We live in a universe completely permeated with electromagnetic waves and fields of different types and intensities. And, as a result, electromagnetic radiation affects the whole creation on planet Earth.
Before moving on to consider the issue of pollution and how to avoid it, let’s try to understand more closely what is the nature of electromagnetic fields and waves.
- What are electromagnetic fields and waves?
- Natural sources of electromagnetic fields.
- Biological electromagnetic sources.
- What are “Schumann waves”? Useful and vital electromagnetic waves.
- Anthropogenic electromagnetic pollution of the environment.
- What is Electromagnetic Smog?
- List of the most dangerous electromagnetic sources in the house.
- Dangerous sources of electromagnetic field outdoors.
- Consequences of electromagnetic pollution. The negative impact of electromagnetic fields on nature.
- How electromagnetic radiation damages human health.
- 5 best ways to protect yourself from electromagnetic radiation.
- Short checklist to reduce damage caused by electromagnetic pollution.
1. What are electromagnetic fields and waves?
Electromagnetic fields consist of the combination of electric field and magnetic field. They are generated locally by any distribution of electric charges and electric current variable over time, propagating in space in the form of electromagnetic waves.
A wave is a change in the state of an electromagnetic field propagating in space.
Waves can be of the following types:
- Radio waves
- Visible light
- Gamma rays
Depending on the origin, electromagnetic radiation can be divided into natural and unnatural (anthropogenic). In this article we’ll try to discuss in detail electromagnetic pollution caused by humans and ways to avoid or minimize it.
Let’s first see what kind of electromagnetic influence we have in nature!
2. Natural sources of electromagnetic fields.
It is important to understand that electromagnetic radiation is not an invention of modern humanity, but an invariable component of the entire Universe.
When we are on Earth, we are influenced by:
- Earth’s magnetic field;
- Earth’s electric field;
- Atmospheric electricity;
- Extraterrestrial sources that include radiation from space objects outside the Earth’s atmosphere, e.g. solar radiation, solar storms, cosmic radiation.
Although electromagnetic fields are invisible, we can see the effect of some, such as the Northern Lights or thunderstorms.
3. Biological electromagnetic sources
Strange as it may seem, even living organisms create electromagnetic fields. Oh… you already know it if you watched the Matrix movie!
Humans, like other physical bodies, emit electromagnetic fields at temperatures above absolute zero in the range of 10 kHz – 100 GHz.
The total power of such radiation in an adult is 100 watts. But don’t get too excited too soon! You can not use yourself to light the room (however, this information is important when you need to select the right air-conditioner for the room with many people inside who emit a lot of heat).
The human body also emits electromagnetic fields with a 300 GHz frequency.
This indicator is insignificant for one person, but for the total population of the entire Earth, it already has a certain impact. (Again, do you remember, how machines used humanity as batteries in “The Matrix”? This picture is exaggerated, for sure, but there’s an atom of truth.)
To be clear: any physical body, whose temperature is above zero, has an electromagnetic field.
The human body emits and receives electromagnetic fields all the time. Thoughts, feelings, and words are also essentially a type of electromagnetic radiation. Our brain, like our heart, constantly emits electromagnetic waves.
In theory, this could provide a scientific basis for validating telepathy and the influence of emotions and thoughts on other people.
The electromagnetic background has always existed on Earth and was an essential condition for the existence (and maybe also for creation) of all living beings. Thus, the organisms were well adapted, did not feel harmful effects from it and even used it for their own needs.
For example, the magnetic orientation of migratory birds, fish, bees, “Homing” of dogs and cats, the perceptions of birds and other animals before a hurricane or earthquake (in Japan, eels are used to predict tsunamis) and much more.
And now let’s talk about some quite unknown but extremely important things that influence us everyday.
4. What are "Schumann waves"? Useful and vital electromagnetic radiation
Not many of us know that all life on Earth is under the continuous influence of “stationary” electromagnetic waves of low and ultra low frequencies between the Earth’s surface and the ionosphere.
These are the natural electromagnetic frequencies of planet Earth. One of them, the main one, averages 7.8 hertz.
Physicist and inventor Nikola Tesla was the first to discover special low and ultra low frequencies in the Earth’s atmosphere, and then, after 50 years, the research was continued by German specialists – physicist Winfried Otto Schumann and doctor Herbert Koenig.
They found that there are so-called “stationary electromagnetic waves” in the Earth’s atmosphere, later called the Schumann waves.
In the United States (NASA) and Germany (Planck Institute) long-term experiments were conducted, as a result of which it turned out that Schumann waves are vital for the synchronization of biological rhythms and the normal existence of all life on Earth. However, in recent decades, these waves have begun to be blocked or even jammed by the materials of the buildings and structures where we live and work, as well as by the “electromagnetic smog” of humanity’s active life.
