The Benefits of Burning Sage (Smudging)
Research shows that there are many benefits of burning sage. The top benefits include, help boosting your memory and mental clarity, enhancing your concentration, purifying the air you breathe, and improving your quality of sleep. Burning sage has also been shown to stimulate creativity, promote a sense of balance, and even heighten your libido.
The best thing of all is you can harness all these benefits in a very short period of time. It only takes a few seconds to burn a few leaves of sage.
In the following article we will show how burning sage gives you:
- A completely natural way to get rid of airborne viruses, bacteria, and even insects quickly and easily.
- Get a better sleep and have more energy.
- Stress relief without a trip to the spa. Simple and affordable way to reduce stress without ever leaving your home.
- Burning sage for spiritual well-being and how this simple practice can help chase negativity out of your own life.
What is Sage?
Sage is a herb from the mint family similar to basil, rosemary. It is commonly used in many cuisines around the world for the earthy, smoky flavours it can bring to a dish. But we are looking at sage for its other benefits and uses. Today we focus on sage “smudging” which the ancient practice of burning sage and the many science backed benefits of doing so.
Burning Sage Improves Air Quality
Burning sage can improve air quality as shown in a 2007 study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacol. This article links the burning of sage to reducing airborne bacteria. The research demonstrates that the burning of herbs or medicinal smoke can purify the air and eliminate up to 94 percent of harmful bacteria for up to 24 hours.
So why is cleaner air important? According to Irina Logman, a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, getting rid of airborne pathogens can prevent you from getting sick. Specifically, white prairie sage “has both antimicrobial and antibacterial properties” that keep viruses, bacteria, and even insects away.
Burning Sage Improves Your Quality of Sleep
In addition to purifying the air you breathe, sage smudging can help you catch a good nights sleep. According to Reshma Patel, PA-C, MMS and founder of Ananda Integrative Medicine. She points to the antimicrobial and antibacterial healing properties of sage. Patel explains that sage belongs to the Salvia plant family, whose name derives from the Latin word salvere, which means “to heal”.
Sage Smudging Can Reduce Stress
The act of burning the sage stick itself can make you feel more grounded. Sage smudging has been used for hundreds of years by Native American populations. Dr. Shahinaz Soliman, a family physician who specializes in combining traditional medicine with holistic practices, says that “Smudging has a connection to mindfulness”. Because of the ritualistic nature of burning sage, it helps people to achieve a sense of calm and clear-headedness as would meditation. She compares the practice to burning incense, and adds that doing so can enhance your concentration, stimulate creativity, and heighten sexual desire.
Burning Sage To Boost Energy Levels
Ridding the body, objects, and spaces of bad energy can help welcome in newer, fresher, and more positive energies. In a way, this could have an energizing effect and help with fatigue. Some sage-like species closely related to white prairie sage are also used for smudging. Many have documented anti-fatigue uses.
Be Sure to Practice Caution
Anyone with asthma or respiratory issues should be careful not to inhale too much of the smoke that comes with burning sage, as it can be hazardous. Also note that some pets may become irritated by the smoke—especially cats. If you notice yourself or a furry friend becoming sensitive try opening your window for fresh air and staying hydrated.
What You Need To Practice Burning Sage
The practice of burning sage or smudging is fairly simple, with few necessary tools.
Basic tools include:
- a sage bundle (or smudge stick)
- some recommend a seashell or bowl of ceramic, clay, or glass to hold burning sage or capture ash
- some recommend matches over a manmade lighter
- optional feather or fan for fanning smoke
There are many types of sage usable for smudging. Traditional examples include:
- white sage (Salvia apiana)
- other Salvia species
- white prairie sage, or estafiate (Artemisia ludoviciana)
- other Artemisia species