Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas tree, or should I say Myrrh Tree!
The Myrrh tree, botanically called Commiphora myrrha, is found primarily in Africa but also in other arid desserts. I’ve always wondered if it would grow well in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona.
The resin of the Myrrh tree is where the medicine is and it is bitter and slightly warming and drying to the body. Harvesting this resin is only available when the bark has been wounded through to the sapwood of the tree. The bark is intentionally wounded. After the wound “heals” the gum resin that had leaked out hardens into a yellow-reddish opaque globule and is then harvested. This has been going on for thousands of years and yet the trees live and continue to produce.
Myrrh resin has been widely used in ceremonies and as medicine and as perfume. Christmas is coming and if you remember, the Christ child received 3 gifts from the Wise Men. Myrrh was one of them. The resin makes a wonderful oil and tincture, and can also be used in powder form and as an infusion. During the time when Christ was a child, Myrrh resin in powder form was used on the umbilical cord after birth to promote healing.
Myrrh is amazing once you get to know it. The resin has the characteristics of a stimulant and is useful for issues involving the chest. Think colds, asthma and even TB. As a soothing antibiotic and disinfectant, it makes for a wonderful antiseptic for washing open sores, cuts and abrasions. Mary was probably loving this!
As an oil, Myrrh can be used for ear infections and as an anti-fungal immune stimulant for thrush and Candida. This wonderful resin has been used for bedsores, skin ulcers and other wounds of the skin for thousands of years. Other wounds that can benefit from myrrh are boils, pimples, herpes outbreaks, and abrasions. Remember, Myrrh is a wonderful antimicrobial and astringent that tightens and tones the tissue.
When it comes to pain relief, myrrh is beneficial to combat blood stagnation such as bruising or pelvic congestion and is commonly used in external preparations for bruising, contusions, arthritis, and other painful conditions.
As a gargle, the resin can be used for mouth and gum sores. Think gingivitis, canker sores and other mouth sores. In powder form it can also be added to “Tooth Powders” in place of commercial tooth paste.
When it comes to the digestive system, I love using Myrrh in tincture form. In my humble opinion, if someone has a lot of GI deficiency symptoms, Myrrh should be used to strengthen the person’s intestines and boost them towards wellness.
One of the benefits of Myrrh is that it has been known to destroy “putrefaction” in the intestines and prevent the absorption of toxins. What does that mean? Our diets, physical exercise and lifestyles determines how our bodies function. Poor diet and lifestyle lead to poor health. It may not happen in our 20’s but it will catch up with us. We can’t put diesel full in our Maserati’s and expect them to perform well. In essence, putrefaction involves the decomposition of proteins, breakdown of the tissues, and liquefaction of the organs, like our intestines. Really kinda gross if you think about it.
When it comes to the GI system, you can find Myrrh in our Herbal Bitters formula and our Herbal Immune Booster formula.
Caution: Now don’t get crazy with myrrh, or really any herb. Our diets play a huge role in our health and should be our starting point. Think nutrient density, fiber, water and physical exercise.
Each of us has a different story so our current health depends on the person and the situation. If you have a lot of health issues, ask your ND, Herbalist or practitioner about using Myrrh or other herbs you are unsure of. They will be able to guide you in this.
*For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.