Schumann waves have frequencies: 7.8 Hz, 14.5 Hz, 20 Hz, 26 Hz.
These waves practically coincide (resonate) with the frequencies of the alpha and beta rhythms of the human brain. They are vital for the synchronization of human biological rhythms.
If the natural effect of Schumann waves is blocked, it can cause headaches, disorientation, nausea, dizziness, etc. People who suffer from great stress especially need these waves. The weakening of Schumann waves is acutely felt by the elderly and patients with vegetative and vascular diseases.
At night, especially between 2 and 4 o’clock, awake people show slowness in actions, the number of errors in solving arithmetic problems increases. This is due to the fact that it is during the night hours that the strength of the Schumann field decreases significantly, and the processes of abstract thinking of a person are directly related to the alpha rhythms of his brain.
The presence of the waves in these spectra is vital. For example, the pineal gland, at a frequency of about 8 hertz, causes the right and left hemispheres of the brain to work synchronously. The hemispheres only in this state begin to control the subcortex, which produces male and female hormones.
In addition, only under the influence of a frequency of about 8 hertz, the pineal gland produces the hormone melatonin. Doctors have found that cancer can develop due to a lack of melatonin. Blocking these “Schumann waves” inhibits the pineal gland. The activity of the left hemisphere is suppressed, and therefore mental illness, depression and other negative conditions arise in a person.
Some alternative science/esoteric/mystic sources also claim that these waves can help you to open your inborn super-abilities, such as intuition, future vision, get new ideas, harmonize different spheres of your life (sexual, relations with the family). Well, maybe it’s too early to buy a crystal ball, but why not try!
If you are concerned that you don’t get enough of these waves, let’s see what you can do:
- You can improve your “exposure” naturally – live in a house made of natural materials, consider moving to the countryside or spend as much time as possible in nature or at least out of concrete jungles. If you work or live in such a building – try at least to go for lunch outdoors, alight from the bus two stops before your home and walk the rest of the distance, go out with your dog, kids or partner for a walk after dinner. Thus, you’ll get an additional benefit: watch less “zombie box” and harmonize your family life.
- However, if it’s not enough for you, there’s “hard artillery”: try to search for something like “Schumann waves resonator”, “Schumann waves generator” and you’ll find a wide choice of commercial products. You can try and if you find it helpful – please share with us!
5. Anthropogenic electromagnetic pollution of the environment
With the development of technology, new sources of radiation appeared, the wavelengths of which did not exist in the natural environment.
For example: any device that generates or uses electrical energy is a source of electromagnetic radiation.
Sources of electromagnetic radiation can be divided into 2 groups:
- Low-frequency wave sources (up to 3 kHz). These are devices and systems that produce and distribute electricity: power lines, cables, household and office appliances, gadgets, electric lines in subways.
2. High-frequency radiation sources (up to 300 GHz). Radio, TV, radiotelephones, locators, maritime navigation systems, radio points, microwave ovens, computer monitors.
6. What is Electromagnetic Smog?
With the development of technology, the effect of various electromagnetic fields and waves has become so extensive that the term ” electromagnetic smog” has appeared (smog = smoke + fog).
It has a negative effect on organisms, and not only on humans but on all living creatures.
For example, in a city, in addition to the local effect of electrical appliances in the home or office, it can be the cumulative effect of television stations, mobile communications, high-voltage power lines, industrial thermal production sites, X-ray systems, plasma and lasers, trolleys, metro, electric trains, military and aviation radars, air defence systems, etc.
7. List of the most dangerous electromagnetic sources in the house
- The main sources of impact on human health at home: microwaves, laptops, and smartphones.
The most dangerous device on this list is the microwave oven (especially if it’s old and has defects), which generates an electromagnetic field equal in power to the total radiation of other electrical appliances in the house.
Despite the shielding, the microwave provides an EMR at a distance of 30 cm, equal to 8 μT, which heats all water-containing tissues. Since a person is 80% liquid, a microwave adversely affects the entire human body, despite the fact that it works for a short time – 1-7 minutes.
Experts advise to stay at a distance of 2-3 meters from the body of the microwave while it is in operation or to leave the kitchen (and don’t stare at its window glass to see how your pop-corn pack is exploding!)
Mobile phones are no less harmful, because during a conversation they create a strong flow of electromagnetic waves and are located near a person’s head.
As a result, the brain suffers, because under the influence of thermal overheating, tumors can develop.
