Alternative Names: Chios mastic gum.
Mastic Gum, a resin produced by the Pistacia lentiscus tree (an evergreen shrub from the pistachio tree family), has been used for a variety of gastric ailments in Mediterranean and Mideast countries for at least 3,000 years. In ancient times, mastic gum was highly revered for its medicinal properties in the relief of dyspepsia and other intestinal disorders. The benefits of this naturally-occurring resin are now being rediscovered for their antimicrobial effects.
Mastic Gum has been known for centuries to have a protective effect on the stomach. Several studies have already been published on Mastic Gum with regard to its positive effects on the gastrointestinal
environment, thus gaining respect among the scientific and medical community. Perhaps the most exciting breakthrough to date has been a study showing mastic gum's effectiveness against at least seven different strains of Helicobacter pylori
The gum is obtained from the resin of a tree which, when dried, becomes solid but chewable with a pleasant taste. This product is available in many health food stores and at naturopathic clinics.
Why it is Recommended
In various studies, mastic gum provided symptomatic relief of ulcers
, reduced the intensity of gastric mucosal damage caused by anti-ulcer drugs and aspirin, and possessed antacid
and cytoprotective qualities. In several studies using mastic gum on patients with ulcers, the original site of the ulcer
was completely replaced by healthy epithelial cells. These results, although not entirely conclusive, do indicate a strong potential role for Mastic Gum in maintaining a healthy gastrointestinal
system, as well as s strong rationale for further studies.