How Frankincense Relieves Inflammatory Arthritis

It’s incredible how much you learn when looking for a solution. I’ve been searching for a natural remedy to help my inflammatory arthritis that has plagued me since having my second baby. (Read more about my postpartum joint pain and all that I’ve done here.)

Use Frankincense to Treat Inflammatory Arthritis: Phase out the Pharmaceuticals

Image by ergsart via Flickr. Image altered.

We’ve all heard of essential oils, I’m sure your Facebook at one time was spammed with a rep trying to sell you some.

However, there is incredible healing truth in some natural oils.

Independently, I’ve researched numerous unbiased studies that all show that Frankincense is not only an effective analgesic (a pain reliever) for arthritis, but it actually assists in halting rheumatic disease (among many other diseases too). I will share with you what I’ve learned so my efforts aren’t selfishly lost with just me and my situation.  

Frankincense and Myrrh heal arthritis

Image by lalithmba via Flickr

How Frankincense Relieves Inflammatory Arthritis

Frankincense reduces inflammation

Frankincense is actually not a true essential oil, it’s a resin distilled from the sap of a bosweilla tree. This sap has long been utilized in Asian and African folk medicine. It’s no wonder research studies have found it to be extremely effective in reducing whole body inflammation and therefore effective in relieving all forms of arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and Chron’s disease. (1) 

This is huge! It is common knowledge now in the medical community that ALL diseases stem from inflammation in the body.

Cancer, autoimmune issues, heart disease, diabetes – any and all diseases – first start with inflammation.

Therefore, if you are able to reduce or prevent inflammation from occurring in the first place, disease will be prevented and a quality lifespan will increase. Bottom line, even if your ailment isn’t “that bad” it would be more than prudent to invest in your future by supplementing with this incredible oil. I’m now having my husband take it as well to reduce his inflammation from stress and to prevent any disease from manifesting. I’m also rubbing it on my children’s feet as a preventive health measure.

For the science lovers out there, here are a couple specific physiologic facts as to how Frankincense works in the body to reduce inflammation:

  • Frankincense’s natural anti-inflammatory activity is due to it’s ability to regulate immune cytokine production and leukocyte infiltration. (2) 
  • It is responsible for inhibition of pro-inflammatory enzymes. “Acetyl-11-keto-β-boswellic acid is the most potent inhibitor of 5-lipoxygenase, an enzyme responsible for inflammation.” (3)

The Healing Properties of Frankincense

The most incredible thing is that many oils, including Frankincense, have been shown to possess anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-carcinogenic (anti-cancer), and anti-neoplastic (anti-tumor) properties. (4) 

The laundry list of medicinal abilities it has is just jaw-dropping! A systematic review was completed on 47 studies that tested Frankincense’s ability to treat asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, osteoarthritis and colitis. All 47 studies showed that Frankincense (B serrata) extracts were clinically effective. (5)

Use Frankincense to Treat Inflammatory Arthritis: Phase out the Pharmaceuticals

Image by skelebear via Flickr.

A Word on Pharmaceuticals 

In the pharmaceutical world today, each one of the healing properties listed above (anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-carcinogenic (anti-cancer), and anti-neoplastic (anti-tumor) properties) would have it’s own class of drugs. And you bet they would all provide a list of side effects that require it’s own pharmaceutical to treat the side effects. Results? Now you’re on two then three then four medications, when initially you just needed one. 

A classic example is when you treat a basic infection like a UTI (urinary tract infection) or a cold (that could have very well been a virus) with a broad-spectrum antibiotic. A broad-spectrum antibiotic is one that destroys all kinds of bacteria in the body, including the good, bad and indifferent. Now, due to the antibiotic, you get a yeast infection which now requires another prescription.

Antibiotics were an incredible discovery, no doubt. They have, and continue to save many lives but the overuse of them in humans and animals has caused dire consequences that will haunt the human population from here on out. (But that’s another story for another post!)

It was not uncommon for me to see a list of over 20 medications ordered, routinely or as needed, for patients I saw in the sub-acute and long-term care hospitals. The need for most of these medications may have been prevented with a healthy, whole food, low sugar diet and alternative therapy used in the correct way.

All this said, there is absolutely a time and a place for prescription medications.

And oils, despite their incredible properties, are not a replacement for good medical care and when needed, pharmaceutical medication. 

The Combined Effects of Myrrh and Frankincense

Just when you think Frankincense is the all and all, you see studies that test the combined effects of Frankincense and Myrrh. In China, Frankincense and Myrrh are often used together due to the synergistic effects of pain relief and activating blood circulation, especially to treat inflammatory diseases A study done with the help of arthritic rats revealed that frankincense and myrrh, together, helped to suppress inflammation and intensity of joint inflammation. (4) 

Like Frankincense, Myrrh is known to posses anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial, anti-parasitic properties.(6) Myrrh extract is effective at significantly reducing swelling in hands and feet. It is thought to work by “reducing the levels of leukotaxine (a chemical produced by injured tissue that causes inflammation) as well as helping to reduce the permeability of blood capillaries, which can also add to inflammation and pain in joints and surrounding tissue.” Dr Robert Jacobs, a GP from the UK conducted a trial on 30 patients. He found that oral administration of Myrrh, when taken orally also helped reduce inflammation associated with the GI diseases ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease (inflammatory diseases). (4) 

I’ve just ordered a bottle of Myrrh to combine with my Frankincense, so we shall see how it goes! 

Use Frankincense to Treat Inflammatory Arthritis: Phase out the Pharmaceuticals

Image by by Honolulu Media via Flickr. Image altered.

How to Use Frankincense Oil

So how do you use Frankincense oil? There are four ways healing oils can be used:

  • Internally
  • Sublingual (under the tongue)
  • Topically
  • Diffusion


I am taking Frankincense sublingually, as studies suggest this is how to improve cellular and immune function. How much? I take 2-3 drops under the tongue in the morning and at night. One study found 3.6g daily is effective at relieving arthritis symptoms. Each drop of my Frankincense contains 60mg, so that means I am taking exactly 3.6g/day.


I am rolling Frankincense on the girls’ feet once a day. With topical application, it is said to have powerful spiritual and emotional benefits plus it is absorbed in the system so I’m certain they will be gaining the health properties as well.

I also just began to apply it to the wrinkles on my smile lines, as it’s been used for beauty benefits for centuries.


When diffused, it’s said to promote peace, relaxation, satisfaction, and overall wellness.

Safety of Internal Administration

I have always used essential oils I picked up at the grocery store in my diffuser to make the house smell good. However, now that I wanted to take oils internally, I wasn’t taking any chances with just any oil. I wanted to be confident that what I was ingesting was 100% safe. So, I took the plunge and purchased a certified pure, therapeutic-grade oil kit. 

Contact Me

If you have any questions about the oils I’m taking, you can contact me and I’ll be able to assist you the best I can! 

I wish you health and happiness, naturally. 



THE INFORMATION PROVIDED DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. All content information is intended to be for general informational purposes only. Please see your doctor with regard to information attained from the above article if you are concerned with the health of your child. The content above is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. NEVER NEGLECT YOUR DOCTOR’S PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE BECAUSE OF SOMETHING YOU HAVE READ. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The product mentioned is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease.

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  1. Max June 22, 2018
    • Jessa Nowak July 5, 2018
  2. APRIL July 16, 2018
    • Jessa Nowak July 16, 2018
  3. Paula February 7, 2019

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