Boswellia is a very popular herb taken by people who want to reduce inflammation and pain. This aligns with boswellia’s traditional usage for arthritis, skin disorders, and general inflammation.
There are many different boswellia supplements one could buy. However, only a handful meet top-of-the-line industry standards for safety, quality, and overall effectiveness.
In this article, we’re going over the best boswellia supplements for anyone interested in reducing pain, combating inflammation, and supporting overall wellness.
Table of Contents
- The Best Boswellia Supplement Brands
- What is Boswellia?
- Potential Health Benefits of Boswellia
- Types of Boswellia:
- What Form of Boswellia is Best?
- Concentration & Dosage:
- How are Boswellia Supplements Made?
The Best Boswellia Supplement Brands
Boswellia supplements, like any product, need to be well-tested, safe, properly dosed, and optimally sourced, among other critical factors.
We’ve scanned the web for only the best boswellia supplements and brands and have determined five that stand out from the rest.
1. Utzy Naturals
Utzy Naturals Inflavinol is the best all-around boswellia supplement. This formula includes a trademarked, well-researched form of boswellia called Casperome®, which has direct benefits for inflammation and pain. It’s also well-dosed at 250mg per serving.
Utzy Naturals is also a very well-trusted company, with over 40 years of experience creating herbal supplements. All of their products are tested in-house and by third-party labs for purity, safety, and effectiveness. And they also have a certificate of analysis to view, which isn’t offered by many other companies.
- Third-party tested
- Effective dose
- Includes other supporting ingredients
- Well-trusted, experienced company
- Clinically-researched form of boswellia
- Sustainable glass bottles
- Contains more than just Boswellia, which adds extra cost
- Only in capsule form
2. Herb Pharm
Herb Pharm Boswellia is a great choice particularly if you want a boswellia tincture supplement. Their formula contains Certified Organic boswellia extract which is sourced from India.
Additionally, they use a liquid extract to enhance digestibility and ingredient absorption. The dose is also quite high at 602mg per serving.
Herb Pharm is one of the top herbal brands on the market. Every product is sourced using only ingredients from Certified Organic farms. Their products are non-GMO, third-party tested, and free from major allergens. Additionally, Herb Pharm is a Certified B Corporation, which means it’s held to the highest standards for brand accountability and transparency.
Altogether, Herb Pharm Boswellia is the best boswellia tincture supplement.
- Certified Organic
- Third-party tested
- Liquid extract for enhanced bioavailability
- Solid dose per serving
- Certified B Corporation
- Not available in capsules or other forms
- May not taste great for some people
Himalaya has a very well-formulated boswellia serrata extract supplement. Their boswellia formula comes from a sustainably harvested oleo-gum-resin extract, which is designed to be superior to conventional boswellia powders and extracts.
Himalaya Boswellia also contains 250mg of boswellia per serving and is standardized to contain 60% boswellic acids.
Himalaya is one of the most experienced herbal dietary supplement companies out there, with a solid reputation since 1930. They are a family-owned company and control all aspects of harvesting, manufacturing, and distribution processes. And they only use herbs that come from sustainable, traditional farming and harvesting methods with ideal growing conditions.
Himalaya Boswellia is also made in a cGMP, FDA-approved facility and is third-party tested for purity and potency.
Overall, Himalaya has the best boswellia serrata extract supplement.
- Very experienced, well-trusted company
- High-quality form of boswellia
- Third-party tested
- Sustainably sourced from India (native region)
- High dose of boswellic acids
- Not available in powder or other forms
- Some may require higher dose, which can get to be a lot of capsules
4. Double Wood Supplements
Double Wood Supplements offers a very affordable boswellia supplement. Each capsule contains 500mg of boswellia serrata extract standardized for 65% boswellic acids.
Double Wood Supplements Boswellia Extract is made in the USA in a cGMP, FDA-registered facility. It’s non-GMO, vegan, and third-party tested, with an available Certificate of Analysis to view.
This product is also very budget-friendly, at just $19.95 for 120 servings. There are also subscription savings and bulk purchasing options to save more money too.
Ultimately, this is why Double Wood Supplements earns the best budget brand for boswellia.
- Very affordable
- High dose per serving
- Standardized for boswellic acids
- Third-party tested
- Non-GMO, Vegan
- Not certified organic
- Unavailable in other product forms (e.g. powder)
- Plastic bottle
5. True Veda
True Veda is a high-quality, well-formulated boswellia supplement. Each serving (two capsules) contains 900mg of organic boswellia serrata extract, standardized to contain 75% concentration of boswellic acid. Importantly, they source their boswellia directly from organic Indian farms.
Additionally, True Veda Organic Boswellia Serrata is USDA Organic, Soil Association Organic, , cGMP, and vegan-friendly. It is also third-party tested at three different stages to ensure purity, safety, and potency.
True Veda is a well-respected company with numerous awards in the supplement industry. They value transparency, safety, and overall efficacy.
Altogether, True Veda is the best organic boswellia brand.
- Certified Organic by two associations (USDA & Soil Association)
- High dose of boswellia per serving
- High concentration of boswellic acid
- Third-party tested at three stages
- Sourced from organic Indian farms
- Only available in capsules
- May have limited supply at times due to small company size
- Plastic bottles
What is Boswellia?
When used as an herbal supplement, boswellia most often refers to the gum resin (or “sap”) extracted from the Boswellia (Boswellia serrata) tree, which is found in various parts of Asia and Africa. This herb also goes by other names such as Indian frankincense or just frankincense.
