You probably already know how good vitamin C is for you. And you may even know that vitamin K is great for your bones and for your brain. In fact, vitamin K has the ability to protect neurons from damage caused by Alzheimer's and other brain diseases. But did you know that one spice from the Mediterranean can give you a full day's supply of both vitamins?
That's right! This little-used spice provides 86% of the RDA for vitamin C and 518% of the RDA for vitamin K. I don't put much stock in recommended daily allowances, as most of them are way below the actual amount you need every day. But these numbers are impressive.
But there's more to this spice. It also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. And a study in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine found that it can help with gastric ulcers. In this study, the researchers gave rats an extract of the spice marjoram. They found that 250 to 500 mg of this Mediterranean spice reduced the number of ulcers. But that's not all. It also helped nourish their depleted intestinal walls. The researchers also said that the marjoram helped prevent the ulcers in the first place.
Marjoram is a spice that many people mistake for oregano. But it has a very different flavor, as it's in the mint family. It has a sweeter flavor and is mildly spicy.
Because of its anti-inflammatory abilities and its ability to help heal the intestinal wall, this is a great spice to add to your cooking or take as a supplement if you've had any digestive problems. Many gastrointestinal problems cause significant damage to the wall of the intestine, which results in inflammation. Marjoram can help heal this damage and reduce the inflammation.
Obviously, with all these amazing abilities, researchers want to know if this spice can help with cancer. One study from the Middle East found that the spice can stop tumors from spreading. So another team of researchers from the United Arab Emirates University looked at its ability to fight breast cancer in mice. This team didn't use large amounts of the spice, but still found that it could stop the cells from dividing and spreading. Then, when they increased the dose, they noticed the cancer cells were dying rapidly. These are preliminary studies, but it's very exciting to see a spice work so well.
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Since marjoram doesn't have any known side effects, there's no reason not to go ahead and add it to your cooking. It's very hard to find marjoram in an extract supplement, so adding it to your cooking or drinking it as a tea is the best way to take it internally. You'll find marjoram essential oil at just about any health food store and online. You can easily use it in a diffuser or use it topically to help with insomnia.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.