After first posting in November about the health benefits of Earthing, I am astounded that so many in the Lyme community have responded by trying Earthing - the simple act of putting your bare feet on the ground or bringing Earth's electrons indoors with simple grounding devices.
Many Lyme patients have written about how Earthing is affecting them. Reports range from little effect to slightly better sleep to very improved sleep to full-on herxing. Lyme patients might be the only group who need to be careful not to Earth too much at first. Below I describe an evolving set of hypotheses to explain what Lyme patients are experiencing.
Here are the evolving Lyme-Earthing Hypotheses:
Electron deficiency can explain some of the differences in how people respond to Earthing, according to research done by Dr. William Amalu. He used an electrometer to measure the effects of Earthing on people in a specially-designed building in Iowa. Test subjects who were regularly in contact with the Earth, like gardeners, appeared to take in fewer electrons than people who lived in a high rise and did not do things like gardening. Amalu said it appears that people who are highly deficient practically drink up the electrons. This might account for my personal reaction to Earthing being so strong: I was probably highly electron-deficient from total avoidance of going shoeless.
Blood Thinning and Bb Cysts
We've been curious about Lyme, the blood-thinning aspects of Earthing, and the blood-thinner drug contraindication. (Coumadin is a contraindication when regularly Earthing.) Here are four hypotheses about Earthing and Lyme given what we know about blood-thinners:
- Prevention of cell-wall deficient forms: "Blood thinners appear to disrupt the formation of spheroblasts [cell-wall deficient form of Borrelia burgdorferi] in the bloodstream, and that could explain the improvement that some patients experience using Heparin." noted Steven Phillips, MD at a 2004 Lyme conference. The cell-wall deficient forms allow Bb to hide from antibiotics, so if they can't form, Lyme can't hide. Since Earthing is a strong blood thinner, does Earthing also prevent Bb from converting to cell-wall deficient forms? Maybe.
- Prevention of Bb from sticking to brain cells: Heparin has the "highest negative charge density of any known biological molecule." The Earth, if you recall, has a negative charge and donates electrons to cells, causing all to be negatively charged and repel each other, like magnets. This is why Earthing thins the blood. Stephen Buhner wrote that Heparin prevents Bb from sticking to brain cells. Is the negative charge the reason? Would Earthing do the same thing? Maybe.
- Vascular penetration: Does the blood thinning aspect of Earthing allow our treatments to penetrate deeper into our vascular system than they've been able to go before, reaching colonies previously left untreated? Maybe.
- Higher O2 delivery: Is the thinned blood more oxygenated, delivering a higher, and therefore more toxic dose of oxygen to the Bb and co-infections? Maybe.
Tapping into Earth's natural frequency could be another reason Earthing has an effect on Lyme. Why are most deer infected with Bb, yet most seem to be asymptomatic? If they do have symptoms, why don't we have reports of deer going crazy and presenting with swollen joints? Do infected lab animals show Lyme symptoms because they are not Earthed? Is Earthing part of what protects the deer? When I spoke with David Wolfe, he didn't hesitate to say yes. When I asked Dr. Stephen Sinatra, the famous heart surgeon and co-author of the book Earthing, he mentioned Earth frequencies might be toxic to Bb - causing the cyst forms to convert to spirochetes and enter the bloodstream where they are susceptible to antibiotics. As a side note, one person mentioned that deer eat teasel and other herbs--natural antibiotics that are toxic to Lyme, so Earthing might not be the whole story vis a vis the deer.
The effects of Earthing on the nervous system are well-documented and not specific to Lyme, but I do have to mention that since Earthing will normalize cortisol and helps most people sleep better (75% of insomniacs, according to Dr. Amalu), improved sleep will obviously help insomniac Lyme patients. Clint Ober mentioned that in ill patients, after 16 weeks of Earthing the nervous system will normalize. I'm presuming he means patients who have worked up to overnight, every-night Earthing.
Other effects of Earthing include blood sugar regulation and thyroid normalization. Again, these are not Lyme-specific, but normalizing these functions should be a great boon to eventual recovery.
Indoor Earthing: Important Note about Properly Testing Your Outlet
I've found that the voltmeter (about $10 at your hardware store) is the only way to check for a truly grounded outlet. A voltmeter measures the difference between two voltages.
Caution: you can electrocute yourself if you stick one end in the rectangular part of the socket. Don't do that!
To use it, put the black test lead into the third prong of the outlet - the round one. Hold the red end with your bare fingers and read the AC (not the DC) setting. You will have a steady number when you have a truly grounded outlet AND if you are not touching any grounding device. The number will be the difference between your body voltage and that of the Earth via your grounded socket. If you see a fluctuating number, your outlet is not truly grounded and you can't use it for grounding - instead you must use a grounding rod that goes directly to the outside. If you have a steady number, then touch a grounding device while still holding the red test lead. If your voltage drops close to zero, you are grounded and have confirmed your grounded outlet. See my Earthing video Part 2 for a demo.
If you get an Earthing kit with an outlet checker: The outlet checker is not the same as a voltmeter! Follow up with a voltmeter if your outlet checker lights up two orange lights on the right. This indicates your outlets might be truly grounded, but you need a voltmeter to confirm.