Is Boswellia Safe?

2023-10-26 17:16:09

Boswellia, also known as Indian frankincense, is an herbal excerpt taken from the Boswellia serrata tree. This ancient remedy has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese drug. moment, Boswellia is gaining fashionability in Western drug for itsanti-inflammatory and pain- relieving parcels. But is Boswellia safe? Let's take a closer look at this herbal supplement.


What is Boswellia?

Boswellia is a tree native to India, Africa, and the Middle East. The sticky resin uprooted from the dinghy of the Boswellia tree contains salutary phytochemicals called boswellic acids. These composites give Boswellia itsanti-inflammatory and analgesic( pain- relieving) parcels.

Boswellia resin has been used in folk drug for conditions like arthritis, asthma, seditious bowel complaint( IBD), and bronchitis. Traditionally, it was burned as incense during religious observances. moment, Boswellia supplements are available as capsules, tablets, creams, and essential canvases . The most common uses are supporting joint, respiratory, and gut health.

Health Benefits of Boswellia

Extensive research in the past few decades has uncovered Boswellia's mechanisms and confirmed many of its traditional uses. Here are some of the key research-backed benefits:

- Joint pain and arthritis:Several studies have found that Boswellia improves pain, swelling and mobility in people with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It appears to inhibit inflammatory enzymes and cytokines, reducing joint inflammation and damage [1, 2].

- Asthma:Boswellia supplements may reduce asthma symptoms like wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness. A study gave people with asthma 300 mg of Boswellia Serrata Extract Powder daily for 6 weeks. 70% of the group had improved breathing capacity and asthma symptoms [3].

- seditious bowel complaint( IBD) In colorful studies of people with Crohn's complaint or ulcerative colitis, Boswellia Extract reduced labels of inflammation and bettered symptoms like diarrhea, abdominal pain, and bowel movements [4, 5].

- Immune modulation:Compounds in Boswellia called AKBA have immunosuppressive effects that may be beneficial for autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and psoriasis [6].

- Stress and mood:Early research indicates Boswellia supports healthy mood balance during stressful situations. It appears to buffer stress-related changes in neurotransmitter levels and cortisol [7].

- Cognitive function: An animal study showed Boswellia extract improved memory and protected the brain from oxidative damage in rats. More research is needed to confirm benefits in humans [8].

How Does Boswellia Work?

The beneficial mechanisms of Boswellia center around modulation of the immune system and inflammation pathways.

Boswellic acids in the supplement inhibit the exertion of an enzyme called 5- LOX( 5- lipoxygenase). 5- LOX stimulates the product of leukotrienes,pro-inflammatory chemicals that promote pain, swelling, and bronchial condensation( 9).

Boswellia also blocks the release of immune signaling proteins called cytokines. Cytokines ramp up the inflammatory response, so limiting them reduces inflammation and damage to joints and tissues [10].

also, AKBA and other boswellic acids have antioxidant parcels that cover cells from free radical damage( 11). The combination of theseanti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and vulnerable- balancing goods make Boswellia an effective remedy for numerous conditions.

Safety and Side Effects of Boswellia

Overall, Boswellia is well tolerated by most people with minimal side effects. Mild side goods can include nausea, acid influx, diarrhea, and rash. Boswellia may stimulate blood inflow in the uterus, so pregnant women should avoid it.

Boswellia excerpt appears safe for long- term supplementation, though optimal lozenge and duration haven't been established. One study gave people with osteoarthritis 1,000 mg daily for a time with no serious adverse goods( 13).

still, Boswellia may interact with specifics that affect blood clotting, blood sugar, vulnerable function, and the liver. People taking anticoagulant or antiplatelet medicines, diabetes specifics, immunosuppressants, NSAIDs, and certain sauces and supplements should use Boswellia cautiously and consult their healthcare provider( 14).

Dosage Information

For general wellness, the standard Boswellia dosage is 300-500 mg per day of extract standardized to contain 30-40% boswellic acids. For therapeutic benefits, the research-backed dosage is higher at 800-1,000 mg daily. It may take 2-8 weeks to see the full effects.

Boswellia is best taken with food to minimize stomach upset. The resin extract has low bioavailability, meaning fairly large doses are needed for adequate absorption. Take Boswellia with a meal containing fats or piperine from black pepper, which enhances absorption [15].

Who Shouldn't Take Boswellia?

