There is a measurable reason we feel good when we stroll along the beach barefoot in the sand, or walk through a grassy field.
It is called earthing.
The first time I heard about this practice the person referred to it as grounding. “You need to get outside and walk barefoot to be more grounded to the earth,” she told me. Though I found it intriguing, I didn’t give it much thought. Partly because it sounded super hippie and a little New Age-y, and partly because it seemed so simple. Maybe too simple to make a difference in our health.
Then again, the simplest things are those that matter the most to our health- things such as drinking enough water, chewing our food thoroughly, sleeping well and breathing deeply.
That was probably about 10 years ago, and ever since when I have walked outside barefoot I’ve noticably felt more connected to the earth. And when my children have kicked off their shoes, I’ve said, “Great! They are getting grounded.” But as I said, I haven’t gone out of my way to make it a daily habit.
Recently, at the end of an incredibly intense therapeutic massage the therapist told my husband to have our children play outside barefoot for at least thirty minutes a day. He said this will counteract the electromagnetic fields we are bombarded with due to our wireless lifestyles. Ok, even more reason to go without shoes.
Now I have a new perspective on grounding- which is also called earthing. Aside from being connected to the earth, there is basic biology and physics to prove it is extremely good for your health. Necessary even. Turns out, when you walk barefoot in nature, there’s a transfer of free electrons from the Earth into your body. These electrons are powerful antioxidants.
How? Antioxidants destroy free radicals and a free radical is a molecule that is missing an electron. When we walk barefoot outside on earth, those electrons freely enter our bodies.
As Dr. James Oscher- an expert in the field of energy medicine, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biophysics and a PhD in Biology- details in one of his studies,
“Many people add to their diets dark chocolate, turmeric, bamboo, and other nutritional supplements that are rich in free-radical scavengers. Anti-inflammatory drugs and antioxidants are electrically charged molecules that carry excess electrons to sites of inflammation where they reduce free radicals.
Anti-inflammatory molecules can become free radicals themselves, once they have donated electrons to neutralize free radicals. Moreover, metabolic processes must remove the antioxidant that has given up its electron. This poses additional demands on the energy system of the organism. In contrast, free electrons act directly on free radicals and do not have the disadvantages of chemical antioxidants. It therefore appears that free (mobile) electrons from the earth can serve a simple and direct “anti-inflammatory” role by neutralizing free radicals.”
So this earth day you can find me earthing.
Might I ask you to suspend skepticism and consider earthing for 30 minutes each day?
Some possible benefits of earthing:
- Beneficial changes in heart rate
- Thinning of the blood
- Decreased levels of inflammation
- Better sleep
- Stronger immune system
Earthing is simply walking barefoot on grass, sand, dirt, basically anything outside that is not man made. What do you have to lose?