The health benefits of oregano essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, digestive, emmenagogue, and an anti-allergenic substance.
About Oregano Essential Oil
Oregano is a plant native to higher altitudes and normally grows in the mountains, which is how it is named “Oregano”, meaning “delight of the mountains”.
The disinfectant and antibacterial properties of oregano essential oil were first recognized in ancient Greece where it was often used for treating bacterial infections on the skin or wounds. It was also used to protect food from bacteria. The essential oil of oregano is extracted through steam distillation of fresh oregano leaves, which bear the scientific name Origanum vulgare. Its chief components are carvacrol, thymol, cymene, caryophyllene, pinene, bisabolene, linalool, borneol, geranyl acetate, linalyl acetate, and terpinene.
It is used in many ways, like in aromatherapy, which has been the most popular use for decades. You can also apply it topically onto the skin or with a carrier oil like coconut oil for improving your skin quality. Finally, you can ingest it in very small quantities as a dietary supplement, usually diluted with honey or other non-dairy beverages.
Health Benefits of Oregano Essential Oil
Along with being respected for its antimicrobial properties, this oil has many medicinal properties as well. Let’s take a look at them below.
Treats Respiratory Conditions
Oregano essential oil can act as an expectorant, which loosens up or helps eliminate the uncomfortable buildups of mucus and phlegm in the respiratory tracts and sinuses. It is also a soothing balm for inflamed lungs and throat, which may often stimulate coughing fits. Therefore, oregano essential prevents and treats symptoms of respiratory ailments.
This oil is good for soothing many types of inflammation, internal or external, caused by a variety of reasons. When it is applied topically, it can reduce redness and irritation onto the applied area and also relieve pain associated with arthritis or injury. When consumed, it has much of the same effect, although it is spread throughout the body, so will not necessarily relieve pain and discomfort as quickly.
Just as it protects you against viral infections, oregano oil protects you against bacterial infections as well. This gives you an additional level of protection against bacterial diseases such as infections in the colon and urinary tract, as well as typhoid, cholera, sores, skin infections, and food poisoning. Also, the antibacterial effects of oregano don’t have an inhibitory effect on the health, so you don’t suffer from the ill effects of being undefended.
Viruses, bacteria, fungi, and protozoa are the four agents that are responsible for communicable and infectious diseases. Out of these, fungi are responsible for some of the most dreadful and fatal infections, both internal and external. They can cause ugly, painful, and deadly infections in the ear, nose, and throat, which, if not treated early, may reach the brain and become lethal.
Many skin infections are also caused by these fungi. Oregano oil, if used regularly, either internally or externally, can effectively protect the body against many of these fungal infections.
Prevents Viral Infections
Oregano essential oil provides protection against viral infections. This means that it strengthens your immunity against cold, mumps, measles, pox, and other problems caused by viruses. This boost to the immune system helps to defend against deadly viral infections and even autoimmune disorders. Oregano essential oil also stimulates the production and function of white blood cells, the body’s main line of defense.
Acts as Antiparasitic
Many types of parasites, such as roundworms, tapeworms, lice, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and fleas live inside or outside the human body. These parasites use the human body as a source of food and as a vessel or carrier of communicable diseases. Oregano essential oil, when ingested, can eliminate intestinal worms, and when applied externally, it effectively keeps away lice, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and fleas. Hence, it is not uncommon to find oregano essential oil as a component of organic bug sprays and repellents.
This property turns out to be one of the most celebrated attributes of oregano essential oil because it protects you from the damages done to the body by free radicals (oxidants). It neutralizes free radicals while repairing the damage already done. This slows down the aging process and protects against certain cancers, macular degeneration, degeneration of muscle due to aging, wrinkles, loss of vision and hearing, nervous disorders, and many ailments related to premature aging and the effects of free radicals. More specifically, oregano essential oil contains phenols, a powerful form of antioxidant that eliminates free radicals that cause diseases and scours the body.
This powerful oil is beneficial for regulating menstruation and delaying the onset of menopause. Those suffering from obstructed menses may also find relief by using oregano essential oil. As an emmenagogue, it can help a woman reduce her symptoms of oncoming menopause, including mood imbalance and hormonal shifts.
