Grounding Benefits: Know the Healing Powers of Touching the Earth
Grounding - Also Called Earthing - Is One Of The Oldest & Simplest Traditional Practices.
Grounding helps to restore the balance of electrical charges in the system.
It goes without saying that our body is electrically active. It consists of numerous salts called electrolytes which are necessary for heartbeat, muscle contractions, and nerve conduction. Examples of electrolytes include: sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, ions.
Take a deeper dive into the science-backed benefits of grounding, and learn how to maximize the benefits as well as how long you should practice it.
A Quick Overview of Grounding
In simple terms, grounding is walking barefoot on a surface that is electrically charged.
Here is a simple way to explain this: If you walk barefoot on a carpet, it cannot be termed as grounding because the carpet is an insulator and thus does not allow movement of charged particles between your body and the earth surface.
However, if you do the same on a ground, the free electrons on its surface flow into your body and you can get a myriad of health benefits. Several studies have found that the free electrons on the surface of the earth are powerful antioxidants and also help to set the biological clock to its original rhythm.
What Are The Benefits Of Grounding?
Based on various study findings, grounding is known to:
Relieve symptoms of asthma, joint pain, and breathing problems while sleeping.
Reduce blood viscosity.
Grounding Benefits: What Science Says
Grounding reduces stress hormone 'cortisol'.
A 2012 study published in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health found that grounding could be effective in lowering the release of cortisol. Cortisol is an integral of Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS), the division of the nervous system that prepares your body for response to stressful situations. For this reason, when your brain turns on SNS, it is also called Fight-or-Flight Mode.
A regular practice gradually shifts the brain functions from Fight-or-Flight Mode To Rest and Digest Mode. As a result, it reduces the risk of conditions that might result due to chronically elevated cortisol levels, such as:
Chronic anxiety and low moods.
Memory problems and poor concentration.
Hormone balance problems like a spike in blood glucose levels.
Reduces The Risk Of Heart Disease.
A 2013 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found some exciting results about the effect of regular grounding on heart health. The study examined how staying connected to the earth could affect the charges on the red blood cells (RBCs) and RBC-clumping.
At the end of the study in which ten healthy participants practiced 2 hours of grounding each day, the researchers found that the participants had:
An increased surface charge on RBCs.
Reduces blood viscosity.
Fewer clumps of RBCs.
Because high blood viscosity due to the formation of RBC clusters is one of the major risk factors for heart disease, increasing the surface charge on RBCs through regular grounding is a simple, highly desirable and effective way to promote heart health.
Keep in mind that high blood viscosity impairs blood flow in the blood vessels and may contribute to conditions like elevated blood pressure, the formation of blood clots and decreased blood supply to the heart.
Reduces Pain & Inflammation.
Pain and inflammation of the injured part is actually a protective mechanism that speeds up the recovery process. However, fighting a severe pain can be a daunting task.
A 2015 study published in the Journal of Inflammation Research found that “grounded” participants had lower fewer inflammatory cells in the injured part. This means they achieved faster recovery with low levels of inflammation and fewer damages to the nearby healthy cells.
The Best Way to Practice Grounding For Maximum Health Benefits.
Keep it simple, just walk barefoot on the ground. Make sure to keep the soles of your feet stay connected to the earth surface. For water lovers, here is a good news; dipping the feet in the sea water is equally effective. If going out is not your cup of tea, think of using a grounding mat.
How Long Should You Keep Yourself Grounded?
For desirable results, consider practicing grounding for at least 20 minutes to 30 minutes each day. Also, note that some studies mentioned above used grounding for two hours a day. Thus, you may want to extend the duration depending on how your body responds to it.
If you struggle with frequent headaches, irregular heartbeat, and dizziness, make sure to practice grounding for at least 40 minutes.
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