If your head is in any kind of Bio-Hacker News lately, you’ve probably heard a tidbit here or there about how wireless earbuds like Apple’s AirPods are giving you cancer. We’ve always known pregnant women shouldn’t stand in front of microwaves, but are they safe for the rest of us? Maybe that’s coming up too. And if you’ve heard of all these, you’ve probably heard about the dangers of the 5G Wireless rollout and the lengths people are going to in order to stop it, including a petition to the United Nations signed by 250 scientists protesting the use of nonionizing electromagnetic fields in almost all of our wireless technology. So -- let’s dissect that sentence a little bit.
Everyone is aware of the dangers of radiation. Anyone who progressed through the U.S.’s public school system can probably recall learning about Marie Curie’s research on radiation, which is the work that sadly, eventually ended her life. Radiation is dangerous. But that statement just barely scratches the surface.
Breaking Down Radiation
There are two types of radiation. Ionizing radiation is the kind of radiation that comes from nuclear fallout and cancer treatments. Ionizing radiation uses a high level of energy, so much so that it can break chemical bonds within the body, and actually damage your physical tissue. Nonionizing radiation uses a lot less energy, and the energy is transferred through radio waves, rather than, say, the atmosphere. Nonionizing radiation mainly comes from wireless phones, microwaves, and wifi routers, so you’re surrounded by it all the time.
For a long time, we’ve been fed the notion that ionizing radiation is the only radiation we have to worry about (think: Fukushima or Chernobyl), and businesses and wireless companies claim that nonionizing radiation is harmless. But, according to the scientists who signed the petition, nonionizing electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are what we should have our eye on. They voiced a heavy concern for the high exposure we all have to the EMF generated by our wireless lifestyle. This includes, but is not limited to, the EMF emitted by cellphones and cordless phones, wifi routers, baby monitors, broadcast antennas, and smart meters.
The Real Danger of EMF
Both national and international guidelines exist that erect standards for the “safe” amount of EMF we can expose ourselves to without repercussion. When companies want to design, create, and market wireless devices that use this nonionizing radiofrequency, they have to follow these guidelines. That way, you don’t have the amount of radiation that comes off a microwave coming through your ear when you make a phone call. Make sense? Here’s what the scientists had to say about it:
“Numerous recent scientific publications have shown that EMF affects living organisms at levels well below most international and national guidelines. Effects include increased cancer risk, cellular stress, increase in harmful free radicals, genetic damages, structural and functional changes of the reproductive system, learning and memory deficits, neurological disorders, and negative impacts on general well-being in humans. Damage goes well beyond the human race, as there is growing evidence of harmful effects to both plant and animal life.”
Most of our wireless devices are putting us at risk for some big issues, and the majority of people are wholly unaware of the gravity of the situation. Our cellphones are consistently emitting this radiation, even when turned off. If you use a wireless mouse, you’re exposed to some form of it all day. EMFs are coming out of your wi-fi router while you’re sleeping.
How Your Device Affects Your Body
You might be wondering how exactly this nonionizing radiation is going to be affecting you, so let’s talk about it. For example, wireless earbuds, like Apple’s popular AirPods, communicate with each other and your phone through something called a magnetic induction field. This variable magnetic field is a little sample of the kind of radiation we’re talking about, and that communication goes directly through your brain. Speaking of brains, you have something called a “blood-brain barrier,” which is basically the barrier that evolved to keep large (read: harmful) molecules from entering your brain and causing problems. Some research is beginning to suggest that EMF radiation has the potential to actually break down the blood-brain barrier, and open it back up. Do you see where this is going?
Furthermore, EMF radiation isn’t only affecting your brain, but it could be hurting your cellular bodies as a whole. In the body, EMFs activate something called a voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCCs), which exists in the outer membrane of your cells. Martin Pall, Ph.D., professor emeritus at Washington State University, is one of the scientists who signed the petition protesting EMFs. He shed light on over 2 dozen bodies of research that talk about these VGCCs and why this process is dangerous for your body.
