Oregano, a herb most often referenced in cooking, has tremendous benefits, particularly for its ability to fight off infections.
Stuffed up? You may find some relief by adding a couple drops of oregano oil to a diffuser and inhaling for a few minutes. You can also add a few drops of the oil to water or juice to reduce pain of a sore throat.
Oregano oil has wide-reaching health benefits, but is most associated with respiratory and immune system health. There is growing research on its ability to prevent and treat infections, such as:
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
- Yeast infections
- Parasitic infections
Adding some oregano oil to your food may alleviate potential for food poisoning. Oregano oil has also shown promise in preventing food-borne illnesses caused by pathogens. An animal study from University of Arizona found that oregano oil can help kill norovirus.
Oregano oil is extremely aromatic and as a result is useful for a number of things, beyond immunity:
- skin conditions like cold sores, muscle aches, nail fungus, joint pain, and dandruff. Try diluting 10-12 drops of the oil in a carrier oil like jojoba or coconut oil. Just don't use oregano oil on broken or sensitive skin, as it can be irritating.
- It's a natural insect repellent: Oil of oregano contains carvacrol — a natural insect repellent. Try putting a few drops of oil on outdoor furniture or mix the oil with your body lotion and apply before going outside.
Oregano oil should be avoided in infants and children, and pregnant or nursing women. It also should be avoided by people with high blood pressure or a heart condition.