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Spices Health Facts: Oregano

Oregano is a culinary herb and spice that is very common in many households. It has flavorful, aromatic leaves that become more flavorful when dried which can be used to season many types of dishes. Common culinary uses of oregano include seasoning for pasta, pizza sauce and other Italian dishes, egg dishes, vegetable dishes, salad dressings, and many more. Oregano leaves can be used either fresh or dried.

For many years now, oregano has been recognized as a functional food because of its many health benefits. It is rich in carvacol and thymol which are antibacterial agents that can fight off infections. Dried oregano is also among the herbs with the highest content of antioxidant properties.

Health Benefits of Oregano

  • Aging – Anti oxidants are not only helpful in preventing many types of cancers but can also fight free radicals in the body and slows down the aging process
  • Amoeba – The antibacterial properties present in Oregano are found to be effective in fighting against amoeba, according to a study conducted in Mexico
  • Anemia – The rich iron content of oregano makes it beneficial in preventing anemia
  • Cancer – Oregano is rich in antioxidant properties. Some studies even suggest that it has more antioxidant properties than apples. Antioxidants are very important in the prevention of many types of cancer
  • Cold – The antiviral properties of oregano make it an excellent cure for colds and flu
  • Digestive problems – Oregano has a high content of thymol and carvacrol which can aid in the digestion and upset stomach. If you are suffering from indigestion, simply mix 3 drops of oregano oil in a glass of milk or water and drink
  • Food-borne diseases – According to the Journal of Food Science which is a publication of the Institute of Food Technologist, the antioxidant properties in oregano act as a barrier against salmonella, listeria and E. coli. Presence of these bacteria in food can cause food-borne diseases
  • Gum problems – When applied topically on your gums, oregano oil can help prevent or alleviate gum problems such as inflamed or sore gums
  • High blood cholesterol level – Oregano is rich in dietary fiber which can help in controlling blood cholesterol level
  • High blood pressure – Regular consumption of oregano in the diet can aid people suffering from high blood pressure because of its high potassium content
  • Immunity – Oregano is rich in vitamins, minerals, and antibacterial and antiviral properties that can help strengthen the immune system
  • Muscle problem – If you have problems in joint and muscle flexibility, regular consumption of oregano can aid your condition because of its high calcium content. Oregano can also relieve muscle cramps and spasms, arthritic swellings and symptoms of rheumatism
  • Sinusitis – Oregano is also a good cure for sinusitis and even lung congestion. To get relief from these conditions, mix 3 drops of oregano oil in your milk or water and drink this at least once a day in 5 days
  • Skin Infections – It has been known that oregano has strong antibacterial and antiviral properties. These properties can help heal or prevent skin infections. You can extract oil from oregano leaves or buy ready-made oregano oil and apply it topically if you have any skin infection such as rashes, eczema, and itchy skin

Oregano has a lot to offer when it comes to keeping us healthy and free from sickness and diseases. And it is not a very expensive spice. There is no reason for us now not to include oregano in our daily diet.

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