This week we are focusing on Frankincense essential oil (Boswellia Carter), which has held great significance in many different cultures and religions for thousands of years. Today, this fragrant resin is transformed into an essential oil that’s valued not only in religious and spiritual practices, but also in aromatherapy and natural health.
Frankincense essential oil has long been a popular ingredient in cosmetics and used for incense. It has even been found in the remains of Anglo-Saxons and ancient Egyptians civilizations. Frankincense comes from the Boswellia genus trees, grown in African and Arabian regions, producing a gum or resin that can be steam distilled into an essential oil that harnesses it’s numerous health benefits. The monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes are the most valuable elements of frankincense oil, as they promote the body’s natural healing processes.
The health benefits of frankincense oil are mostly attributed to its anti-inflammatory, astringent, antiseptic, disinfectant, digestive, diuretic, and expectorant properties. It is also considered a tonic for supporting the performance of all systems of the body — including digestive, respiratory, nervous, and excretory systems — and aids in the absorption of nutrients while strengthening the immune system.
The aroma of spicy, earthy wood frankincense oil provides a calming and relaxing sensation, and its comforting properties can be helpful for visualizing, grounding, and improving one’s spiritual connection. In aromatherapy, frankincense oil is either inhaled or diffused, which can be a very effective sedative that induces a feeling of mental peace while helping to relieve anxiety, anger, stress and despair.
The effects and benefits of frankincense oil can also be acquired by applying it topically or ingesting it in very small amounts. For pain relief, simply massage the oil onto the affected areas. Meanwhile, using a diffuser or inhaler works for treating colds and clearing up respiratory blockages. You can also sprinkle a few drops on a clean cloth and inhale the scent, or add it to your bathwater for a rejuvenating soak.
Frankincense oil can be directly applied to the skin or blended with other carrier oils such as jojoba, sweet almond, avocado. It blends well with all essential oils, including patchouli, rosemary, clary sage, citrus, and basil oils. Depending on your uses for frankincense, substitutions that can be used are sandalwood, cedarwood, lavender, or vetiver essential oil.
Always test for skin sensitivity before widespread use and use on the feet when possible. Excessive use of any oil can lead to skin sensitization. Keep out of eyes, ears, or nose, and know that not all oils are created equal. So test brands carefully, and never use oil in a way not recommended by its maker.
Because frankincense essential oil has contributed so much my health and that of my family’s, I wanted to provide you with a list of 8 beneficial uses we have found:
1. Promotes Pain & Inflammation Relief –
Frankincense essential oil has been known to considerably reduce levels of inflammation associated with conditions such as arthritis, asthma, and symptoms caused by painful bowel & digestive disorders. It can also be useful for preventing the breakdown of cartilage tissue. This makes it a powerhouse choice in natural pain relief for anything that affects the muscles, joints, and tendons.
By diffusing frankincense oil and massaging it onto problem areas of the body, circulation can be improved, and symptoms of joint or muscle pain can be alleviated. To relieve tension from aching muscles, add frankincense to a warm, Epsom salt bath or place a drop or two on a towel and steam while in a hot shower.
2. Slows the Aging Process & Repairs the Skin –
Because of the protection of skin cells, frankincense oil provides it the ability to fortify the skin while developing tone, elasticity, immunity to bacteria, and rejuvenation of the skin cells to lessen the appearance of scars, stretch marks, acne blemishes, and wrinkles.
Add a few drops of frankincense oil to a carrier oil or unscented lotion, and apply directly to areas of concern to give skin nourishment and support the tightening, lifting, and healing of sagging or dry cracked skin. To aid in the healing of wounds put two to three drops on a cold compress and apply it directly twice a day. Although it is safe to apply frankincense essential oil to skin that is already in healing stages, take caution when placing it directly on broken skin and open wounds.
3. Aids the Immune System & Fights Off Bacteria –
One of the biggest reasons Frankincense oil is sought after is due to it’s considerably effective disinfectant and antibacterial properties. With the capability to enhance the immune system and defend the body (internally and externally) against infections, viruses, bacteria and germs, it’s not surprising that 100% pure, therapeutic-grade frankincense essential oil is out of stock regularly.
