FREEDOM FRIDAY: Are you sufficiently grounded?
You can listen to the podcast version of this episode on Apple, Spotify, or this audio player:
Be afraid — be very afraid — of nature.
That’s basically what we’re conditioned to believe.
Those beliefs are reflected in our behaviors and even our purchasing decisions.
In the summer, we jack up the air conditioning to protect us from the heat of the sun; in the winter, we turn up the heat to protect us from the cold.
We slather ourselves with chemicals in the summer to protect ourselves from the “dangerous” sun.
Pills are popped at the first sign of a fever, thus blocking our natural immune function.
Our rubber-soled shoes protect us from the rocks and stones and pebbles on the ground.
I’m not saying any of these things are “bad” (well, I will say that toxic sunscreen is certainly not good for you), but the bottom line is that we are conditioned to think we are “separate” from nature.
There are a variety of repercussions of this separation, ranging from war, violence, environmental degradation, and so forth, that we will not cover here.
On an individual level, however, a life of separation from nature has direct implications for our mental, physical, and emotional health — implications that no amount of drugs or technology can “fix.”
There are a number of simple activities in which we can engage to reconnect with nature and align with the natural rhythms of the earth to make us healthier in every way.
In this podcast, we’ll focus on one powerful activity — knowing as “grounding” or “earthing.”
What is Grounding?
Grounding, or earthing, is quite simply walking or standing barefoot, outdoors, on natural surfaces (such as dirt, grass, soil) to allow your body to directly connect with the electrical currents of the Earth.
In the 2017 documentary, Down to Earth, cardiologist Dr. Stephen Sinatra explains…
“[G]rounding is literally putting your bare feet on the ground. When you do that, you’re in contact with the Earth, and mother Earth is endowed with electrons, and these electrons are literally absorbed through your feet. It’s like taking handfuls of antioxidants, but you’re getting it through your feet.”
For example, several times a week, I head out on the dirt trails and red rocks here near my home in Sedona, Arizona, and, during a hike, will take off my shoes and socks for a portion of the hike — or during a time when I’ll just pause for a standing meditation on the red rocks.
If you live near a beach or a park, you can do the same. Put your feet in the sand or the grass and walk, or just stand. Breath deeply through your nose and into your belly the sun and fresh air.
If you have a grass yard (especially if it’s not doused in toxic chemicals), you can do the same.
If you have a garden, get out in it, with your feet and hands directly in the dirt.
If you think this all sounds weird, or “hippy-ish”, or if you’re worried what others will think of you — then so be it. You’re free to continue living in the bubble of technology and pharmaceuticals :)
But if you’re open to connecting with the natural rhythms of the earth to boost your physical, mental, and emotional health, please read on for some real benefits of grounding.
Five Benefits of Grounding
Here are just five powerful benefits of grounding:
1 — Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation is the source of most disease and illness in our world. Thanks to our disconnection from nature, and our food — which is laced with inflammatory agents such as glyphosate, vegetable and seed oils, sugar, among other toxins — we find ourselves in a constant state of inflammation.
In the film, Down to Earth, grounding expert Clint Ober explains…
“Inflammation is produced by neutrophils, which are white blood cells. [When] you have an injury … a damaged cell … these white blood cells come over and encapsulate the damaged cell and … release reactive oxygen species, which rip electrons from the damaged cell and that destroys the damaged cell.If there’s not enough free electrons there to reduce the remaining radicals, they’re going to steal an electron from a healthy cell and, in the process, damage it. Then the message goes out to the immune system, and another neutrophil does the same thing and eliminates that cell, and then you have a chain reaction.”
This study showed grounding’s positive impact in reducing muscle inflammation and soreness after workouts, and even help wound healing.
Another study showed “consistent beneficial effects of grounding” related to inflammatory biomarkers in massage therapists experiencing muscle pain.
2— Improve Heart Health
In his book, Human Heart, Cosmic Heart: A Doctor’s Quest to Understand, Treat, and Prevent Cardiovascular Disease, Dr. Tom Cowan advocates grounding/earthing as one of the primary means of improving cardiovascular health in his patients…
“Thirty minutes per day of barefoot walking when possible, especially on a beach for those who live near the ocean…The benefits of barefoot walking, or “earthing,” are based on the same influences that make water move. Making our water (i.e., blood) move is an important component of healthy circulation, of which the heart is a part. Increased blood flow means increased metabolism, which translates to a restoration of the health of the heart as a muscle. Vigorous barefoot walking is a key to improving blood flow and overall circulation.”
