What is Earthing? Understanding the Benefits of Grounding for your Health
Earthing, also known as grounding, is the practice of connecting with the Earth's energy by walking barefoot on the ground or coming into contact with conductive objects. This ancient practice has been found to have incredible benefits for our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. In an age of chronic disease on the rise, earthing provides a way back to better health and can generate dramatic results for many people.
Why is Earthing so important?
Electrons are the "object of affect," of positively charged free radicals, the biochemical agents that cause oxidation in the body. Electrons are the source of antioxidant power. This influx of electrons from the soil is believed to potently neutralize or quench free radicals that would otherwise steal electrons from healthy tissue, the activity that results in tissue damage and chronic inflammation, being the basis for many common and serious diseases.
Connecting with the earth, both outside and inside a building, has helped many people tremendously with various illnesses, injuries, and stresses. For over ten years, thousands of people around the world have incorporated connecting to Earth into their daily routines for health benefits. The results are documented and extraordinary. Staying grounded is our responsibility, so, go for a barefoot walk on the beach, go for a picnic on the park or if you have a garden just lay down for half an hour and connect.
Benefits of Earthing (Supported by Science)
There has been many studies in the past 10 years leading to the benefits of this practice. Studies have been developed on concrete aspects like inflammatory and sleep disorders and how staying grounded can drastically improve the symptoms of these and other chronic diseases.
Improves Skin Clearness & Blood Flow
Many people have reported improved skin appearance and elasticity from Earthing, or connecting with the Earth's energy. Spending just one hour grounded has been found to enhance facial blood circulation and improve skin appearance, brain and cardiovascular activity. A study was conducted with 40 middle-aged participants divided into two groups: a grounded group and a control group. The participants sat in a comfortable chair equipped with grounding mats, pillows, and patches. One group was connected to the ground while the other was not. The results were measured using an infrared camera to track changes in blood flow and temperature. The study found that even just one hour of Earthing improves blood circulation in the torso and face, supports tissue repair, enhances skin health, and optimizes facial appearance (p = 0.002 for full anterior torso view and face anterior view, p = 0.017 for face lateral views)
Facial Blood Flow Scientific Paper
Improve Sleep & Chronic Pain
It has been well documented that many people have eliminated or severely diminished chronic pain through the control of inflammation or free radicals balance.
The first double-blind investigation focused on people with sleep disorders and chronic pain. 100% of the "connected" woke up more rested. 93% reported an improvement in sleep quality. 82% noted improvement in muscle stiffness and pain. 78% say they have had greater general well-being. In the control group the improvements were null or very little.
Scientific article on Chronic Pain & Sleep Disorder
Improves muscle recovery
The benefits of Earthing were put to the test when an American cycling team used it for recovery during the Tour de France. This led to a significant improvement in muscle recovery, which sparked further interest and study. In a double-blind, crossover study, 42 participants were divided into two groups and practiced Earthing during exercise and recovery. One group was earthed for 30 minutes during exercise and recovery in the first week, while the other group was earthed during the second week. Blood samples were taken before and after the training sessions to evaluate changes. The results showed that Earthing during exercise and recovery led to lower blood urea levels and may improve protein balance in the body. These differences were noted at various stages of exercise and recovery in both groups
Improves the cardiovascular system
Heart disease is the top killer in the US for all genders and ethnic groups. Every 37 seconds, someone dies from heart disease in the US, leading to over 647,000 deaths each year, making it a critical issue to address. To better understand its impact, a study was conducted to see the effects of grounding on red blood cell electrical charge and clumping.
10 adults participated in the study by wearing conductive patches on their feet and hands that were connected to a rod in the ground. Researchers took small blood samples, applied an electric field and used a microscope to measure the movement of red blood cells and the clumping of cells. Participants sat in a quiet room with dimmed or turned-off lights while they were grounded.
The results showed that grounding increased the surface charge on red blood cells and reduced clumping, leading to a decrease in blood viscosity. Grounding had an average increase in zeta potential by 2.70 and significantly reduced red blood cell aggregation. This study indicates that grounding may be a simple and effective way to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and events.
Study on blood viscosity
So, how do I get started?
