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Earthing Benefits

Earthing or grounding impacts the whole body and individuals often report multiple health benefits.

Grounding benefits do accumulate and you may see significant changes over the coming weeks and months. Some studies have measured near-immediate changes in muscle tension with earthing (see below).

How much time does it take?

Some people experience benefits very quickly – within the first day/s, while for others it can take more time, with the benefits becoming more apparent gradually over weeks or even several months.

Generally speaking, more noticeable changes are likely if you have pain, stress, poor sleep, some form of chronic disease or a long-standing health issue.

Even if you don’t notice anything, subtle changes may be happening. Some studies have measured near-immediate changes with earthing (see below).

Immediate Changes (within 4 seconds)

  • Earthing calms the nervous system
  • Muscles start to relax and return to normal tension

30-120 minutes of daily grounding

  • Stress reduction
  • Pain relief
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Improved heart rate variability
  • Blood flows more freely aiding circulation and wound healing
  • Supports the cardiovascular system and healthy blood pressure.
  • A more positive, relaxed mood

Grounding Overnight While You Sleep

  • All the benefits listed above
  • Deeper sleep
  • Fall asleep faster
  • Wake up less during the night or return to sleep faster after waking.
  • More energy during the day.
  • Less emotional stress and improved mental health.
  • Reduced pain including musculoskeletal pain, gastrointestinal problems, headaches, menstrual cramps and temporomandibular joint symptoms.
  • Less pain interfering with sleep
  • Effectively reduce inflammation & free radicals in the body.
  • Shorter recovery time from muscular exertion

Why Fighting Inflammation may be the Number 1 Health Benefit

When you connect with the earth, your body receives a dose of what’s known as “free electrons” directly from the earth’s surface.

These free electrons can help quench the fires of inflammation.

Free radicals are positively charged. They are missing an electron. In an effort to become stable (neutral) they “steal” an electron from another molecule. This triggers a chain reaction referred to as “oxidative stress”, and is how free radicals cause widespread inflammation, damaging tissues and cells.

When a positively charged free radical meets a negatively charged free electron, they bond and the electrical charge becomes neutral. This stops the chain reaction in its tracks.

When the free radicals’ chain reaction is stopped, inflammation reduces. In turn, this may reduce the risk of serious disease.

Grounding for Chronic Pain Relief

The root cause of most types of pain is inflammation. This includes joint pain such as arthritis, back pain, strains, and sprains. By reducing inflammation, earthing also has the effect of relieving pain.

In his series of 20 case studies, Dr William Amalu used medical thermography to document the effects of earthing on inflammation and pain levels. This technique allows us to view areas of inflammation and poor circulation within the body as an image. The subjects of these case studies had various types of pain ranging from back pain and knee pain to unhealed wounds.

In all cases, earthing reduced areas of inflammation within the subjects’ bodies resulting in a reduction in pain and other symptoms. Read our articles on arthritis, joint pain, bursitis, back pain, migraine or neck pain for more.

Dr Amalu stated in his paper “Grounding is showing incredible promise as one of the most significant advances in the treatment of both acute and chronic inflammatory conditions.”

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A Good Night’s Sleep

Grounding overnight can help regulate your natural diurnal rhythms or your sleep-wake cycle.

Cortisol is a hormone which is associated with stress. It also has the function of waking you up in the morning and keeping you alert throughout the day.

Cortisol secretion should be at its peak at 8 am and gradually fall as the day goes on. However, sometimes this natural cycle can be disrupted, often due to chronic stress. This results in high night-time cortisol levels, difficulty falling asleep and waking during the night.

In a 2004 study12 subjects had their daily cortisol profiles measured before and after sleeping on an indoor earthing system. During the 6-week study time, their cortisol levels returned to a more normal profile. The subjects also reported falling asleep more easily and waking fewer times during the night.

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Faster Immune System Response

Earthing can help support immune response according to a 2011 study Earthing the Human Body Influences Physiologic Processes. 32 subjects were given a dose of typhoid vaccine and tetanus toxoid and monitored over the course of four days.

Between days 3 and 4, half of the subjects were earthed overnight, while the other half were sham-earthed. The subjects did not know which group they were assigned to.

After seven hours earthing overnight, the subjects in the earthed group had increased levels of y-globulins. These are proteins made by the liver and immune system in response to the vaccine. This shows a faster immune response.

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Stress Relief

Earthing can reduce stress due to its effects on the central nervous system. It triggers a shift from the sympathetic, “fight or flight” branch of our nervous systems, to the parasympathetic branch, which is responsible for rest, relaxation, and recuperation. This happens within just a few seconds of grounding yourself.

