Myrrh is the resin of two trees that grow in India (C. mukul and C. myrrha). It is frequently used in Ayurvedic medicine. Its primary therapeutic use in traditional formulas is for treatment of arthralgia, back pain, sciatica, and body pain. Modern studies show that its active components have potent anti-inflammatory action. However, a reason for its widespread use in other formulas is because it promotes digestion and alleviates accumulation, so it can be used in therapies for many diseases, including those that involve obesity, atherosclerosis, chronic phlegm production (catarrh), and swelling of the mouth and throat. The analgesic action of myrrh is relied upon in many traditions from the Middle East through India to China. Recent studies also indicate that it lowers blood lipids.
Formula for arthralgia and other pain syndromes
Rumastal is one example of numerous traditional Ayurvedic formulations used for rheumatism and other pain syndromes. All ten ingredients of this formulation have the properties of preventing accumulations in the joints, overcoming stagnation in blood circulation, and alleviating pain. From the modern perspective, they have anti-inflammatory action; traditionally, they treat the combination of ama accumulation and vata vitiation. Among these herbs are three spices used in preparation of foods: ginger, garlic, and moringa (horseradish); these warming herbs are thought to calm vata (having a cold property in the Ayurvedic description). According to the Charaka Samhita: wind that lodges in the blood causes severe pain with burning sensation; wind located in the flesh produces heaviness and pain of the limbs; and wind lodged in the bones makes one feel as if the joints are breaking.