When Cowan says “making our water move”, he’s referring to increasing the structure of the water in our cells to mirror “structured water” in nature. Healthy water within our cells should be highly structured and charged.
Dr. Joseph Mercola writes…
“Water is in every cell in your body, and this water is highly ordered (structured) and charged. If you don't have properly structured water in your cells, it can impact the functioning of the much larger protein molecules (and others) that interface with the cell. The water inside the cell also interfaces with water outside the cell, which has the opposite charge, creating a battery effect.
Your body's ability to generate electricity is actually a key part of your achieving health. Electrical charges delivered from cell to cell allows for nearly instantaneous communication within your body, and the messages conducted via these electrical signals are responsible for controlling the rhythm of your heartbeat, the movement of blood around your body and much more.”
This study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that...
“Grounding increases the surface charge on RBCs and thereby reduces blood viscosity and clumping. Grounding appears to be one of the simplest and yet most profound interventions for helping reduce cardiovascular risk and cardiovascular events.”
3 — Improve Mood/Reduce Anxiety
Grounding can help balance your body’s secretions of cortisol (the stress hormone), as well as bring your sympathetic nervous system (“fight or flight” system) back in balance with your parasympathetic nervous system (“rest and digest” system).
A study in Psychological Reports found that “pleasant and positive moods statistically significantly improved” among study participants who engaged in grounding.
And according to the researchers who conducted this study…
“Contact with the Earth (earthing) directly or via a conductive wire plays role as a neuromodulative factor, probably primary, which enables the nervous system to be better adapted to the demands of organism and ambient environment. It helps to restore natural, electrical status of the electrical environment of the organism and thus the nervous system.”
This 2006 study found grounding also helped produce...
“Reductions in overall stress levels and tensions, and a shift in autonomic balance.”
4— Protect Against EMF Damage
Thanks to WiFi, 5G, microwave ovens, and a host of other technologies introduced in recent decades, the human body is constantly bombarded with harmful, electro-magnetic frequencies (EMFs).
The International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified EMFs as a potential carcinogen, and EMFs have been found to impact our mood, fertility, sleep levels, and physical health.
This 2016 study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that grounding can protect humans from the impact of indoor EMFs.
A series of additional studies have found that earthing/grounding can have a dramatic positive impact on balancing out the electrical currents of the human body to protect against the imbalances caused by EMF bombardment.
Check out this recent video by Matt Roeske, co-founder of superfood company Cultivate Elevate, which shows the impact of earthing on human blood cells before and after grounding:
5— Improve Sleep and Boost Energy Levels
This study found that, by grounding at night using a "grounding mattress", reduction’s in night-time levels of cortisol could occur, leading to greater alignment with “the natural 24-hour circadian” rhythm.
The researchers found that…
“Grounding the human body to earth during sleep improves sleep and reduces pain and stress.”
Another study found that grounding helped normalize “diurnal cortisol profiles” and improved sleep and lead to a decline in stress levels.
How Can I Start?
The great thing about grounding is that it’s totally free. All it costs is your time to get started.
Take twenty minutes today and go in your backyard or a local park or the beach. Take off your shoes and walk around. Sometimes I like to go on the red rocks here in Sedona and do standing meditation.
If you are inclined to spend some money, this Web site provides a great guide to grounding shoes, mattresses, pillows, and other products to help you stay grounded morning, noon, and night.
No matter how you start, instead of looking this as another chore or yet another “discipline” to add to your routine, look at it as a fun form of self-love that gets you away from the screens and the noise and into the calm rhythm of nature.
As I explain in this video, the great threat to humanity isn’t anything external (or any Election Day results 😉), it’s the imbalances that occur within each and every one of us:
Grounding is a wonderful away to bring yourself back into balance.
Here also is a video in which Matt Roeske and I discuss the power of grounding (as well as sunlight and other health cultivation activities):
What are you waiting for?
Get barefoot and get outside!
Curt Mercadante helps driven men free themselves from the limiting beliefs and stress that block their joy, fulfillment, and freedom. Click here to get access to our FREE Freedom Lifestyle Audio Course.