“O-O-O”

Hello everyone! Hannah here. Today’s post is about the essential oil that scarred me for life: Oregano (Origanum vulgare).

I say this a little tongue in cheek, but it’s a little true too. When my siblings and I were little, Mom (Julia), in an effort to do the best for our health, would put oil of oregano in our orange juice, and then proceed to pretend it was normal.

Little six-year-old me would look at the oily film over the surface of my juice and refuse to drink it. I knew what she’d done, and I knew that oily, pizza-smelling orange juice wasn’t normal.

But oregano’s health benefits overruled my palate, and Mom made me drink the pungent juice every morning. I grew to hate oil of oregano, so much that I hated to even hear the name. I insisted that everyone refer to it as “o-o-o” in my presence.

One day I gagged while trying to force my orange juice down. After that Mom never made me drink it again, and my thought was “wow, I should’ve started gagging a lot sooner!” I was a devious little thing.

Now we joke about it with Mom, who is a little embarrassed that she made her children take such a strong oil internally! Knowing what she does now, she does not recommend ingesting oils, with a small exception (which I’ll get to later).

Humorous childhood stories aside, there are many health benefits to oregano. According to Pompeii Organics’ information on the essential oil, oregano is a disinfectant, antiviral and antibacterial, making it helpful for wounds.

It’s also an effective pain reliever, warming and numbing to the skin. It’s great to stimulate the digestive system and boost the immune system.

This last property is why Mom sneaked oregano into our orange juice all those years ago – in her defense, we never got sick! Of course, given the chance she’d do it a bit differently.

Ingestion of essential oils can be extremely dangerous for children. Many in the field of aromatherapy advise against it for adults, too, and here is where Mom (as an aromatherapist) will make a small exception. She’s found that for herself, ingesting a few drops of oregano essential oil in a capsule can totally eradicate the first signs of cold or flu. Any time sickness is going around and she starts to feel off, she takes a capsule and is back to normal in no time.

Of course, it’s important to do your research and find what will work best for you. If you are sensitive or have an allergy to oregano, this will most likely not work! This is where a consultation with an aromatherapist (I know a great one ;)) can help: she can get an overview of your health and tailor a remedy to fit your particular needs!

Have you ever tried “o-o-o”? Do you have ever tried it in orange juice? (don’t, it’s disgusting 🙂 ) Happy weekend to you all!

In addition to writing for Honest Aromas, Hannah blogs at .hannahallmankennedy.wordpress.com  while she works on her Master’s in English.

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