Boswellia Serrata is an ancient, prosaic, lackluster looking tree that's usually found in dry mountainous regions of the Middle East, Northern Africa, and India. The boswellia available as a supplement comes from the inner bark of the tree after an incision is made. It's slowly oozes out as a sap and dries and hardens before it's collected. It's classified as a gum resin, and has some very powerful medicinal properties with a pretty good amount of research to back it up. The active medicinal constituents are called boswellic acids, and this extract is standardized to contain a high amount of one of the most potent boswellic acids, AKBA. We have another boswellia that's extracted to contain a wider range of boswellic acids, but less AKBA.
Boswellic acids are some of the best anti-inflammatory substances around. Research has shown that it helps inhibit powerful inflammatory molecules such as NF-kB, leukotriene, and 5-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid synthesis. (1) There are multiple studies showing boswellia extracts help to improve arthritis and multiple types of pain. One study showed that 100mg of Boswellia standardized to 30% AKBA was able to reduce knee joint pain and stiffness in only 7 days, with maximum benefit coming after 90 days. (2) Another study showed clear improvement for patients with osteoperosis. (3)
What's also encouraging is that boswellia actually helped protect from the degradation of cartilage on osteoarthritic patients by reducing damaging molecules like matrix metalloproteinase-3, TNF-A, and possibly some others. (4) Boswellia has also been shown to restore integrity within weakened blood vessels and improve blood flow to injured joints. Other inflammatory conditions are positively affected by boswellic acids usually, and have some positive research as well. A human study actually showed a significant improvement of lipid profiles (lowered LDL/triglycerides, raised HDL) and fructosamine levels in people with diabetes. (5)
Boswellic acids also show tremendous potential to those looking to strengthen the immune system and cause anti-cancer mechanisms in the body to be up-regulated. One study showed that AKBA inhibited prostate cancer growth by suppressing a growth factor called vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2. AKBA also showed very significant and surprising effects with other types of cancer such as breast, colon, leukemia, pancreatic and more! Boswellic acids help the immune system by decreasing the production of certain pro-inflammatory cytokines and increasing the phagocytosis of macrophages. The boswellic acids been found to have an inhibiting effect on the formation of oxygen radicals and other molecules weaken the immune system and degenerate the body. (6-9)
Suggested use: 75-100mgs 2-3 times per day.