Scientifically Speaking . . . Smudging

Like so many other ancient practices the concept of smudging has in many ways been veiled as a ‘woo woo’ practice without really acknowledging its real potential benefits. The translation of smudging by new age spiritual communities like so many other rituals have awarded it a bad rep. Medical Researchers have now risen to the task of testing the truth behind practices like smudging- and the results do not invalidate smudging but in fact they support that ancient cultures may have legitimate uses for smudging all along. A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology writes that smoke from burning sage “Demonstrated to completely eliminate diverse plant and human pathogenic bacteria of the air within confined space”.

Smudging is AIR PURIFYING: White sage has proven antimicrobial properties that have also been shown to repel insects. It helps to keep infectious bacteria, viruses, and fungi at bay. In 2007 a study found that burning sage for an hour decreased the level of aerial bacteria by 94 percent. The effects were preserved for up to 24 hours afterward.1

Smudging is ANTI BACTERIAL: Due to its remarkable ability to clear pathogens in the air researchers believe it could hold promise as a pulmonary and dermatological agent. This is in basic terms a tool for clearing bacteria and other pathogens from the respiratory tract and skin. For centuries sage has been known as a remedy in teas and tinctures used by modern naturopaths to aid coughs and colds.

Smudging is reported to AID BREATHING & SLEEP: The air we breathe contains positive and negative ions. Common positive ions include allergens (which are NOT good) such as pet dander, pollution, dust, and mold. Though not yet scientifically proven burning sage is thought to also release negative ions (which are GOOD) and help to neutralize positive ions. In a controlled study focused on Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD researched found air charged with negative ions balance levels of serotonin, balance sleep patterns, promote restfulness, and improve physical performance.2 3 There are many reports by sufferers of respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies and bronchitis that find relief in burning sage.

Smudging REDUCES STRESS: As the world looks to the past to find natural therapies that can bring down their stress levels smudging is slowly rising in popularity. It is a holistic approach that offers calming and relaxing effects known to help lower blood pressure and relieve stress.4 Scent is one of our most powerful senses that helps to reduce anxiety and stress by keeping us focused on the present moment.5 A ritual focused on cleansing a space and bringing in positive thoughts and intention can be directly linked to the practice of mindfulness and reducing stress.

Smudging REMOVES NEGATIVE Energy: First and foremost, the purifying smoke is known for its use in eliminating the negative or spare energy in spaces or things. The concept is that certain sacred plants call on a spirit that helps you to eliminate energies within a space. For us the law of attraction and intention is what is most powerful about an energetic cleanse. Have you ever had someone enter a room and their energy was felt before you even saw them arrive? Just like the feeling you have when visiting a sacred space, church, or holy place the smoke emitted from smudging instantly shifts the energy within a room and instils positive energy in its place.

Sources and Scientific Articles





[5] Aroma Effects on Physiologic and Cognitive Function Following Acute Stress: A Mechanism Investigation. Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine. Sep2016, Vol. 22 Issue 9, p713–721. 9p. 2 Diagrams, 4 Charts, 2 Graphs.

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((¸¸.·´ ..·´ Trish-:¦:-
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