There are many facets of our modern lives that are strikingly different from the way previous generations of Americans lived. Our food is different, our morals are different, our architecture and fashions have changed, but perhaps the most striking difference is in our technology.

Our lives are saturated with high-tech electronic devices. Our printers can now upload scanned images to social networking sites. We can video chat with our cell phones. We now live in an age where the average Internet using adult spends roughly 8 hours a day on the Internet. This highly electrolyzed lifestyle has had a profound effect on our society, but has it impacted our health?

Most everyone agrees that electronic devices, particularly wireless devices, have physiological effects on the human body that can cause negative effects, but the disagreement over how severe these effects are is nothing short of full-scale war.

radarThe evidence for the harmful effects of electromagnetic radiation, the kinds of frequencies emitted by nearly all electrical devices, begins primarily in WWII. In Russia, the military noticed that its radar operators often fell ill with a peculiar set of symptoms: headache, fatigue, stress, sleep disturbances, prickling skin, burning sensations, rashes, pains and aches in the muscles, and other symptoms of a condition that many now call electrical hypersensitivity syndrome.

It may seem strange to some that the body could be affected by invisible frequencies. Many of us have never known a world in which their wasn’t a radio in every car, large electrical appliances in every house, power lines over every street, and cell phones in every hand. The truth is that our bodies are predominantly water, and as a result, our bodies are highly conductive and naturally sensitive to many forms of radiation.

The very first astronauts that were sent into outer space for prolonged periods of time returned from their missions ill. After much deliberation and experimentation, it was realized that separation from the Earth’s natural electromagnetic frequencies created ill effects in astronauts.

The earth has a relatively stable electromagnetic frequency that is created by the constant lightning strikes and electrical storms in the atmosphere. The frequency of the earth is approximately 7.83 hertz, this is referred to as the Schummann Wave. Once a Schumman Wave generator was installed in space craft, the astronauts returned without illness.

That is an example of how our bodies harmonize with the natural frequencies generated in nature. But what happens when those frequencies are distorted or have interference? We have all heard interference on the radio, certain areas where you can almost hear two stations at once, our a cell phone call comes in and strange sounds come out of the radio speakers.

If you take a moment to consider that sheer volume of man-made electromagnetic pollution, it is staggering. Think of every major appliance in every house, every power line, every cell phone repeater tower, every radio antennae, every cellular device, every WiFi hotspot, every airport radar station, military stations, power stations… it’s truly staggering. All of these signals mash together and enter our bodies.

cell phonesNowhere has the debate over the physiological effects of this radiation been more heated than in the mobile phone industry. Since the 1980s, cellular usage has skyrocketed and very little information about the effects of holding a microwave device to the human head has been made broadly available to the public.

In the early 90s, the cell phone industry hired Dr. George Carlos to conduct research into the health effects of cell phones. In 1999, six years after his research begun, he published the results of his investigations. Radiation from cell phones caused massive amounts of damage to human blood cells, especially genetic damage to the chromosomes. Cell phone radiation also caused the blood brain barrier, the body’s natural protective mechanism to prevent certain toxins from entering and damaging the brain, to become compromised. Cell phone radiation also effectively doubled the chances of developing certain types of cancer.

When these results were published, the cell phone industry took swift action. They cut off his research funds and began a major discrediting campaign against him. He then proceeded to publish a book with his findings and became the first major researcher to alert the public of the real dangers of cell phone radiation. Since then, many more studies have been conducted to either confirm or refute Dr. Carlos’s findings, many of which were funded by the telecom industry.

However, there was very little action taken on behalf of consumers until 2007 when a 650 page report was released by the Bioinitiative Working Group, a committee of 14 scientists and health experts who studied the health effects of electromagnetic radiation. After citing thousands of studies, they outlined some of the major health effects like, immune system deficiencies, brain cancer, and even childhood cancers like leukemia.

Cell phone radiation is also spermicidal and may be a major contributor to the decline in male fertility that is affecting the current generation.

After the report was published, many European governments took action. The government of Lichtenstein adopted all of the recommendations of the report in full. Germany, France, and Russia have all dismantled WiFi networks in public schools and community libraries.

France has even gone further and announced that they will soon be implementing several major restrictions on the cell phone industry. Advertising of cell phones to children under 12 will be banned. Manufacturing phones specifically for children 6 and under will be prohibited. They also plan to implement other restrictions on the amount of radiation that can be emitted from the devices, and other safety measures.

penetrationThe reason why there is such a focus on protecting children is because of more recent research that has shown that children are at tremendously greater risk than adults when it comes to cell phone radiation exposure. Research conducted by Om Gandhi of the University of Utah in the mid 90s, found that the radiation emitted from a cell phone penetrates and is absorbed throughout the entire brain of a 5 year old child. The reason is because as we age, our bones become more dense, but a 5 year old has a very limber and fluid skeleton and the radiation from the cellular phone washes right into it. 

This information on children’s health risks was presented in testimony before Congress in 2008 by Dr. Ronald B. Herberman. One of the most shocking pieces of information he presented to corroborate the reality of Professor Gandhi’s research was an analysis of government statistics on brain cancer between 1987 to 2005. He noticed that the incidence of brain cancer in 20-29 year olds has been steadily increasing.

So what do we do? Suggesting that we all stop using cell phones and wireless devices in this day and age would be like telling people to give up running water. Then what are the options and what can be done to protect ourselves from these sources of harmful radiation?

The best strategy is minimizing exposure. In your home, if you have WiFi, switch to cable if at all possible, especially if you have children. It’s on 24/7 and emits large amounts of radiation in order to be detected throughout an entire house or building. If you have a cordless phone, switch to a cabled phone if possible. If this is somehow not possible, keep the base station as far from you as possible. Do not keep it in areas you frequent or sleep in.

Turn off the WiFi, Bluetooth, or other wireless features of your computers, laptops, and tablets as much as possible, it not only saves battery, but saves your health.

As far as cell phones go, keep the device as far from your body at all times as possible. Turn off as many of the auto-syncing features of the apps and the device as you can to reduce the signal output.

ferrite beadKeep the phone calls as brief as possible, and never hold the device to your head. Use speaker phone. Headsets, even though they get the device away from your head, they act as an antenna for the radiation emitted unless they have a ferrite bead. Most do not. There are many ferrite bead distributors online and they are not expensive. If you must have a headset or hands-free device, use a headset with a ferrite bead.

Bluetooth headsets are no better than a cell phone held to your head. Do not use a Bluetooth device attached to your ear.

Some manufacturers are now starting to advertise their low radiation ratings on their devices now through a “SAR” number. SAR stands for Specific Absorption Rate. However, this number is very inaccurate and unreliable and its best to simply use the previous tips to reduce exposure.

Besides devices in your home, there are many utility and infrastructure devices in public space that can also pump massive amounts of radiation into your home. Cell phone repeater towers, power line transformers, radar stations, etc. Survey your neighborhood and work environment and locate potential sources of radiation and try to create as much distance and solid barriers as you can between it and you. Be especially concerned if you have children because there is published research that suggests that many childhood development and behavioral disorders have a correlation to electromagnetic radiation exposure in the womb and during early childhood.

There are many devices that advertise that they protect you from radiation, either from cell phones or other devices. Some of these devices, covers, stickers, etc. have dubious efficacy. The only reliable protective devices are those that are designed to reflect incoming frequencies in order to prevent interference, such as the copper or copper/zinc mesh used in medical facilities, broadcasting stations, and conferencing centers.

natureBe smart, be safe, and reduce your exposure to these electromagnetic radiation sources as much as possible to safeguard your health and the well being of your loved ones.