To be short, once the VGCC’s are activated by the EMFs, an abnormally large amount of calcium is allowed to enter your cells. This raises the levels of other important elements in your cells, eventually resulting in the formation of potent oxidant stressors. According to www.mercola.com,
“EMFs are not, therefore, causing damage by having a thermal influence or heating your tissues; they are not "cooking" your cells as some suggest. Rather, EMF radiation activates the VGCCs in the outer cell membrane, triggering a chain reaction of devastating events that, ultimately:
- Decimates your mitochondrial function, cell membranes and cellular proteins
- Causes severe cellular damage
- Results in DNA breaks
- Dramatically accelerates your aging process
- Puts you at higher risk for chronic disease”
The excessive activity of these VGCC’s has a direct effect on the brain, even though the brain isn’t necessarily the first point of exposure to the radiation. But think about it. Here’s what Martin Pall had to say about it.
“I reviewed a [large number] of studies on various kinds of EMF exposures, each of them showing neuropsychiatric effects. What you find is that these effects have been repeated many times in these epidemiological studies.
It's the same thing that everybody's complaining about, 'I'm tired all the time,' 'I can't sleep,' 'I can't concentrate,' 'I'm depressed,' 'I'm anxious all the time,' 'My memory doesn't work well anymore.' All the things people are complaining about.
We know all those things are caused by EMF exposures. There's no doubt about that. Because we know their effects on the brain, we know that the VGCCs' excessive activity can produce various neuropsychiatric problems.”
Exposure from EMF radiation could lead to a myriad of issues, like neurological disorders, disease, and maybe even cancer. Whatever the case, the reality of this situation is that the research does not exist to prove whether or not this kind of exposure to nonionizing radiation is safe. So by using these devices, giving them access to your vital systems, you are essentially performing a health experiment on yourself. Again, the research doesn’t exist to corroborate the alleged safety of using these devices. So why take that chance?
What Can I Do?
There is a lot of opportunity for exposure to nonionizing electromagnetic frequencies, but luckily, there is also a lot you can do to protect yourself from it. First, you’re going to want to pinpoint the biggest sources of EMFs in your life, and then lower them as much as possible.
- If you sleep close to your phone, cease doing that right now.
- Invest in a cheap alarm clock that plugs into your wall.
- Leave your phone plugged in, and on airplane mode for the night in the kitchen or living room.
- ALWAYS leave your wi-fi router shut off at night. You’re not using it while you’re asleep, and it’s senseless to expose yourself to that level of radiation while you’re sleeping.
- Try to only turn your wi-fi router on during the day when you really need it.
- Make steps to hardwire your home. Think ethernet ports and adapters for all devices.
- Ensure your desktop is connected to the internet via an ethernet cable.
- Leave your computer on airplane mode so it is not accessing a wi-fi connection.
- Stay away from wireless keyboards, mouses, and speakers. Go for a version with a cord whenever possible.
In general, it’s a good idea to stay away from “wireless” devices. Again, this goes for phones, computers, chargers, speakers, baby monitors, headsets, headphones, etc. There are corded alternatives for each one of those devices, and you’ll save yourself so much grief and illness. You’re always safer with a cord.
Another great rule is this: Whenever possible, avoid direct contact with a device that emits EMF radiation. Keep your phone in your purse, rather than in your pocket. Don’t wear a wireless headset. Smartwatches? Avoid them at all costs. Go for the kind with gears and a battery.
Products to Try
If you’re looking for a phone case that will help block radiation, try THIS ONE from Pong.
For SAFE headphones, try THESE from PrimalHacker.
To keep your phone near you while blocking the radiation, try THIS handy pouch, also from PrimalHacker.
To conclude, we live in a wireless world, and that’s something we absolutely can’t avoid. But stay on top of it, stay informed, and do everything in your power to keep yourself protected. Stick with what we know is safe.