti Inflammatory – therefore great for people with IBDs, IBS or any other inflammatory diseases like arthritis (although I do not have not experience of this).
Anti Bacterial – Studies have been done comparing oregano oil with standard doses of antibiotics. They placed bacteria and the antibiotic/oregano oil in a test tube and found that the oregano oil was equally effective at inhibiting the bacterial growth as the standard dose of antibiotic! Plus you don’t get all the awful antibiotic side effects, like a messed up gut flora!
Anti Fungal – Studies have found that it completely inhibits the growth of yeast fungus, especially candida (the one that can cause thrush, athletes foot etc).
It is also Anti Parasitic – Great for cleansing the body of any parasites/infections that may have entered through food/water/skin, i.e. great to put in your back pack when traveling to exotic places!
What to know more about the studies? Click here.
It is also said to treat mouth ulcers, athletes foot, nappy rash, intestinal infections, gum problems, acne, colds/flu, bruises, eczema, sores and boosts immunity – the list is endless.
+It treated my athletes foot.
+It boosted my immunity and wards off colds and infections. I have used it like an antibiotic, consistently for a few days, morning and evening, and that quickly dealt with any infection.
+Similar to the above but it has really helped when I’ve been feeling a bit run down, especially with mouth ulcers (a good indicator for my husband and I that we need to have a rest).
+I have used it diluted with coconut oil to treat sores or rashes on my skin. Due to the summer season when caught out with not-natural remedies, I have been itching my eyes more which left them a bit raw, but so far they are looking much better.
How To Take It?
Personally I take about 4-8 drops on a spoon with some water, followed by lots of water (it tastes like all the weird herby bits of pizza) or dilute it roughly 5:1 with olive oil or coconut oil. As always, start small and listen to your body – we are all wonderfully unique.
Also keep adding it to your food, the level of carvacol will be much much lower but its better than nothing!
You can buy oregano oil online or in many health food shops and I personally prefer the one diluted in olive oil not alcohol. Make sure that it is 75% carvacol or more and that its naturally occurring not added later , as this is not as beneficial. It is not cheap (mine was £20 approx) but it will last a long time and is about the same price of 3 separate prescriptions charges and far nicer to your body.
Do you have any experience with health boosting herbs? I would love to hear from you!
2. E book ‘What you Need to Know About Wild Orgeano Oil’ by Jini Patel Thompson,