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What are the benefits of earthing?

It's Earth Day tomorrow, so how can you reconnect with the Earth's surface and do you know what its healing benefits are?

We all know the Earth is important. It's quite literally where we live. However, we don't always appreciate the impact of our connection with it - physically as well as emotionally. Science however, is always there to add evidence to experience when it comes to wellbeing, and earthing could be much more important than you realise.

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What is earthing?

Earthing is a really simple concept - also referred to as 'grounding'. It literally involves heading outside barefoot and letting your skin connect with the earth beneath you. It's the simplest way of reconnecting with Mother Nature. You can also reconnect with the earth by being outside, gardening and getting your hands into the soil, or swimming in the sea. It's all about direct contact with nature.

What happens when we disconnect from the earth?

Modern life has a tendency to separate us from the earth and research suggests that this disconnect can contribute to physiological dysfunction and poor wellbeing.

Although research is limited, a review from the National Library of Medicine says:

"During recent decades, chronic illness, immune disorders, and inflammatory diseases have increased dramatically, and some researchers have cited environmental factors as the cause."

Conversely, reconnecting with the earth can be a powerful and easy way to promote wellbeing.

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What are the benefits of earthing?

The same National Library of Medicine study says:

"Emerging scientific research has revealed a surprisingly positive and overlooked environmental factor on health: direct physical contact with the vast supply of electrons on the surface of the Earth."

It continues:

"It is an established, though not widely appreciated fact, that the Earth's surface possesses a limitless and continuously renewed supply of free or mobile electrons. [...] Mounting evidence suggests that the Earth's negative potential can create a stable internal bioelectrical environment for the normal functioning of all body systems. Moreover, oscillations of the intensity of the Earth's potential may be important for setting the biological clocks regulating diurnal body rhythms, such as cortisol secretion."

All of this is to say that noted benefits of earthing to date may include:

  • Better sleep
  • Reduced pain
  • Help relieving chronic stress
  • Improve autonomic nervous system function
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Improved heart rate
  • Normalised day–night cortisol rhythm
  • Improved wound healing
  • Reduced blood viscosity
Want to reconnect with the earth? Why not try forest bathing? Find out more

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