Herbal Folklore & Tradition
It has been used for thousands of years in the east as a medicine and incense; the fumigations were believed to drive away evil spirits. It was used by the Chinese herbalists for its heating and drying qualities, as a good urinary antiseptic and as an aid to digestion.
In the west, it is best known in the form of compound tincture of benzoin or Friars Balsam, used for respiratory complaints. Externally it is used for cuts and irritable skin conditions; internally it is used as a carminative for indigestion, Anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, antiseptic, astringent, carminative, cordial, deodorant, diuretic, expectorant and sedative. It also acts as a preservative of fats.