What is Oil of Oregano?
Multiple species of this herb exists within the mint family. However, only two of the varieties contain health benefits:
- Thymus capitatus and
Thymus capitatusgrows naturally in Spain,origanumvulgaregrows throughout the rest of the Mediterranean. These are the two varieties to concentrate on when searching for health benefits.
Why and When Should I Use It?
Many holistic doctors and advocates of this herb recommend oil of oregano as a natural remedy and alternative to drugs for a plethora of different ailments. The most common uses for oregano oil are prevention and treatment of: the common cold, flu, sore throat, coughing, athlete’s foot, diarrhea, upset intestinal and gas, sinusitis, congestion and also as a powerful antioxidant for immune support.
Some studies have also shown oregano oil to improve colon health, stimulate flow of bile in the digestive organs and significantly aid in liver regeneration.
How Does It Work?
There are many studies supporting oregano oil as being effective as an antifungal, antiseptic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antihistamineand antioxidant. Oil of Oregano has many active compounds that give it beneficial properties. Here is a list of Oil of Oregano’s active compounds and some of their specific benefits:
- Carvacrol: an antimicrobial proven to be effective against candida albicans, the aspergillus mold, staphylococcus, campylobacter, klebsiella, e.coli, giardia, pseudomonas, salmonella, and listeria. (The active component of Carvacrol is responsible for most of the benefits of oregano oil.)
- Thymol: Thymol is an antiseptic and fungicide which is also used in the common mouthwash Listerine©.
- Rosmarinic Acid: An antihistamine and an antioxidant.
- Naringin: Gives grapefruit its characteristic bitter flavor and serves as a powerful antioxidant and protects against carcinogens.
What Should I Look For When Purchasing Oil Of Oregano?
Look for pure, organic, and unadulterated oil of oregano from the subspecies origanumvulgare. It is most commonly found in liquid form with a dropper but can also be found in capsules. Look for it at your local health food store such as Whole Foods, Sprouts, Hi-Health or online.
Who shouldn’t Use Oil of Oregano?
Although many people can benefit from using oil of oregano, pregnant women, those with allergies to oreganoand those on blood thinners should consider other options.
How Should I take Oil of Oregano?
Because the dosage and consumption forms can vary greatly it is recommend that a little due diligence is conducted in order to ensure proper dosing and consumption. More is not automatically better; even though it is a natural product, pure undiluted oregano oil can be caustic. Most quality sources will recommend diluting the oregano oil before using it.
LiveStrong.com has some great advice for proper use of oil of oregano.
This information will help you get started on your due diligence and give you some knowledge to build on as you continue to educate yourself.
Like any naturally occurring compound recommended for the treatment or improvement of health, there will always be cynics and proponents. Westernized medicine vs. natural options, man-made medicine and big pharmaceuticals vs. God and nature will always be in an on-going and heated debate. Both have their benefits and purpose however the choice of what to put into your body is yours.
About the Author
Chris Smithis one of Pulse Fitness’s expert personal trainers; he has 7 years of experience in the fitness industry. He is ISSA, TRX and Perform Better certified and continues industry specific education regularly. Chris enjoys working for a gym that has positioned itself as one of the few leading training studios in the industry and where he can pursue his passion for fitness and helping people. His clients call himThe Monkeyfor his love of gymnast style exercise and how he can often be found hanging on the monkey bars.