Oregano (from Greek oreiganon, from oros "mountain" + ganos "brightness, ornament”) is a perennial herb found in mountainous and rocky areas. In Messinia oregano grows at the mountain range of Taygetus and is considered to be of excellent quality. It blooms from late summer to autumn. The leaves and flowers of oregano are used, fresh or dried, to flavor sauces, salads, meat and fish dishes, fried chips, and feta. Oregano is considered to have anticonvulsant, stimulating and antiseptic properties. It is ideal for the treatment of indigestion and acts as a complementary medicine for coughs. In Ancient Greece, it symbolized happiness and peace. Every year in the town of Kyparissia a festival of oregano takes place mid-August.


Oregano has strong antioxidant activity due to the phenolic compounds of thymol and carvacrol, which block the action of free radicals. Therefore, adding oregano to flavor meat enhances the latter’s nutritional value. Oregano also contains fiber, iron, potassium, zinc, copper and β-Carotene. As an essential oil, oregano can help prevent many diseases.

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