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Oregano Oil

Origanum vulgare

Oregano Essential Oil

Oregano oil is higher in antioxidants than most fruits and vegetables and is packed full of powerful compounds called phenols.

Oregano oil can be taken orally, diffused in steam and inhaled, or diluted and applied to the skin for the treatment of acne, athlete's foot, canker sores, psoriasis, rosacea, varicose veins, and warts.

Oregano has been popular ever since the Greeks and Romans used it for medicinal purposes in ancient times. The name oregano comes from the Greek words "oros," meaning mountain, and "ganos," meaning joy or delight.

Studies have shown that oregano is highly antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antiviral. Oregano oil may be effective against bacterial and fungal infections, inflammation and pain, among other conditions.



Carvacrol and thymol, found in oregano, are two compounds in oregano that have been associated with antiviral properties. In one test-tube study, carvacrol inactivated norovirus, a viral infection that causes diarrhea, nausea and stomach pain, within one hour of treatment. [1]

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Boost Immune System

Oregano oil may stimulate the production and function of white blood cells, the body’s main line of defense.

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Weight Loss

Oregano oil may be beneficial for weight loss through the action of carvacrol. Researchers have found that carvacrol, the main compound in oregano oil, disrupts part of the process that leads to the creation and accumulation of fat tissue. [2] Carvacrol appeared to reverse the chain of events that can lead to the formation of fat cells. [3]

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Insect Repellant

Both carvacrol and thymol may be effective insect-repellents. In 2017, researchers found that these compounds repelled some ticks and mosquitos. [4]

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Anticancer Potential

In studies on cancer cells in test tubes, carvacrol, one of the compounds of oregano oil, has been found to inhibit cell growth and cause cancer cell death with lung, [5]liver [6]and breast [7]cancer cells. Oregano oil contains phenols, a powerful form of antioxidant that eliminates free radicals that cause diseases and scours the body.

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Promote Digestion

According to a study published in 2010, oregano essential oil can promote digestion by increasing the secretion of digestive juices. [8] It also increases the nutrient digestibility and enzymes which aid in absorbing food. This can improve your health by maximizing the nutrients you receive from food.

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Rich in Antioxidants

Oregano oil contains compounds called phenols, terpenes and terpenoids, which have powerful antioxidant properties, compounds that help fight damage from harmful free radicals in the body. It is thought that free radical damage plays a role in aging and the development of some diseases, such as cancer and heart disease. Oregano essential oil is especially high in carvacrol and thymol, two antioxidants that can help prevent damage to cells caused by free radicals. [9]

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Oregano contains flavonoids and phenolic acids that help to alleviate inflammation-related diseases. When applied topically, oregano oil can reduce redness and irritation onto the applied area and may also relieve joint pain associated with arthritis or injury. [10] Thymol, a compound found in oregano oil, has been shown to reduce inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract associated with conditions such as colitis, and may be effective in reducing other inflammatory conditions in the gut, such as leaky gut syndrome and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). [11]

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Oregano has many antimicrobial properties including antibacterial and anti-parasitic.

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Improve Gut Health

Oregano oil may benefit gut health by killing gut parasites and protecting against a leaky gut.

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Increase Energy Levels

Thanks to B-vitamins and its unique organic components present in oregano, it may help boost metabolism, making the body feel rejuvenated and energized.

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Oregano oil is one of the most powerful antibacterial essential oils because it contains carvacrol and thymol, two antibacterial and antifungal compounds. One study found that oregano was effective against 23 species of bacteria. [12] Research shows oregano oil is effective against many clinical strains of bacteria, including Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. [13]

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Lower Cholesterol

Carvacrol, the main compound in oregano oil, has also been shown to help lower cholesterol.

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Improve Heart Health

Oregano is a natural form of omega-3 fatty acids, the beneficial type of cholesterol that helps rebalance your cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation in the cardiovascular system.

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Digestion Aid

One of the active compounds in oregano oil, called carvacrol, has antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties – and is effective for killing yeast and other types of harmful bacteria in the GI tract. [14]

Several of the active compounds found in Origanum vulgare can help to aid digestion by relaxing the muscles of the GI tract and also helping to balance the ratio of good-to-bad bacteria in the gut.

Oregano oil may also help improve symptoms of sluggish digestion, such as bloating, by stimulating the release of bile and other digestive fluids. [15]

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Treat Parasites

Oregano essential oil, when ingested, can eliminate intestinal worms, and when applied externally, it effectively keeps away lice, bed bugs, mosquitoes, and fleas. Oregano essential oil is often a component of organic bug sprays and repellents.

One study found after taking supplements of 600 milligrams or oregano for six weeks, adults whose stools tested positive for enteric parasites, gastrointestinal symptoms improved in seven of the 11 patients who had tested positive for Blastocystis hominis, which tends to cause symptoms like nausea, gas, bloating and abdominal pain. [16]

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Remove Warts

Oregano oil has shown to be a natural remedy for wart removal when applied topically to the skin or ingested. [17]

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Legend has it, the Greek goddess Aphrodite created aromatic oregano as a symbol of joy and grew it in her garden on Mount Olympus. Oregano was believed to bring happiness and it was believed to be able to cure almost anything.

In addition to oregano’s association with Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty, the herb is linked to the goddess Artemis, protector of childbirth. Artemis often was depicted wearing a crown of dittany of Crete (Origanum dictamnus) and ancient Greek women also wore the wreaths during labor.

How to use Oregano Oil

Oregano oil is available as a liquid or in capsule form. Oregano oil can be used topically, diffused or taken internally (only if it’s 100 percent therapeutic grade oil). Before using oregano essential oil on your skin always mix it with a carrier oil.


Make sure to first test your reaction to any essential oil by applying a small amount to a patch of skin to check for allergies.

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