A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine used skin conductance to monitor the nervous system. Conductance reduced immediately on earthing. This indicates a shift from sympathetic to parasympathetic activity, or a calming of the nervous system.

See our related articles on anxiety, depression, or chronic stress for more.

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Improved Blood Circulation

Earthing has also been shown to reduce blood viscosity and improve circulation.

It does this by increasing the negative charge of red blood cells, also known as zeta potential.

This negative charge causes red blood cells to repel one another, much like a pair of magnets. This stops red blood cells from clumping together, allowing the blood to flow more easily in the vessels. This, in turn, reduces the risk of conditions such as high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke.

In a 2013 study, 10 healthy subjects had the zeta potential of their red blood cells measured before and after two hours of earthing. After earthing, the subjects’ blood had more clusters of one or two red blood cells and fewer clusters of three or four. This indicates an improved zeta potential and reduced blood viscosity.

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Recovery from Injury and Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness

Earthing can also help to speed up recovery time and relieve DOMs (delayed onset muscle soreness.). DOMs is a common condition which can occur following excessive exercise due microscopic tears in muscle leading to increased levels of inflammation.

Grounding can also help to speed up recovery time and relieve DOMs (delayed onset muscle soreness.). DOMs is a common condition which can occur following excessive exercise due to increased levels of inflammation.

The 2010 Pilot Study on the Effect of Grounding on Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness took eight healthy subjects and exposed them to unfamiliar, vigorous exercise to produce DOMs. Half of the subjects were earthed, both overnight and during the day, and the other half were sham-earthed.

A total of 48 biological markers were tested before and after earthing as a measure of inflammation. The study found consistent differences in 30 of these markers between the two groups following earthing. The earthed subjects also reported reduced pain and faster recovery time compared with those who were sham-earthed.

Jeff Spencer, a chiropractor working with many top athletes, also recommends earthing. He uses earthing to help speed up recovery in his clients including competitors in the gruelling Tour de France. He says:

“My observations and feedback enable me to say, without any reservation, that Earthing is an indispensable healing and recovery tool, something even beyond significant, for any treatment or recovery regimen as it relates to injury, surgery, and maximum athletic performance.”

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Earthing for Glucose or Blood Sugar Regulation

Earthing may help regulate blood glucose levels as shown in the study Earthing the Human Body Influences Physiologic Processes. 12 patients with type 2 diabetes were either earthed or sham-earthed continuously for 72 hours.

By the end of the trial, the patients in the earthing group had significantly reduced fasting glucose levels indicating better blood sugar regulation. Therefore earthing could be a valuable weapon in the battle against this common disease.

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Cardiovascular Function

Earthing may help reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. This is due to its ability to reduce inflammation, improve circulation and improve heart rate variability (HRV).

HRV has been strongly linked with cardiovascular disease along with other factors such as obesity, smoking and stress. Poor HRV is indicative of increased activity in the sympathetic branch of the nervous system which can put extra strain on the heart.

A 2013 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that just 40 minutes of earthing improved HRV significantly. The authors state:

“This study showed a positive trend in HRV that kept improving all the way to the end of the 40-minute period of grounding, suggesting a greater benefit with time.”

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Improved Bone Density

Healthy bone density relies on the balance of a number of minerals, especially calcium, within our bodies. If we do not have enough calcium, our bones will become weak and brittle. This can increase the risk of fractures and conditions such as osteoporosis.

The study Earthing the Human Body Influences Physiologic Processes looked at the effects of earthing on the levels of calcium, phosphorus, and iron in the blood. In this experiment, 84 subjects were randomly assigned to two groups – earthing and sham-earthing.

After sleeping earthed for eight hours, those in the earthing group had decreased serum levels of all three minerals. This is thought to be due to a decrease in excretion by the kidneys while earthing overnight.

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Improved Vagal Tone

The vagus nerve is the main nerve of our parasympathetic nervous system. As such, it helps regulate a number of the body’s functions from our resting heart rate to breathing, and healthy digestion. The positive effect of grounding on vagal tone has been demonstrated in two studies: one on adults and one on premature babies.

Find out more in Earthing for Improved Vagal Tone.

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What Benefits Might I Experience After a Year of Regular Grounding?

Although there are currently no longitudinal studies, anecdotal evidence suggests that regular earthing can bring:

  • Better ability to cope with stress
  • More energy to pursue goals
  • Continuation of pain relief and improved sleep
  • Decrease of inflammatory markers

Get started today with an indoor earthing product. It is the easiest way to earth daily while you work, relax or sleep.