Oregano Oil is one of the most widely used home remedies. Almost every crunchy individual with even the most basic understanding of herbal remedies will probably tell you it’s their go-to for everything from cold and flu to fungus infections. Oregano oil, though simple, does it all.
Oregano oil, sometimes referred to as oil of oregano, has been shown to exhibit some rather potent antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties. It has proven itself to be an effective agent against yeast infections like candida, intestinal parasites, and of course, cold and flu beasties. (source)
The only caveat? Buying oregano oil can be a bit pricey, depending on the source. While I really love the P73 oregano oil by N. American Herb and Spice, it can cost upwards of almost $50 per ounce! Sure, it lasts a really long time (this wild oregano oil is super potent, and you only use a drop or two), but when I run out of it, it’s always a bit painful to pick up a new bottle.
If you’re in the same boat, the good news is you can easily make oregano oil at home and use it for a wide range of conditions.
Oregano Oil Uses and an Oregano Oil Recipe
Oregano oil is an ancient remedy that has been used for centuries to help relieve a variety of ailments. It has powerful anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties, making it effective in treating skin infections, colds, indigestion, and general gut health.
To make a good oregano oil, you will need the following:
- One large bunch of fresh oregano (cleaned and completely dabbed dry – be sure to shake out every drop of water!)
- A high-quality extra-virgin olive oil (you can use a different carrier oil like grapeseed oil, avocado oil, or refined coconut oil if desired. Just choose a natural oil with a light flavor)
- A mason jar
Instructions – How to Make Oregano Oil, aka Oil of Oregano
1. To begin, make sure that the oregano is free of any dirt or debris by washing it thoroughly with water.
2. Dry it completely using a towel. You don’t want any moisture on it at all since water will breed bacteria in the olive oil. I will often dry it with a towel, then let it sit out to further air dry.
3. Next, remove the leaves from the stems and add them to the jar. If you use the stems, cut them up into pieces with scissors to help them macerate in the olive oil.
4. Use a muddler or mortar and pestle to crush and bruise the leaves. This helps release the volatile oils in the oregano, which is where all that good medicine is.
5. Once you deem the oregano leaves to be well muddled, pour over the olive oil until everything is good and submerged.
6. Give it a stir to make sure everything is coated with oil, and make sure the oregano is under the surface of the oil.
7. Let the oregano infuse the olive oil for two weeks, stirring on occasion, in a cool dark place. The oil will darken into a dark green-brown color and smell strongly of oregano.
8. Once two weeks have passed, use a cheesecloth or strainer to strain the oil into a jar.
I like to fill a 1oz dropper bottle with oregano oil and keep it in my medicine cabinet. The rest I keep in a jar and store in the fridge to keep it fresh.
Out of the fridge, oregano oil will last a few months. You will know when it isn’t good anymore when the olive oil starts to smell rancid like old crayons, you know, that tell-tale rancid oil smell.
In the fridge, oregano oil can last up to a year.
Another Way to Make Oil of Oregano
Alternatively, you can boil freshly made oregano oil to extract its properties faster by adding the oregano and olive oil to a heat-proof container (I like using a pyrex measuring cup for this) and gently simmer the container in a water bath for an hour.
If you aren’t in the house, you can also just add water to a crock pot and use that as your water bath for infusing your own oil of oregano.
Oregano Oil Benefits, Uses, and Components
So now that you’ve made oregano oil, how do you use it? What is oregano oil good for?
Oregano contains some pretty potent compounds that are known to help support the body during illness.
These properties include:
- Carvacrol – this gives oregano its anti-microbial properties (very good against gram-negative and gram-positive pathogens)
- Thymol – antiseptic and antibacterial in nature
- Terpinene – antioxidant
- Phenols – protect cells from free radicals
- and many others
Oregano oil is an amazing immune system supporter. It is full of antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, antibacterial, antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal…the list goes on and on!
During cold and flu season, or even when I feel a bit worn and run down, I will often take 5 drops of homemade oregano oil orally, followed by a chaser of either grapefruit juice or water once a day. Adding the oil directly to water or juice can help dilute it a bit.
It’s potent stuff!
When I am actually sick, I will take it twice per day in a homemade wellness shot for up to 10 days.
It is important to give your body a rest when using oregano oil since it’s so powerful. Usually, about ten days on and ten days off works well.
You can also take a few drops of oregano oil before meals to help ease indigestion, gas, and bloating.