If you're looking to incorporate Earthing into your daily routine, start by taking a barefoot walk on the beach or a park, or even in your backyard. If you're unable to go outside, consider using a grounding mat or sheet inside your home. These products are designed to conduct the Earth's energy directly to your body, and can be used while sitting or sleeping, adapting to your daily routines.
Incorporating Earthing into your life can take some time, but the benefits are well worth it. With regular practice, you may find yourself feeling more balanced, less stressed, and with improved overall well-being. Remember, Earthing is a simple yet powerful way to reconnect with the natural world and promote optimal health and vitality.
You can visit our Frequently asked questions for more information
Grounding Sheets and Grounding Mats
As we stated before, these products are designed to help you stay connected to the Earth's energy, even when you're indoors. They are made of conductive materials that transfer the Earth's energy to your body through contact and can be used while sitting, sleeping or even during yoga or meditation.
It's important to keep in mind that to fully reap the benefits of Earthing, it's recommended to combine it with other healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet, regular exercise, and adequate hydration as well as getting enough sleep.
You can learn more about the difference between these two products in our article Difference between mats and sheets
We were born to be in direct contact with the earth. Moving away from this origin is dysfunctional as dozens of scientific studies confirm. It is not necessary to return to the caverns. Nor do you walk barefoot for 24 hours. With 8 hours of grounded sleep “connection” is enough. If you can not make this connection naturally, or you object, implement technological solutions at home, you will get the same benefits.
Here are 43 of the most commonly asked questions with brief responses:
- Earthing Meaning: Earthing, or grounding, is the process of connecting your body directly to the Earth's natural electric charge. The Earth emits a constant flow of direct current (DC) electricity, and when our skin comes in contact with the Earth, we can absorb this energy.
- Practicing Earthing: Earthing can be practiced by walking barefoot outside on conductive surfaces like grass, sand, soil, or unsealed concrete. Additionally, specialized earthing equipment such as grounding mats, bands, or sheets can be used indoors.
- Grounding Duration: Ideally, a minimum of 30 minutes of earthing a day is suggested. The benefits increase with longer periods, but any grounding can help.
- Earthing vs Grounding: They essentially refer to the same concept. The term "earthing" is more commonly used in Europe, while "grounding" is used in North America.
- Benefits of Earthing: Earthing is believed to provide various health benefits like reducing inflammation and chronic pain, improving sleep and mood, boosting immunity, increasing energy levels, and lowering stress levels.
- Importance of Earthing: Earthing is seen as a way to balance the electrical energy in our bodies, which is critical for maintaining good health. It also helps us to sync with the Earth's natural rhythms.
- Sitting While Earthing: Yes, you can sit in a chair while earthing, as long as your bare feet are in contact with a conductive surface like a grounding mat or the Earth.
- Earthing & Inflammation: Earthing is suggested to help reduce inflammation. Some researchers hypothesize that the negative electrons from the Earth may neutralize the positive free radicals causing inflammation.
- Start Grounding: To start grounding, begin by spending time barefoot outdoors. This can be as simple as walking in your yard or a park. You can also use grounding equipment for indoor grounding.
- If You Don't Ground: Without grounding, you may miss the potential benefits like reduced inflammation and stress, improved sleep, energy, and mood. Some people also report feeling more "disconnected" or "out of balance."
- Ground on Concrete: Yes, you can ground on unsealed or unpainted concrete. But sealed or painted concrete, asphalt, wood, and vinyl are not conductive.
- Walking Barefoot: While there's no strict rule on duration, spending a minimum of 30 minutes walking barefoot daily is often suggested to reap the benefits of earthing.
- Disadvantages of Earthing: Walking barefoot outside can also raise concerns about hygiene and safety from sharp objects.
- Ground with Socks: No, socks generally act as insulators and prevent the flow of the Earth's electrons into your body. Bare skin contact is usually needed for grounding.
- Ground While Sleeping: Grounding can be achieved during sleep using grounding sheets or mats that connect to the Earth's electrical field.
- Earthing & Toxins: While earthing is suggested to promote overall well-being and a healthier immune system, there's no concrete scientific evidence suggesting it directly removes toxins from the body.
- Feel After Earthing: Many people report feeling more relaxed, at ease, and well-rested after earthing. Some also report improvements in chronic pain or inflammation.
