What comes to mind when you think of oregano? For me, it used to be pizza. We used to make pizza at home on Thursday nights when I was growing up, and oregano was one of the ingredients we used in our homemade pizza sauce, so the smell and flavor hold happy memories for me.
But, when I started developing unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms a few years back, my research and subsequent experience gave me a new perspective on the merits of oregano... and more specifically, oregano oil.
It is mind boggling how many types of human physiological imbalance can be addressed by high quality oregano oil. I'm excited to share my personal experience along with what research has shown about this truly phenomenal natural medicine.
Oregano oil contains a whopping 50 active compounds (at least) that boost immunity, reduce inflammation, prevent disease, and kill pathogens. These include terpenes (such as pinene, limonene and others) and phenols (or phenolic acids). Three phenols that have shown impressive germ-killing properties are thymol, rosmarinic acid, and carvacrol, with carvacrol being the most abundant in oregano and oregano oil.
Amazingly, over 800 studies have proven oregano oil is ANTIVIRAL, ANTIFUNGAL, ANTIBACTERIAL, ANTI-INFLAMMATORY, ANTIPARASITIC, and it is also a potent ANTIOXIDANT.
In other words, it packs a powerful punch when it comes to foreign invaders that cause distress in the human body!
Let's delve right into the properties of all the wonderful constituent compounds in oregano that make it the superior natural medicine it is.
Oregano Oil and Other Illnesses
One thing that is on most everyone's mind these days is the coronavirus or other "viruses" that have been talked about for decades. So, I'll make that the first topic of discussion:
As reported by Dr. Cass Ingram, "in a Registered Nurse’s trial it has been discovered that wild spice oil therapy offered complete protection against the onset and transmission of SARS Coronavirus-2... The trial, managed by Ingram and M. Villasenor, R.N., involved 50 health care workers on the front lines, working primarily in hospitals but also clinics."3 The "wild spice oil" being referred to here has oregano oil as the primary ingredient.
Another study done back in 2003 by Dr. M. Khalid Ijaz, of Microbiotest, an independent microbiological testing lab in Sterling, VA. found the same results. In Dr. Ijaz's trials, it was found that "oil of oregano, alone and in combination with other essential oils, have unequivocal virucidal and virustatic effects [on what is seemingly coronaviruses] in vitro"13
There is copious evidence of the efficacy of oregano oil on other (both RNA and DNA) flare ups as an illness, including the illnesses that have often been called influenza, norovirus (which causes symptoms that are like those of food poisoning), adenovirus, coxsackievirus, poliovirus, herpetic viruses (including oral and genital herpes, and shingles), and HPV (Human Papilloma Virus, which causes warts). It has even shown some efficacy against HIV illness. In many cases, it was shown to literally SHATTER whatever causes these types of illnesses.
I personally used oregano oil to get rid of a plantar wart I acquired once when I forgot my shower thongs at the gym and took a shower without them. I simply applied oregano oil to the wart every day for about four weeks until it completely disappeared. It never came back.
Oregano Oil and Bacteria
Oregano oil is also a potent antibacterial agent. It destroys numerous strains of staphylococcus (which can cause a whole slew of illnesses, including bone, heart, and vein infections, toxic shock syndrome, as well as bacterial pneumonia and other types of lung infection). It kills pseudomonas aeruginosa (one of the leading causes of urinary tract infection). It obliterates e.coli, campylobacter, listeria, and salmonella (all sources of serious food poisoning), as well as helicobacter pylori, which is the cause of some types of stomach ulcers and gut illness. And these are just a few.
The best part is, oregano oil has this amazing "broad spectrum" antibacterial effect without causing many of the harmful side effects commonly attributed to high use of pharmaceutical antibiotics, including leaky gut syndrome, reduced vitamin absorption, antibiotic-resistance and other health-deteriorating conditions. Oregano oil also does not have the detrimental effect on healthy probiotic gut flora that pharmaceutical antibiotics have.
It kills the bad guys without annihilating the good ones!
Oregano oil has actually proven MORE EFFECTIVE than PHARMACEUTICAL ANTIBIOTICS in some studies, and just as effective in numerous others. One lady who discovered this for herself is Kelly Burris, PhD. After a string of serious illnesses, multiple hospital stays, multiple emergency room visits, and 5 rounds of antibiotics (the last of which was an intravenous pick line), Burris chose to treat the next (round 6) of infection with 75-85% carvacrol-rich oregano oil. The infection was gone for good after ten days of treatment. Oregano oil resolved an issue that 5 rounds of antibiotics failed to resolve.16
That is quite a testament to the HEALING POWER of nature!
Oregano Oil and Fungi
Oregano oil has been shown to eliminate multiple strains of parasitic fungi, including jock itch, athlete's foot, toe and fingernail fungus, candida (yeast infections, thrush, ringworm). It has even been effective against meningitis!2,6
Oregano Oil and Parasites
Oregano oil eradicates both external and internal parasites.