To naturally disinfect, kill and prevent germs from spreading, and reduce indoor pollution, diffuse frankincense oil throughout your home daily. To help break up phlegm, relieve cold, flu, bronchitis or pneumonia symptoms, place a few drops on a towel and inhale. This also can reduce inflammation in the nasal passages and make breathing easier, which can also benefit those who suffer from asthma and seasonal allergies. Frankincense can also be used in place of chemical household cleaners to eliminate bacteria in your home, and be a natural deodorizer.
4. Provides Stress Release & Emotional Balance –
Due to the chemistry of frankincense, which contains sesquiterpenes that stimulate the part of the brain that controls emotions, it is highly beneficial for relieving anxiety, depression, emotional fatigue, and insomnia. Research has shown that it can reduce the heart rate and lower blood pressure, therefore providing a sense of calm and comfort. Frankincense oil has also been known to be effective at releasing one’s self from the ego. Promoting grounding, enhancing intuition and spiritual connection, makes this essential oil a favorite in meditation, and spiritual and religious practices.
For stimulating feelings of peace, relaxation, and well-being — without the negative side effects and drowsiness caused by prescription medications — inhale Frankincense directly or diffuse it in your home. To relieve tension, stress and anxiety, add eight to ten drops to a hot bath or massage a couple of drops onto the bottom of your feet. If you have troubles with falling asleep at night or suffer from insomnia, diffusing it in your room can help to lower levels of anxiety, open the breathing passages to induce the ideal sleeping temperature, and diminish pain that keeps you awake, naturally.
5. Calms & Supports Digestion –
Frankincense essential oil has been known to aid the digestive system and promote relief from gastrointestinal pain, constipation, nausea, stomach aches, PMS, and cramps. Because it speeds up the secretion of digestive enzymes — which allows food to be digested quicker and with more ease as it relaxes the digestive tract muscles — it can stimulate circulation, aid in proper detox to produce bowel movements, and relieve pain from bloating by flushing out excessive water.
To encourage healthy digestion and reduce discomfort, add one to two drops of frankincense oil to a glass of water or a tablespoon of honey. Be sure your oil is 100% pure, therapeutic grade and not a fragrance or perfume oil, if you choose to ingest it. For pain relief, cramps, and nausea rub two to three drops directly onto the abdomen.
6. Prevents Oral Health Problems –
Many people choose frankincense as a natural preventative addition to their oral health routine. The antiseptic properties of this oil can help by inhibiting the production of cavities, bad breath, toothaches and decay, canker sores, gingivitis, and other infections.
If you’re looking for a natural oral care product to alleviate discomfort from dental conditions or just want to prevent bad breath and boost your oral hygiene, check out your local, all-natural health stores and look for products that contain frankincense oil. You can even make your own toothpaste or mouthwash with frankincense if you like to DIY.
7. Helps Regulate Estrogen & Hormone Levels in Women –
For gynecologic conditions, pre and post-menopause symptoms, and hormonal imbalances, frankincense oil can provide a vast amount of relief to all women. Since it helps to regulate the production of estrogen hormones, it can reduce the chances of tumors and cysts being formed, therefore lessening the risk of uterine cancer. It can also be useful to stabilize menstrual cycles for promoting a healthy uterus.
For the relief of symptoms caused by menstruation — such as cramps, headaches, constipation, nausea, fatigue, and mood swings — massage two to three drops of frankincense onto the abdomen area or for severe cramps, add it to a warm towel or compress. Using frankincense in a warm bath and soaking in it, can also provide relief from burning caused by urinary tract infections.
8. Naturally Assists in Fighting Cancer –
Many studies have now shown us that frankincense oil can aid in fighting certain types of cancer cells. Frankincense’s potential cancer-killing properties are due, in part, to its ability to influence genes to increase healing.
Many of those diagnosed and treated for cancer suffer greatly from the side effects caused by cancer treatments. The strength of these medications and treatments can cause a toxic overload in patients, which then causes more side effects for them to endure. But as the research and clinical trials of frankincense grow in results, many scientists and doctors are pushing for it to be a considered prescription alternative to steroids for cancer patients in radiation treatment.
By adding frankincense essential oil to your daily regimen, you’ll not only feel these amazing benefits naturally, but you’ll be also be setting a preventative measure in place to ensure the best, most natural, healthy lifestyle for you and your loved ones!
By Kelly Redfield