Can you eat frankincense?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you eat frankincense?”, and what are the health benefits of frankincense?

Can you eat frankincense?

Yes, you can eat frankincense. Do not take frankincense tablets or supplements without consulting your doctor.

What is the Effective dosage of frankincense? 

The safe and effective dosage of frankincense varies from person to person. Therefore, it is important to get in touch with your doctor before taking frankincense supplements. 

Self-medication can sometimes have negative consequences. The safe dosage of frankincense for individuals suffering from several conditions is given below. These dosages comply with scientific studies.

Asthma 200 or 500 mg per day
IBS 250 mg per day
Osteoarthritis 170 mg, twice per day
Ulcerative colitis 250 mg per day

The recommended dosage for using frankincense to improve oral health and in creams is unknown.

Health benefits of frankincense 

May reduce arthritis

The anti-inflammatory properties of frankincense can help prevent arthritis. This is attributed to the presence of two main compounds, known as terpenes and boswellic acid, in frankincense. 

These compounds work antagonistically to the inflammation-causing compound known as leukotrienes

Frankincense may also prevent the joint pain that occurs due to rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. More scientific research needs to be conducted to prove the positive impact of frankincense on rheumatoid arthritis.

May improve gut function

The anti-inflammatory properties of frankincense are also effective in preventing gut disorders. 

A 2017 study showed that frankincense, in combination with some herbal medicines, relieved abdominal pain, bloating, and even associated depression and anxiety in people suffering from IBS. 

Several other studies have shown that the intake of Boswellia supplements efficiently reduced the symptoms of ulcerative colitis.

Improves asthma 

Frankincense has been used for ages to treat bronchitis and asthma. Certain anti-inflammatory compounds in frankincense prevent inflammation and the production of mucus by preventing the release of leukotrienes and Th2 cytokines.

Mainatins oral health 

The anti-bacterial properties of frankincense keep the mouth clean and prevent oral infections. Studies have shown that frankincense inhibits the growth of Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans; the bacteria responsible for most gum infections.

May have anti-cancer properties 

Several test-tube studies have proven the anti-cancer properties of frankincense. This is ascribed to the Boswellic acids present in the frankincense. It may help prevent breast, prostate, pancreatic, skin, and colon cancer cells.

Common myths 

Helps prevnts diabetes 

The myth claims that frankincense can help prevent diabetes by controlling blood sugar levels. But there is not enough scientific evidence to support this claim.

Reduces stress, anxiety, and depression

Several lab tests on rats have shown that frankincense helped relieve the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression. There is a lack of human-based experiments to support this claim.

Prevents heart diseases

Inflammation is the leading cause of heart disease. The anti-inflammatory properties are well-known and backed by scientific evidence. However, the positive effect of frankincense in preventing heart disease needs more experimentation.

Promotes smooth skin

Frankincense essential oil is effective against acne and anti-aging signs. However, the lack of scientific evidence makes this claim doubtful.

Improves memory 

Lab tests showed that frankincense supplements improve the memory of rats used as specimens. More experiments and evidence are needed to validate this theory in humans.

Balances hormones and reduces the symptoms of PMS

The positive effect of frankincense in alleviating menstrual cramping, nausea, headaches, and mood swings and delaying menopause needs more scientific evidence.

Enhances fertility 

Few studies have shown that frankincense supplements improved fertility in rats. More experiments need to be conducted on humans to support this claim.

How to use frankincense?

It could be used topically or taken orally in the form of capsules or tablets. Consult with your health care provider before taking frankincense supplements. 

For topical use, it is better to combine frankincense with a carrier oil. This reduces the viscosity of frankincense essential oil. This essential oil is inhaled as a part of aromatherapy.

Mix a drop or two of frankincense essential oil with your favorite oil like almond oil or lotion to apply to the skin. 

Mix some frankincense essential oil with milk and mix it in your bath water to create an aromatic soap. Applying frankincense oil to pulse points during meditation or yoga or to a hot compress can help you relax.

Possible side effects 

Reported side effects of the overdose of frankincense include indigestion, constipation, and nausea. Research is underway on the effectiveness of frankincense in treating covid-19.

Frankincense hinders the working of certain medications, especially blood thinners (e.g warfarin) and possibly nonsteroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen. 

Special precautions and warning 

Pregnant and breastfeeding women have low immunity and are going through many hormonal changes. Therefore, such women should not take any medication, be it frankincense, without consulting their doctor. 


In this article, we answered the question “Can you eat frankincense?”, and what are the health benefits of frankincense?


Hello, I'm Sana Ameer. I'm a student of Food Science and Technology at UVAS. I like to bake and I aspire to become a Food blogger.