Did you know that Bay Leaves, Marjoram, and Oregano Are GREAT for Your Health?

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Herbs, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Health | Posted on 05-07-2016

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Italian Herbs

If you like Italian food, you’re going to love what I have to say today! We are going to talk about three of the most important green herbs in Italian food. For those who cook Italian you will definitely know what I’m talking about, and for those of you who don’t know how, never fear, the Italian cooking wonder is here!

Italian Herbs Organic Dried

The three most important herbs in Italian cooking are bay leaves, marjoram, and oregano. (Basil is also important but we have already sung its wonders in a previous article).

Scientifically bay leave (also known as bay laurel) is called Laurus Nobilis, and is an evergreen herb, mostly grown in Asia and the Mediterranean. This herb has been used since ancient times, and was considered the herb of champions. Haven’t you ever heard of “resting on your laurels”? (That is when people who are winners get lazy). In ancient Greece and Rome, poets and others were crowned with wreathes of bay laurel, in honor. Also, at that time and after people believed that bay leaves could protect people against evil and disease. Although this herb is mostly used in cooking (and is imperative for a great Italian tomato sauce, but only for flavoring, not for eating), there are plenty of medicinal uses as well. Bay is good for muscle aches and pains, rheumatism and arthritis (for which it is apparently like a miracle), colds, bronchitis, and the flu, stomach ailments (also gassiness), and skin problems (like rashes). It is said that pregnant women shouldn’t take bay leaf though, because it is very astringent and might cause contractions. It is also good to help bring down a fever, and is supposed be great for diabetics, being particularly helpful in metabolizing sugar.

Bay leaves organic

In order to treat with bay leaves, you can make a nice light tea with the leaves, or make an infusion and use it for hot compresses on achy muscles and joints. It can be used as a poultice on the chest (for flu, bronchitis, etc), and directly on bruises, sprains, etc. And low and behold, putting a few in your drawers or closets will help to keep the moths and other bugs out.

organic oregano

Now, the deal with oregano and marjoram is that they are from the same “Origanum” family, and are basically the same. They are both native to the Mediterranean areas, although they are also found in the Sham areas (like Syria, for example), as well as practically everywhere else around the world now as well. Oregano is stronger than marjoram, which has a very mild, sweet flavor. Interestingly, all marjorams are oreganos, but not all oreganos are marjorams. Go figure! Oregano is known scientifically as Origanum vulgare (which is also known as wild marjoram), while marjoram is known as Origanum majorana L. What’s even stranger is that they act the same in some ways, and very differently in others. Oregano is considered a winter herb, while marjoram is considered a summer one. It would be ideal to use marjoram fresh, but it isn’t available in Kuwait like that unless you grow it yourself, so dried will probably have to do. You can usually find it in the grocer’s herb and spice section of any larger supermarket. Oregano can also be used fresh, but here in Kuwait is probably only available in dried form. Don’t confuse it with some kinds of what they call “zaatar” here in Kuwait. That’s not really what it is.

organic marjoram

These herbs are also known to be good for diabetes, and they are both antibacterial and antifungal. There is nothing better for an upset stomach than marjoram, and it is also amazing for sore throats. It is one of the most soothing herbs I have ever seen, and can reduce swelling practically immediately. These herbs have also been used since ancient times, and again, the ancient Greeks and Romans used to love both.

Marjoram and oregano are both great for stomach problems, colic, and many people say headaches. They are also good for colds, flu, fever, and cough. You can also take it for relaxing because it is so soothing that many use it as a sedative. People who have menstrual problems use marjoram and oregano to soothe the cramping. If you suffer from arthritis or rheumatism, you will also find relief in these two herbs, and you can both drink it and use it externally. Both oregano and marjoram are great for getting rid of swelling and can also be taken both internally and used externally for that purpose. If you suffer from edema, then a nice light tea will help if you drink it on a regular basis, and swelling due to injury will be greatly relieved with both of these herbs. You can use an infusion with compresses for relief.

Like bay, both oregano and marjoram are supposed to be very helpful for those who suffer with diabetes, and they are said to help the body metabolize the sugar taking the place of the missing insulin. Marjoram is good for high blood pressure and more. They both are also great for liver problems and gall stones.

Oregano has been found to be so high in antioxidants that it leaves even garlic in the rear, and if you’ve been watching Oprah in the past year, you will have seen a program talking about super foods, and how great blueberries, etc, are. Well, I have news for you! Statistically, oregano beats them all. Listen to this. From an antioxidant point of view, according to an Internet source, oregano has: 4 times more than blueberries, 12 times more than oranges, 30 times more than potatoes, and 42 times more than apples! Now that is incredible!

