Our hearts. They keep us going, give us strength, and sometimes, they break us.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a leading cause of death around the world, and the risk factors are complex. From cholesterol to blood viscosity to inflammation, cardiologists are gaining more and more awareness about why CVD occurs and what can prevent it.
This is where grounding, or earthing, came into play.
What is grounding?
Grounding is making a physical connection with the earth. Walking barefoot through dirt, grass, sand or even concrete. Swimming in an ocean, lake or river. Or, using "sham-grounding" techniques like conductive mats, body bands and patches.
Can grounding help prevent CVD?
Blood viscosity, or the thickness of blood, is a risk factor for CVD and can be measured by how active a person's red blood cells are. This is called zeta potential. Red blood cells create an electrical charge when they move, and the higher the charge, the less chance there is of clumping or resistance which causes CVD.
Grounding for CVD is based on electrostatic physics, which says that when two conductive objects with different electrical potential touch each other there is a virtually instantaneous transfer of charge. The two objects, like the human body and the earth for example, then equilibrate to the same electrical potential.
The case study
Drs. Gaétan Chevalier and Stephen T. Sinatra were aware that this transfer of electrons can alter many electrical properties of the body, and wanted to see if zeta potential was one of them. They recruited 10 healthy adults between the ages of 40 – 60 to take part in 2-hour grounding sessions to test their theory.
Conductive patches connected to the soil by wires and a stainless-steel rod were placed on the subjects' feet and palms, and the zeta potential of their blood was measured 9 different times throughout their sessions.
At the end of the day, the grounding methods actually worked. On average, the zeta potential increased by a factor of 2.70 and red blood cell aggregation was significantly reduced. While further studies are warranted, this experiment showed that grounding can be a natural way to prevent some factors of Cardiovascular disease. Best of all, grounding has virtually no negative side-effects, but countless positive ones like reduced pain, increased blood flow, and more.
What you can do
Step outside without shoes off, take a swim in a local body of water, or find grounding products that work for your lifestyle. Then, experience the difference grounding can make for you.