6 Benefits to Burning Bay Leaves


Bay leaves have an elaborate history dating back thousands of years and were used for their health benefits by the ancient Greeks and Romans.

The bay leaf has long been a common addition to various dishes due to its ability to aid in digestion and relieve a number of respiratory and anti-inflammatory discomforts, with a multitude of cultures around the world valuing it as a popular spice to this day.

In addition to its historical and culinary uses, the bay leaf has also been held as a sacred tool for cleansing one’s space and alleviating stress, anxiety, and unpleasant energy. Ancient temples routinely burned bay leaves to clear the space and heighten one’s intuitive powers, and today the practice of burning bay leaves in one’s home is resurfacing in practice.

There are many burning bay leaves benefits, and here is a comprehensive guide to burning bay leaves for stress/anxiety, as well respiratory discomforts and fatigue. You may also be surprised at the practice of burning bay leaves for wishes, and the proper method of safely burning the leaves indoors.

1. Burning Bay Leaves For Fatigue and Tensionburning bay leaves for wishes

Bay leaves contain powerful compounds such as pinene, cineol, and elemicin that, when burned, produce a nerve-soothing effect, as well as a pleasant energy boost. Burning bay leaves releases those medicinal properties into the air, and when inhaled can put you in a relaxed state of mind that in turn alleviates feelings of fatigue.

2. Burning Bay Leaves For Anxiety

burning bay leaves for stress/anxiety

In addition to the compounds listed above, bay leaves also contain a significant amount of linalool, a naturally occurring terpene found in various flowers and spices that is widely known for its stress-relieving qualities. A recent study conducted through the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists found linalool to greatly reduce anxiety and likewise enhance social interactions between those under the influence of it. The study deduced that in under 10 minutes of inhaling fumes from the burning bay leaves subjects felt the linalool’s effects.

3. Burning Bay Leaves For Respiratory Relief

Respiratory Relief burning bay

Bay leaves are a natural remedy that can help treat clogged, backed up respiratory passages and lungs. It acts naturally to help break up and remove the nasty mucus and phlegm that’s causing all the problems. Instead of burning the leaves, soak fresh ones in clean water or pick up a small vial of bay leaf oil and use it in a humidifier to create a steamy vapor which you then breathe in. You can also simply boil the treated water on the stove top or rub the oil on your chest area to alleviate respiratory problems, allergies, and asthma.

4. Burning Bay Leaves For Wishes

burning bay leaves for wishes

In the ancient Greek myth of Apollo and Daphne, the god fell in love with the nymph and tirelessly pursued her. Seeking help from her father, Daphne was transformed into a bay laurel tree, and thereafter bay leaves were believed to provide one with protection and goodwill when used as spiritual implements.

Bay leaves were routinely burned in temples and sacred spaces to assist in acts of prayer and meditation, as well as wish-making. For this reason it is still a common practice to write one’s wish on a bay leaf, meditate upon it, then burn it. When this is finished, throw the ashes into the wind, which will carry your wishes off to be materialized.

5. Burning Bay Leaves For Pest Control

Burning Bay Leaves For Pest Control

Bay leaves are a safe and effective way to rid your household of annoying pests such as cockroaches and pantry moths. The fumes of burning bay leaves are highly unpleasant to many insects, and routine practice will drive them out of infested spaces for good.

6. Instructions For Safely Burning Bay Leaves

Instructions For Safely Burning Bay Leaves

Properly burned bay leaves will release their healing benefits quickly. Place one dried bay leaf in an ashtray or appropriate holder, then set the leaf on fire and leave the room while it burns, closing the door to allow the aroma to fill the space.

When you return, gently blow on the embers and inhale deeply. A few precautions to keep in mind when burning bay leaves:

  • Never leave burning leaves or even the embers unattended.
  • Make sure you completely extinguish and dispose of the ashes once the leaves have fully burned down.
  • Keep an eye on pets and small children when burning bay leaves.
  • There’s a chance that burning bay leaves will set off a household’s smoke detector, so be mindful of which room you choose to use and its proximity.
  • Try to burn freshly dried bay leaves, as these will produce more beneficial results.

There are numerous burning bay leaves benefits, with many people burning bay leaves for stress/anxiety as a safer, more pleasant alternative to over the counter and prescribed remedies. Used for thousands of years to cleanse and enhance sacred spaces, as well as adorn prestigious individuals, the bay leaf is also a time-honored addition to many of the culinary dishes we’ve come to love, and a proven alleviator for physical ailments ranging from inflammation to heart disease and diabetes.

In addition to its physical properties, the fumes from a burned bay leaf are a potent remedy for fatigue and tension, as well as psychological anxiety and stress. With no toxic components or fragrances, bay leaves are a safe and natural way to relieve all manner of conditions.

Burning bay leaves for wishes is a wonderful way to welcome in the new year, as many have done for centuries. Write your wish on a freshly dried bay leaf and meditate on your sincerest desires while watching it burn. Inhale the pleasantly healing aroma then release the bay leaf ashes to the wind, remembering that some of the best and most helpful remedies often come in the smallest forms.

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