Pistacia lentiscus (generic name)

treats Duodenal ulcer, Dental plaque, and Gastric ulcer
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Herbs & Supplements

Synonyms

alpha-Pinene, alpha-terpineol, Anacardiaceae (family), arbre de mastic, beta-caryophyllene, beta-myrcene, beta-pinene, Chios tears, çori, evergreen pistache, germacrene D, legeltxor, lentisc, lentisco, lentisco mastich, lentisk, lentisque, limonene, linalool, llentiscle, mastick, mastick tree, mastiek, mastiha, mastix, mastixpistazie, myrcene, Pistacia lentiscus, pinene, pistheqa-pesag, Saladin, schînos, schísei, trans-caryophyllene, verbenone.

Background

Mastic is the resin of Pistacia lentiscus, a shrub of the sumac family (Anacardiaceae) found in the Mediterranean regions of France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Turkey and Africa. Mastic has been used historically for the treatment of hypertension (high blood pressure) in the Mediterranean regions of Spain. It has also been used since the 13th Century for the treatment of dyspepsia (upset stomach) and abdominal discomfort. Mastic has also been used in dentistry as a filling for cavities and in surgery as a varnish to cover wounds.

Further trials are needed to confirm the anti-ulcer activity of mastic and to establish any benefit mastic may have over conventional pharmaceutical treatment for ulcer.

Evidence

DISCLAIMER: These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.

Dental plaque: Mastic has shown antibacterial activity against Helicobacter pylori in vitro, therefore, mastic gum may reduce the amount of dental plaque in users. However, more research is needed in this area, including studies comparing mastic gum to other forms of oral hygiene before a recommendation can be made.
Grade: C

Duodenal ulcer: Mastic has been used by traditional Mediterranean healers to treat intestinal ulcers since the 13th Century. Mastic has been shown to have antibacterial action against Helicobacter pylori in vitro, which may help to explain its ulcer-healing properties. Additional research is needed to make a strong recommendation.
Grade: C

Gastric ulcer: Mastic may decrease the severity of induced gastric ulceration, but its exact mechanism of action is unknown. Additionally, mastic has been shown to have antibacterial action against Helicobacter pylori in vitro, which may help to explain its ulcer-healing properties. Additional study is needed in this area.
Grade: C

Tradition

WARNING: DISCLAIMER: The below uses are based on tradition, scientific theories, or limited research. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider. There may be other proposed uses that are not listed below.
Abdominal pain, antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, antispasmodic, arthritis, astringent, bad breath, boils, bronchitis, catarrh, colds, cuts, cystitis, dental cavities (tooth fillings), diarrhea, diuretic, expectorant, flea control, gout, Helicobacter pylori infection, hemorrhoids, insect repellent, leukorrhea (vaginal discharge), lice, muscle aches, neuralgia, rheumatism, ringworm, scabies, sciatica, stimulant, urethritis (inflammation of the urethra), varicose veins, whooping cough, wounds.

Dosing

Adults (18 years and older):

For duodenal or gastric ulcers, 1 gram mastic powder taken by mouth daily, before breakfast, for a period of two weeks has been used.

Children (younger than 18 years):

Based on the available scientific evidence, there is no proven safe or effective dose for mastic in children.

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