Oregano, a hardy perennial herb, is native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa, although it grows in many areas of the world. The ancient Greeks and Romans used oregano for various medical purposes. There are over forty species of oregano, but the most therapeutically beneficial is the wild Mediterranean variety. Oregano essential oil is extracted through a process of steam distillation, which produces a concentrated product that must be diluted by the user.
Common uses of oregano oil include the treatment of foot and nail fungus. Mix three drops of oregano oil with two drops of thyme oil and ten drops of coconut oil. Apply the mixture on the specific nail every morning and night. Oregano oil can also be used to treat thrush in the mouth. Mix two drops of oregano oil with fifteen drops of coconut oil. Swab the mixture inside the mouth. To treat sinus infections and colds, combine two drops of oregano oil, five drops of Roman chamomile oil, six drops of lavender oil and five drops of coconut oil. Apply this mixture to the bottom of the feet three days a week.
Oregano oil is comprised of a variety of phenols with proven therapeutic effects. Thymol is a natural fungicide and antiseptic. It helps boost the immune system, shields against toxins, and prevents tissue damage while encouraging healing. Carvacrol exhibits antimicrobial, antitumor, antimutagenic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antiparasitic properties, making it one of the most active components of oregano oil. Rosmarinic acid is an antioxidant that shows promise in treating allergic asthma while preventing cancer and atherosclerosis. It works as a natural antihistamine, helping to reduce fluid buildup and swelling caused by allergy attacks. Naringin, another phenol, inhibits the growth of cancer cells and helps boost the other antioxidants in oregano oil. Beta-caryophyllin, another substance found in oregano oil, inhibits inflammation and may also be beneficial for conditions like osteoporosis. Finally, the terpenes found in oregano oil are known for their powerful antibacterial properties. Taken together, these components provide a powerful array of benefits to anyone suffering from acute or chronic illness.
Besides being excellent for respiratory and immune system health, oregano oil has shown promise in treating a variety of infections. Urinary tract infections caused by bacteria such as E coli, Proteus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa have all responded to oregano oil. Respiratory infections brought on by Klebsiella pneumoniae and Staphylococcus aureus have also been successfully treated. Yeast infections and parasitic infections that have become increasingly resistant to Diflucan and Tinidazol have responded to oregano oil. Food-borne pathogens such as listeria, salmonella, E coli and Shigella dysenteriea have all shown susceptibility to oregano oil. And norovirus, responsible for gastroenteritis, has been killed by oregano oil in a laboratory setting. Even methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), one of the most deadly bacteria found in hospital settings, has been killed by oregano oil.
Other uses for oregano oil include keeping insects away. Just put a few drops on outdoor furniture, or apply a diluted mixture to your skin when heading outdoors. Oregano oil may also be applied, in diluted form, to skin conditions such as cold sores, dandruff, acne, and rosacea. And a few drops in a glass of water may be used as a gargle for sore throat pain.
When diluted with water or a carrier oil, oregano oil is generally considered safe. It is advisable to apply a small amount of oregano oil mixture to the skin of one’s forearm to see if irritation occurs before using oregano oil for other purposes. Always seek out the best quality oregano oil, made from wild Mediterranean oregano. Inferior products may provide no health benefits. Some people may experience stomach upset when ingesting oregano oil. Those with allergies to plants such as mint, lavender, sage, and basil should avoid oregano oil. Oregano oil is not advisable for infants and children. Pregnant or nursing women are discouraged from using oregano oil as the oil may cause miscarriages or premature birth. In addition, there are insufficient studies to prove whether oregano oil is safe for pregnant or breastfeeding mothers. —TP
—Adapted from “Help Ward Off Infections and Improve Your Immune System With Oregano Oil” originally published at www.mercola.com.
Oregano Oil Remedy
• Dried oregano leaves, chopped, or crushed
• Olive oil, almond oil, or grape seed oil
• Sanitized glass jar with lid
1. Fill the jar halfway with dried oregano leaves.
2. Pour in the oil to cover the oregano leaves. Stir the oil to remove any air bubbles.
3. Make sure that all the leaves are covered in oil by carefully shaking or turning the jar.
4. Put the jar in a warm area. However, make sure it will not be exposed to direct sunlight. If possible, place the jar inside a paper bag to ensure it does not come into contact with sun’s rays.
5. Let the mixture steep for four to six weeks, turning or shaking the jar every few days.
6. After steeping, strain the oil through a cheesecloth to remove the leaves. Place the oil in another sanitized glass container.
7. Seal the jar. Store the oil in a cool, dry area. This recipe may last for up to a year.
—Adapted from “Help Ward Off Infections and Improve Your Immune System With Oregano Oil” originally published at www.mercola.com