Boswellia Health Benefits
Boswellia health benefits include anti-inflammatory abilities which may help in treating BPH and prostatitis or chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS). The herb may also have an effect on prostate cancer cells. Experts believe boswellia gets its anti-inflammatory properties from more than a dozen components.
Boswellia (Boswellia serrata), or Indian frankincense, is an Ayurvedic herb that is derived from the resin of the boswellia tree. Traditionally boswellia has been used to treat inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and asthma, as well as coughs and snakebites. Still today, fighting inflammation is one of the most important boswellia health benefits.
In fact, researchers in India identified several of the components in boswellia that are responsible for fighting inflammation. (Siddiqui 2011) However, boswellia health benefits may extend beyond anti-inflammatory properties. Boswellia health benefits may come at least partially from its most commonly known component, called boswellic acid, which has been credited with anticancer potential.
A study published in Cancer Research reported that boswellic acid inhibited human prostate tumor growth. It accomplished this by interfering with a process that involves the development of blood vessels that nourish tumors. (Pang 2009) In a subsequent study, researchers purified three acids from the resin of boswellia. When they used these acids in laboratory studies, they found that they possessed some antitumor properties in prostate cancer animal models. (Estrada 2010) Thus far, however, no other studies have shown boswellia to be effective in fighting prostate cancer.
Boswellia supplements are available as tablets and capsules standardized to 65 percent boswellic acids. Side effects from taking boswellia are rare but may include diarrhea, nausea, heartburn, and rash. If you are interested in boswellia health benefits, consult a healthcare professional about the risks and advantages before taking boswellia supplements.
Estrada AC et al. Tirucallic acids are novel pleckstrin homology domain-dependent Akt inhibitors inducing apoptosis in prostate cancer cells. Molecular Pharmacology 2010 Mar; 77(3): 378-87
Pang X et al. Acetyl-11-keto-beta-boswellic acid inhibits prostate tumor growth by suppressing vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2-mediated angiogenesis. Cancer Res 2009 Jul 15; 69(14): 5893-900
Siddiqui MZ. Boswellia serrate, a potential anti-inflammatory agent: an overview. Indian Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 2011 May; 73(3): 255-61