Native to the Mediterranean and Eurasia and growing in rocky, mountainous areas, there are several types of oregano, not just the ones you can buy in the shops. In fact there are 44 species of oregano! You probably know it though for its role in Greek and Italian foods and many love it for its strong flavour. Its uses do not stop there however as it has a whole host of great qualities just waiting for you to discover. So sit back, relax and read on for these Top 5 Health Benefits of Oregano!
1. Antibacterial and antifungal
The presence of antioxidants including both thymol and carvacrol show oregano has profound antibacterial properties. These compounds can help defend against a wide selection of bacteria that can affect your entire body. Oregano can also help to encourage your production of more white blood cells which help to fight infection.
It contains Beta-carophyllin (E- BCP), and has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. Health issues including diabetes and arthritis can be fought with oregano as when researchers gave mice E-BCP, 7 out of 10 recovered from inflamed paws.
Oregano is host to a whole range of powerful antioxidants, for example: thymol and rosmaric acid. All antioxidants help to support your immune system and to give you an idea of just how powerful it is as a source, it contains 42 times more antioxidants than apples!
4. Mineral source
This wonderful herb has a lot to offer in regard to its mineral content. As a source of calcium, iron and manganese, some of the key nutrients needed for strong bones, oregano can help to prevent osteoporosis in later life. Also containing potassium, oregano works to help control your heart rate and blood pressure.
5. Source of Omega-3
Omega-3 fatty acids which may help to lower some chronic diseases such as, heart disease and arthritis are in good supply in this herb. Especially useful if you are vegan or just don’t like fish, it can help to bolster your omega-3 intake with 2732 mg of it per 200 calorie serving. This makes it one of the most powerful herbs and spices as a potent source of omega-3.
Looking for an easy way to include oregano in your diet? How about some super simple Pan-fried chicken with lemon and oregano. If you want to include it in your diet in a different way, try oregano tea as shown in the video above to take advantage of all the health benefits on offer. What do you most like about oregano, how do you use it? Tell us in the comments below, join in the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. (Feel free to check out our other Top 5’s!)