Most essential oils are known for their usefulness in benefitting human health across several fronts, with some of the more versatile oils able to cover a whole lot of ground. Take, for instance, oil of oregano – which many people do. Oregano oil has established a reputation as not only an antioxidant, antibiotic and antibacterial, but also an antifungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory. It's no wonder many health-conscious folks won't leave a health-food store or the nutritional supplement aisle without oregano oil. Oregano oil's reputation for its disinfectant and antibacterial characteristics dates to ancient Greece, where it would often be utilized to treat bacterial infections on the surface of the skin or in wounds, as well as a compound to protect food from bacteria, per organicfacts.net. The oil is extracted from oregano leaves that grow on wild oregano plants known scientifically as Origanum vulgare, a plant found at higher altitudes, such as in the mountains of the Mediterranean regions.
Oregano: A Guard Against Harmful OrganismsA significant amount of research on oregano oil's effectiveness as a health remedy, to include evaluations done by pharmaceutical companies, has found that the oil has produced positive effects when it comes to guarding our health – and food – from harmful organisms. Because oregano oil is one of the most potent natural remedies in the world (never to be consumed in raw, undiluted form), per globalhealingcenter.com, users making their own oil – steam distillation is a common process – are cautioned to dilute the oil when making it; several websites offer preparation instructions. Oregano oil has an abundance of phenols, which are natural phytochemical substances that provide antioxidant benefits. Those phenols include thymol, a fungicide that can help bolster our immune systems, protect us from toxins and assist in preventing tissue damage. There's also carvacrol, which has been found to be an effective fighter against bacterial infections such as staphylococcus, salmonella, aspergillus mold and listeria. The oil's other compounds beneficial to our health include terpenes, rosmarinic acid, naringin and beta-caryophyllin, per articles.mercola.com.
10 Health-Related Uses for Oregano OilAmong oregano oil's many health benefits are the following:
- Allergies. Chalk this area of relief up to the rosmarinic acid found in oregano oil. It has been found to operate as a natural antihistamine to help cut down the buildup of fluid and swelling linked to allergy attacks, per articles.mercola.com.
- Anti-aging. As a potent antioxidant adept at neutralizing free radicals that can speed up the aging process (premature wrinkles, vision impairment, etc.), oregano oil can not only tap the brakes against the aging process, it has the potential to heal some of the damage already done.
- Bacterial infections. Can be used to help treat such infections as E.coli, giardiasis and food poisoning.
- Cold symptoms. We all know there is no cure for the common cold, and oregano oil is no exception to that reality, but it can help with our breathing, help control a cough and provide relief to a sore throat.
- Digestion issues. What's going on in our gut is central to our health, and oregano oil is recognized for its ability to help in cleaning out our digestive tract, per globalhealingcenter.com. It's also handy for promoting the flow of bile into the digestive organs.
- Insect repellent/bug bites. Oregano oil applied to the skin in a diluted mixture can help ward off insects, and then when mixed with olive oil it can help relieve the aggravation of bites and rashes that occur when bugs manage to get through to our skin.
- Joint relief. A 50-50 mix of oregano oil and olive oil can work wonders for joint pain, sports injuries, sore muscles, etc. when applied topically. It can provide deep relief – at least it feels as such.
- Menstruation. Oregano oil has proven itself as a worthy aid when it comes to relieving the discomfort of periods and the unpleasant effects from menopause.
- Mood enhancer. Studies have shown that some of oregano oil's ingredients – namely carvacrol, thymol and terpinene – can have a positive effect on the nervous system and the mind, helping to produce a healthy mood, lessen stress, and tamp down emotional problems.
- Weight loss. Tests with mice have shown that infusions of carvacrol can not only promote weight loss, but also reduce blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides.