Incense… Good or Bad

Is incense beneficial?


Is incense beneficial?

Isabella Portu, Staff Writer

Incense is becoming more and more popular in homes across the US, either as a scent enhancer or spirituality purposes. However, a recent study may have revealed that incense may  do more damage than expected. Now it is extremely difficult to compare the positive effects of spirituality when using incense, and the physical damage it can do to your lungs. 

Incense is known to have some other useful properties, other than the two previously mentioned. According to Taodewan, “the use of specific incenses enables clear thinking and helps in developing a state of complete awareness.” Later in the article, they also bring up how it can aid insomnia, as well if correctly used with the right kind, it can help kill bacteria, and fight against infections. “A study from an international team of scientists has discovered how burning frankincense (resin from the Boswellia plant) activates poorly understood ion channels in the brain that alleviate anxiety or depression.” The best incense to be using would be all natural, vegan products, with as little chemicals as possible.

An example of incense usage (rentingonline)

Sadly, there are some cons when it comes to burning incense often, these include cancer, asthma, inflammation, etc. A study from 2015 by Environmental Chemistry Letters suggested that incense may be worse than cigarettes for your lungs. However the study was inconclusive, because they only tested on animal cells in-vitro. According to HealthlineOne study showed it may cause inflammation not only in the lungs, but also in the liver. The study was limited since it was done only on animals. This inflammation was caused by the body processing particulate matter into metabolites, which also caused oxidative stress.” The current research on incense is shaky, no matter what side you’re on. Certain studies will tell you that incense can help you destress, and loosen sore joints, where others will tell you it causes just that.

In my opinion, the best thing is to be cautionary, know where you’re getting your incense from, go with the most researched option possible, as well as using everything in moderation. Too much of anything is always going to be harmful to your health, however if used responsibly and properly, you can actually reap some of the benefits.