The potential danger of smartphones was recognized by the World Health Organization after the publication of the results of studies conducted in thirteen countries. At the same time, the most intense radiation is given by mobile phones with a frequency of 812 MHz, which are the most common gadgets.
Experts recommend talking on a smartphone for less than 15 minutes a day and only via bluetooth and headset (but how to spend a half day in TikTok then, huh? Stupid experts!)
Many users consider laptops safe because they do not have a cathode ray tube, which generates electromagnetic waves. This is a big misunderstanding!
Electronic control circuits, voltage converters and other elements can produce EMWs. At the same time, they act on the body especially strongly, since laptops are almost always placed very close to the human body (especially if you spend all the day on the sofa with a laptop over your belly (and other delicate body parts)!)
2. The second place is occupied by refrigerators, TVs, electric stoves, vacuum cleaners and fluorescent lamps.
Conventional refrigerators emit a small electromagnetic field – only 0.2 μT (in the ten-centimeter zone around it).
Models with anti-icing system (No Frost) generate a greater background at a distance of one meter from it. So don’t put a fridge in your bedroom! (though it’s very practical if you are a secret night-eater).
Depending on the various models, the front panels of electric stoves emit a EMWs, the level of which at a distance of 20-30 cm is 1-3 μT.
Vacuum cleaners in operation generate electromagnetic radiation that exceeds the norm by 500 times. But these units are less dangerous, since during cleaning they are located at a sufficient distance from a person – 50-60 cm.
Fluorescent lamps at a distance of one meter create a powerful EMF, so they are not recommended for lighting bedside tables.
- Other electrical appliances are considered safe: irons, toasters, coffee makers, hair dryers, washing machines. Irons and kettles turned out to be the most harmless units. In heating mode, irons have the electromagnetic field of 0.2-0.6 μT within a radius of twenty cm (hope you are not ironing pants when you’re inside of them!)
The electromagnetic radiation of washing machines is quite high, but the maximum level is observed near the control panel – 10 μT. When washing clothes, you should stand 1-1.5 meters from them (and not meditate staring at your pyjamas rotating inside!).
Hair dryers generate a powerful magnetic field, but the main danger of these electrical appliances is that they are kept close to the head and electromagnetic waves act directly on the brain. Therefore, for safe use, it is not recommended to turn on such devices for a long time and more often than 1-2 times a week.
8. Dangerous sources of electromagnetic field outdoors
But you are affected by electromagnetic waves not only inside of a building. Unwanted radiation occurs on the street, in a shopping mall and even on public transport. Here are some examples:
High voltage lines
High-voltage lines are laid both in the ground and in the air. The space around the 110 kV power transmission lines may have such a EMFs intensity that at a distance of 10 m it poses a threat to human health. Thus, high-voltage power lines are raised to a great height or buried deep in the ground.
When buying a property, be sure to inquire about the location of high-voltage transmission lines. It is not worth buying a plot of land where overhead power lines pass. Many owners of such houses develop severe headaches after a few years, and their health worsens.
For example, cell towers, which are now installed almost everywhere. Or radio communication systems installed at airports, including military or research installations.
Operating in the wavelength range from 500 MHz to 15 GHz, such electromagnetic devices constantly affect the human body, even at a considerable distance from people.
Public electric transport
If you use streetcars or suburban trains regularly and for long periods of time or work on one of them, there’s a high chance that it will leave some consequences for your well-being. The most harmful is the use of the metro: in terms of negative impact, it is 2 times higher than any type of electric transport.
Though these types of transport are considered to be “greener” and more sustainable, we should not forget about this aspect and try to minimize or neutralize its effect.
If you feel exhausted or have a headache after a long ride – give yourself a chance to recover and stay outdoors for a while!
9. Consequences of electromagnetic pollution. The negative impact of electromagnetic fields on nature
The mechanism of action of electromagnetic fields is not yet fully understood, especially for low-intensity radiation. It is believed that by passing through the body, EMWs excite electrons in substances and activate biochemical processes in the human body.
For example, waves with a frequency of 850 MHz increase the activity of water molecules by 11 times!
Because of this, body temperature rises, molecules ionize and cause secondary electromagnetic radiation in living tissues.
Since each organ works at a certain frequency, for example, the heart – 700 Hz, the brain in sleep – 10 Hz, while awake – 50 Hz, a source of electromagnetic waves operating at a different or similar frequency can disrupt the normal functioning of an organ and lead to the development of a disease.
At the cellular level:
Even insignificant electromagnetic irradiation involves morphological and functional disturbances in it. As a result, the energy of the cell’s field is converted into other types, and the cell can increase in size.
Weak fields also modify living tissues and hinder their regeneration.
