Balsam, Balsam Tolu, Bálsamo de Tolú, Balsamum Tolutanum, Baume de Tolu, Baumier du Pérou, Myroxylon balsamum, Myroxylon balsamum var. balsamum, Opobalsam, Resin Tolu, Resina Tolutana, Thomas Balsam, Toluifera balsamum, Tolu, Toluiferum Balsamum.


Overview Information

Tolu balsam is a sap-like substance that comes from the Myroxylon balsamum tree. It is used as medicine.

People take tolu balsam for cough, bronchitis, swollen airways, and cancer.

Tolu balsam is applied directly to the skin to treat bedsores, cracked nipples, cracked lips, and minor skin cuts.

Some people inhale tolu balsam to treat hoarseness and croup.

In foods, tolu balsam is used to flavor chewing gum, foods, and beverages.

In manufacturing, tolu balsam is used as a fixative, as a fragrance in soaps and cosmetics, and as a flavoring in cough medicines.

How does it work?

Tolu balsam contains ingredients that help break up congestion. It might also work as a skin protectant.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Cancer.
  • Cough.
  • Bronchitis.
  • Swollen airways.
  • Bedsores, when applied to the affected area.
  • Cracked nipples, when applied to the affected area.
  • Cracked lips, when applied to the affected area.
  • Minor skin cuts, when applied to the affected area.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of tolu balsam for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Tolu balsam is safe in food amounts and seems safe for use as a medicine when taken by mouth. There isn’t enough information to know if it is safe when applied to the skin as a medicine.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of tolu balsam during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Fever: Don’t take tolu balsam if you have a fever or a condition that involves swelling.

Kidney disease: There is concern that tolu balsam might make kidney disease worse. Don’t use it if you have kidney problems.

Tolu balsam allergy: Don’t take tolu balsam if you are allergic to it.



We currently have no information for TOLU BALSAM Interactions.



The appropriate dose of tolu balsam depends on several factors such as the user’s age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for tolu balsam. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


  • Electronic Code of Federal Regulations. Title 21. Part 182 -- Substances Generally Recognized As Safe. Available at:

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
© Therapeutic Research Faculty 2018.