Myrrh is a gum-resin derived from trees that grow in northeast Africa. Myrrh has been revered since ancient times as a perfume, incense and medicine. The ancient Egyptians embalmed the bodies of Pharaohs with the antiseptic properties of myrrh. In the Bible, myrrh was a gift to Jesus at his birth, and after his death Jesus' body was anointed in myrrh.
Myrrh is used in both western and eastern traditional medicines as an astringent and as a potent antimicrobial against bacteria, fungi and parasites. It is primarily used to treat ulcers and infections of the mouth, throat and gastrointestinal tract. In addition, research suggests that myrrh may act as an immunostimulant and increase the production of white blood cells to assist in fighting infection. Preliminary studies also show promise for ulcerative colitis.
Externally, myrrh has been used to speed the healing of ulcers and to treat topical infections caused by bacteria and viruses.
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