- Earthing Through Clothes: Clothing acts as a barrier and generally inhibits the flow of electricity from the Earth to your body. Direct skin contact is usually needed for effective grounding except the sleeping mat that works under a moisture principle.
- Knowing if Earthing Works: The effectiveness of earthing can be subjective and varies between individuals. Some report feeling more relaxed or energetic. Others may notice reductions in pain or improvements in sleep. You can also use a body voltage meter to measure changes.
- Earthing Detox Symptoms: Some individuals may experience detox-like symptoms such as mild discomfort, flu-like symptoms, or emotional distress during initial stages of grounding. These typically resolve over time.
- Overdoing Earthing: Currently, there's no documented evidence suggesting negative effects from earthing too much. The practice is considered generally safe.
- Earthing & Healing: Earthing is suggested to aid in healing by reducing inflammation and promoting better sleep, both of which support the body's natural healing process. However, it's not a substitute for medical treatment.
- Earthing & Sleep: Yes, grounding can improve sleep. It's thought to do this by normalizing the body's circadian rhythm and reducing cortisol, the body's main stress hormone.
- Touching a Tree: Yes, touching a tree can be grounding, as trees are connected to the earth and can help transfer the Earth's energy.
- Best Surface for Earthing: The best surfaces for grounding include wet sand (beach), grass, bare soil, and unsealed concrete and brick. Water is also highly conductive.
- Grounding in Winter: During winter, you can use indoor grounding equipment, such as grounding mats, sheets, or patches. These connect to the ground port of your electrical outlet and provide grounding benefits.
- If You're Not Grounded: Feelings of disconnection, restlessness, scattered thoughts, or stress might suggest you're not grounded. It's a feeling of being "off" or not being present in the moment.
- Grounding Surfaces: Good surfaces for grounding include soil, grass, sand, and unsealed concrete or brick. Sealed or painted surfaces, asphalt, wood, and vinyl are not conductive.
- Indoor Grounding: You can ground indoors using grounding devices like mats, sheets, or patches. These connect to the ground port of an electrical outlet to simulate earthing.
- Touch to Ground: To ground yourself, you can touch the Earth directly with your bare skin. Indoors, you can use a grounding device or even touch a grounded object like a radiator.
- Earthing & Anxiety: Earthing may help alleviate anxiety by promoting relaxation and reducing cortisol levels. However, more research is needed.
- Best Place for Grounding: The best places for grounding are those where you can have direct contact with the Earth. This includes grassy areas, sandy beaches, or even your own backyard. If indoors, use a grounding mat or sheet.
- Grounding in Shoes: Most shoes, especially those with rubber or plastic soles, act as insulators and prevent grounding. Leather-soled shoes might allow some conductivity.
- Cheapest Earthing: Walking barefoot outside on a conductive surface is the cheapest form of grounding as it costs nothing.
- General Earthing Rules: Always make sure you have direct skin contact with the Earth or grounding device. Avoid insulating materials that could block the Earth's energy.
- Proper Earthing Method: The most effective grounding involves direct skin contact with the Earth. When outdoors, walking barefoot or sitting on the ground is optimal. When indoors, using a grounded device is recommended.
- Grounding & Pain Relief: Grounding can help with pain relief, especially with chronic pain, by reducing inflammation and promoting relaxation.
- Grounding & Mental Health: Grounding might improve mental health conditions such as anxiety or depression by promoting relaxation and reducing stress. However, more research is needed.
- Safety of Grounding: Grounding is generally safe for everyone, but individuals with health conditions should always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new health practice.
- Grounding Through a Mattress: Grounding typically requires direct skin contact, but there are special grounding mats and sheets designed to be used on beds during sleep.
- Grounding & Digestion: While there's limited research, some individuals report improved digestion after starting grounding. This might be related to stress reduction and improved sleep.
- Potential Side Effects of Grounding: Some individuals might experience temporary discomfort or detox-like symptoms during the initial stages of grounding. There's also the potential risk of electric shock if grounding equipment is not correctly used.
- Grounding with a Mat or Sheet: Yes, you can ground using a specialized grounding mat or sheet. These devices are connected to the ground port of an electrical outlet to simulate grounding. Check our complete article on the differences between mats and sheets