These individuals should avoid using Boswellia extract unless approved by their doctor:

- Pregnant or breastfeeding women

- Children and adolescents under 18

- People with bleeding disorders

- Anyone taking anticoagulant or antiplatelet medications

- People with diabetes, autoimmune conditions, liver disease, or kidney disease

- Individuals having surgery in the next 2 weeks (may slow blood clotting)

Is Boswellia Safe for Kidneys?

In healthy adults, normal doses of Boswellia do not appear to adversely affect the kidneys. However, there is not much research on Boswellia's safety for people with pre-existing kidney dysfunction.

One study gave people with chronic kidney disease a combination supplement containing Boswellia, curcumin, and quercetin for 6 months. No negative effects on kidney function were observed [16]. But until more is known, people with impaired kidney function should use Boswellia with caution or avoid it.

Can Boswellia Be Taken Daily?

Yes, for most healthy adults Boswellia Serrata Powder can be taken daily long-term, provided the dosage guidelines are followed. Studies using daily supplementation for 6-12 months have not uncovered any concerning side effects [13].

As a natural anti-inflammatory, Boswellia is well suited for chronic inflammatory conditions like arthritis, IBD, and asthma that require daily management. But periodic breaks from any supplement are prudent. Cycling on and off Boswellia extract every few months gives your body a rest.

Always start with the lowest effective dose based on your health needs. Follow dosage instructions closely and monitor for any reactions. And check with your doctor before taking Boswellia regularly, especially if you take prescription medications.

Does Boswellia Really Work?

Clinical studies provide good evidence that Boswellia serrata extract can be an effective remedy, particularly for inflammatory conditions. The exploration suggests Boswellia can ameliorate symptoms of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, seditious bowel conditions, and conceivably certain brain, mood, and autoimmune diseases( 1, 3, 5, 7, 17).

Theanti-inflammatory exertion and analgesic parcels of boswellic acids are well proved. Individual results will vary depending on the condition, dosage, and extract potency. High quality supplements standardized to 30% AKBA or higher tend to be most effective. For some people, the benefits of Boswellia are quite noticeable.

Is Boswellia Hard on the Liver?

When taken in appropriate doses, Boswellia does not appear to pose any safety concerns for the liver. Human studies have not reported signs of liver toxicity or damage [13, 18].

However, a few isolated cases of liver injury potentially linked to Boswellia have been documented. The cause is not certain, but could involve an allergic-type reaction or contamination issues rather than a direct toxic effect [19].

Boswellia should be avoided by those with liver disease and used cautiously by anyone taking hepatotoxic drugs. Those with liver impairment should consult their doctor before trying Boswellia. For healthy individuals, periodic liver function testing is reasonable for long-term supplementation.

Which is Better - Turmeric or Boswellia?

Turmeric and Boswellia are both highly effective herbal anti-inflammatories. Which is better depends on the specific health condition and needs of each individual:

- For general inflammation, turmeric may be better as its active compound curcumin has broader anti-inflammatory effects throughout the body.

- For arthritis and joint pain, Boswellia may be superior. Numerous studies confirm its ability to improve osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

- For digestive inflammation like IBD, turmeric and Boswellia both help by reducing intestinal swelling and lesions. Turmeric may be a bit more potent and effective.

- For respiratory issues like asthma, Boswellia appears to be more beneficial and has shown efficacy for improving breathing capacity.

- Turmeric is an antioxidant powerhouse, while Boswellia's antioxidant activity is more mild. Turmeric offers more overall cellular protection.

- Boswellia may be the safer choice for people taking anticoagulant medications or those prone to kidney stones, as turmeric can sometimes exacerbate these conditions.

The best solution is often to take a combination supplement that includes both turmeric and Boswellia. Together, they provide broader anti-inflammatory coverage and synergistic effects for optimal therapeutic benefits. Always check with your healthcare provider before combining dietary supplements.


Boswellia serrata is an ancient herbal remedy that modern science has confirmed as an effective anti-inflammatory and painkiller. The boswellic acids in Boswellia resin help inhibit pro-inflammatory compounds that promote swelling, pain, and injury in tissues and joints.

Exploration suggests Boswellia is safe and salutary for conditions like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, seditious bowel complaint, and conceivably indeed brain and mood diseases. When taken in applicable boluses, side goods are generally mild.However, Boswellia may interact with certain medications and should be avoided by some individuals.

Talk to your integrative healthcare provider to see if Boswellia supplementation is right for your needs. With professional guidance, Boswellia extract can be a valuable part of a natural protocol to reduce inflammation and improve well-being.

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