Plants and spices have been used to support the health of the body for as long as humans have walked the earth. Our ancestors had many tools at their disposal in their natural apothecary to aid the healing of many afflictions, from stress and anxiety, to broken bones or a sore throat.
Today, modern scientific study is beginning to see connections between these incredible natural medicines from the Earth, and our health and wellbeing.
In this guide, we take a look at what frankincense is, and we will be exploring the benefits of the beautifully fragrant frankincense to help to improve our quality of life.
What Is Frankincense?
Famous for its Three Wise Men connotations, Frankincense is more than just a Christmas scent. Also known as olibanum, it comes from the resin of the Boswellia tree. Because of the tree’s need for dry, mountainous earth, it is most commonly found in the Middle East, India, and Africa.
The woody spiciness makes it particularly popular with fragrance manufacturers, the heady scent of frankincense has been used in spiritual and religious ceremonies in these areas for thousands of years, and is considered one of the essential healing essences.
The Benefits of Frankincense
Frankincense benefits people with many different afflictions through its use in aromatherapy. Many people swear by its ability to help calm and soothe anxiety, or help them to concentrate on important tasks. There is also a new wave of research into some of its potential medical benefits.
1. Alleviates anxiety and depression
We all struggle with our mental health from time-to-time. Whether you’re feeling low or stressed-out, finding ways to cope is essential.
Believe it or not, one of the home remedies you can try is burning frankincense in your home. Research from Johns Hopkins University and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem suggests that doing so ‘activates poorly understood ion channels in the brain’ and could relieve anxiety and depression. Experts believe the revelation sheds light on ancient mental wellness practices.
“This study also provides a biological explanation for millennia-old spiritual practices that have persisted across time, distance, culture, language, and religion—burning incense really does make you feel warm and tingly all over!” said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal.
2. Helping to reduce the effects of arthritis
Arthritis and other joint inflammations can have a terrible impact on the lives of the sufferers. It is now believed that frankincense has anti-inflammatory properties that can help these people to manage arthritis and other similar issues by inhibiting the body’s release of leukotrienes, which cause the swelling.
It is also believed by some that the use of frankincense incense also aids general digestion and supports a healthy gut.
3. Offer relief to those with lung problems such as asthma
Historically, frankincense has been used to offer relief to sufferers of asthma, bronchitis, and lung disorders.
The constriction of the lungs that creates problems for sufferers is caused by the same leukotrienes mentioned previously. It is believed that frankincense inhibits the production of these chemicals by the body, offering relief to the sufferer.
While much of this research is still in its early stages, it is exciting to see the potential that this beautiful scent has. Why not introduce frankincense to your aromatherapy routine and feel the benefits today?