Gifts of Nature

Boswellia serrata

Boswellia serrata, also known as Frankincense in Turkey, is a crustacean tree found in dry, barren, and rocky areas of Africa, the southern regions of the Arabian Peninsula, and eastern India. Boswellia was named after the British botanist Johann Boswell, who described the tree in 1846.

Frankincense

Made from the Boswellia tree, Frankincense is also known as oleo gum resin.

From Hippocrates to Dioscorides of Anazarbus, and from ancient Egyptian remedies to traditional Islamic medicine, this precious resin has been used for a myriad of purposes in a variety of cultures and regions. It has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine to treat inflammatory diseases. It is also described as being effective in the treatment of skin problems, cardiovascular and blood disorders as well as bronchitis and asthma. This resin has also been used in the form of ointments and incense to heal wounds and to provide a pleasant fragrance in homes.

In his famous work Materia, Dioscorides of Anazarbus noted that the finest quality Frankincense originates from India.

Boswellia serrata tree
Boswellia serrata tree's flowers
The Influence of Frankincense in Europe

Europe discovered Frankincense through the Frankish Crusaders and used it to alleviate the symptoms of rheumatic disease.

Today, Boswellia has again become the focus of scientific research with a growing attention to natural and alternative treatment methods, and laboratory studies have confirmed that it has specific therapeutic properties.

 
Discovery of Boswellic Acids and Clinical Studies

In 1991, Prof. Dr. Ammon and his team at the Institute of Pharmacology at the University of Tübingen found that Frankincense resin contains a compound called 3-Acetyl-11-ketoβ-Boswellic Acid (AKBA), which has anti-inflammatory properties.

The chemical composition of Frankincense resin is highly rich in various ingredients including monoterpenes, diterpenes, triterpenes, pentacyclic triterpenic acids (boswellic acids) and tetracyclic triterpenic acids. The pharmacological activity of the resin originates from the boswellic acids found in its composition.

Numerous clinical trials and studies have demonstrated the anti-inflammatory activity of boswellic acids. This suggests the importance of using boswellic acids, especially in the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.

After years of research, Frankincense is recognized to possess many anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. Given the growing need for natural therapies, further progress in this research is indispensable in the years to come.

Boswellia serrata

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