If you haven’t yet heard of the pseudoscience that is ‘earthing’, this is for you. A friendly warning though, you might suddenly get the urge to nap in your backyard.
We at Woman This Month are continuously on the look out for the next big craze gripping the attention of wellbeing leaders of the world. This month, the concept of ‘earthing’ as a means to prolong life and promote balance is on our radar.
Basically, the theory suggests that our bodies are meant to come into contact with the earth on a regular basis. With all the electromagnetic waves around us from our little mobiles and gadgets, our bodies have a high amount of positive electrons built up.
This, according to the book Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever? is not normal. The practice encouraging the balance of charges involves coupling your body to the earth’s surface energy by walking, sitting or sleeping on the ground. It looks like the men and women of the Stone Age had it right. Reports even suggest that sleeping outside can reduce oxidative stress and inflammation, therefore increasing life expectancy.
The phenomenon started in 1998 by a retired cable TV executive named Clint Ober who had somewhat of a ‘Eureka!’ moment as he sat on a park bench in Sedona, Arizona. Ober questioned why synthetic, plastic or rubber-soled shoes had replaced leather ones and if this change impacted our health. He followed up with the research, which showed evidence demonstrating that earthing generates a powerful and positive shift in the electrical state of the body.
Today, more and more people are jumping on the bandwagon that suggests balancing out the positive charges in our body can offer a range of benefits. So which are the big names behind this brand new health fad?
Well-known doctor and natural health proponent Dr Mercola and ex-Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong have been using earthing mats for years; even Dr Oz has gotten on board. Although the credibility of the latter two is doubtful, many established athletes live by using earthing as a means to speed recovery and reduce injuries.
Still, many are criticising the theory’s ‘revolutionary’ vision, saying that it’s not really a new concept, but a recycled one.
Before the rubber shoes and exposure to electromagnetic fields, people used to walk or work barefoot all the time. Although now we live in houses and hardly come into direct contact with the earth, some experts say that we in many unconscious ways already ground our bodies.
Walking with socks on in our houses for instance, or even using our laptops that are being charged or ‘grounded to the earth’. Some critics are even going as far as saying the whole concept is just a scientific way of earth-worshipping. There are big cracks in the theory, yes, but the idea of re-connecting to the earth does sound very tranquil. One thing is for sure; you won’t catch us walking around the island barefooted anytime soon.