Oil of Oregano

 The Benefits of Oregano Oil


Can Oil of Oregano Treat MRSA?

MRSA is the shortened term for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. This refers to several strains of Staphylococcus aureus which are resistant to different antibiotics, including methicillin. With respect to this group of bacteria, oil of oregano can definitely eradicate them and prevent them from causing infections. These were the findings of several scientists and medical researchers who testified that this essential oil was more effective in killing these harmful microbes as compared to several pharmaceutical drugs. 

The Nature of Staphylococcus aureus
Staphylococcus aureus is a group of bacteria that is actually harmless and lives on the surface of the skin and inside the nose of human beings. Most people are carrying this bacterium totally unaware that they have it. Medical authorities estimate that about 30% of the people in any given area have this microbe in their skin and inside their noses. It can easily spread by person to person contact.

oil of oregano
The Problem with MRSA
It is when this group of germs enters our body through a cut or wound in our skin that they become a problem. Healthy individuals are able to fight staphylococcus aureus infection and will only experience mild symptoms. But individuals with weakened immune systems are liable to develop more serious health conditions. These are people who have ongoing illnesses and those who have just undergone surgery. They could develop boils, septic wounds, abscesses, toxic shock syndrome and heart-valve problems.

The Usual Treatment for MRSA
People who have been infected with Staphylococcus aureus are usually given antibiotics to clear the infection. And here is where the problems occur. The MRSA strains of bacteria have already developed resistance to several antibiotics which are normally used for treating this kind of infection.

It is now more difficult to treat this infection and stronger antibiotics are resorted to, such as vancomycin and teicoplanin. However, serious side effects have been documented when these antibiotics are used. The side effects of vancomycin are serious. They include loss of hearing, severe blistering of the skin, breathing difficulties, extreme abdominal pain, and kidney damage. The side effects of teicoplanin include skin rashes, redness of the skin, itching, fever and abscess on the skin where the antibiotic is injected. More serious side effects are hearing loss, diarrhea, broncho spasm and blood and bone marrow problems.

In this context, a safer product such as oil of oregano could be a better alternative. And this is what a team of scientists and medical researchers have found. This oil has the capacity to kill staphylococcus aureus without leaving any side effects.

The Power of Oil of Oregano
Numerous tests and clinical studies have already proven the effectiveness of oil of oregano against all types of harmful microbes, including MRSA. A group of medical researchers from the University of the West of England, together with their partners in India, have found that carvacrol, one of the active ingredients in oil of oregano contains potent anti-fungal and anti bacterial properties. They said that this substance can be put to a wide range of medicinal uses. This group of scientists revealed that the MRSA super-bug could be wiped out using oil of oregano.

They have discovered that this natural product could eradicate staphylococcus aureus from hospital wards. The carvacrol content of this essential oil was found by these investigators to be a more effective anticimicrobial agent than 18 pharmaceutical drugs used in mainstream medicine for controlling this group of bacteria.

Here is a list of the things that these researches were able to discover about oil of oregano:

• They found that oregano oil can kill gardia lambia, a protozoan parasite that lives in the intestine and that can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, etc.
• It can also sterilize septic water.
• It can kill fungi such as candida albicans.
• It can be better than streptomycin and penicillin for eradicating harmful microbes.
• Even small doses of this essential oil can kill colonies of bacteria, including MRSA
• This oil can still function even if it is brought to boiling temperature. This means that this oil can be used to disinfect hospital sheets.
• It is still effective in vapor form, therefore it could be used as an antibacterial spray.

What Are the Implications of These Findings?
As a result of these medical findings, Mr. Ben Heron, a representative of the firm Biolaya Organics who led the research in Northern India, stated that oregano oil can kill MRSA with a dilution ranging from 1 to 1,000 and its antimicrobial properties are not affected by heat treatment. This is not true with most conventional anti-bacterial agents.

He added that once they have completed their research and have published their findings, they aim to convince additional partners to join them in their production of hand soaps, multi-purpose anti-bacterial wipes and other products intended for hospital use for controlling and preventing MRSA. It should be noted that the average NHS (National Health Service in Britain) hospital deals with 26 cases of MRSA each year. In 2007, there were more than 4,000 reported cases of this kind of infection in Great Britain.

Both Himalayan Oregano and Mediterranean Oregano are Effective
The medical research conducted by the UK University in corroboration with Biolaya Organics used the Himalayan version of Origanum vulgare. Many scientists already knew the antimicrobial capacity of oregano oil sourced from the Mediterranean oregano plants because of its carvacrol and thymol content.

This is the first time that they conducted research and studies on the Himalayan oregano oil and they were happy to find that this plant’s carvacrol properties are the same as that of its Mediterranean counterpart.

Bright Prospects for Oregano Oil
The results of these studies could lead to a new way of controlling and preventing MRSA infections in hospitals. More scientific evidence is being gathered around the world on the antibiotic ability of oil of oregano. Consider this: of all 52 plant oils tested, oregano oil was the only one acknowledged to have “pharmacologic” action against common germs like Candida albicans, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Salmonella enterica. This is published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology, Volume 86, in June 1999. Pseudomonas is another microbe that has developed strains that are also resistant to antibiotic drugs. But like MRSA, they are not able to withstand the powerful substances that oil of oregano contains.

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