Plum Dragon Herbs

Ru Xiang (Frankincense)


Frankincense Resin, also known as Boswellia resin, is a natural product derived from the resin of the Boswellia tree. It is commonly used for its potential health benefits, including supporting joint health, reducing inflammation, and promoting relaxation. The active compounds in Ru Xiang include boswellic acids, which have anti-inflammatory properties, and terpenes, which are known for their calming effect on the mind and body. Frankincense has also been traditionally used to support digestive health and to improve the symptoms of certain skin conditions. Another use of Ru Xiang is for aromatherapy. Ru Xiang is generally considered safe when used as directed, but as with any supplement, it is always best to consult with a healthcare professional before adding it to your routine, particularly if you are taking any medications or have any medical conditions.

Frankincense invigorates the blood exhibits synergistic properties when coupled with Mo Yao (Myrrh). It's warm and aromatic nature make Ru Xiang useful in treating various conditions such as inflammation, pain, and digestive disorders. In TCM, Ru Xiang is believe to have the ability to promote blood circulation, relieve pain, and stimulate the immune system.  It can be used in combination with other herbs to enhance effectiveness and treat a wider range of conditions. 

High Quality Ru Xiang: What does it look like?

High quality Frankincense resin should have the following characteristics:


  • It should be solid and have a slightly sticky texture.
  • The color can range from light yellow to light brown, depending on the species of Boswellia.
  • The resin should be free of any dirt, dust or other foreign matter.


  • It should have a strong, resinous aroma that is characteristic of Frankincense.
  • It should not have any chemical or moldy odor.

Frankincense resin has been used for centuries in religious and cultural ceremonies, and it is also used in traditional medicine for its medicinal properties. It has been used as an anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and to soothe the digestive system, among other things. The resin can be used in a variety of forms, including as a resin incense, in essential oil blends, and as a supplement. It is important to consult with a qualified healthcare professional before taking any herbal supplement.

How is Ru Xiang prepared and processed?

Frankincense resin is a natural resin obtained from the Boswellia species of trees, which are native to the Arabian Peninsula and African regions - primarily Somalia, Yemen, Oman, and Ethipoia.  Boswellia carterii, also known as Frankincense, is a tree that is native to the dry, arid regions of North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. In order to grow optimally, Boswellia carterii requires a hot and arid climate with low rainfall and high temperatures. The tree prefers well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter, and it performs best in sandy, loamy soils. Boswellia carterii requires full sun to grow properly and is drought-tolerant, requiring very little water to grow. The tree can benefit from occasional applications of compost or well-rotted organic matter to provide additional nutrients, and it is relatively resistant to pests and diseases. However, if the soil is consistently too wet, Boswellia carterii can be affected by fungal infections. In traditional medicine, the resin from Boswellia carterii is used for its medicinal properties, which include anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving, and antiseptic properties. It is commonly used in aromatherapy and traditional medicine systems.

Plum Dragon Herbs offers Frankincense (Ru Xiang) in the traditional resin form. The resin is produced by making small incisions in the tree trunk, which cause the tree to release a sap-like substance that hardens into resin over time. The resin is harvested by hand, and the process typically begins several months after the initial incisions are made. The resin is carefully scraped off the trunk of the tree, and is then sorted and graded based on its quality and color.

The harvested resin is then processed by various methods to obtain the final product, which can be used in a number of ways, such as for burning as incense or for distillation to obtain the essential oil. The essential oil is used in perfumery, as well as in traditional and alternative medicine for its believed therapeutic properties, such as its calming and soothing effect.

In addition to its use in perfumery and traditional medicine, frankincense resin has a long history of use in religious and cultural rituals, particularly in the Middle East and parts of Africa. It is still used today in various religious ceremonies, such as the Catholic mass, where it is burned as incense to symbolize prayer rising to heaven.

Frankincense resin is used in TCM for various health conditions, such as menstrual pain, abdominal pain, and digestive problems. It is also used to treat respiratory issues such as cough, asthma, and bronchitis. It is believed to have a warming effect on the body, and is often combined with other herbs to enhance its therapeutic effects.

In TCM, frankincense is considered to have a bitter taste and a warm energy. It is typically used in the form of an essential oil, which is obtained by distillation of the resin, or in the form of a powdered resin, which is prepared by grinding the dried resin into a fine powder.

Overall, the most common use of frankincense in TCM is as a topical or internal remedy for pain and discomfort, as well as for promoting circulation and aiding in the treatment of respiratory issues.

Popular Recipe for Ru Xiang

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Ru Xiang is commonly used to make a tea for treating respiratory issues, such as cough and bronchitis. Here is a recipe for frankincense tea:


  • 2-3 pieces of frankincense
  • 1 cup of water


  1. Boil water in a saucepan.
  2. Add the frankincense pieces to the boiling water.
  3. Reduce the heat and let the frankincense steep in the water for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Strain the tea and serve warm.

Note: This recipe is intended for occasional use and not as a substitute for professional medical advice. Consult with a licensed healthcare provider before using frankincense for medicinal purposes.

Safety Precautions for the use of Ru Xiang

When using and handling Ru Xiang, it is important to take the following precautions:

  1. Consult with a licensed healthcare professional: Before using Ru Xiang for medicinal purposes, it is important to consult with a licensed healthcare professional, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are taking medication.

  2. Avoid if pregnant or breastfeeding: Ru Xiang should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, as it can cause harm to the developing fetus or newborn.

  3. Use proper dosages: Only use recommended dosages of Ru Xiang, as excessive use can lead to adverse side effects.

  4. Store in a cool, dry place: Store Ru Xiang in a cool, dry place to prevent spoilage and preserve its potency.

  5. Wash hands before handling: Before handling Ru Xiang, make sure to wash your hands to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria.

  6. Keep away from children: Ru Xiang should be kept out of reach of children, as it can be harmful if ingested in large quantities.

  7. Seek medical attention if adverse reactions occur: If you experience any adverse reactions after using Ru Xiang, such as skin irritation, stomach pain, or breathing difficulties, seek medical attention immediately.

Note: These precautions are intended as general guidelines and not as a substitute for professional medical advice. Consult with a licensed healthcare provider for specific recommendations and precautions relevant to your individual health status and needs.

Additional Information about Ru Xiang

Common Names: Ru Xiang (Frankincense, Mastic); Boswellia Carterii; Olibanum

Properties: Pungent, bitter, warm

Channels Entered: Heart, Liver, Spleen

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