Boswellia Serrata: The Frankincense that Commanded the Price of Gold

Long before processed paper symbolized currency, the plants themselves directly moved from hand to hand in the economic exchange, acting in their own right through myriad displays of desirable qualities.  In days past, the Frankincense resin in particular held the power to take away pain, purify and electrify the air and senses, and buy the very allegiances of gods.

Boswellia Serrata, a small deciduous tree member of the Burseraceae Family, produces the Indian Frankincense Resin when wounded.

This gooey, intoxicating substance is secreted by the trees when they are wounded, and is a gift for any human to ever consume in turn, to ease the pain of our own wounds.

This is our raw material.

Close up of a drop of pine resin

Pine Resin Drop

After growing these trees organically in India, our partners carefully harvest their resin and perform a Supercritical (CO2) extraction.  This process yields a potent concentration of the plants’ highly active terpenes, or volatile oils; the molecules responsible for the aroma that commanded the price of Gold.  You will not find another supercritically extracted Boswellia supplement in herbal commerce.  It’s too sticky.  No one but Tattva’s Herbs will give the time and attention necessary for this arduous task.

Boswellia Serrata, Indian frankincense or Salai is called Shallaki in Sanskrit.  While it is true that our Boswellia CO2 extract contains 257 mg of Boswellic Acid per capsule, the part of the plant studied for it’s effect on pain receptors, let us not mistake milligrams with United States currency.  Today one can purchase a 120 count bottle of Boswellia Serrata CO2 extract for $49.95 U.S., however this aromatic treasure still holds preeminence in religious rituals, has been offered as a sacred gift to royalty, and widely traded for riches such as gold and jewels throughout human history.

Gum Olibanum, Dhoop, India

In our next edition, we will explore the medicinal applications of this precious substance Mother Earth so graciously loans us, along with Her stern instruction to use this medicine wisely and with gratitude.

Ayurvedic Relief for Muscles and Joints

Ouch!  In response to lifestyle, diet, and emotional pattern, our doshas; vata, pitta, and kapha, can easily move out of balance. These imbalances slow down agni, or digestive fire, resulting in the toxic by-product of inadequate digestion known as ama.

Vata, the main active dosha, brings ama into the colon.  From there, ama travels throughout the system, lodging in the bone tissue and joints, giving rise to the stiffness and pain characteristic of chronic joint disorders.

Ayurveda works through both diet and supplementation to remove ama from the joints and move it back to the colon, where the body can then eliminate it.  For this, we need to keep the colon clean and active.  Triphala is the most commonly used herb for cleansing the colon, or the combination of Triphala and Guggul.  Ayurveda recommends general techniques to increase the intensity of agni and burn up the toxins harming the body.  We begin with our food by adding more spices to the diet, such as turmeric, chilis, pepper, cardamom and cloves when cooking.  herbs in bulk cropHerbal extractions of Turmeric Curcumin and Boswellia support a healthy inflammation response and ease of movement, while Ashwagandha helps balance all the doshas and reduce negative effects of stress in the body.

Various oils may be applied to the skin to help the body clear toxins, relieve pain and restore mobility.  Ayurveda has used two traditional oils in particular for thousands of years:  Maha Vishgarbha Oil and Maha Narayan Oil, both containing dozens of herbs in a sesame oil base. Massaging these oils into painful areas can improve flexibility, stiffness, muscle fatigue, circulation and ease pain. These oils when massaged into the skin can also assist in breaking up blockages. After oil application; warm heat, yoga, bath, and mild exercise can further relax and relieve the body.  Tattva’s Herbs Joint Care Oil, featuring Boswellia as a topical option, is also a potent and cooling application for both chronic and acute situations.

You May Also Like to ReadHow to Enhance you Inner Strength using Ashwaganda?

Five Reasons Why YOU Should take Boswellia Serrata Today!

Boswellia-webBoswellia serrata (frankincense) is a tree found primarily in India. In order to harvest the Boswellia tree for human consumption, strips of the bark are peeled away leaving gummy resin.

This resin, is the medicinal part of the boswellia tree.  Extracts of this gummy substance are what is typically used in Ayurveda for a variety of health conditions.

 

 

Here is our list of the top 5 ways that you can benefit from this magical substance:

1) Provides relief for painful joints – Boswellia has been shown to enhance the blood flow to joints. In turn, this increases joint mobility and eases stiff joints.

2) Supports healthy respiratory function – It is great for your lungs, and has been shown to help suppress coughs and respiratory circulation.

3) Protects the liver & heart – Boswellia has potent anticoagulant properties, which both your heart and liver will thank you for! Preventing your blood from getting too sticky is vital to healthy circulation and stroke prevention.

4) Helps to lower cholesterol – Boswellia has been reported to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

5) Reduces inflammation – This is the most well known benefit of Boswellia. Many schools of thought agree that inflammation is the root cause of nearly all disease. Boswelliia has been shown in countless studies to reduce inflammation and increase blood flow. This alone, is helpful to so many ailments and conditions that people battle everyday.

There are many other benefits of this one-of-a-kind herb, and we encourage you to read more here.

Joint Pain? Inflammation? Four Incredible Ayurvedic Remedies

As you may or may not now, the traditional Ayurvedic school of thought is that all disease and health ailments are rooted in some sort of inflammation. Luckily, there are many great Ayurvedic products that help our bodies deal with these issues.