Organic italian seasoning

But, don’t overdo any of these herbs, because they can be harmful. Always remember, in herbal medicine, less is more. Go light on any herb you take and you will never have a problem. When you make any herbal tea, always make your tea as light as possible. You want a light green color, nothing dark! Keep that as a rule, and you will never go wrong.

 

email me: mia@yournaturalhealthonline.com




About Marjoram Essential Oil

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Information About Essential Oils | Posted on 08-02-2014

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Marjoram

Last week we talked about the glory of oregano, and this week we are going to talk about oregano’s sister. This herb is very similar to oregano, but is much sweeter, lighter, and less overpowering. It is used as a cooking herb in most countries, especially in Italy, where it is one of the important ingredients in every tomato based sauce. In the Middle East, it is more likely to be used as tonic, usually in liquid form, which is very big in Bahrain, and called “Mai Margadoosh”. This tonic is most likely to be derived from the process of steam distilling the plant, specifically the flowering tips and leaves, in order to get the essential oil.

The herb that I am referring to here is Marjoram. Some people also like to refer to it as sweet marjoram. Its scientific name is “Origanum majorana”, being derived from the Latin, meaning “great”, and also from the Greek, meaning “joy of the mountains”. Even though the essential oil of marjoram is a fantastic medicinal oil, marjoram is generally used as a dried or, more rarely, fresh herb for culinary purposes. In ancient times marjoram was used medicinally by the Greeks, and it was thought to prolong life. It was known to the ancient Egyptians too. It is native to Asia and the Mediterranean, and nowadays the biggest areas producing this amazing herb are Spain, Hungary, Egypt, and other areas of North Africa, but can grow almost anywhere!

In ancient Greece and Rome, this plant so symbolized love and honor that the people of that time took to making wreathes of marjoram that were worn by newly married couples.

Marjoram is famous for many, many medical ailments, including digestive problems, intestinal spasms, and more. If you suffer from gassiness marjoram will soothe and ease your problem.  

When it comes to respiratory illnesses you can’t do much better than marjoram. It is great for soothing spastic coughs, asthma, bronchitis, and all the symptoms of colds and flu. One of the ways that it does this is by soothing the inflammation in the mucous membranes. This can also be accomplished with the dried herb made as a tea. It gets rid of a sore throat in a jiffy too!

Marjoram is generally a very soothing and relaxing herb, helping with stress and anxiety. It also tends to bring down high blood pressure. In fact, it is fantastic for the circulation in general. As a general heart tonic, it is practically as good as rosemary oil.

And if you are one of those people who suffer from insomnia, then a few drops of marjoram essential oil on your pillow might be just what the doctor ordered. Tests have shown that marjoram even relaxes brain waves.  This may lead to results in the future for hyperactive children, which is a prevalent problem these days. Part of the benefit of marjoram in this respect is the anti-allergic aspect, as with the soothing of the inflammation and reaction, the hyperactivity will be reduced, and other undesirable behaviors will cease as well. Marjoram is even known for reducing depression. It is also good for ordinary headaches, and even migraines, again, probably for its amazing anti-allergic properties.

Marjoram Essential Oil

NOW Foods – Marjoram Oil – 1 oz – Liquid

The essential oil of marjoram is also an antioxidant, and has been reported to be great for aging skin.

It helps with painful muscles and for those that suffer from rheumatism, recurrent muscle cramps, generalized or specific neuralgia, and even for sprains. Indeed marjoram is one of the best essential oils to use in massage blends, and sports clubs should use it for their injured athletes, for quick relief. It is very detoxifying and has a strong analgesic action, as well as having a strong capability of reducing swellings. It also encourages the production of urine and, thus, kidney and bladder health. 

It helps with feminine hormonal and reproductive problems. It is great for girls and ladies who suffer from painful menstruation, and all you have to do is make a little oil blend, using olive oil as a base, and adding a few drops of marjoram essential oil. Then you apply it over the lower abdominal area for speedy relief. Marjoram is also helpful with the symptoms of PMS, but best not used during pregnancy.

Because marjoram oil is so anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and anti-microbial, it is great against fungus outbreaks and bacterial infections.  In fact, some studies have shown that marjoram in a test tube with the herpes virus reduces the virus. 

But, as always, less is more, as marjoram is considered dangerous in very high doses, so, as with all herbs and essential oils, care should be taken in the use of marjoram. But, it is certainly one of the safest herbs of all.

Organic Marjoram

Whole Spice Marjoram Leaves Organic, 1 Pound