Oregano: 9 Health Benefits, How to Take & Nutritional Info

Oregano is an aromatic plant that is used to season foods like pizza, pasta, salad, fish, meat and sauces. It adds a slight spicy and aromatic taste to foods. 

Scientifically known as Origanum vulgare, oregano contains antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancerigenic properties, making it useful for treating fungus, viruses and bacteria and preventing the development of some chronic diseases. It can also promote weight loss.

The part of oregano that is commonly used is the leaf, which can be fresh or dried to season food. It can also be consumed as a tea, used to prepare syrups, or used as an essential oil. 

Health benefits

Consuming oregano regularly can offer many health benefits, such as::

1. Prevent cancer

Oregano is rich in antioxidants, like carvacrol and thymol, which help to neutralize free radicals that accumulate in the body. This can reduce cellular damage and prevent the growth of cancerous cells, reducing the risk for the development of some types of cancer, like ovarian, prostate and leukemia. 

2. Help to reduce cholesterol 

Consuming oregano tea on a regular basis can help to decrease “bad” cholesterol, or LDL, levels. This plant contains great amounts of compounds with antioxidant properties, like flavonoids, thymol and carvacrol, which prevent cardiovascular diseases.

3. Improve digestion

Oregano is a great antispasmodic that stimulates gastrointestinal secretions that promote digestion. Oregano is a great option for improving symptoms of dyspepsia, as well as gas and abdominal cramps. 

4. Respiratory secretions 

When consumed as a tea or homemade syrup, oregano can acts on the bronchi to promote the movement of lung secretions, making it a great natural expectorant. Generally, oregano can be used to complement the treatment of bronchitis, dry coughs, common cold, sinusitis and laryngitis.

5. Help to relieve muscular pain 

Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, oregano can help to relax muscles and reduce some pain, like pain from a stiff neck or back. Essential oil or a dressing infused with oregano can be applied directly to affected areas. 

6. Manage diabetes 

Consuming oregano on a daily basis can have an antidiabetic effect, which blocks some enzymes from metabolizing glucose. This can help to balance blood sugar levels. 

7. Prevent early aging

Daily oregano consumption can help to prevent early aging, as oregano is rich in antioxidant compounds, like flavonoids and vitamin C. These help to neutralize free radicals and prevent cellular damage to maintain younger-looking, healthy skin. 

8. Help with weight loss

The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds in oregano can help to reduce inflammation and burn fat. Oregano can be very useful in weight loss diets as a result. 

9. Fight viruses, bacteria or fungus 

Oregano contains properties that help to treat some infections, like the flu, UTI, herpes and yeast infections. It contains compounds, like carvacrol, that decrease the microorganisms’s activity to speed.up recovery. It can be used to complement medically prescribed treatment. 

Nutritional information

The following table outlines the nutritional information of 100 g of dried oregano leaves: 


100 g of dried oregano

2 grams (1 tablespoon) of dried oregano


346 cal

6.92 cal


11 g

0.22 g


2 g

0,04 g


49.5 g

0.99 g

Vitamin A

690 mcg

13.8 mcg

Vitamin B1

0.34 mg


Vitamin B2

0.32 mg


Vitamin B3

6.2 mg

0.12 mg

Vitamin B6

1.12 mg

0.02 mg

Vitamin C

50 mg

1 mg


15 mg

0.3 mg


15 mg

0.3 mg


1580 mg

31.6 mg


200 mg

4 mg


120 mg

2.4 mg


44 mg

0.88 mg


4.4 mg

0.08 mg

It is important to highlight that to obtain all the health benefits oregano has to offer, it should be included in a healthy, balanced diet. You should also incorporate regular physical activity into your routine. 

How to consume

Oregano can be consumed during dress or dried leaves, and is easily stored in glass jars. Dried oregano has a shelf life of 3 months, as they tend to lose their smell and taste over time.

This herb can be used in tea form or to season foods. It is a great complement for eggs, salads, pasta, pizza, dish, lamb and chicken. 

Other ways to consume oregano to achieve health benefits include: 

1. Oregano tea

This is a common way to consume oregano and obtain its benefits. It is prepared in the following way: 


  • 1 tablespoon of dried oregano 
  • 1 cup of boiling water 

How to prepare

Place the oregano in a cup of boiling water and allow to infuse for 5 to 10 minutes. Then strain, wait for it to cool, and drink 2 to 3 cups per day. 

2. Oregano syrup

This syrup contains expectorant properties that help to eliminate pulmonary secretions and relieve coughing. Mix 1 teaspoon of oregano with one tablespoon of honey, heat in the microwave for 5 seconds, and take 2 to 3 times per day.

3. Oregano essential oil

Oregano essential oil can be applied to the skin, used for inhalations or consumed in capsule form. It can help to treat oral herpes, yeast infections, muscular main or gastrointestinal pain. 

To use it on the skin, dilute 1 drop of oregano essential oil into 5 ml of another oil (like olive or or coconut oil). This will help to increase its rate of absorption while decreasing the risk for irritation. 

Oregano essential oil should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, not by children under 12 years of age.

4. Oregano vapor

Oregano vapor helps to thin out lung secretion and improve respiratory diseases like bronchitis and sinusitis. Boil 1 liter of water in a pot with a handful of oregano leaves. Once the water starts to boil, inhale the vapor carefully, keeping a safe distance to prevent burning.