Oregano comes from Kingdom Plantae and Lamiaceae family and the word Oregano means mountain of joy. The scientific name of this plant is origanum vulgare. It is a perennial plant which means that this plant lives for more than two years. It grows up to 80 cm tall. It is well known for its medicinal and culinary use that were already been practiced for a thousand years.
Health Benefits of Oregano
There are many health benefits that we can get when we consume Oregano. Below are some of the lists of benefits that we can get from it.
- It helps relieve diarrhea
- It helps relieve vomiting
- It helps relieve jaundice
- It helps relieve muscle pain
- It helps lower cholesterol
- It helps lower the risk of cancer because of its antioxidant properties
- It helps treat sore throat
- It helps improve memory
- It can help boost the immune system
- It helps protect the heart
- It can be used as an insect repellant
- It helps treat allergies
- It helps lessens fatigue
- It helps treat acne
- It helps treat dandruff
- It helps treat cold and flu
- It helps treat skin condition
- It helps treat urinary tract infection and other urinary tract disorders
- It helps treat heart condition.
- It helps in treating toothache.
Nutrients Found in Oregano
|Nutrient||Unit||Value per 100g|
|Total lipid (fat)||g||4.28|
|Carbohydrate, by difference||g||68.92|
|Fiber, total dietary||g||42.5|
|Vitamin C, total ascorbic||mg||2.3|
|Fatty acids, total saturated||g||1.551|
|Fatty acids, total monounsaturated||g||0.716|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated||g||1.369|
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Other nutrients found in Oregano are Folate, Vitamin B-12, Vitamin A, Vitamin D and Vitamin K. Oregano is also rich in anti-oxidants that helps protect the effects of free radicals and omega 3 fatty acids that is an essential nutrient for our health.
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Medicinal Uses of Oregano
Downside of Taking Oregano
Like any other herb, Oregano has side effects, below are some of it.
- It can cause allergic reactions to some individuals.
- It can upset stomach to some individuals.
- Pregnant women are not advised to take Oregano because it can stimulate blood flow in the uterus. You must consult your physician first.
Uses of Oregano
The fresh and dried form of Oregano can be used in many ways
- It can be used in alcoholic beverages.
- It can be used in meat and meat products.
- It can be used as condiments.
- It can be used as preservative.
- It can be used in snack foods and milk product.
- It can also be used as a one of the components in fragrance for soaps and perfumes.
- It can be used for tomato sauces, fried, roasted, grilled vegetables, meat and fish.
- It can be used to add flavor and as an ingredient to many dishes. The dish most associated with Oregano is pizza.
Oregano is not hard to cultivate. You can plant it in your own backyard. Oregano needs moderate water because they do not like particularly moist oil and grows 20 inches taller. It prefers a hot and dry climate. You can plant the seeds or the stem. Oregano stems or plants are easier to grow but the seeds are cheaper when you buy it. It grows in well-drained soil where plants receive full sun. Make sure to keep your garden free of any weeds and bugs. You can harvest the Oregano when it is about 6 inches tall. If you are just planting it in your own backyard try not to put pesticides, it is better to keep it organic. We have grown Oregano in our backyard and happy to say that we do not put any pesticides on it and it grows beautifully. See the picture I used above? It is our own Oregano plant.
We plant Oregano in our garden together with eggplant and one other plant and I can say that Oregano makes a good companion for any vegetable or plants in the garden. From our own experience this plant is really easy to cultivate. We use the stem to plant this herb and it grows beautifully. Do not be afraid to transfer this herb if the need arises because transferring this plant from one place to another is not difficult and this is also based from experience. You don’t have to water it everyday so you do not have to worry if you miss it. If you want to harvest the leaves, you may do so. Trimming not only produces new branches and new leaves but also maintains the freshness of it.
I think Oregano is one of the herbs that we should have in our garden because of the many health benefits and uses of it in our daily cuisine that I have already elaborated in this article. It can be consumed as dried, paste, oil and fresh. The dried oregano that can be bought in the supermarket is the most popular one. So if you do not have this in your backyard and want to have this kind of herb, you can just buy it on the supermarket. Spice up your dish by putting some oregano and you will not only benefit your body but also it will add spice on your cuisine.
This herb does not serve as a medicine but as a supplement. Before taking any medicine always consult your physician.