Out of all the herbs, oils, products, etc. that make up this list, we have chosen what we believe to be the four most important/helpful.

Without further ado –

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1) Turmeric – Turmeric (Curcumin) is quite possible the most important herb in all of Ayurveda, and it’s ability to combat inflammation is second to none. You can read all about it here.

 

 

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2) Boswellia – Boswellia is a very poswerful anti inflammatory and also a great pain reliever. Many people use Boswellia in place of Tylenol for pain. You can read more here. 

 

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3) Maha Vishgarbha Oil – Maha Vishgarbha is a very powerful traditional blend of 72 different herbs. This oil has the ability to penetrate deep and have amazing affects! Read all about it here. 

 

 

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4) Maha Narayana Oil – Another great traditional Ayurvedic oil blend, this combination of 52 herbs is extremely powerful. Read more here.

 

The Bountiful Benefits of Boswellia

boswellia-2010Boswellia (Botanical name: Boswellia Serrata) is the premier Ayurvedic herb in helping the body maintain a healthy and positive inflammation response. It is extremely effective in delivering and maintaining a healthy blood supply to the joints, yet avoids the irritation associated with many conventional pain relievers. Boswellia is a sap that is reduced to a sticky resin substance that is known as a guggul (tree resins used in Ayurvedic preparations and healing). This resin, also called boswellia, is the medicinal part of the boswellia tree.

In traditional Ayurveda, Boswellia is believed to suppress the proliferating tissue found in the inflamed areas while supporting healthy connective tissue. The higher the grade of boswellia, the more fragrant and potent the resin is. Boswellia grades are determined by the season when the resin is harvested, and how well the resin has been sorted. The highest quality boswellia is said to be that which is harvested in October, when a section of tree bark is scraped away and the sap is collected.

Boswellia potency and grades also depend on the variety of boswellia used in the preparation of the extract. This article will focus on the high-grade boswellia serrata variety, which has been refined and used in both the East and the West for hundreds of years.

The active ingredient in boswellia tablets is boswellic acid. Boswellic acid makes up about 30 percent of the raw boswellia sap as it is taken raw from the tree. Once the sap is concentrated and purified, the concentration of boswellic acid increases dramatically. The most powerfully concentrated boswellia extracts contain 65 percent boswellia acids. include Maha Vishgarbha Oil, Muscle and Joint Therapy (Vata Oil), and Sesame and Mustard Oils.

The optimal process for concentrating Boswellia is called supercritical extraction. This organic method uses up to 200 pounds of fresh boswellia sap to create just 1 pound of super concentrated boswellia extract. Prior to processing, all of the sap is tested for heavy metals and other impurities that would render it unsuitable for refining. Carbon dioxide (just like the carbon dioxide used to carbonate sparkling water) is used in place of chemicals or alcohol to reduce the raw tree sap into the pure extract. The extract is then recombined with raw boswellia to create a product so pure that the heady fragrance is still present. This careful process results in a super-concentrated, yet pure extract. It is often recommended to take Neem along with Boswellia to help maintain healthy blood-toxin levels. In addition to adding herbs to one’s diet, one should be very careful to eat a healthy and balanced diet and exercise regularly to re-balance the body. Ayurveda also recommends the use of herbal massage oils to cool and soothe inflamed joints and muscles.

Click Here for Tattva’s Herbs Boswellia.

Ayurveda and Joint Health

Depending on a person’s lifestyle, diet, and emotional pattern, either vata, pitta, or kapha  goes out of balance. Then that particular dosha slows down agni (digestive fire), resulting in the toxic, sticky by-product of inadequate digestion known as ama.

Vata, the main active dosha, brings the ama into the colon, and from there it travels through the system and lodges in the bone tissue and in the joints, giving rise to the stiffness and pain characteristic of arthritis.

Ayurveda attempts to remove the ama from the joints and bring it back to the colon, and then to eliminate it. To do this, we need to keep the colon clean. Triphala is the most commonly prescribed herb for cleansing the colon, or the combination of Triphala & Guggul. Ayurveda recommends general techniques for increasing the intensity of the digestive fire (agni) in order to burn up the toxins that are harming the body. This can be done with dietary changes, such as adding more spices to the diet, such as turmeric, chilis, pepper, cardamom and cloves when cooking- but also taking the herbal extractions such as Turmeric, and Boswellia can be very effective in reduction of pain and swelling, and ease of movement, while Ashwagandha can help with balancing the doshas and relieving stress.

Various oils may be applied to the skin in order to help the body clear toxins, relieve pain and restore mobility. Two oils in particular have been used in Ayurveda for thousands of years- these are Maha Vishgarbha oil and Mahanarayan oil. They are both formulations of many herbs usually mixed in a base of sesame oil. Massaging the painful areas can improve flexibility, stiffness, muscle fatigue, body circulation and can help with pain This oil also breaks up blockages and begins to heal locally. After oil application, warm heat, yoga, bath, or mild exercise further improves this situation.

Tattva’s Herbs also carries a muscle & joint care oil that works well for the pain associated with not just arthritis, but also painful joints due to injury, overuse, or muscle tension due to stress.