• Philly Shiels

Frankincense: Ancient Wonder For A Modern Age

Updated: Jun 14

What do you think of when you hear the word ‘frankincense’?

“…Frankincense to offer have I Incense owns a Deity nigh Prayer and praising, all men raising, Worship him, God most high…”

– We Three Kings, John Henry Hopkins Jr, 1857.

Yup, most of us would say the same thing: the Three Kings and their gifts to the baby Jesus as told in Gospel of Matthew.

Depending on how much attention you paid in Sunday School, you might already be clued-up on the significance of the Wise Men’s opulent gifts. As highly precious and sought after items, they of course represent fabulous wealth, but each item also has a special symbolic purpose.

Gold was an appropriate gift for a royal personage. Myrrh suggests anointing and embalming, and so casts forward ominously to Christ’s death. Frankincense indicates that Jesus was more than ‘just a King’, though. This precious, difficult to obtain substance came from far away in modern-day Oman and was burned as an offering to God in the temples. Caspar unveiling it at the stable in Bethlehem pointed to Jesus as the son of God; a Saviour with divine duties to serve on earth.

2000 years later, we’re able to examine Frankincense’s properties and effects scientifically, and it transpires that this extract from the Boswellia Sacra trees in the valleys beyond the Dhofar mountains is something of a wonder-product. The list of potential benefits from using Frankincense in its many forms is astonishing, from inhaling the scent of the essential oil to reduce anxiety, lower heart rate and aid sleep, to researchers at Mansura University in Egypt discovering its significant immunostimulant capabilities. Put simply? Using frankincense can boost the immune system. The oil is a natural antiseptic, improves the elasticity and appearance of the skin (hence we include it as a major ingredient in our range of face oils and beauty products) and inhibits inflammation, helping those who suffer from painful conditions such as arthritis naturally.

Perhaps most exciting, though, is the work of Dr Mahmoud Suhail. Originally from Iraq and now living in Oman, Suhail has devoted most of his professional life to exploring the relationship between frankincense and cellular health; and specifically, how frankincense resin can be used in the fight against cancer. The results of his pre-clinical trials are compelling: patients in the late stages of breast cancer with carcinoembryonic antigen readings of 200+ international units per ml (the normal range is 5-10 international units per ml) dropped to readings of 18 in a matter of weeks and then lower again with one month after treatment with boswellia extract. He also talks about how pre-clinical trials across three clinics, including in Oklahoma in the USA, saw radical shrinking of tumours and benign biopsies taken from previously malignant tissues. His work is so inspiring – take a look at this video to learn more.


Yet this magical – and we don’t use that word lightly – resin is almost unheard of in medical circles in the Western world – why? Many reasons – the difficulty of obtaining funding for clinical trials and, more cynically, protecting the profits of ‘big pharma’ – but here at Hope in Health we want to bring the benefits of Frankincense to everyone. That’s why we’ve created our own Frankincense Tonic Water, composed of purified water and ingestible grade frankincense. After you’ve placed the frankincense teardrops into the bottle and left it to stand for 24 hours, simply shake and drink 250ml. Feeling more exhausted than fatigued and in desperate need of a pick-me-up? Drink twice a day. And if you’ve used up your month’s supply and are waiting for your next Hope in Health goody box to arrive, don’t despair – remove the resin from the bottle and chew like gum to release even more frankincense goodness 🙂

What does drinking Frankincense Tonic Water feel like? Happiness in a bottle. It heightens awareness, awakes the consciousness and keeps you in the moment. To pinch another not-so-virtuous brand’s slogan, it gives you wings. I’ve been drinking it for years now and I think of my life as ‘BFTW’ (Before Frankincense Tonic Water) and ‘AFTW’ (After Frankincense Tonic Water – I’ve never had more energy!

Go on, what are you waiting for? Give nature a try. You can shop our tonic here.