Q. Dear Terry, “I’m a little confused about boswellia and frankincense. Are they the same thing? Should I take both?”– Lupe M., Henderson, NV
A. Dear Lupe, The boswellia tree creates a precious resin that has a long history of use in perfumes and traditional medicinal systems. Oil produced from this resin is what we call frankincense oil. The resin can also be processed into an extract that can be used in supplements. There are over 20 species of boswellia and each species produces a slightly different medicine. Frankincense can come from any of the boswellia species. When it comes to boswellia extracts, the majority of the clinical research has been on Boswellia serrata.
Frankincense oil has been shown to be very powerful at preventing tumors. It has also been shown to interfere with tumor growth, without damaging the normal and healthy cells. Research has also shown that frankincense oil can hinder tumor cells from protecting themselves, which makes them easier for our immune system to identify and neutralize. Make sure you choose a frankincense oil that is indicated for internal use.
When choosing a boswellia extract, I believe an extract standardized for AKBA is essential. Researchers have found that AKBA appears to be responsible for the majority of boswellia’s medicinal benefits. There is another compound in boswellia that is actually pro-inflammatory, which is called beta-boswellic acid (BBA). The boswellia extract I recommend is standardized to high levels of AKBA and virtually free of BBA.
I believe that boswellia and frankincense both have valuable medicinal properties. I would take boswellia extract (B. serrata) and frankincense oil (B. sacra) once or twice per day.
Terry . . . Naturally
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