EMF (or Electro-Magnetic Field) is a broad term which includes electric fields generated by charged particles, magnetic fields generated by charged particles in motion, and radiated fields such as TV, radio, and microwaves.
Electric fields are measured in units of volts per meter or V/m. Magnetic fields are measured in milli-Gauss or mG. The field is always strongest near the source and diminishes as you move away from the source. These energies have the ability to influence particles at great distances. For example, the radiation from a radio tower influences the atoms within a distant radio antenna, allowing it to pick up the signal. Despite the many wonderful conveniences of electrical technology, the effects of EMF on biological tissue remains the most controversial aspect of the EMF issue with virtually all scientists agreeing that more research is necessary to determine safe or dangerous levels.
Iron, necessary for healthy blood and stored in the brain, is highly effected by EMF.
The permeability of the cell membrane of our nerves, blood vessels, skin, and other organs is effected. The intricate DNA of the chromosomes has been shown to be effected by EMFs as well.
In fact, throughout our bodies, every biochemical process involves precisely choreographed movement of EMF-sensitive atoms, molecules, and ions.
When Are EMFs Dangerous?
After more than 25 years of intensive study, the health and safety conscious Swedish government has established a safety limit for exposure to ELF magnetic field at 2.5 mG, and VLF magnetic fields at only 0.25 mG.
Although the U.S. government has been slower to act in establishing its own standards, the Swedish standard is generally accepted throughout the world. What this possibly means is that if someone consistently experiences exposure which exceeds the standard, that person could be at risk for developing health problems which can range from headaches, fatigue, and dizziness to skin rashes, miscarriage, leukemia, and cancer. In fact, numerous court cases where plaintiffs claim to have been injured by EMFs are now in progress.
Even though the controversy of conflicting scientific studies persists, it seems strange that cigarettes and alcohol are packaged with warnings we already know about, and the sodium, fat, and cholesterol content of foods must appear on the labels, but…. No one tells you that the average hair dryer or vacuum cleaner emits an amazing 300 mG or more!
What Can You Do About EMFs?
1. Detect EMFs in your home and work environment.
You have to know where the sources of EMF are in your everyday world and how strong these sources are.
Is there wiring in the wall behind your bed that you don’t even know about?
Is the vaporizer emitting strong fields in the baby’s room?
How much EMF are you and your family getting from the power lines in the street?
Get a meter, share it with your friends, and test the areas where you spend time.
2. Diminish your exposure to the EMFs you find.
Remember that EMFs go right through doors and walls.
- Determine how far you must stay away from the EMF emitters in your home & work environment to achieve less than 2.5 mG of exposure… the microwave oven, the alarm clock, the computer, and so on.
- Rearrange your furniture (especially the beds, desks, and couches where you spend the most time) away from heaters, wiring, and fluorescent lights, electric doorbells, and other EMF “hot spots”.
- Test electrical appliances before you buy with an EMF meter of read the specs. Know what you are buying and buy the lowest EMF emitter. Where practical, replace your electric appliances with non electric devices.
- Contact your local council if you suspect high radiation from power lines near your home, schools, or workplace. They will come out and test. If they find high levels of EMF they may be required to re-route the power lines, move them higher, or bury them.
- Turn off, don’t use, or throw out electrical appliances you dont need or use.
- Have an electrician correct faulty high EMF wiring and help you eliminate dangerous stray ground currents.
- Here’s a simple way to reduce exposure from idle computer monitors using the “Low-Power Standby” mode: In Control Panel, locate the “Display Properties”. Click the Screen Saver tab and check the Low-Power Standby box. Set the amount of minutes of idle before activation of standby mode. Click OK. What this accomplishes is that the monitor will power down (almost zero radiation output!) when the keyboard is idle for a short while. To “wake up” the monitor, simply touch the keypad or mouse.
- Note: this is better than Screen Savers, which do not reduce radiation or power consumption. This may only be available in some Windows 95/98 computers.
3. Shield yourself.
Use shielding devices on your computer screen and cellular phone. Add shielding to your household wiring, circuit box, and transformers. Use shielding-enhanced materials in your bedding or your clothing if you must be exposed to EMFs.