Regarded as a symbol of happiness by the ancient Romans and Greeks, oregano is an amazing and versatile herb. It has numerous uses in and out of the kitchen. It’s name means ‘mountain of joy’ and rightly so, considering its immense nutritional and medicinal value.

If you suffer from upper respiratory infections, you’ll be glad to know this unassuming herb can help. It contains antiviral properties. Use a diffuser to spray a mixture of aromatic oils (oregano included) around your house. You should experience relief within a short while.

Ingesting oregano encourages the body to get rid of phlegm from the lungs. So next time you come down with the flu, reach for this herb.

Oregano contains rosmarinic acid, an antioxidant that improves immune system health. That’s not all, the herb contains 42 times more antioxidants than apples. It’s not only an apple a day that can keep doctors away!

This herb is also good at fighting inflammation since it’s rich in beta-caryophyllin. It’s beneficial in mitigating conditions such as arteriosclerosis (hardening of arteries) and osteoporosis.

Fungi and bacteria stand no chance against the herb. It contains two antimicrobials: carvacol and thymol. Certain species of Candida fungi are decimated by oregano.

When it comes to cooking, the rich, aromatic flavour goes well with many foods: eggs, vegetables, salad dressings and much more. When added to meat before cooking, it reduces harmful compounds that are created during cooking. The best part is, growing the herb is easy. Being a perennial, it assures you of fresh supply for years on end.

You can use the leaves while fresh or dry them for later use. To preserve the latter, store in an airtight container in a cool place, away from direct sunlight. It’s also available as a powder. There are two varieties: Mexican and Mediterranean oregano. The former has a stronger flavour.



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