Oregano is a culinary and medicinal herb. It adds flavor to cooked and baked goods and a great addition to soups.
Health Benefits of Oregano
Health benefits of oregano include:
1. Boosts Immunity
A study conducted by Dr. Giovanna Cervato and his team of researchers from the University of Milan, Italy, concluded that the two most important components of oregano are rosmarinic acid and thymol, both of which are powerful antioxidant compounds that have been closely linked to reducing oxidative stress in the body.
Free radicals are the destructive by-products of cellular metabolism that may cause cancer and other chronic diseases. Thus, adding oregano to your diet by sprinkling it on your meals can improve your immune health and keep your body safe from some of the most dangerous and silent killers.
2. Anti-cancer Potential
According to a study by Kim C et al,. Î²-caryophyllene oxide, a sesquiterpene, present in the essential oils of certain medicinal including oregano, may have an anti-cancer effect. Experiments suggested that this component of oregano inhibited cancer cell growth (Molecular Carcinogenesis 2014).
3. Antibacterial Activity
On a more basic immune system note, oregano also has clear antibacterial properties, which is again due to the presence of thymol and carvacrol, stated a report published by a team of researchers from Department of Food Science, University of Massachusetts, USA, in the Process Biochemistry Journal.
These important organic compounds can defend the body against a wide range of bacteria that can affect the skin, the gut, and other parts of the body. Oregano is also a slightly stimulating agent, which can increase the production of white blood cells and speed up the metabolism, resulting in the faster recovery of common illnesses.
4. Aids in Digestion
Oregano is packed with fiber, so despite its small size, it can have a major impact on your digestive system. Fiber is an essential element of a healthy digestive system, as it can increase the bulk of your stool and stimulate peristaltic motion, which moves food through the digestive tract and excretes it efficiently. Also, fiber helps maintain the health of the gut and increases nutrient uptake, so the food you eat does more for you!
5. Improves Heart Health
A study published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition states that oregano is a natural form of omega-3 fatty acids, the beneficial type of cholesterol that improves your heart health. Furthermore, omega-3 fatty acids help rebalance your cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation in the cardiovascular system, thereby helping to prevent atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes!"