By Bob Condor

Just a few blog entries ago, the DHB reported on the effectiveness of turmeric to reduce inflammation in mice. Curry all around was the conclusion, since there is no toxic dose associated with turmeric. Asian cuisine basked in the healthy glow of the research.

Not to be outdone, the herb oregano is giving a similar boost to Italian foods and pizza sauce. A new study completed by Swiss researchers shows that oregano is an ultimate inflammation fighter. The active ingredient, betacaryophyllin, helped seven out of every 10 mice to recover from inflamed paws.

The study was published here in the U.S. last week in Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences, marking a significant mainstream mile for the herb—and for betacaryophyllin, abbreviated as E-BCP, which is also plentiful in black pepper (“yes, I would like fresh-ground pepper on my salad”), rosemary and cinnamon (also found in research literature to be a regulator of bad cholesterol). Plus, basil, so those Italians clearly know how to stem inflammation too.

Stemming chronic inflammation is no small, as it is increasingly associated with leading to heart attacks and sits at the root of autoimmune disorders including diabetes, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis among others. One promising discovery is oregano and E-BCP could well work to prevent the immune system for overacting and attacking itself, which is at the core of autoimmune disorders.

And there’s more. The Swiss scientists reported that lab findings suggest that oregano could well hold off the bone degeneration associated with osteoporosis. While not part of this study, the researchers speculated that E-BCP could address inflammation of the bowel associated with Chron’s disease.

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