Learn More About Oregano
What is oregano?
Although a number of different types of oregano exist, the one that has aroused the most interest in the alternative health community is Orignanum vulgare, or Wild Mountain Oregano. Since the time of the ancient Greeks, various Mediterranean peoples have prized this species of the mint family not only for its flavor but also for its medicinal properties.
What is oregano used for?
Aside from issues of taste, one of the reasons that pre-industrial people prized herbs and spices was due to their ability to keep food from spoiling and to prevent food poisoning. (In the days before refrigeration this was such a pressing concern that it prompted Columbus to sail in search of trade routes that would provide access to herbs and spices.)
Oregano contains notably high concentrations of two important substances, thymol and carvacrol. This may explain why test tube studies indicate that oregano works to kill a very broad spectrum of bacteria and fungi, making it a potentially useful adjunct to prescription antibiotic drugs, even at concentrations as low as a fraction on one percent.
For instance, scientists have conducted in vitro (that is, test tube) studies using oregano as well as various other essential oils against Candida albicans, a common yeast infection that often follows high sugar intake and/or antibiotic use. Of the fifty-something oils tested, oregano worked against this hard-to-kill form of yeast better than did the all others, including a derivative or garlic. In fact, researchers have compared oregano’s effectiveness against yeast to such commonly used medications and substances as Nystatin and caprylic acid, making it potentially very important indeed.
Other researchers have investigated the potential of oregano to prevent food spoilage, not only by yeast (think of moldy bread, for instance) but by bacteria as well. Once again oregano has shown itself to be unusually potent in halting these destructive processes. Although this might seem to be of concern only to cooks and large food companies, this once again out the profoundly antimicrobial properties of oregano. If oregano can kill harmful micro-organisms in food, it might also prove effective against a number of diseases as well, including (according to some doctors and reasearchers) flu, pneumonia, and even athlete’s foot.
While the notion that oregano may help get rid of athlete’s foot does not seem all that earth-shattering, it points to this herb’s seeming usefulness against a wide range of heath conditions when applied topically. Reports indicate that oregano might have efficacy against acne, eczema, insect bites, and ringworm, as well as arthritis. Because of its reputed antiviral properties, some people employ oregano during the early stages of herpes outbreaks. (To use it topically, oregano definitely should be diluted in olive oil, a benign carrier agent.)
Users of oregano often contend that it can be helpful for sufferers of sinusitis and respiratory infections. Several drops of oregano oil added to a bowl of hot water and then inhaled apparently reduce the severity of such illnesses and promote a more rapid recovery, making it invaluable not only during the winter months but during allergy season as well.
How is oregano taken?
Generally oregano is used in a liquid form, mixed with olive oil, or else taken as a softgel. The softgel minimizes issues related to taste and odor, although many prefer liquid oregano because it enables the herb to be ingested by mouth but also applied externally. Be aware that oregano has a distinct odor.
Small amounts typically suffice. Label directions should provide all necessary guidance, depending on the concentrations of various brands.
Is oregano safe?
Oregano has been used as both food and medicine for thousands of years. Nonetheless, do not use oregano supplements if your are or might be pregnant, and those with specific health concerns should always consult with a knowledgeable heath care practitioner before using this or any other supplement.
And remember—you can get the best oregano supplements at the best prices from A1Supplements.com!