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Gifts from the three wise men have health, wealth benefits

Gold, frankincense and myrrh in abstract pattern over old paper are the three most famous gifts in history and all of them keep giving in many ways.Marilyn Barbone

Gold, frankincense and myrrh in abstract pattern over old paper are the three most famous gifts in history and all of them keep giving in many ways.

Have yourself a merry — and healthy — little Christmas.

Those three wise men who came bearing gold, frankincense and myrrh were even wiser than you might think. Their presents continue to be valuable today, often in ways most people don’t know.

And other holiday traditions also have surprising side benefits:

FRANKINCENSE

An herb, made from the resin of boswellia trees has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine to reduce inflammation in joints.

It sells as an essential oil and can be found online for as low as $ 8.49 for 10 milliliters.

Frankincense can be used to soothe burns, rashes and scrapes. It can also be added to facial moisturizers, body creams and shampoos.

MYRRH

Myrrh has a pretty long history considering Egyptians used it for embalming. In Kenya, farmers still grow myrrh.

“We spray it in our homes to repel snakes and insects,” farmer. Hareth Hassan, tells the BBC News. “If you break a limb, before correcting it, we apply myrrh on the affected area.”

Myrrh essential oil can also be found online for as low as $ 9.95 for 5 milliliters.

HOLLY

Holly berries are toxic and should be kept away from children.Delphine Poggianti

Holly berries are toxic and should be kept away from children.

Beware of the pointy, sharp leaves used as trim around the house. The berries are toxic and just 20 of the tiny berries are enough to kill a child.

Native Americans knew it could be used to induce vomiting and would make a tea from it, according to WebMD.

MISTLETOE

Mistletoe can be used to fight against colon cancer.

Mistletoe can be used to fight against colon cancer.

Research scientists in Australia discovered that mistletoe contains an anti-cancer compound “that might be used to complement chemotherapy or act as an alternative to drugs to treat colon cancer,” according to NewsMax.com

CHRISTMAS TREES

Conifer trees can be used for their bark to make spruce beer, popular among pirates, and for elixirs said to aid in circulation.OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

Conifer trees can be used for their bark to make spruce beer, popular among pirates, and for elixirs said to aid in circulation.

Various conifers can be used to make elixirs, where leaves are left to ferment in jars filled with alcohol and honey. These are said to aid in circulation.

The most fun fact about these trees is that spruce bark is rich in vitamin C. Pirates drank spruce beer and some guess that was to ward off scurvy, or it could be that pirates would drink anything.

GOLD

OK, so it doesn’t help your health, but, nu?, it’s bad to have gold?

jcutler@nydailynews.com

Tags:
holidays ,
christmas

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