Long before humans invented concrete, bricks, asphalt and other paving materials we walked on what Mother Nature provided us: grass, sand, dirt and other natural surfaces. Today, this is a practice known as earthing and as it turns out, taking one’s shoes off and following in our ancestors’ footsteps has some amazing benefits.
A review published in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health looked at a number of studies that highlight how drawing electrons from the earth improves health. In one, chronic pain patients using grounded carbon fiber mattresses slept better and experienced less pain.
Another study found that earthing changed the electrical activity in the brain, as measured by electroencephalograms. Still other research found that grounding benefitted skin conductivity, moderated heart rate variability, improved glucose regulation, reduced stress and boosted immunity.
One particularly compelling investigation, published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, found that earthing increases the surface charge of red blood cells. As a result, the cells avoid clumping, which decreases blood viscosity. High viscosity is a significant factor in heart disease, which is why so many people take blood thinning aspirin each day to improve their heart health. Another study in the same journal found that earthing may help regulate both the endocrine and nervous systems.
All that from just walking barefoot in the grass.
So long as the honey bees aren’t pollinating in the clover and ground ivy, that’s easy, right?
Walking, it has been well established has all sorts of health benefits, even on a treadmill. But walking in nature is different. There is a soothing effect on the spirit and soul. Being in the sun with precautions taken helps to lift humans as well. So, why not give it a shot? It could well be that what heals the spirit is not more pharmaceuticals, but a daily walk outside.