How Is Burning Sage a Healthy Practice?

Burning Sage

Sage burning is well known among Native American tribes as a spiritual cleansing practice. Mediums and psychics also use it to clear negative or residue energy from a space. While all of that sounds abstract, burning sage also has some practical health benefits if you listen to doctors and scientists.

It Purifies

Native Americans are correct in that burning sage purifies. While they are thinking more in spiritual terms, it turns out that burning sage can kill or control nasty things like viruses and infectious bacteria as well as fungi.

Different types of sage have different properties that work in these areas. Prairie sage has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. White sage is antimicrobial. Both types also make for excellent insect repellents.

Relieves Allergies

Burning sage is said to release negative ions which neutralize positive ions that come from things like pet dander, dust, and mold. This is scientifically unproven but could help with things like allergies, asthma, and bronchitis.

It Can Help Mental Awareness

One of the reasons for burning sage is to help people resolve situations and guide them to make good decisions. While this is typically used in a spiritual context, it has some scientific reasoning as well.

Some sage has thujone, which is a mildly psychoactive substance. It is supposed to enhance intuition so burning sage, particularly the salvia sages and white sage, could enhance clarity.

It Enhances Mood

Burning sage is known to dispel negativity and scientific research shows that it physically does that to a body. A 2014 study shows that white prairie sage can be used to treat depression, and anxiety and can even boost mood.

It Reduces Stress

A University of Mississippi study in 2016 showed that white safe has compounds that stimulate receptors in the brain that can alleviate pain and reduce stress.

It Can Help Sleep

The fact that sage burning can relieve stress and anxiety naturally helps with sleep. Other research shows that it can help with insomnia. Classic garden sage and white sage can both be used to help sleep.

Sage Helps With Memory

Studies from 2016 also show that some benefits are that it improves cognition. Other studies suggest that it can be used to thwart diseases like dementia and even Alzheimer’s although more research is needed.

Burning Sage

It’s easy to burn sage in your home and you don’t need to be a spiritualist to do it. You need a sage bundle but can also use standard dried herb sage found in grocery stores. Put it in a ceramic or glass bowl.

Take an extended lighter to light it. It may take a few seconds to light but then it will dissipate to smoke that you can waive throughout your home.


Burning sage has been used for spiritual purposes but it is also linked to some practical benefits. In fact, the two may be intertwined as those who burned sage may have been sick less often leading tribes to see it has divine protection.

In any case, it isn’t a bad practice to do at times for a variety of reasons. The smell is nice too and can also lift your mood.