My Love Affair with Frankincense

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I have used essential oils for decades, and have a huge inventory of different doTerra brand oils, which I use on a daily basis for everything from preventing illness to making our home smell wonderful. I must own 200 or more bottles of doTerra essential oils in varying sizes and formulations.  Frankincense is my most frequently used and most highly esteemed essential oil.

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Much doTerra literature recommends ingesting oils for various ailments. I do not agree with doTerra’s recommendations for ingesting oils.  As a scientist, with a masters degree in Psychology, I have had to conduct countless hours of research for various projects.  The one thing I have noted about my research on essential oils is that their primary dangers manifest when the oils are swallowed, so I never do that, nor do i recommend that anyone else ingest them.

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I might use a product, such as toothpaste, in my mouth, or apply frankincense to my gums, if need be, but I will not swallow it.  Despite doTerra’s claims, doing so is dangerous.

Essential oils are best used for their therapeutic properties and healing abilities through topical and aromatic uses. It is made from the leaves, roots or stems of various plants in highly concentrated forms, and is used for many different things.  I use it for making my own household cleaning products, for aromatic therapies and for, as mentioned earlier, making our home smell wonderful. I love its earthy, spicy aroma with its fruity undertones.  I love its fresh, clean, slightly sweet scent.

Frankincense essential oil is made from the sap of the Boswella Carterii tree or the Boswellia Sacra tree.  Both are grown in and around the Arabian Penisula, especially in India, Oman, Yemen, Somolia and Ethiopia. The oil is sometimes referred to as Olibanum oil.  The word frankincense comes from the term “franc encens,” which means quality incense in old French. Frankincense has been associated with many different religions over the years, especially the Christian religion, as it was one of the first gifts given to Jesus by the wise men.

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Since the early days of Christianity, Biblical scholars and theologians have offered varying interpretations of the meaning and significance of the frankincense that the magi presented to Jesus, according to the Gospel of Matthew (2:11). Biblical theorists suggest that it might have been presented as a means to prevent arthritis, as was the custom of the times.

Today, Frankincense is used a variety of ways that adhere to modern culture and the quest for products that are more adaptable to a natural healing process.  Here are some uses that I employ personally, and would like to share with you:

  • FIY natural household cleaners
  • Stress relief
  • Natural hygiene products
  • DIY anti-aging cosmetic treatments
  • Indigestion (through diffusion only, and not by drinking the oil!)
  • Scar treatments
  • Scalp treatments
  • Gum treatments
  • Insect bites
  • Treatment of colds (external use only!)
  • Sore joints
  • Many other uses

doTerra is not the only company that sells high quality, pure, theraputic grade essential oils, although many oils are inferior to this brand.  Many essential oil manufacturers cut the potency of their oils by adding carrier oils and other ingredients that make the oils less effective. I have recently discovered the Essential Oil Labs brand, which is highly comparable in quality, at a fraction of the cost that doTerra brand charges, and there are other brands as well.

My personal criteria for buying oils is that they be pure, organic (if possible), cruelty free and ethically harvested and manufactured.  Other than doTerra, I like to buy my oils from small, independently run companies that harvest and manufacture oils in small batches.

I feel that using essential oils has enhanced my life and the lives of my family members exponentially, but I urge anyone who is new to this endeavor to explore the empirical research on their safe use, and to not simply do something based on a single isolated study.  Research an entire body of evidence to find out if essential oils are right for you.

 

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