So, I’ve mentioned before my “hippie” ways. I like living a natural life. I believe that God is really, REALLY smart and that He created an amazing world that works so synergistically that far too often our “man-made” ways have messed up with the natural balance of things… You know, like processed foods, over-dosing on pharmaceuticals, and shoes.
Did I just say shoes are a problem?
As a modern dancer I’ve come to love the freedom of moving without restrictive shoes. As a somatic practitioner I often look at women wearing high heels and feel sorry for what they are doing to their spine in the name of fashion (I don’t care how comfortable you think they are). But I’ve recently learned a new reason to prefer barefootin’ to lacing up some shoes:
(This is where I put a flower in my hair and start singing “kumbaya” while hugging a tree.)
What I’m about to say may sound like a too-hippie-for-most idea, but hear me out. I heard about “earthing sheets” several months ago. My first thought was, “Really? Sheets?” I mean, even for me it just sounded too weird and… well, kind of made up. But then I kept hearing about this concept. I kept reading about it. And the more I learned the more it made sense.
So what is earthing?
It’s both a very simple and very complex concept. Simply put: Earthing is the process of grounding ourselves (in a similar way that we “ground” our electrical outlets). It’s a natural process of being connected to the earth in order to “neutralize” our body’s electrical makeup.
Back in the “good old days,” people were much more connected to the earth. But today it’s a different story. Everything is insulated. We wear rubber shoes. We live in insulated houses. We spend most of our day engaged in electrical devices. We are literally disconnected from the Earth and that lost connection to our planet has created an electron deficiency in our bodies.
Your planet is a six sextillion (that’s six followed by twenty-one zeros) metric ton battery that is continually being replenished by solar radiation, lightning, and heat from its deep-down molten core. And just like a battery in a car that keeps the motor running and the wheels turning, so, too, do the rhythmic pulsations of natural energy flowing through and emanating from the surface of the Earth keep the biological machinery of global life running in rhythm and balance.(Earthing: The most important health discovery ever? page 3)
The electric charges of the earth are really important for us humans. Why? Because, like the Earth, our bodies are made up of mostly water and minerals—both of which are amazing conductors of electrons. And as long as there is direct skin contact with the earth, the free electrons from that 6,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 metric ton battery (Earth) are easily transferred into and throughout our body. These free electrons help balance out our bodies—which have a lot of free radicals moving about.
In a nutshell, free radicals are positive-charged molecules (short of one or more electrons) that search for free electrons to become stable. In a healthy, balanced body, these free radicals obtain their missing electrons by stripping electrons away from pathogens and damaged tissue—killing “the bad guys” in our bodies. This is acute inflammation. (This is good.) The problem is that in chronic or prolonged inflammation those free radicals go on a rampage and start attacking healthy tissue.
We believe that normal inflammation veers out of control because of lost contact with the Earth. People are suffering from an electron deficiency—not enough free electrons on hand to satisfy the lust of rampaging free radicals. (Earthing, page 60)
Medical experts and scientists consider inflammation to be one of the major causes in almost all chronic disease from stroke to heart disease to arthritis. In fact, a number of people suffering from a variety of issues (such as back pain, autism, allergies, arthritis, electrosensitivity, fibromyalgia, jet lag, multiple sclerosis, sciatica, sleep apnea, stress, and varicose veins) have reported amazing results by getting grounded.
The whole concept of earthing is still relatively new, scientifically speaking. But the studies that have been performed over the past decade and a half are showing amazing results. For example, in a double blind study one group used “earthing sheets” and the control group used placebo sheets. In the “grounded” group:
- 85% went to sleep more quickly
- 93 percent reported sleeping better throughout the night
- 82% experience less muscle stiffness
- 74% experienced an elimination of chronic back/joint pain
- 100% reported feeling more rested upon waking
- 78% reported improved general health
- Some ‘grounded’ participants also reported relief from respiratory issues, RA, hypertension, sleep apnea, hot flashes, and PMS.
In fact, earthing recovery bags have been used by the American bikers in the Tour de France for a number of years with an impressive track record for faster recovery and healing while also keeping tendonitis at bay.
And if you are the type who “learns from pictures” check these out:
These thermal images were taken just 30 minutes apart before (left) and after (right) earthing. The red, orange and yellow show inflammation “hot spots.”
The really good news is that earthing is free!
You don’t need to buy sheets, bands, or mats to get a dose of the earth’s goodness. You just need to get connected to the earth. Take your shoes off. Make some skin contact to the planet’s surface (preferably for at least 30 minutes consecutively.) Go on a picnic. Do some barefoot running. Hug a tree (seriously, do it.) Of course, if weather or other life routines make it hard to get outside, you may find it useful to look into some of the sheets. But earthing is a simple, free solution available to all! (Of course, if you are interested in earthing products for those winter months, you can check them out here.)
This series is getting ridiculously long (sorry about that). And I haven’t even talked about my experience yet (or how it helped me with my insomnia.) Come back tomorrow to learn more. I’ll make it worth your while with a giveaway!!!
What do you think? Does this make sense to you or is it “too out there?” Do tell!
(top image by nicholᴀs, Flickr)