Marjoram belongs to the family of Lamiaceae and its scientific name is Origanum majorana also known as Majorana hortensisThey are herbaceous plants, perennial in their places of origin, bushy, native to north-eastern Africa and central Asia. Unlike their close relative, oregano (Origanum vulgare), they do not grow spontaneously in Europe but are only cultivated. Any spontaneous plants that can be found are those "escaped" from cultivation.
The stem is erect, quadrangular, up to 60 cm high, branched and reddish in the upper part and covered with a thick down.The leaves are small, oval, with smooth margins, provided with a short petiole, covered with a dense down which give it a very velvety appearance. The white-pink flowers are collected in spikes. The fruit is an oval capsule that has a dark color when ripe.
The whole marjoram plant gives off a strong characteristic aromatic scent. Marjoram is often confused with oregano as the appearance is very similar but the taste and aroma is very different as it does not contain the essential oils of oregano.
Marjoram is a herb very rich in vitamin C, essential oils, tannins and rosmarinic acid.
Its properties are: antispasmodic, expectorant, sedative, antiseptic, tonic, stimulating, carminative.
USED PARTS OF THE PLANT
The flowered tops and leaves of the marjoram are used, which are collected at the beginning of flowering by cutting them with all the branches.The twigs with flowers and leaves must be dried as soon as they are picked, as quickly as possible hung upside down in dry, dark and airy places so that they do not lose their characteristics.Once dried, the leaves and flowers must be recovered, crumbled and stored in glass jars.
Unlike oregano, marjoram loses much of its aroma with drying, so it is preferable to consume it fresh or frozen.
HOW TO USE IT
Marjoram herbal teas or infusions are effective as a sedative, for migraines and neuralgia, for toothache, painful menstruation and for digestive problems, having a beneficial effect also on meteorism.
Its essence has a strong antispasmodic action, that is, it promotes the relaxation of the muscles of the digestive and respiratory systems.
The essential oil is effective for rheumatic pains and neuralgia and inhalations of the vapors are very good for colds and phlegm.It is also used in perfumery to make soaps and hair products and is also widely used in aromatherapy .
It has a very similar aroma to that of oregano but much sweeter and is highly sought after in the kitchen to flavor meat, fish, vegetables and soups.
As it is a plant that loses a lot of its aroma with drying, it is good to use it fresh, adding it at the end of cooking.
With the leaves, fresh or dried, a delicious tea is prepared that remembers as a fragrance a mixture of thyme, rosemary and sage.
The plant was most likely introduced in Europe in the Middle Ages thanks to crossroads.
The essence of marjoram has a strong antispastic action, that is, it favors the relaxation of the muscles so it is good not to exceed the doses.
LANGUAGE OF FLOWERS AND PLANTS
You see: Marjoram - The language of flowers and plants.
Marjoram is the origanum majorana, a plant of the Lamiaceae family, a relative of common oregano. It is an aromatic herb with a mild flavor, used alone or in combination with other herbs, fine herbs or Provence.
In this content we will see:
Marjoram boasts one of its best known properties sedative is calming. It acts on the nervous system by reducing theanxiety and the states of stress. In this way, even the insomnia caused by too much thinking can be resolved. This is possible thanks to the presence of magnesium which stimulates nerve function and also promotes the transmission of impulses.
Again thanks to magnesium and its intervention on the nervous system, marjoram is also an excellent remedy for headaches. In this case you should use it in the form of herbal tea.
The presence of the C vitamin inside the plant it not only makes it useful for counteracting the onset of flu states, but also useful against cough and cold symptoms. In fact, it has an antispasmodic action.
The essential oil of marjoram, thanks to the terpenes, tannins and flavonoids, acts on the body and mind by relaxing them. The muscles relax and the mind so too, so as to reap benefits on a large scale.
Thanks to the substances contained in essential oils, the plant also has an analgesic action on body inflammations. In fact, it relieves toothache but also muscle pains in general.
