Veterinarian Reviewed on June 6, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized
Native to some areas in India the Boswellia tree produces a resin that when it dries is scraped from the tree and then processed to create an extract that has been part of Ayurvedic Medicine for thousands of years. Known as Indian Frankincense or Salai Guggal, it has been used to treat all kinds of inflammatory diseases, improve circulation and muscle strength and various other problems.
Boswellia Extract Today
Boswellia can be applied either topically as a cream or taken internally in the form of capsules, tablets or tinctures. It is used in various products in the United States. While more research needs to be done on this extract, it is known that Boswellia has anti inflammatory properties that make it excellent for treating Arthritis and other muscle and Joint Pain.
Boswellia extract has also shown signs of helping people with Asthma and inflammatory bowel disease IBD and it is believed that it can also improve thyroid function as well.
Over The Counter Uses of Boswellia
Boswellia extract can be purchased over the counter and has been found in variety of supplements such as weight loss pills and products and even in anti wrinkle creams. It has also been topically applied to treat joint pain, muscle aches and ring worm.
It is believed that Boswellia can help encourage and speed up Weight Loss due to the fact that it improves thyroid function and contains gugglesterones which aids in weight loss. However, no actual studies have been done to verify that this supplement can indeed help you lose weight.
It is also used in some anti-wrinkle creams and its use in these products is said to increase circulation of oxygen and nutrients within the body that will help make your skin appear younger. It should however, be noted that the anti-wrinkle creams using this supplement also contain well known anti-wrinkle ingredients so it is difficult to tell if the Boswellia extract or the other ingredients are what helps in reducing your fine lines and wrinkles.
More Possible Benefits of Boswellia Extract
Scientists in both Europe and the United States are testing Boswellia to see what benefits it may have for reducing peritumoral brain edema and reducing tumors and several other diseases. While studies are underway there still isn’t enough information known about the Boswellia extract benefits, but it does look promising.
Possible Side Effects of Boswellia Extract
Although like most herbal supplements Boswellia is considered to be basically safe and few people reported having any serious side effects when taken as directed, there are people who have experienced some rather unpleasant side effects from taking Boswellia. These side effects include :
• Skin rashes
• Reactions with other medications
In addition when Boswellia is taken in too large of amounts it has resulted in people having difficulty both with blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Therefore it is advised that you seek medical advice from an herbalist before using Boswellia extract or consuming any product containing Boswellia extract. If you experience any negative side effects while taking this supplement you should discontinue use and see your physician immediately.
As with most herbal supplements, women who are pregnant or nursing should not use this supplement unless directed to by their medical professional.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan