Ancient Greeks & Romans had a profound appreciation for oregano, using it for various medicinal uses. It’s antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, which makes it helpful in preventing and treating all kinds of infections.
There are over 40 oregano species, but the most therapeutically beneficial is the oil produced from wild oregano native to Mediterranean regions. Beware when purchasing oregano supplements – most of them aren’t made from this variety and therefore have much less medicinal value.
Oregano oil is high in phenols, which are natural phytochemical compounds with beneficial antioxidant effects. Carvacrol, one of the main phenols in Oregano, has been shown to be effective against nasty bugs like Candida, Staphylococcus, E. coli, Campylobacter, Salmonella, Klebsiella (one UTI culprit), Aspergillus (mold), Giardia, Pseudomonas, H. Pylori and Listeria. Nutrients like vitamins A, C, and E, calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium, manganese, copper, boron, and niacin are also found in oregano oil. It’s awesome for sinus infections and treating gut health (SIBO).
Oregano oil can be taken orally in capsules, as a liquid, and as a dry herb. It’s best taken with food. Additionally, it can be used directly on the skin for fungal rashes and warts (but needs to be diluted), as a mouthwash for oral infections, and in a steam inhalation to help clear the sinuses.
That being said, Oregano Oil, like all herbs, isn’t necessarily for everyone – some people may experience stomach upset when ingesting oregano oil (or even the herb itself). Those who are allergic to plants from the Lamiaceae plant family (mint, lavender, sage, and basil are also in the group) should avoid this oil, as they may also develop an allergic reaction.