Oil of Oregano: The Best Defense Against Colds
What is Oil of Oregano
Oil of Oregano (Origanum Vulgare), not to be confused with the cooking spice oregano (Origanum Marjoram), is a herb derived oil that contains phytochemicals, plant chemicals that protect us from disease. These chemicals promote a healthy immune response. Specifically, oil of oregano has two key components, Carvacrol and Thymol, that help fight off harmful microorganisms. It is also a natural antioxidant.
Carvacrol, inhibits the growth of several different types of bacteria. When purchasing oil of oregano you should look to purchase a brand that contains at least 70% Carvacrol.
In addition to strengthening the immune system, oil of oregano can be used to strengthen the respiratory and digestive systems.
The oil is known to block the absorption of iron so it not recommended to take if you have an iron deficiency, are pregnant/nursing or plan to take it for more than two weeks at a time.
Oil of oregano supplements usually come in two forms:
2) liquid as an extract (not to be confused with oregano oil used for aromatherapy, which is not edible)
Note: The liquid extract can be diluted in water (using a 1:3 ratio) and ingested orally or diluted in oil like olive oil or coconut oil and applied directly on the skin. It is not recommended to apply oil of oregano directly to the skin, since it is a skin irritant.
Using Oil of Oregano
First, I have to admit that oil of oregano is my favorite supplement to take for one main reason, it works really well and really fast. Oil of oregano supplements comes in two forms, capsule and liquid, and I have only taken the capsule.
According to those who have taken the liquid, it has a very strong and unpleasant taste and should be diluted in water to tone down the spicy flavor. Most people recommend a 1:3 ratio or oil of oregano to water for dilution; however, to avoid experiencing any unpleasant taste, I only use the capsules.
Although oil of oregano can be used to treat a number of conditions, I have only taken it to ward off colds and flu-like symptoms. I have a toddler who carries countless germs and inevitable he ends up eating off my plate and poking me in the eyes and mouth with his fingers, so periodically I feel like I am coming down with a cold. So, the first sign of a sore throat (usually how a cold starts for me) I take one capsule of oil of oregano in the morning and one in the evening. Usually after the second capsule I am symptom free. It has worked for me countless times and I am never without a bottle of the supplement.
The brand that I use is Gaia. I have friends who have tried other brands that have worked, but this is the first brand that I tried, it works, and so I’m sticking with it.
If I use oil of oregano for other reasons in the future, I will keep you updated.