Grounded a Self Care Solution
We are very fortunate this week to have a very special guest blogger for The Impetus. Here is a simple and informative explanation of Grounding also called Earthing, written by Dr. Jesse Allen, chiropractor and Independent Nikken Consultant from Fremont, California.
What is Earthing?
Clint Ober (co-author of the popular book Earthing, the most important health discovery ever?) came from a background in the cable industry. He understood that all electrical and cable systems had to be “grounded” or connected to the earth’s surface to stop interference from outside electromagnetic fields. He observed that most people wear some type of rubber or plastic-soled shoes. He wondered if this could have an adverse effect on our health. As a child growing up on a farm, he noticed that animals that were allowed to run free were much healthier than animal kept indoors in a cage.
He began experimenting with the use of a simple voltmeter to measure the effects of exposure from household appliances and wiring in the walls of his home. He then took measurements while “grounded to a grounding rod. Ultimately, he found that when he was grounded, he slept better and had less discomfort.
In another early experiment with Dr. Maurice Ghaly, a retired anesthesiologist, cortisol levels were measured before and after grounding. (Elevated cortisol indicates chronic stress which can lead to chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure, stroke and depressed immune system function). It was found that earthing could “resynchronize” cortisol secretion to a more normal natural rhythm. People slept better and reported less discomfort.
In 2001, Mr. Ober began working with Dr. Stephen Sinatra, an integrative cardiologist who had identified inflammation as the cause of arterial and cardiovascular disease. With the help of biophysicist James Oschman, Ph.D. they were able to determine that the earth was an effective anti-inflammatory aid.
The electric energy on the surface of the earth takes the form of a limitless supply of negatively charged particles called electrons. When you make contact with the earth, while barefooted or with a grounding/earthing device, the electrons are absorbed into the body where they attach to positively charged free radicals that cause chronic inflammation. The key here is the effect of chronic inflammation. When you experience an injury or illness there is a normal level of inflammation that is part of the healing process. However, if you have chronic inflammation, tissue can be damaged leading to illness or disease.
Due to our technological world where cell phones, tablets, laptops and wi fi connected devices surround us 24/7; we are constantly being bombarded with EMF, electromagnetic frequencies. This exposure has been linked to inflammatory reactions, cancer, sleep disruption and immune system dysfunction.
If you can regularly walk bare foot on grass, dirt or on the beach you can ground yourself naturally. However, most of us live in urban settings that limit our access to direct contact with the earth. Grounding devices/earthing devices are the best alternative to neutralize the effect of electromagnetic fields and free radicals.
Thank you, Dr. Allen, for this enlightening explanation as to the health benefits and need for us all to be grounded. This is a concept that I have been aware of since the publishing of Earthing in 2010. I believe we all can appreciate the benefits of walking barefoot on the beach or strolling barefoot in a grassy park. We experience a feeling of relaxation and ease, less stress and a greater sense of well-being.
As part of the Nikken Wellness Home, we are pleased to announce a new Active Wellness product, the KenkoGround. The KenkoGround is designed to help us connect to the Earth as a natural energy source. Direct contact with the ground (soil, grass, sand, ocean floor) gives our bodies natural energy to help restore our own healthful nature.
The contemporary lifestyle often causes fatigue, sleeplessness, and a general feeling of being out of balance. Unlike our ancestors who were directly connected to the ground by their bare feet, we separate ourselves from nature by using and wearing non-conductive materials, e.g. rubber, plastic, artificial flooring surfaces, etc. In other words, our feet rarely connect with the earth beneath us.
The KenkoGround serves as an indoor and portable way to reconnect with Mother Nature. Simply plug it into a grounded outlet and use it under your feet while working, on your mattress while you sleep or even draped around your shoulders. Direct contact with the skin is recommended for best results.
As a physiologist I appreciate the research that has been done in this field within the last decade. A simple google search on earthing grounding, can lead anyone who has an interest to be more informed. A 2015 study from the Journal of Inflammation Research entitled, “The effects of grounding (earthing) on inflammation, the immune response, wound healing, and prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases” is a good place to start.
The authors concluded, “Accumulating experiences and research on earthing, or grounding, point to the emergence of a simple, natural, and accessible health strategy against chronic inflammation, warranting the serious attention of clinicians and researchers. The living matrix (or ground regulation or tissue tensegrity-matrix system), the very fabric of the body, appears to serve as one of our primary antioxidant defense systems. As this report explains, it is a system requiring occasional recharging by conductive contact with the Earth’s surface – the “battery” for all planetary life – to be optimally effective.”
Heather and I are very excited about the new KenkoGround and can’t wait to integrate it into our Wellness Home as part of our Active Wellness program.