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Oregano
Oregano
Oregano 78% Carvacrol
Origanum vulgare

Plant Origin: Turkey
Method: Steam distilled from leaves
Cultivation: grown organically but not certified
Chemical Family: Phenol
Aroma: Strong, herbaceous, camphoraceous, dry-woody
Note (Evaporation Rate): Middle
Key Constituents from GC/MS Analysis: Lot OGO-103
carvacrol 78.10%
para-cymene 13.58%
beta caryophyllene 2.29%
thymol 1.81%
gamma-terpinene 0.63%
linalool 0.42%
Children? Use caution applying topically on children under 2 years of age due to possible skin irritation issues.
Pregnancy/Breastfeeding? Not suitable.
Medication Incompatibility? All Routes: Antibiotics, Antidepressants/CYP2B6 substrates); Oral: Diabetes, Ephedrine 
Therapeutic Uses
Oregano essential oil may support, aid, ease, soothe, reduce, calm, relax, promote and/or maintain healthy function of the following:
Congestion
Digestion, E Coli, giardiasis, food poisoning
Immune
Infection, viral, bacterial, fungal 
Inflammation
Joint aches and pain
Muscle pain
Pain
Parasites
Respiratory infection
Tuberculosis
Virus

Articles/Research

"A published article in Phytotherapy Research stated that oil of oregano is as effective as morphine when used as a pain killer."

Kurt Schnaubelt, Ph.D wrote in The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils that Oregano can be taken for acute tonsilitis. Schnaubelt warns the user to be careful, "this oil burns and needs to be absorbed on a charcoal pill or something similar that will release it slowly." In Medical Aromatherapy, Schnaubelt writes that the preferred mode of use is "internally, ideally diluted in vegetable oil and in capsules."

Alternative to Conventional Anticoccidial Additives in Broiler Feeds

Application Suggestions (See Essential Oil Usage for more information and a dilution chart.)
Topical: *Dilute with a carrier oilunscented lotion or unscented cream and apply on area of concern or as desired. Consider using a roll-on applicator for ease of application of prediluted oil. To avoid skin irritation, the maximum dermal use level is 1%, which is 1 drop in 3 mLs carrier.
Cautions Dermal: Hypersensitive, diseased or damaged skin, children under two years of age. Oregano can cause irritation of skin and mucus membranes if not appropritely diluted. According to Tisserand/Young, maximum dermal use level is 1.1% (Tisserand page 376).
*Test on the skin in a small area to be sure it is not irritating. If it is, then dilute it more.

Inhalation: Diffuse - Oregano is not well-suited to being diffused unless diluted with other suitable essential oils. Due to a high percentage of phenols it is aggressive to mucus membranes and should be avoided unless blended in low percentage with essential oils from other chemical families. 

Internal: Oregano is suitable for internal use within safe parameters if such use is deemed appropriate. Due to the potential skin irritating properties of Oregano, the preferred mode of use is internally, ideally taken by capsule diluted with a suitable carrier oil (Dr. Kurt Schnaubelt). We feel that internal use is rarely *needed* and should only be used with respect for how concentrated the oils are. HEO does not advocate internal use of essential oils without appropriate knowledge and understanding of how to administer, for what purpose, how much, which essential oils, safety concerns and so on. In our experience, essential oils are generally more effective used topically with proper dilution or inhaled. Kurt Schnaubelt Ph.D. notes that "French aromatherapy literature contains many references to using oils orally." He goes on to note that "generally 1 drop is always enough when ingesting essential oils." A potential toxicity hazard could occur when untrained people use essential oils orally and ingest too much. Keep in mind that while medical doctors or health care practitioners may prescribe essential oils for internal use, they are trained and experienced in the safe application of essential oils. It is not a matter of using "French" or "British" methods, it's a matter of experience and appropriate application.
Oral Caution: Diabetic medication, anticoagulant medication, major surgery, peptic ulcer, hemophilia and other bleeding disorders (Tisserand/Young page 376).
Click here for more information about internal usage.
 

Testimonies
The following anecdotal testimonies have not been reviewed by the FDA.
The products mentioned are not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat or cure disease.
Information shared on the HEO website is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice given by your trusted health care provider.
We believe that essential oils are provided by the Lord to support our health and well-being.
The Lord is our wisdom, protector and healer.
(Genesis 1:29-30, Ezekiel 47:12) 

1. Oregano (undiluted) got rid of the mole I was troubled with. I applied it with a toothpick dipped into the oil, and it still irritated the surrounding skin, but I was able to help that by applying lanolin around the mole first to protect the skin right next to the mole. The mole went through stages: changed colors from dark to light, wept blood or pus, even smelled pungent at one point. The spot has totally healed now (3 months later) without a trace of the mole!

2. I used a toothpick to apply Oregano (undiluted) on a *bad* looking mole (or wart - not sure what it was). I treated it morning and night, and in about 3 days, I could see tiny black spots. Over time, the mole got scruffier and raised up more. The black spots gradually flaked off, but more appeared, and I've heard that with warts, there is a mother wart that feeds the others, so the idea is to kill the virus in the mother wart so all of the warts will go away. These black spots grew like hair on a man's beard, and when I tried to pluck them out, they would bleed, so I left them alone and they eventually rubbed off when they were ready to. More black spots kept appearing, they grew and then rub off, and all the while the mole was shrinking. This cycled over and over again - over 10 times until finally, the mole was hardly noticeable and I basically forgot about treating it. Oregano is the main oil I used, but sometimes I used Frankincense and sometimes Lavender.

