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
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.
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
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.