Studies of environmental impacts on our health often concern negative factors such as pollution. But the natural environment also has a positive impact on our health; we can get our vitamin D from the sun and our oxygen from the trees. Recently, we’ve been very interested in the practice of obtaining the healing properties of the Earth through the simple act of touching it, also referred to as Earthing or Grounding.
Earthing is a means by which we can directly connect our bodies with the earth in an effort to improve our health and well-being. Interest in Earthing has grown over the past several decades and is supported by research in the field.
How It Works
The free radicals that we build up throughout the day are positively charged, and the surface of the Earth is negatively charged. Free radicals are uncharged molecules (typically highly reactive and short-lived) that have an unpaired valence electron. Normally, our bodies can handle free radicals, but if antioxidants are unavailable, or if the free-radical production becomes excessive, damage can occur. Free radical damage can accumulate with age and is closely connected with inflammation. Earthing is a natural way to “ground” these free radicals.
Biological and Physiological Effects
The biologic effects of grounding the human body during sleep as measured by cortisol levels and subjective reporting of sleep, pain, and stress. The results of studies* on Earthing support a decrease in inflammation after earthing and a shift toward parasympathetic function of internal organs.
Based on these studies, it would appear that earthing reduces stress and normalizes the functioning of the autonomic nervous system.
Putting Into Practice
The practice of earthing involves coupling your body to the Earth’s surface energy by walking, sitting, or sleeping outside in direct contact with the Earth. During cold weather months, or simply for convenience, you can mimic this behavior by using a device that creates the same response indoors. Earthing mats or earthing sheets are effective simulation techniques.
If you’re looking for additional information earthing and its connection to our biology, our Health and Education Retreat is an opportunity to receive in-depth health education and advanced therapies.
Have you tried earthing techniques? Let us know in the comments!
- The effects of grounding (earthing) on inflammation, the immune response, wound healing, and prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases
- The biologic effects of grounding the human body during sleep as measured by cortisol levels and subjective reporting of sleep, pain, and stress.
- Emotional Stress, Heart Rate Variability, Grounding, and Improved Autonomic Tone: Clinical Applications
- One-Hour Contact with the Earth’s Surface (Grounding) Improves Inflammation and Blood Flow—A Randomized, Double-Blind, Pilot Study