We know that fever is the body's response to inflammation. In practice, marjoram intervenes by helping to reduce inflammation, indirectly causing a reduction in fever. This is due to the presence of terpenes, tannins and flavonoids.
Being a plant with bitter principles, it is useful for digestive problems. You can use it as an infusion, it intervenes on a greater production of gastric juices.
The active ingredients contained in the essential oil of marjoram affect our body by reducing the presence of gas in the stomach. In practice, it helps both against flatulence and bloating. Also in this case, the most suitable form of intake is herbal tea.
Inside the marjoram there are, as we have seen, different substances. There is Vitamin A and C, lutein, flavonoids ... all with known antioxidant properties. Antioxidants, as is well known, act against free radicals. It therefore means that they help prevent various degenerative diseases but also premature skin aging.
It contains vitamin A, which is known to protect the health of the eyes and sight. It also defends them from UVA rays and macular degeneration, which is instead typical of advancing age.
Several studies have shown that Alzheimer's can also be countered by the frequent use of marjoram. It is rich in vitamin K and in fact contains neuronal damage within the brain.
The presence of mineral salts and water causes a greater stimulus to urination, so as to eliminate excess fluids and cleanse the kidneys.
From a nutritional point of view 3, dried marjoram is distinguished by the considerable content of various vitamins and mineral salts.
However, it should be noted that this spice is consumed in such small quantities that its nutritional contribution is modest.
In fact, a teaspoon of dried marjoram weighs only 0.6g 3, therefore it provides less than one hundredth of the nutritional values shown in the table below.
|Nutritional value per 100 g of dried marjoram 3|
|Energy (Calories)||1,136 kJ (271 kcal)|
|Dietary fiber||40.3 g|
|Vitamins||Quantity (% RDA) *|
|Vitamin A, RAE||403 µg (161%)|
|Lutein + zeaxanthin||1,895 µg|
|Thiamine (B1)||0.289 mg (19%)|
|Riboflavin (B2)||0.316 mg (18%)|
|Niacin (B3)||4.12 mg (26%)|
|Vitamin B6||1.19 mg (60%)|
|Folate (B9)||274 μg (67%)|
|C vitamin||51.4 mg (89%)|
|Vitamin E||1.69 mg (6%)|
|Vitamin K||621.7 μg (777%)|
|Mineral salts||Quantity (% RDA) *|
|Football||1,990 mg (199%)|
|Iron||82.71 mg (458%)|
|Magnesium||346 mg (87%)|
|Manganese||5.43 mg (272%)|
|Phosphorus||306 mg (31%)|
|Potassium||1522 mg (33%)|
|Sodium||77 mg (3%)|
|Zinc||3.6 mg (24%)|
|Selenium||4.5 μg (6%)|
|* Percentages have been roughly calculated using US Adult Recommendations (DRI). Source: USDA Nutrient Database.|
One of the contraindications of marjoram concerns its use in pregnancy
We talked about the main benefits of marjoram, but it is worth pointing out some of them side effects and possible interactions related to the use of this plant. In case of doubts and questions, it is always preferable to consult your doctor.
L'Origan not only is it one of the most used aromatic herbs in Mediterranean cuisine, it is also an excellent repellent for ants. To exercise the repellent action, just sprinkle oregano in the places most frequented by ants, remember to replace it when the scent becomes less intense.
Oregano can be grown in the garden or on the balcony. It blooms in late spring and it is necessary to collect the flowering branches to exploit its properties. Oregano, to better face the winter, loses all its leaves and seems to wither: do not worry, at the beginning of spring it will start producing new and fragrant shoots again.
If you intend to start a small cultivation of oregano, let yourself be guided by our article: How to grow oregano.
The leaves of Origan they are used after drying. To preserve the dried oregano the twigs, after drying remove the leaves, chop them and store them in glass jars. Dried in this way, oregano can be stored for about a year.