Avoid oregano during pregnancy

So called conditioned flavor aversions caused by foodstuffs are rather common with humans and with animals, if a gastrointestinal malaise is experienced after eating some novel food. Oregano is a herb which has been used in animal experiments to study food aversions (Launchbaugh and Provenza, 1994). However, pregnant women can develop aversions even without any nausea or ill-feeling. Oregano is one of the most common foodstuffs, which have the ability to cause aversions during pregnancy. Although pica and cravings are also common phenomena during pregnancy, oregano causes rather an aversion than pica or craving symptoms (Hook, 1978, 1980). Therefore we would recommend not to use oregano as a seasoning in any food during pregnancy.

Oregano can cause systemic allergic reactions

According to Benito et al. (1996) there were no cases described in medical literature of systemic allergic reactions due to oregano before their report on three cases. Benito et al. (1996) concluded that plants belonging to the Labiateae family seem to show cross-sensitivity on the basis of clinical history and in vitro and in vivo test results. However, already in 1993 Futrell and Rietschel have published results of their patch tests of spice allergies, and 4 of their 55 patients with suspected contact dermatitis showed positive results with oregano.

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