Boswellia: Strong anti-inflammatory benefits

The fact that boswellia is also known as Indian frankincense provides an important clue to its origin, and in fact boswellia is native to the Indian subcontinent. Boswellia is derived from the boswellia serrata tree, which grows wild in the hills of the Indian subcontinent.

Indian healers have long used this “Indian frankincense” to treat a number of conditions, including inflammation and joint problems. In addition, boswellia is thought to be effective at treating back pain and some intestinal disorders as well. Boswellia is thought to provide many of the pain relieving and anti-inflammatory benefits of traditional prescription and over the counter pain relievers, without the stomach upset that can often accompany these medications.

The gummy resin of the tree is known as salai guggal, and many commercial preparations made from this purified extract and packaged in creams and pills are used to reduce inflammation and reduce the pain associated with both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Major benefits of Boswellia

For thousands of years Indian healers have used the gummy resin derived from the bark of the boswellia serrata tree for its strong anti-inflammatory benefits.

In the world of modern medicine, there are a great many preparations made with boswellia, and these preparations have shown real promise in reducing the inflammation associated with both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Boswellia preparations are available in both pills and creams, but the creams are most often used to reduce the inflammation associated with arthritis.

In addition to its effectiveness, boswellia has an important benefit over traditional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) drugs, and that is the fact that it does not cause stomach irritation like those drugs do.

Apart from its usefulness as an anti-arthritis preparation, boswellia has been found to be effective against chronic back pain and other inflammatory conditions. Both the oral and cream preparations of boswellia have proven effective at reducing lower back pain.

Additional information:

Boswellia is available in many different preparations, including capsules, tablets and many topical creams. The topical varieties of boswellia are particularly effective against the pain of arthritis and at treating back pain. When using boswellia cream, a pea-sized amount of the cream should be rubbed into the affected area and treatment should be repeated every four to six hours as needed.

When choosing boswellia preparations, it is important to choose those products that have been standardized to a 60% concentration of boswellic acids. It is these boswellic acids that are thought to provide the therapeutic effects, so it is important to choose those preparations that contain a therapeutic level concentration of these healing compounds.

While side effects from boswellia are rare, on occasion diarrhea, nausea and skin rashes have been reported. Those who experience such side effects should discontinue their use of the supplement and notify their doctor. It is also important to consult with your family physician when using boswellia preparations to treat arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. It is important for your physician to have information about all medications you are taking, including over the counter medications and herbal remedies.

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