3. My  husband has battled ringworm off and on since he was a child. Within 3 days of taking Oregano oil diluted with olive oil in a capsule, he is virtually clear of ringworm. I just want to cry typing this! - Lynsey

4. Last night I had a sore throat (part of a cold) that kept me from sleeping. I put 3 drops of diluted Oregano under my tongue, held it there as long as possible, and as I was swallowing it slowly (because it is very hot). I made sure the oil covered all the sore spots in my throat. Almost immediately my sore throat was gone and it has not come back at all. - Marilyn

[Caution: Oregano can cause irritation of skin and mucus membranes if not appropritely diluted. According to Tisserand/Young, maximum dermal use level is 1.1% (Tisserand page 376).]

5. We live in Missouri and have used a lot of essential oils on our horses with incredible success. We put a couple drops of Oregano on their daily feed a few times a month for parasite control, and it works great. They all love Oregano, and it's so much better than the chemical wormers in so many ways. - Sharon

6. My 2 sons came down with a horrid croupy mucous-y cold/virus which included fever, chills and no appetite. I broke out my new Oregano and Respiratory Relief oils. What a difference overnight! My youngest son normally goes into asthma with the slightest sign of running nose. Today (2 days later) he is running around and eating well and no sign of asthma! My husband came home feeling ill today and asked me for some of my "miracle oils." Applied Oregano and Lavender oils for him, and he quickly went to sleep. I am impressed with these oils already!!! — feeling thankful. - Nancy
[Caution: Oregano can cause irritation of skin and mucus membranes if not appropritely diluted. According to Tisserand/Young, maximum dermal use level is 1.1% (Tisserand page 376).]

7. Oregano works well with itchy rash that is produced by polycythemia vera. With this disease the problem is excess red blood cells that cause " thick blood," and Oregano is a natural blood thinner and pain killer. Because itching and pain are relayed to the brain on the same circuits, it will kill the itch. A hot oil causes the blood next to the skin to withdraw, keeping it away from the surface, thus preventing the itch. For an eczema rash, I dilute 6 drops into a 30ml bottle with carrier oil (I like to use Jojoba). With polycethemia vera, I up the drops since the skin is healthy. - Charity
 
8. My grandfather had Lewy Body Dementia, and one time when he was in the hospital he got a "skin infection." It was nasty and migrated around his body (probably internally as well as externally), and we were pretty sure that it was MRSA. So my parents put a homemade oregano oil I had made in a crockpot full of coconut and olive oil over as much fresh Greek Oregano as I could cram in it. That oil stopped that infection in its tracks every time it popped up. Now I have Warrior on hand and it has helped with an infection our dog had after being spayed, as well as a bad scrape on my husband's knee that was showing signs of infection. It is now healing well. My husband particularly likes the Warrior blend, though he says it makes him hungry because it smells so good!: -)
 
9. We add 4-5 drops of Oregano to a 5 gallon chicken waterer, and it helps with sickness or just for their well being. - Maria
Safety
Dermal Caution: Oregano can cause irritation of skin and mucus membranes if not appropriately diluted. According to Tisserand/Young, maximum dermal use level is 1.1% (Tisserand page 376).

Oral Caution: Diabetic medication, anticoagulant medication, major surgery, peptic ulcer, hemophilia and other bleeding disorders (Tisserand page 376). Oral Lethal Dose for a Child: 21mls (Buckle)

Contraindications (all routes): Pregnancy and nursing (Tisserand page 376). 

Avoid contact with the eyes and other sensitive areas. Essential oils are both lipophilic and hydrophobic. Lipophilic means they are attracted to fat— like the membranes of your eyes and skin. They are also hydrophobic, meaning they do not like water. Applying a carrier oil will create another fat for the essential oil to be attracted to other than the membranes of the eyes or skin. Tisserand suggests: "With essential oils, fatty oil has been suggested as an appropriate first aid treatment, though the advantage of saline [eyewash] is that the eyes can be continually flushed, and this is less easy with fatty oil.” We are not aware of a case where essential oil in the eyes caused permanent injury or long-term discomfort, but if you feel concerned, please call your health care provider. 

"An essential oil consisting of 93.9% carvacrol [the key component of Oregano] was given orally to pregnant rats during gestational days 0-15 at doses of 100, 500, or 1,000ppm. There were no signs of maternal toxicity or teratogenicity at any dose, and in the two higher dose groups there was a significant increase in the number of implantation and live fetuses, a positive outcome." - From Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand, page 376.
References Aydin S, Ozturk Y, Beis R et al (1996) Investigation of Origanum onites, Sideritis congesta and Satureia cunefolia essential oils for analgesic activity. Phytotherapy Research 10 (4): 342-344
Buckle, Jane, Clinical Aromatherapy, 2nd Edition 2003, p.83.
Schnaubelt, Kurt, The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils, 2011, page 134. Schnaubelt, Kurt, Medical Aromatherapy: Healing with Essential Oils, North Atlantic Books, 1999, page 202-203. Tisserand, Robert; Young, Rodney, Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals, Elsevier Health Sciences UK 2nd Edition 2014, pages 152-153, 375-376.
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