What is Frankincense oil?
Frankincense, also known as olibanum, comes from the Boswellia genus trees. The milky white sap is extracted from the tree bark, allowed to harden into a gum resin for several days, and then scraped off in tear-shaped droplets.
Boswellia trees grow in African and Arabian regions, including Yemen, Oman, Somalia, and Ethiopia. Oman is the best known and most ancient source of frankincense, where it’s been traded and shipped to other places like the Mediterranean, India, and China for thousands of years.
The highest-quality frankincense is clear and silvery, but with a slight green tinge. Brown-yellow varieties are the cheapest and most readily available. In Oman, the best frankincense is usually reserved for the sultan and is rarely shipped out of the country.
Frankincense is traditionally burned as incense. Today, this resin is steam-distilled to produce an aromatic essential oil with many benefits.
Frankincense oil has a woody, earthy, spicy, and slightly fruity aroma, which is
calming and relaxing. It’s said to be sweeter, fresher, and cleaner than frankincense resin.
Frankincense Essential Oil Benefits
1. Helps Reduce Stress Reactions & Negative Emotions
When inhaled, it has been shown to reduce heart rate and high blood pressure. It has anti-anxiety and depression reducing abilities, but unlike prescription medications it does not have negative side effects and does not cause unwanted drowsiness.
2. Helps Boost Immune System Function and Prevents Illness
Studies have demonstrated that frankincense has immune enhancing abilities which may help destroy dangerous bacteria, viruses, and even cancers. It can be used to prevent germs from forming on the skin, mouth, or in your home too. This is the reason many people choose to use frankincense of naturally relieving oral health problems; the antiseptic qualities of this oil can help prevent gingivitis, bad breath, cavities, toothaches, mouth sores, and other infections from occurring.
3. May Help Fight Cancer, or Deal with Chemotherapy Side Effects
Frankincense oil has been shown to help fight cells of specific types of cancer. A 2012 study even found that a chemical compound found in frankincense called AKBA is successful at killing cancer cells that have become resistant to chemotherapy.
4. Astringent, Kills Harmful Germs and Bacteria
Frankincense is an antiseptic and disinfectant. It has the ability to eliminate cold and flugerms from the home and the body naturally and can be used in place of chemical household cleaners.
5. Heals Skin and Prevents Signs of Aging
Frankincense has the ability to strengthen skin and improve its tone, elasticity, defense mechanisms against bacteria or blemishes, and appearance as someone ages. It helps tone and lift skin, reduces appearance of scars and acne, and heals wounds. It can also be beneficial for fading of stretch marks, surgery scars or marks associated withpregnancy, and for healing dry or cracked skin.
6. Balances Hormone Levels
Frankincense oil reduces symptoms associated with menstruation and menopause by balancing hormone levels. It can help relieve pain, cramps, constipation,headaches, anxiety, nausea, fatigue, and mood swings. Frankincense oil also helps with regulating estrogen production and reduces the risk of tumor or cyst development in pre-menopausal women.
7. Eases Digestion
Frankincense helps the digestive system to properly detox and to produce bowel movements, reduces pain and cramping in the stomach, can relieve nausea, helps to flush out excess water from the abdomen that can cause bloating, and even relieves PMS-related stomach pains.
It does this by speeding up the secretion of digestive enzymes, increasing urination production, relaxing the muscles of the digestive tract, and also helps to improve circulation which is needed for proper digestive health. It has been shown to be beneficial in reducing symptoms of leaky gut syndrome, chronic colitis, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and IBS.
8. Acts as a Sleep Aid
Frankincense essential oil is useful in lowering levels of anxiety or chronic stress that can keep you up at night. It has a calming, grounding scent that can naturally help you to fall asleep. It helps open breathing passages, allows your body to reach an ideal sleeping temperature, and can eliminate pain that keeps you up.
9. Helps Decrease Inflammation and Pain
Frankincense can inhibit the production of key inflammatory molecules associated with conditions like arthritis, asthma, painful bowel disorders like IBS, and many more conditions. It can be useful in helping to prevent the breakdown of the cartilage tissue and has been shown to significantly reduce levels of dangerous and painfulinflammation, making it a natural treatment option for pain-related conditions that effect the muscles, joints, and tendons.
Frankincense essential oil is extremely well tolerated, especially compared to prescription medications. To date there are no reported serious side effects of using Frankincense oil, as long as you do not ingest large quantities which can result in it becoming toxic.
Rarely frankincense oil can cause certain reactions for some people – including minor skin rashes and digestive problems like nausea or stomach pains. Frankincense is also known to have blood thinning effects, so anyone who has problems related to blood clotting should not use Frankincense oil or speak with a doctor first. Otherwise the oil may have potential to negatively react with certain anticoagulant medications.