Externally, oregano oil can be used as a topical insect repellent. This is effective for humans as well as animals.8,9
When taken internally, oregano oil has been shown to eradicate enteric (gut) parasites, such as Blastocystis hominis, Entamoeba hartmanni and Endolimax nana with only six weeks of treatment.6
This action, along with the effects of oregano oil on H. Pylori and other unhealthy gut bacteria makes it wonderfully effective on the often debilitating symptoms of some stomach and gut issues like ulcers, IBS, IBD, and Crohn's Disease.
Oregano Oil and Gut Health
Incidentally,I discovered the powerful action of this super-healing oil when I started having terrible IBS-like symptoms about 8 years ago. After spending a few years paying close attention to my diet in order to alleviate candida overgrowth, I ended up in the hospital twice within two years (for an unrelated issue). I was given multiple rounds of heavy-duty, intravenous antibiotics during these visits, which wrought havoc on my gut flora, seemingly undoing all the healing I had worked so hard to achieve. I knew without a doubt why these issues developed! Anyway, as I always do when I have a health issue, I started doing research.
That's when I discovered Jini Patel, and oregano oil. Patel is one of the most ardent supporters of the healing oil because she healed herself from a lifetime of serious health issues relating to intestinal distress caused by IBS and Crohn's disease. SHE COMPLETELY HEALED HER SYMPTOMS with oregano oil after exhausting all the protocols offered to her by conventional medicine. She has written a phenomenal book about her journey and findings titled Listen To Your Gut. She also has several downloadable guides to using oregano oil for various ailments (including mouth ulcers, bed sores, and tooth/gum infection) on her website by the same name (listentoyourgut.com).7
After taking Patel's advice, I took oregano oil religiously every day for six weeks and eliminated all the symptoms I was experiencing! After that, I was sold. I have only become more impressed by its healing properties since then. It's something I start taking immediately if I feel a cold or flu bug coming on.
Anti-Oxidative Properties of Oregano Oil
The phenolic acids present in oregano are some of the most powerful antioxidants around! It also contains other potent anti-oxidant agents such as vitamins A, C, and E, as well as carotenes, lutein, zeaxanthin and cryptoxanthin.
Oregano oil has been rated as one of the plant sources with the HIGHEST ANTIOXIDANT ACTION.
Why is this important? Well, while oxygen is a necessary molecule for human biological function, the reactions it is involved in create FREE RADICALS. These undesirable molecules play a key role in the widespread cellular degeneration throughout the body that causes aging, i.e., in skin, eyes, and joints, etc. Free radicals are also produced by (and exacerbate) disease processes. Oregano oil protects healthy cells from being ravaged by these destroyers.
Oregano Oil and Inflammation
Because of all the properties discussed already, oregano oil is highly effective at preventing and eliminating inflammation.That's because, by its healing action on so many different pathogens, it clears out metabolic and toxic "gunk." This strengthens the immune system and helps the body function at a more optimal level. That means it can vastly improve the symptoms of auto-immune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, anemia, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, lupus, celiac disease and alopecia areata (hair loss), to name a few. And, of course, in some cases the symptoms can be completely reversed.
This is a good place to note yet another issue oregano oil helps control in the body. It's high cholesterol, which is essentially inflammation that builds up on the interior walls of the blood vessels.14
Oregano Oil and Cancer
Since cancer can arise from having an over burdened immune system, oregano oil acts as a cancer preventative by managing many of the contributing factors (such as oxidative stress/free radical damage, inflammation, bacterial and viral infection, etc.)
Additionally, oregano oil has been shown to inhibit or kill multiple types of cancer cells, including breast, lung, colon, liver, cervical, ovarian, pancreatic, bladder, oral, skin and brain cancers. It also acts to significantly and effectively manage the side effects that go hand-in-hand with cancer and conventional cancer treatments.1,5,10,12
Is There Any Reason Not to Take Oregano Oil?
With all the evidence we've seen around the super-healing properties of oregano oil, it would seem the answer to this question would be no. However, there are some instances where caution should be used when taking oregano oil.
It is not recommended to take oregano oil while pregnant or nursing. It is also not recommended for children. Oregano oil has a bit of blood-thinning activity, so it should be noted by those with bleeding disorders and those on blood thinners. Also, diabetics need to be aware that oregano oil can affect blood sugar levels. So, while it can still be used, it is advisable to monitor and titrate your dosage based on your experience.
In addition, if you do decide to take advantage of the healing powers of this amazing herbal oil, your best results will be achieved when purchasing high quality, preferably wild-crafted oregano oil. Some of the most potent varieties of oregano come from the Mediterranean.
I hope you have found this information helpful, and that you will consider adding oregano oil to your arsenal of powerful natural medicines, especially at this time in our history! Links to references, studies, and further reading are provided below.
Further Reading Links:Oregano oil and urinary tract infections Oregano oil and pseudomonas study (one cause of UTI)