The structure of the tissue also defines the degree of its heating. Certain organs are particularly sensitive to heat: brain, kidneys, bladder, gallbladder and vision.
In addition, radiation can cause mutations.
For information: Continuous or daily repetitive long-term exposure to an electromagnetic field (EMF) has been found to induce cellular stress responses at non-thermal power levels, leading to an accumulation of DNA errors.
But it’s not only humans who can feel the adverse effects of EMFs. Plants also respond to strong and weak fields. Typically, this response affects growth and reproductive function. In the flowers and stems of plants growing under power lines and nearby, changes in the shape and size of the leaves have been noted.
Insects react in their own way to the effects of radiation. Some species, depending on the structure of the body and lifestyle, slow down their development and growth, there may be a loss of orientation or increased aggression.
An important problem is the interruption of magnetic orientation, for example, in bees and ants. Scientists could also notice that they also try to avoid exposure to the field created by power lines.
It has been established that under the influence of the electromagnetic field, the central nervous system of birds suffers first of all.
It is also characteristic that birds do not build nests near functioning radar stations.
In rats, it causes a change in the general condition, metabolic disorders, changes in intrauterine and postnatal development, males and females show also signs of infertility.
Pigs exposed to radiation developed anxiety and discomfort during sleep, while cows increased calf mortality or those born with abnormalities increased.
10. How electromagnetic radiation damages human health
EMF has a depressing effect on the immune system, heart, blood vessels, endocrine glands and nervous system.
Prolonged stay in its area causes headaches, insomnia and stressful conditions. Constant irradiation can lead to hair loss, exacerbation of chronic diseases and the development of serious mental illness.
It is especially dangerous for pregnant women since it can provoke miscarriages, premature birth and the development of defects on newborns.
According to the WHO, EM radiation is closely associated with terrible diseases such as leukemia and malignant tumors.
In addition, an increase in the electromagnetic field changes the hormonal state of a man, increases the number of chromosomal mutations and adversely affects his reproductive system.
11. 5 best ways to protect yourself from electromagnetic radiation
Paranoidal – for example, the famous “aluminum hat”. According to supporters of this super-technology, it also allows you to protect yourself from the influence and control of your thoughts by government organizations, special services and aliens.
A more expensive option is to make a “Faraday cage” at home. It’s a structure that blocks penetration of electromagnetic fields inside. But before building this “beautiful” construction in your garden and live an “electromagnetic sterile life”, consider that there are also useful EMV that your body needs for normal functioning.
Technological – you can buy an inexpensive electromagnetic radiometer and periodically check the indicators in the house, office, means of transport, etc. and compare with the norms. Regulations and norms vary from country to country.
Evasive – give up the use of personal gadgets and appliances at home, urban electric transport and settle in a quiet area away from the big cities.
Rational – Reduce contact with EM radiation and maintain the correct distances from operating devices.
Free and Funny – “grounding” your body is a free and fun way to normalize your body’s electromagnetic field. For example, you can walk barefoot on the grass, wander on the sand at the beach, or simply sit or lie on a blanket (not rubber) in a garden or park.
12. Brief checklist to reduce damage caused by electromagnetic pollution
- Buy certified appliances with standard electric field strength. For more powerful devices the EMF will be correspondingly more intense.
- Before going to bed, turn off all electrical devices in the immediate vicinity and do not put the phone charging on the bedside table near your head (although, unfortunately, we all do)
- Check the humidity level in the room, for example, with a home humidifier. Water vapor significantly absorbs electromagnetic waves.
- Buy a protective screen for your computer. The screen is placed above the monitor.
- Rearrange devices with an increased electromagnetic background in your home and office. Inform yourself of optimal distances to household appliances.
- The wiring must have the third ground conductor, you can also replace the normal wiring with a shielded one (in a special braid-screen).
- When not using the device, turn it off and do not leave it in standby mode.
- Do not put the laptop on your knees or belly when working on it.
- Use hands-free kits to talk with a mobile phone.
- During a call, do not bring the phone close to the ear until a connection is established with the other user.
- Do not carry your cell phone in a pocket near the heart or in pants near the genitals. Better to carry the mobile in your bag.
- Minimize mobile phone usage time.
- Get out of the kitchen when you turn on the microwave.
- Use air ionisers (or negative ion generators) in rooms with a large number of electrical appliances. A high concentration of positive charged ions in the air in combination with a high level of EMF can significantly increase its negative impact on the body.
- If you live near a TV tower, high-voltage power line or similar structure, consider painting the walls with a special shielding paint and using curtains made of shielding fabric or window shielding film that protect against EM radiation.
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