The well-known story of the three Magi bringing gifts to the newborn baby in Bethlehem is a cherished vision, but the value of those gifts is often underrated by those who don’t understand how priceless these essences were to people living in those regions of the world during the first century.
Ancient medical documents dating back to 1500 B.C. list frankincense, as well as myrrh, as remedies for certain illnesses. Frankincense oil held a regal position next to gold in that society (though the oil was not obtained in the same way we do modern distillation); It was used to treat skin blemishes and wrinkles, as well as viral infections and depression.
Frankincense (Boswellia carteri) is closely related to myrrh (Commiphora myrrha); both are species of balsams. Boswellia carteri, also known as olibanum, originated in the Middle East and Africa. The resin is harvested from these small knotted balsam trees, and then distilled to produce an essential oil.
The use of frankincense is well documented during Biblical times to treat a number of physical, as well as spiritual issues, and new research is exploring the ability of frankincense oil to stimulate human growth hormone (HGH) production in the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. The pituitary gland slows down the production of HGH after the age of thirty, so the body begins to show signs of aging.
Facial lines and creases, as well as sags and wrinkles begin to surface as HGH production slows down, but when frankincense oil is used, wrinkles seem to disappear. Compounds known as sesquiterpenes that are found in frankincense oil work to fortify the limbic system, stimulating the key glands that secrete the hormones responsible not only for regulating the aging process, but for regulating the health of the cells in all organs in the body. Reducing wrinkles is one of frankincense oil’s strong points; all the better if it is a function of restored hormone functions in the body.