September 24, 2023
Fifty percent of the world’s population is infected with Helicobacter pylori, which can trigger many gastrointestinal disorders. Although most of the infected people never experience symptoms of disease, there is a risk that some of them may develop a peptic ulcer (approximately 10 to 20% of infected subjects), one quarter (approximately 4.25%) may have serious ulcer complications, while 1 to 2% may progress to gastric cancer. Therefore, the efficient eradication of H. pylori from gastric mucosa is a necessity. Standard treatment is "triple therapy", which consists of two antibiotics and a proton pump inhibitor. Even this therapy is not highly effective because H. pylori has developed significant resistance to antibiotics and it can cause adverse side effects. It was assumed that an essential oil mixture, obtained from species from genera Satureja L.(savory), Origanum L.(oregano) and Thymus L.( thyme) and called the HerbELICO® essential oil mixture, could be useful in H. pylori infection treatment.
The HerbELICO® essential oil mixture containing three essential oils isolated from Satureja hortensis L., Origanum vulgare L. and Thymus vulgare L. The HerbELICO® essential oil mixture is a homogeneous blend of savory, thyme and oregano oils that was created by adding various amounts of the individual oils to achieve the necessary concentrations of the main constituents.
Carvacrol and thymol are the major components of oregano and thyme essential oils and previously have shown in vitro anti-H. pylori activity. Additionally, some findings indicate that the mixture of oregano and savory essential oils is more effective against H. pylori growth compared to each oil being used individually. Therefore, it is possible that these oils may have a synergistic effect when being used together. Essential oils do not normally induce adverse side effects and are therefore generally recognized as safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. In addition, unlike antibiotics, it is probably very difficult for any micro-organism to develop resistance to essential oils.
This study confirmed that the HerbELICO® essential oil mixture is effective against 20 different H. pylori strains from different host origin and different resistance levels to antimicrobial medicinal products. This suggests that the HerbELICO® essential oil mixture is effective against all H. pylori types regardless of their resistance or host origin. Since essential oils are complex mixtures of lipophilic compounds, they probably can penetrate through the bacterial cell wall, disrupt the bacterial membrane and interfere with integral membrane proteins, leading to cascade events of bacterial cell rupture. In addition, many bacterial cellular functions can be affected as well. Additionally, the chemical complexity of essential oils completely disables the microorganism from developing resistance. This implies that it is probably impossible for H. pylori to become resistant to the HerbELICO® essential oil mixture.
After confirming that a mixture of Satureja (summer savory), Thymus (thyme), and Origanum (oregano) essential oils was effective against drug-resistant strains of H. pylori in a laboratory setting, a small pilot clinical trial was conducted to determine if it was effective in humans. Participants took 260 mg (roughly 6 drops) of the essential oil mixture in sunflower oil orally (liquid form) or the same EO dosage in solid gelatin capsules (Florite, microcrystalline cellulose, and magnesium stearate) for 15 straight days, followed by 130 mg (roughly 3 drops) of the mixture for another 30 days. Eight weeks after finishing the therapy, participants stool was examined for the presence of H. pylori. The study found a high H. pylori eradication rate of 93% in humans, with the solid form being the most effective.
According to this study, the mixture of oregano, savory and thyme essential oils, which was named the HerbELICO® essential oil mixture, may be used as an alternative natural agent against H. pylori infection.