Nature’s controversial “new” secret weapon in the war against superbugs

It’s now fully summertime, even in New England, so you may want to gather around the campfire for this Dispatch. In fact, new, compelling research shows “second-hand” smoke might be a secret weapon in the fight against antibiotic-resistant superbugs.

You may have seen the headlines last month that a new, deadly superbug hit the U.S. It doesn’t respond to even the strongest, last-resort antibiotics.

As usual, big pharma and big government don’t have the answers. In fact, with the Republican convention rapidly coming up, I thought about Ronald Reagan’s words from that same convention 36 year ago. He aptly said, “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

Similarly — big government/big pharma isn’t the solution to superbugs. It IS the problem.

Big pharma and mainstream medicine created the superbug problem by relentlessly pushing antibiotics for every infection, big and small, bacterial or viral, serious or silly, for decades.

They turned the 20th century “miracle” of antibiotics from “magic bullets” into “friendly fire.” So now — there are thousands of casualties every year on the front lines of medicine from this “friendly fire” of antibiotic-resistant superbugs.

How do they plan to fix it, when they caused it, precisely because of their own practices?

Just declare another war, that’s the ticket

Well, the medical mandarins at National Institutes of Health plan to create another permanent government “war” on superbugs. But as you know, they never win these wars. Naming it a “war” only guarantees them billions more in taxpayer funding for as long as their publicly-padded, lifetime careers can last.

But while mainstream medicine blows smoke about the prospect of coming up with stronger antibiotics (the same methods that caused the problem in the first place), ancient healing traditions offer promise.

Old folk remedies hold powerful, forgotten healing secrets

In turns out, ancient European folk remedies found in a moldy, old manuscript called Bald’s Leach Book — and other ancient resources — offer many methods shown to combat modern, antibiotic-resistant superbugs.

In fact, new evidence shows medical smoke from smudging can kill deadly superbugs. Smudging is a traditional practice associated with Native American culture to this day. They use it to clear the air of evil influences. Far from polluting the air, medical smoke purifies it.

The germ theory of disease in medicine only began about 150 years ago. Before that point, traditional healers believed “bad air” held evil influences that caused disease. In fact, until the late 19th century everyone in Europe and the U.S. thought microbial infections came from bad air. (For instance, the name “malaria” is Italian for “bad air.”)

The idea of clearing “evil influences” from the air was common in traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurvedic medicine of India, and in European medicine until modern times.

To clear the bad air, Native Americans use smoke from many medicinal plants, including tobacco. Native Americans traditionally use tobacco as a medicine — consumed ritually, not habitually.

Unfortunately, the government’s misguided, quasi-scientific “war” on tobacco — their sole “solution” for lung cancer — essentially guaranteed this important, traditional knowledge went up in smoke.

As I explained during the Ebola “crisis” in 2014 in my Insiders’ Cures newsletter, the tobacco plant contains the only known source of certain compounds that scientists can isolate to kill the Ebola virus. The traditional medicinal smoke practice of smudging can do the job as well. (If you’re a subscriber, you can look up that newsletter article in my archives by going to and logging in with your username and password. If you’re not yet a subscriber, now is the perfect time to get started.)

Smudging combats bacteria in the air

Modern science shows smudging has significant antiseptic benefits. Scientists published this evidence in a study called, “Medicinal smoke can completely eliminate diverse and human pathogenic bacteria in air.”

The researchers found a one-hour treatment of medicinal smoke from burning wood and a mixture of medicinal herbs reduced bacterial counts in the air by 94 percent. Just one hour of smoke purified the air for a full 24 hours, and many bacteria remained greatly reduced up to 30 days after the smoking.

In the study, medicinal smoke proved deadly to several potentially killer bacteria, including Corynebacterium, Curtobacterium, Enterobacteria, Klebsiella, Kocuria, Pseudomonas, Staphylococcus, and Xanthomonas.

We all come in contact with billions of bacteria in the air, and elsewhere, all the time. But to come down with an infection, you must come in contact with a large enough “dose” of the bacteria. So by cutting down the dose of bacteria you’re exposed to, you can potentially prevent infections.

In another scientific review, scientists administered herbal remedies via smoke in 50 countries across five continents. They found it proved useful to address infectious diseases among the following organ systems: lung (24 percent), neurological (22 percent), and skin (8 percent).

They also found that “ambient smoke” — the type of passively inhaled smoke generated by smudging medicinal plants, such as tobacco — is an effective air purifier. Smoke-based delivery of herbal medicines offers many advantages, including more efficient absorption, more rapid delivery to the brain, and lower costs.

Of course, “ambient smoke” in traditional medicine is essentially the same thing as the government’s dreaded “second-hand smoke,” now “tertiary smoke.”

I personally witnessed in the early 1990s how the Office of the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health creatively interpreted some of the “science” supposedly supporting second-hand smoke as a public health hazard out of thin air using “smoke and mirrors.”

The government uses the illusion of second-hand smoke as a smoke screen to justify its Draconian measures against anyone using tobacco, even in moderation. In fact, the FDA just issued another crushing edict that will severely limit the sale of most premium cigars in the U.S.

Nobody since General Ulysses S. Grant smokes premium cigars habitually. (Indeed, habitual cigar smoking may cause some health problems.) Instead, most people who smoke cigars use them ritually, in moderation, as intended by traditional Native American medicine.

Nonetheless, the FDA continues its anti-tobacco discrimination campaign to the final frontier of cigars. They must have missed the important 1989 tobacco study, published in the American Journal of Public Health by our team of scientists at the National Cancer Institute. It was one of the largest tobacco studies ever done. The evidence linked cigar/pipe smoking with overall lower disease and death rates compared to non-smokers!

Some grunt solider in the new war on superbugs may want to take a look at all this research before the government destroys the last tobacco plant, or the FDA destroys the last remnant of traditional smoke therapy.

Always on the side of science,

Marc S. Micozzi, M.D., Ph.D.


“Medicinal smoke reduces airborne bacteria,” Journal of Ethnopharmacology December 2007; 114(3):446-51