Electro Magnetic Fields

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What are Electromagnetic Fields?

The transmission of electrical energy through wires, the broadcasting of radio signals and the phenomenon of visible light are examples of electromagnetic fields (EMF). EMF always consists of both an electrical field and a magnetic field. It occurs in a wide range of frequencies, spanning what is called the electromagnetic spectrum.

At the high end is cosmic radiation. At the low end is household electricity. The lower electromagnetic frequencies have been utilized by man to generate electricity and all associated electrical products, including all electronic communication systems and electrical appliances. Electromagnetic radiation (EMR) is often called an electromagnetic field (EMF) when it falls within the lower frequencies. Both EMR and EMF are commonly used to mean the same thing.

What are the Common Sources of EMF?

Electricity is the most common source of power throughout the world because it is easily generated and transmitted to where it is needed. As electricity moves through wires and machines, it produces EMF. The power grids of nations consist of electrical generation, transmission and distribution facilities. As electricity is sent along the wires of the power grid, EMF is created. In cities, primary electric power distribution lines run across the top of utility poles and feed secondary transformers, which are then connected to the electric power meters of buildings.

Once electricity is delivered to the user, it continues to produce EMF throughout the wiring systems of offices, homes, schools, factories and other structures. The appliances and electrical equipment connected to these wiring systems produce their own EMF as well.

In the workplace the generators of EMF include computers, cell phones, fax machines, copy machines, fluorescent lights, printers, scanners, telephone (PBX) switching systems, electrical instruments, motors and other electrical devices.

In homes, the immediate sources of EMF include electric blankets, electric water bed heaters, hairdryers, electric shavers, television sets, stereo systems, air conditioners, fluorescent lights, electric can openers, telephone answering machines, cell and portable phones, refrigerators, blenders, portable heaters, clothes washers and dryers, coffee makers, vacuum cleaners, toasters, and microwave ovens.

EMF is not only produced by electricity moving through wires or machines, but it is the nature of all television and satellite transmissions, as well as radio and microwave communication systems, including cell phones. Transportation methods such as automobiles, trucks, airplanes, electrical and magnetic trains and subway systems are significant sources of EMF.

More than one source of EMF in proximity to other sources will produce overlapping fields in the same area. Any metropolitan home or office environment in the world will be saturated by a variety of interpenetrating EMF from a variety of sources. The nature of EMF is very complex and the number of EMF sources are rapidly growing.

Unfortunately, the entire effect of multiple electromagnetic fields on human physiology is not completely understood. However, it is well known that low-frequency magnetic fields can trigger major biochemical responses critical to the functioning of human cells, which operate by complex electrochemical processes. The consequences of living in our EMF world may not be known for decades. Virtually all research on the serious health effects of man-made EMF has come to the conclusion that the adverse health responses from EMF are from long-term cumulative exposure.

We are the First Generation to Live in an EMF World

Paul Brodeur, the author of Currents of Death, a book about EMF and a series of famous articles on EMF for the magazine The New Yorker, first raised the question about the key difference between natural DC magnetic fields of the earth and artificial man-made EMF which is mostly composed of alternating current (AC). Brodeur suggests that the AC magnetic fields appear to have profoundly negative effects on human cell behavior. Human life has gradually evolved over two billion years in an environment devoid of AC magnetic fields. Man-made AC fields differ greatly from the earth's magnetic field, as the earth's current is direct current (DC) and not alternating current (AC). Brodeur argues that, in terms of the biological consequences, this constant, unprecedented human exposure to AC fields is highly stressful. The evidence is persuasive that man-made AC fields can interact with or stress our human cells to the point where adverse reactions result.

The adverse effects of exposure to EMF appear to arise slowly over a long period of time. For example, it may take 5 to 10 years in the case of leukemia or perhaps 30 to 40 years in the case of Alzheimer's disease for symptoms to develop. The health cases that are coming to light in the 1990s most likely had their origin in the 1980s or before. Damage that is being inflicted today is not even knowable. The EMF problem has been categorized as a new form of pollution as consequential as air and water pollution. It has also been likened to the newly-discovered hazards of asbestos and cigarette smoking. In terms of its cumulative health effects, it's been compared to the slow process of lead poisoning. The EMF problem will grow - and at a compounding rate. Fortunately, public awareness of EMF is also growing.

Recommended safety levels range from 0.5 mG to 2.5 mG as the maximum exposure - with 1.0 mG as a preferred standard. Adverse biological effects have been found at 2.5 mG.

Strengthen Yourself Against EMF

Your body possesses a remarkable ability to adapt to rapidly changing environments. But when your body is chronically bombarded by man-made EMF (electromagnetic fields), its innate intelligence and energy can become weakened. When your body's ability to cope is impaired, it's more difficult for your body to shield itself from negative influences. EMF, in effect, can knock your innate intelligence and energy "out of phase."

You know why the airline captain tells you to turn off your electronic devices during take off and landing? The EMF generated by your cell phone and laptop wreak havoc on the plane's navigational system. And they wreak havoc on yours as well.

Some scientists estimate that you are now daily exposed to 100 million times the EMF radiation of your grandparents. Research shows that these fields have a significant disruptive effect on the natural energy levels of your body. Your body's energy, as well as your cellular communication system, are altered by the high frequencies of EMF. Man-made radiation magnifies your body's "fight or flight" responses, compounding your adrenal loads from other stressors and significantly reducing your ability to effectively cope.

EMF disrupts your natural energy levels, triggering stress responses. Both alternative and traditional doctors report that EMF is a co-factor in increasing your daily stress levels. Stress can impair your body's natural ability to heal. EMF adds stress to your own stress and fatigue. EMF adds stress to your already taxed system. EMF contributes to energy depletion and fatigue from cell phones, air travel and household appliances.


Electromagnetic Fields:
A Consumer's Guide to the Issues and How to Protect Ourselves— by B. Blake Levitt
A comprehensive account of the electromagnetic fields caused by high-tension power lines examines the health problems related to them and explains what the government is doing about the problem and how one can increase one's safety.

The Electricity Around You May be Hazardous to Your Health— by Ellen Sugarman
A thorough overview of the myriad health issues associated with electromagnetic fields.

Cross Currents:
The Promise of Electromedicine, the Perils of Electropollution— by Robert O. Becker
Dr. Becker tells of the emergence of electromagnetic medicine, which promises to unlock the secrets of healing, and the growth of electromagnetic pollution, which poses a clear environmental danger. He explains the effectiveness of alternative healing methods that use parts of the body's innate electrical healing systems, and warns that our bodies are being adversely affected by power lines, computers, microwaves and satellite dishes.

Information Ventures, Inc.
EMF-Link® is a multimedia information resource covering biological and health effects of electric and magnetic fields (EMF) produced by everyday sources - powerlines, appliances, communications and transportation equipment. EMF-Link® is a product of the EMF Clearinghouse at IVI, which also offers a range of print publications and the EMF Database, the world's most comprehensive electronic database of scientific information on EMF. EMF-Link® provides detailed information and informed discussion of EMF technical, legal, and consumer related issues in an unbiased fashion.


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Last modified: June 20, 2010
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