This is another side of the sedative and anti-inflammatory properties of oregano essential oil. Allergies are hyper-reactions of the body towards external stimuli. Oregano oil, a sedative in nature, calms down this hyper-sensitivity and is known to give relief from allergy symptoms. Through its anti-inflammatory quality, the severity of allergies can be reduced, which is important for serious reactions like anaphylactic shocks or swelling in the throat.
Oregano essential oil promotes digestion by increasing the secretion of digestive juices. It also increases the nutrient digestibility and enzymes which aid in absorbing food. This can improve your health by maximizing the nutrients you get from food!
Oregano essential oil has been shown to help heal psoriasis, eczema, athlete’s foot, flu, and other infectious ailments. Furthermore, it can be used to treat bacterial infections like E. coli, giardiasis, and food poisoning. It relieves congestion, and certain studies also say that it is a powerful painkiller, with the added benefit that it works without having any strong side effects.
Oregano Essential Oil FAQs
What is oregano oil?
Oregano oil is a highly beneficial essential oil extracted from oregano leaves. While oregano is famed as a spice, oregano essential oil is a concentrated form that is widely sought after for natural remedies. You can use a steam distillation process on normal oregano leaves to get the pure essential oil, which can be used topically or consumed orally, depending on what ails you.
How to make oregano oil?
You can make oregano oil for yourself but the process is a bit lengthy. First, boil water in a saucepan or pot and then place chopped oregano leaves and a carrier oil into a glass jar. Carrier oils include olive, grapeseed or almond oil. When you place the jar into the hot water, the oil inside the jar heats up and releases the natural oil from the oregano leaves. Place the jar beside a sunny window for 2 weeks, shake it every few days, and then strain the resulting mixture.
How to use oregano oil?
You can topically apply oregano oil for skin irritation and in the space near wounds, as it can speed up healing. You can put oregano oil under your eyes and over wrinkles as well. You can also consume oregano oil as an additive, or in straight doses of roughly 500mg, 3-4 times a day, as a digestive aid. But remember, it is extremely potent and concentrated, so there is no need for an excess amount.
What is oregano oil good for?
Oregano oil is very important for human health and is impressively effective for the treatment of parasitic and fungal infections in many parts of the body. It is also an all-around immune system booster and can help improve digestion when consumed. It can help balance hormones and lessen the symptoms of menstruation, aid in weight loss efforts, and even minimize the severity of allergic reactions.
How to take oregano oil?
You can take oregano oil in supplemental form, meaning in a 500mg dose, or you can add small amounts of oregano oil to your food. It comes in capsule, tablet, and liquid form, and can be used topically, provided you dilute it 1:1 with olive oil. Oregano oil is very strong and concentrated, and should not be consumed or applied in large quantities. Capsule and tablet forms are recommended for this very reason.
Where to buy oregano oil?
You can buy oregano oil from any place where essential oils are sold, as well as major stores and big-box chains. It is relatively easy to prepare by yourself, although it takes a few weeks to fully make. Look out for it at natural health practitioners and herbalists, as well as stores like Walmart and GNC.
How to use oregano oil?
You can use oil of oregano in different ways, including topically for irritation on the skin and wound healing, sublingual consumption (dropping the oil beneath the tongue), adding it to certain foods, and even consuming it in a tablet or capsule form. Oregano oil is very useful for different health concerns and each method of using the oil is connected to what ailment you have. Speak to a professional who can recommend the best method!
Blending: The essential oil of oregano blends well with the essential oils of Lavender, Rosemary, Bergamot, Chamomile, Cypress, Cedar Wood, Tea Tree, and Eucalyptus. These combinations are often made and widely used by aromatherapists and herbalists.
Word of Caution: Oregano essential oil can cause irritation to the skin and mucous membranes if taken in high concentration or dosages. Pregnant women should avoid using it and should consult with a doctor before adding it in any significant way to the diet. Due to its ability to stimulate and regulate the hormones, it can potentially result in a miscarriage if the hormone that induces periods is stimulated. Also, like with any new dietary supplement or food, check with your doctor about allergies. People allergic to basil, lavender, marjoram, mint or sage are also commonly allergic to oregano and its essential oil.