What are EMF's?
Electromagnetic Fields or EMF’s are a broad term that essentially refers to an electric field produced by a charged object. If you have next to no knowledge of electricity and magnetism (don't worry, you're not alone), it may be helpful for you to see EMF's represented in picture-format as the electromagnetic spectrum.
This is the electromagnetic spectrum outlining the different types of EMF's found in our environment.
There are different categories of EMF's based on frequency and wavelengths ranging from short wavelength/high frequency gamma rays like solar flares and supernovas (star explosions) to long wavelength/low frequency radio waves which conveniently give us AM/FM radio.
Somewhere in between we have x-rays, UV radiation, the visible spectrum of light (yes, good ole ROYGBIV emits electromagnetic energy), infrared light and microwaves.
Now that we have that out of the way, it should be pretty clear that we can’t really classify EMF’s as all good or all bad seeing as gamma and x-ray EMF's can cause some pretty serious cellular damage yet the sun which emits a variety of visible colours in addition to UV and Infrared light is the primary source of all life on earth.
What is much more useful is to differentiate between NATIVE (or naturally occurring) EMF’s and NON-NATIVE (or artificial) EMF’s.
Native EMF's vs Non-Native EMF's
Ok, let's start with the good news. Native (naturally produced) EMF's are all around us. The sun is our best example of a native EMF as it emits almost the entire electromagnetic spectrum! However, its main components are ultraviolet light, the visible light spectrum (predominantly red), and infrared light.
Although it is true that excessive UV light from the sun can cause cellular damage, the benefits of these different spectra (in proper doses) provided by the sun far outweigh the negatives.
The earth also emits native EMF's called the Schumann Resonances which provide energy and information to our bodies. This is a part of why grounding or earthing has been shown to be extremely beneficial for humans! Simply putting your bare feet on the earth can provide a host of benefits, including reducing inflammation and pain, and improving sleep.
Ok, now for the bad news. The list of non-native EMF's is long. Some of the main ones are WIFI, cell service, bluetooth devices and AM/FM radio. These are all in the radio or microwave range. Initially it was thought that only ionizing radiation from gamma rays and x-rays caused cellular damage but now we know that exposure to radio waves and microwaves (from sources such as WIFI) creates oxidative stress in the body that can lead to disease over time.
Non-Native EMF's are all around us in the modern world and it's only getting worse. Cars that drive themselves, wireless headphones, GPS watches, smart TVs, “smart diapers” etc. Technologies containing non-native EMF's are getting stronger and more widespread by the day.
How to Avoid Getting EMF'd: Create a Sleep Sanctuary
Guess how much non-native EMF's have increased since 1917?
A hundred times, a thousand times, maybe even a million times? Not even close.. the answer is one billion billion times!
Yes that’s 18 zeros, also called a quintillion.
Even if there was no scientific research to demonstrate the harms of non-native EMF's, it would be ludicrous to think that something in our environment that has increased a quintillion times in 100 years isn’t having a biological impact on us.
Due to this massive increase, it’s impossible to completely eliminate EMF exposure in your day to day life. Therefore one of the best strategies you can implement to protect yourself is to create a sleep sanctuary as close to EMF free as possible.
Creating a sleep sanctuary:
- Keep all cell phones and other smart devices out of the bedroom. If they must be in the room, ensure they are completely turned off or on airplane mode.
- Switch off the breaker that supplies electricity to your room. If this isn’t possible, unplug any electronics that are in your bedroom, especially the ones that are near your head.
- Lastly, make sure your WIFI is turned off at night. The easiest way to do this is to plug your WIFI router into an outlet timer switch that will automatically turn your router off during the time period you set it to. You can also unplug it manually if you remember, perhaps the same time you switch off your bedroom breaker!
Creating a sleep sanctuary will dramatically improve your sleep quality which will give your body a chance to recover properly in order to combat daily exposure to non-native EMF's, and of course the many other stressors we encounter on a day-to-day basis.
Try it out tonight and pay attention to how you feel tomorrow morning. You can usually feel the difference after just one night's sleep, but the effects are cumulative and continue getting better the more you implement these strategies. Make it part of your routine, and don’t forget to share with your loved ones!
If you want to learn more about how to optimize your sleep, be sure to check out our post on Reducing Blue Light at Night.
How to Avoid Getting EMF'd - Daytime Defence
Distance is the key, the further away from the exposure = decreased intensity of exposure. This is called the inverse square law in physics. Ultimately this means that the further away you are from highly populated areas, the better off you will be.
If you’re not willing to move out of the city (which is not always practical even for tinfoil hat folks like us), then let’s work together to decrease the intensity of our EMF exposure every single day.
- Never hold your cell phone up to your head, or put your laptop on your lap.
- Always use speakerphone or headphones when talking on the phone.
- Absolutely avoid Air Pods and other bluetooth wireless head devices which are wi-frying your precious brain.
- When carrying your cell phone close to your body, ensure it is always on airplane mode.
- Opt for warming foods in a frying pan or toaster oven, and avoid the use of microwaves. Steam convection ovens are also a great alternative to microwaves.
- Avoid the use of wireless smart devices in your home. This includes devices such as Alexa, Google Home or anything that is constantly emitting a bluetooth signal. Same goes for smart devices (TVs, washing machines, etc).
- Avoid the use of Apple watches, Fitbits and other wearables unless they can be used on airplane mode. The OURA ring has this option but it’s still not perfect!
- Consider using an ethernet cable and turning your WIFI off if you spend your day on a computer. We bought these cables on Amazon: 50ft cable for the main floor, and an 100ft cable to reach the basement. If you already have a couple ethernet cables laying around the house, consider buying an ethernet cable coupler to put them together in order reach your office. If you have a newer computer that doesn't have an ethernet port, buy an ethernet adaptor like this one we got on Amazon.
- Avoid the use of a wireless keyboard/mouse.
- If you are unsure of your EMF exposure, consider investing in an EMF meter. Make sure it measures the magnetic, electric AND radio frequency/microwave radiation. We use this one.⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Lastly, do your best to minimize your exposures, but don’t lose sleep over trying to be perfect. Chances are unless you live in a forest, you’re going to be exposed to EMF's every single day. But if you create a sleep sanctuary and reduce major daily exposures, your body will become more adaptable and resilient to stress.
In conclusion, if we're smart and take simple, practical steps to reduce our exposures: WE ARE NOT EMF’d!
Looking for more info? Here are two great sources to learn more: