Boswellia, or “Indian frankincense,” is a type of tree found in India. Extract is made from the tree’s resin to create an herbal remedy, which contains powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can help treat a variety of conditions.1,2 The sap can also be hardened to make frankincense, which can be burned and used in aromatherapy to calm and relax you.3 The frankincense oil from boswellia is said to contain anti-inflammatory, disinfectant, antiseptic, astringent, and diuretic properties. Boswellia and products derived from it can be applied topically, taken orally in tablets or capsules, or used in aromatherapy.
Boswellia Uses and Health Benefits
Boswellia benefits many body processes, but boswellia uses are most commonly for inflammatory diseases. Thanks to its herbal properties, boswellia uses include for the following conditions:
- Chronic Childhood Arthritis - Chronic childhood arthritis, or juvenile arthritis, is an autoimmune disease that causes arthritis in children and young teens. Boswellia benefits chronic childhood arthritis patients when taken orally thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties.
- Osteoarthritis - To reduce the inflammation and pain associated with osteoarthritis, consider a boswellia diet herbal remedy. Boswellia is said to be as effective as ibuprofen and aspirin in treating osteoarthritis. Among boswellia benefits, it doesn’t cause the stomach irritation that other osteoarthritis medications can.
- Brain Tumor - When you have a brain tumor, swelling and inflammation around the tumor site is dangerous. Boswellia benefits brain tumor patients by reducing the inflammation in the brain. Take the herbal remedy orally as directed on the product label.
- Crohn’s Disease - Crohn’s disease is a disease of the intestines that causes inflammation in the digestive tract. Crohn’s disease can result in abdominal pain, vomiting, and ulcers, but a boswellia diet can help reduce that inflammation and protect from secondary symptoms.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis - Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease affecting a person’s joints. It can result in inflamed joints, which cause pain and reduce range of motion. Boswellia is believed to help reduce the pain and swelling associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
- Ulcerative Colitis - Ulcerative colitis is a type of Irritable Bowel Syndrome that causes inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, causing diarrhea and preventing proper nutrient absorption. Taking boswellia orally may help reduce inflammation as well as other drugs and encourage remission.
Boswellia Side Effects and Precautions
There are no known boswellia side effects when taken with other drugs.5 However, you should proceed with caution if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. When shopping for boswellia, try to find extracts containing at least 37. percent boswellic acids--also called boswellin. The dosage amount depends on how much boswellic acid is present in the extract, so be sure to follow the product labeling. If giving to children, give half the dose of adults. Avoid taking boswellia for more than eight weeks at a time.8 Talk to your doctor about other medications you’re taking to get a full view of your health to see if a boswellia diet may be a good choice for you.