Oregano’s Amazing Health Benefits
The Healing Qualities of Oregano
A bountiful source of many nutrients including, vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as fiber, folate, iron, magnesium, vitamin B6, calcium, and potassium- No wonder Oregano has so many Amazing Health Benefits!
Anti-inflammatory Properties- Oregano may be beneficial for conditions such as osteoporosis and arteriosclerosis because it contains beta-caryophyllin (E-BCP), a substance that inhibits inflammation.
Antifungal and Antibacterial- Two phytochemicals in oregano, Carvacol and thymol are among two of the strongest antimicrobials ever found.These two compounds can help to fight bacterial infections as well as prevent them. Research has also shown that essential oils from the oregano plant can be useful against certain Candida species, and may also kill the food-borne pathogen listeria and the super-bug MRSA.
Antioxidants- Oregano has one of the highest antioxidant activity ratings, with a higher antioxidant punch than apples. It has about 42 times more antioxidants than any other food product such as fruits, vegetables, berries and grains. There is an active ingredient in oregano called rosmarinic acid, an antioxidant that is thought to support immune system health.
Upper Respiratory Infections- One of the many useful things about oregano is that it has the potential to ward off many viruses that are common today. Oregano is a potential anti-viral and was found to significantly relieve upper respiratory infections, as well as encouraging sweat production. Ingesting it may help your body to get rid of unwanted phlegm in your lungs.
Cancer-Fighting- A promising phytochemical in oregano, carnosol, may have anti-carcinogenic properties in prostate, breast, skin, leukemia, and colon cancer. Oregano extract has been shown to lead to growth arrest and cell death in colon cancer cells.
Can I grow Oregano?
You don’t have to be a seasoned gardener to grow oregano. It is very easy to grow at home, and will give you a virtually free and ongoing fresh supply of this wonderful herb. It is also a perennial, which means it will keep coming back year after year and it works well grown indoors in containers.
Once ready to harvest, simply clip what you need and use it fresh, or dry it before use. Keep dried oregano in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.
What Is Oregano Oil?
Oregano oil is derived from the leaves and flowers of the oregano plant. To obtain the oil, the dried flowers and leaves of the wild oregano plant are harvested when the oil content of the plant is at its highest, and then distilled.The resulting oil is golden to dark yellow, with a strong spicy odor.
There are many species of oregano, but the most therapeutically beneficial is the oil produced from wild oregano or Origanum vulgare that’s native to Mediterranean regions.
Many of the oregano oils sold in grocery stores are not made from this variety, and may have little to no therapeutic value. Opt only for oregano oil made from Origanum vulgare and Thymus capitatus, a variety that grows in Spain.
Where does Oregano come from?
Oregano is related to the herb sweet marjoram, and is one of the most important herbs used in culinary cooking and medical practices today. It is so important in fact, that it has been used for these two purposes for thousands of years.
The word Oregano comes from the Greek words “oros” and “ganos,” which literally means “joy of the mountain”.
Oregano has purple colored flowers and spade-shaped, olive-green leaves. It is a perennial however it is grown as an annual in colder climates, as it usually will not survive the winter.
Having a long history in ancient folk lore, it was used as a poison antidote, and as a fomentation to treat skin irritations, infections, dropsy, convulsions, and as an antidote for narcotic poisons by the ancient Greeks.
Oregano which symbolizes joy, is said to have banished sadness with its sweet fragrance and velvety leaves, and was believed to hold magical properties. Although oregano is heavily associated with Italian cuisine, it is likely that it originated in ancient Greece.
Oregano has many impressive medicinal properties that have been shown to help improve a person’s overall health. Whether that person is suffering from cancer, has an upper respiratory infection or is looking for a powerful source of antioxidants, oregano is one of the few herbs that can do it all. Not to mention it’s quite tasty.
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To your good health,