We all know the benefits of wearing shoes in our industrialized society, but have you ever stopped to think about what it would be like to not wear shoes? Think about it… our ancestors once walked all over the earth completely barefoot. They even slept on the ground. Now, most of us have at least several pairs of shoes. Shoes have become just as much a part of our style and wardrobe as clothes.
Yet, there’s something so peaceful to walking barefoot on the sand, or in a field of green grass. Why is that? Well, when we stand barefoot on the earth, our electrical body communicates with the electrical field of the earth. Through our bare soles, we absorb free electrons from the earth, which acts like antioxidants in the body.
The term “earthing” or “grounding” refers to the act of putting our bodies into direct contact with the earth’s surface.
Think of the earth like a gigantic battery. It holds a mild negative charge to it, but our bodies build up a positive charge, especially over time in our modern day society. Our bodies also produce free radicals, the precursor to inflammation. When we have too much in our bodies, things can go a little hay-wire. Earthing continuously allows the supply of electrons to enter into the body to neutralize this charge. By absorbing the electrons in the form of negative ions, our bodies are able to return back to an equilibrium.
Clint Ober pioneered the concept of earthing in his book Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever! as well as in the documentary, The Earthing Movie. Ober claims that shoes are the most destructive invention man has ever made. He also claims he was able to heal himself completely with earthing. Now, with the rise of inflammation-related diseases, it’s hard not to wonder if he’s onto something. Could shoes really be harming us? Trust me…
I was a little skeptical myself.
Heart disease, considered a “silent inflammation,” is the #1 killer in America. That statistic alone should have us concerned. So what if there really is something to this “earthing” concept? Would it even hurt to spend more time outdoors, in nature, under the sunshine?
However, easier said than done. Especially for those living in large cities. But once I discovered earthing mats, I knew I had to give it a try. Earthing mats work in the same way that earthing does, just with extra equipment. These mats connect to the ground port of an electrical outlet. The mats are infused with carbon and have a conductive top layer. Once the cord is connected from the mat into the outlet, the connection will be made. That means you’re grounded!
Besides restoring biological rhythms in the body, other benefits of grounding for at least 30 minutes a day include…
- less inflammation in the body
- better sleep
- more energy
- weight loss
- boosts immune system
- decreased pain
- higher metabolism
- reduced anxiety
After doing more research, I decided to try it myself. Since I spend most of my time indoors either in bed or at my computer, I decided to get two grounding mats. One for my bed when I sleep, and one for my feet under my desk. I knew earthing would help quiet my sympathetic nervous system and help with my adrenal fatigue, so that was something I was looking forward to. Both of the mats were easy to set up with the instructions, and as soon as I used the mat on my feet, I noticed a tingling sensation. The tingling sensation meant that my circulation was moving. I’m known to have really cold hands and feet, so I felt better knowing that my circulation was already increasing.
Is it worth the investment?
Yes! Now that it has been over a month since using these mats, night and day, I can say I’ve noticed a difference. My sleep started getting deeper, as if I was more relaxed throughout the whole night. I notice I can spend longer periods of time doing work on my computer without feeling fatigued. Overall, I feel more relaxed, or “grounded,” if you will. I think that feeling has connected me more deeply with my own yoga and meditation practice. Intuitively, I sense a deep connection to this supporting energy when I’m in contact with the mats. It’s the same feeling I get lying in grass. The earth truly supports us.
All in all, nothing beats earthing outside. But having the option to do both gives me flexibility and more accessible benefits. Especially during periods of limited outdoor activity (due to weather, government lockdowns, etc.) it’s comforting knowing I have the option to earth inside while also receiving the health benefits. And if buying an earthing mat isn’t in your budget, try to get outside as often as possible. Take off your shoes and socks and connect to the ground, whether it be grass, dirt, soil, or sand. Bask in some sunshine and observe the sensations of the earth beneath your soles. What’s the harm anyways?
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Photo by Clint McKoy and Nick Page on Unsplash