Other health benefits of oregano oil include:
- Fights bacterial overgrowth like candida
- Fights various infections, including those in the sinuses and lungs (even fungal infections)
- Helps relieve inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, sciatic pain, and IBD when used topically
- It can help heal certain skin conditions – you can even use it on minor wounds
How to Use Oregano Oil
Because oregano oil can interfere with certain medications, always consult your physician before using herbal remedies. Oregano oil is not considered safe to use during pregnancy.
Oregano oil should only be used to help support the immune system and not as a replacement for medical treatment.
Here are some of the ways you can use oregano oil:
As a Natural Antibiotic
For conditions that require the use of antibiotics, you can take 3-5 drops of oregano oil 1-2 times daily for 10 days. You can also apply a few drops of oregano oil to the soles of the feet or over the abdomen. (source)
Oregano Oil for Ear Infection
Dilute 3-5 drops in 1 teaspoon of carrier oil and apply a small amount around the ear 3x daily.
Oregano Oil for Candida or Toenail Fungus
Apply a few drops of oregano oil directly to toenails and the surrounding area twice daily. Continue application for several weeks after symptoms are gone. (source)
For candida, take 2 drops of oregano oil twice daily for 10 days while avoiding sugar.
As a Treatment for Respiratory Infections
If you suffer from a sinus infection or bronchitis, take 3 drops of oregano oil twice daily for up to 10 days.
Oregano Oil for Sinus Infection
Take internally by adding 3 drops to a small amount of water and taking 3-5x daily to help fight infection. Additionally, you can add a few drops to a bowl of very hot water and drape a towel over your head over the bowl. Carefully inhale the steam for 15 minutes twice daily.
Oregano Oil For UTI
Take 3-5 drops diluted in water or a mild-flavored carrier oil 3-5x daily for up to 10 days.
As a Treatment for Intestinal Parasites and Bacteria
Take 3 drops of oregano oil twice daily for up to 10 days. (source)
Oregano Oil for Gum Infection
Dilute 3-5 drops in 1 teaspoon of carrier oil. Apply directly to the affected gum twice daily. This is a great remedy to apply directly to your floss before use.
As a General Cold and Flu Preventative and Treatment
As a preventative, take 2-3 drops of oregano oil when exposed to others who are sick or when you feel run down during cold and flu season.
As a treatment, take 2-3 drops of oregano oil 1-2 times daily for up to 10 days.
Oregano Oil for Sore Throat
Add 3-5 drops to a 1 oz spray bottle. Fill to the shoulder with water. Shake well and spritz the back of the throat 3-5x daily.
Typical Oil of Oregano Dosage
3-5 drops 1-2 times daily for up to 10 days.
Oregano Oil Side Effects
- Upset stomach
These are all caused by either taking too much oregano oil or if it is applied to sensitive areas.
Where to Buy Oregano Oil
You can get the best oregano oil HERE. This is also the best oregano oil for internal use.
What is Oregano Essential Oil?
Oregano essential oil is completely different from both oregano oil and oil of oregano.
It is created through steam distillation, which extracts very potent compounds and medicinal constituents from fresh plant matter.
Oregano essential oil must be diluted before use and should not be taken orally.
Frequently Asked Questions About Oregano Oil
Can I use dried oregano to make oregano oil?
Yes, oregano oil can be made by mixing dried oregano with a carrier oil like olive or coconut oil. The mixture should be left to steep for several weeks in order to extract all of the active compounds from the oregano leaves.
Once done, you can use the resulting oil topically or take it orally as a dietary supplement to reap its medicinal benefits.
Is there a difference between oil of oregano and oregano oil?
Oil of oregano is not actually a type of oregano oil, but rather a concentrated blend of other essential oils with oregano being the dominant ingredient.
The difference between oregano oil and oil of oregano is that the latter contains a higher level of carvacrol, one of the active compounds in oregano.
How much oregano oil to take as antibiotic?
Take 3-5 drops of oregano oil 3x daily in a little water. You can also take it in a teaspoon of mild-flavored oil.
Is fresh oregano stronger than dried oregano?
Yes. Using fresh oregano will ensure that you are getting the most potent properties of the plant available.
Dried herbs have often started losing their potency soon after being dried.
When should I take oregano oil?
Take oregano oil as soon as you start feeling a cold or flu coming on to help support your body’s immune response.
What have been your favorite uses for oregano oil? Please share in the comments below!
You may also enjoy reading:
Oregano Oil Roll-On for Cold and Flu Care
Oregano Oil Benefits You Need to Know
How to Use Oregano Oil as Herbal Antibiotic (+ what kind is best)
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