Boswellia is one of the most common herbs used in Ayurveda, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and other traditional medicine systems, particularly for inflammation, pain, and asthma, among other conditions. Additionally, it was used as incense in cultural and religious ceremonies.
There are many bioactive components in boswellia, including various triterpenes and essential oils. Within this group, the boswellic acids seem to have the greatest health benefits, which is why many supplements are standardized to contain a high percentage of boswellic acids per serving.
Potential Health Benefits of Boswellia
Boswellia has several potential health benefits, which are all backed up by varying degrees of clinical evidence.
These possible boswellia benefits include:
1. May Reduce Inflammation
There is a lot of clinical research which shows that boswellia may reduce inflammation and inflammatory-related conditions, such as arthritis. Boswellia contains triterpenoids compounds, especially various boswellic acids, that appear to inhibit numerous pro-inflammatory enzymes, such as 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX). Boswellia’s ability to lower inflammation may make this a helpful herb for Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
2. May Improve Arthritis Symptoms
Boswellia may also reduce arthritis symptoms, particularly osteoarthritis. Evidence shows that boswellic acids in Boswellia can reduce 5-LOX and other inflammatory enzymes, while also inhibiting the expression of adhesion molecules and other inflammatory factors that contribute to arthritis. Overall, Boswellia appears effective for reducing pain and improves physical function in people with osteoarthritis.
3. May Support Skin Health
Research shows that boswellia may offer benefits for a number of skin conditions. Triterpenes and other compounds in boswellia have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial activities, which may all contribute to healthier skin. In particular, boswellia has been shown to offer benefits for acne, wrinkles, healthy skin aging, dryness, eczema, redness, and sunspots, among a few other skin-related conditions.
4. May Help With Asthma
Boswellia may also improve asthma symptoms and general respiratory function. This is thought to stem from boswellic acids, which have been shown to reduce inflammatory cytokines and general inflammation in the airway. These effects may also help to open up the bronchial airways, improving overall breathing.
5. May Promote Healthier Blood Sugar
Another potential benefit of boswellia serrata is improved blood sugar levels. Research shows that boswellic acids and other components in boswellia may have an anti-inflammatory effect, which in turn can improve insulin function, glucose levels, and other related metabolic aspects. Interestingly, these benefits seem to be for people with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes, as both of these conditions have some roots in inflammation-related insulin disruption.
Types of Boswellia:
While there are many different Boswellia species, there are only four major ones used to produce frankincense extract. These are:
- Boswellia serrata
- Boswellis sacra
- Boswellia papyrifera
- Boswellia frereana
And among these forms, extracts of Boswellia serrata and Boswellia sacra have the highest concentration of boswellic acids.
Furthermore, when comparing these two, Boswellia serrata is by far the most popular form used for boswellia extract supplements, although it’s not necessarily the only beneficial type.
What Form of Boswellia is Best?
Ultimately, it’s best to choose Boswellia serrata because this form is the most well-researched type of boswellia since it has the highest amount of boswellic acids, which are the most important bioactive compounds in boswellia for health benefits.
The other species mentioned are still likely beneficial. However, they simply don’t have as much clinical research behind them.
Also, regardless of the form, it’s important to only choose supplements that use the gum resin extract, as it is the only part of Boswellia that’s high in boswellic acids.
Concentration & Dosage:
The recommended dosage of Boswellia depends on the exact product form. In general, though, 300 to 400mg of Boswellia (standardized for roughly 60% boswellic acids) taken up to three times per day seems effective.
Certain trademarked forms such as 5-Loxin®, Aflapin®, and Casperome® may not require as high of a dose (around 100 to 250mg) due to their particular high concentration of boswellic acids and unique bioavailability properties.
How are Boswellia Supplements Made?
Boswellia supplements are made using the gum resin from the Boswellia tree. This is done by extracting the resin from the bark. Once this resin is collected, it is ground into a fine powder. From there, it can be made into a powder, capsule, liquid extract, or even topical gel/cream.
Often, companies go through standardization procedures to make sure boswellia contains a certain percentage of boswellic acids or other bioactive compounds in each serving.
Is Boswellia Safe to Take?
Of course, safety is never 100% guaranteed, and individual effects may vary.
Some of the possible side effects of boswellia serrata include:
• Stomach pain
Is Boswellia the Same as Frankincense?
Yes. Both terms refer to the extract taken from the resin from the Boswellia tree. However, most dietary supplements are referred to as boswellia, whereas the essential oils are most often referred to as frankincense or Indian frankincense, even though they involve the same general substance.
How Does Boswellia Work in the Body?
Boswellia is rich in compounds called boswellic acids. These inhibit several pro-inflammatory enzymes, which ultimately results in decreased inflammation in many systems of the body. And it is these effects which carry over into many of the other benefits of boswellia, such as improved arthritis symptoms, asthma reduction, healthier skin, and improved insulin function.
Boswellia supplements and extracts are highly popular for reducing inflammation and pain, while also offering other potential health benefits. Indeed, clinical research has shown that boswellia has many potential benefits, including reduced inflammation, improved arthritis symptoms, healthier skin, balanced blood sugar, and improved asthma.
However, it’s important to talk with your doctor before taking any boswellia supplements as individual results and side effects will vary.
Additionally, supplement quality is of utmost importance to ensure that one will receive these benefits. That’s why it’s essential to choose boswellia supplements only from reputable companies, and that are properly dosed, concentrated for boswellic acids, and thoroughly tested for safety, purity, and potency.
Overall, boswellia has been initiating health benefits for hundreds of years, and the use of high-quality, well-respected boswellia supplements may help to continue that trend.