Categories
Big Picture Detoxification Gut Nutrients Product Reviews Sleep Symptoms

The Body is Electric

Every now and then, a product comes along that could potentially shift how you feel — across your entire body.

Let’s back up though.

First, consider this:

  • All animal bodies move and function via electricity.
  • We are no different. Every activity is performed electrically — breathing, moving your limbs, brain function, & immunity.

In other words, life functions using a currency of energy… of electricity.

And real, legitimate scientific research is now demonstrating something super unusual:

  • Touching the earth puts you in contact with small currents of electricity. Your body then does something with the energy it gains.

What happens in the body with that electricity? A lot.

Multi-disciplinary research has revealed that electrically conductive contact of the human body with the surface of the Earth (grounding or earthing) produces intriguing effects on physiology and health. Such effects relate to inflammation, immune responses, wound healing, and prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

In layman’s terms: touching the Earth provides electricity to the body — which then impacts system-wide bodily functions:

  • inflammation
  • wound healing
  • prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases
  • improve sleep
  • normalize the day–night cortisol rhythm
  • reduce pain
  • reduce stress
  • shift the autonomic nervous system from sympathetic toward parasympathetic activation
  • increase heart rate variability
  • speed wound healing
  • reduce blood viscosity

A summary of these health impacts has been published in the
Journal of Environmental and Public Health.

How could touching the Earth impact health so much?

Our main hypothesis is that
connecting the body to the Earth
enables free electrons
from the Earth’s surface
to spread over and into the body…

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

What are free electrons? To oversimplify, they are what electricity is made of.

“The continuous flow of electrons in an electric circuit is called an electric current.” (source)

Image courtesy of: https://circuitglobe.com/electric-current.html

Free electrons (electricity) can do a lot in the body. Consider one major role:

  • Free electrons are antioxidant

How is electricity anti-oxidant?

Consider what happens when an object — say a wrench, or chain — is oxidized.

Outdoors, metal oxidizes — mostly due to oxygen and moisture. This oxidation is what happens when metals rust.

This rust — or oxidization — means the surface of the object is losing its electrons.

Oxidation = to remove electrons.

Instead of removing, free electrons (from the Earth) add electrons.

So, providing your body with extra (free) electrons quite substantially counteracts all the oxidative stress in your body.

This is why anti-oxidants are so lauded these days. As we age and suffer poor health, our bodies become unbalanced, with high oxidative stress — not a healthy state. Antioxidants help us detox, and protect our tissues and volatile nutrients from oxidation.

And as research is showing, free electrons — from the earth — can help the body in ways that dietary antioxidants cannot.

But wait, there’s more — regarding the food we eat.

Our metabolism — how we generate energy from food — is a very specific type of metabolism. Care to guess which type?

That’s right — oxidative metabolism.

What does that mean? It means the body uses oxygen (when we breathe in) to literally steal electrons from food, so we can use it as our body’s energy. (Cellular respiration is another term for this).

We oxidize food — just like that rusty chain left outside — to get electricity.

Thus, all energy from food comes via electricity.

Yes — the energy that powers your brain, fights off pathogenic invaders, pumps your heart, moves your limbs, opens your mouth and eyelids — it’s all electricity taken from food.

…energy from food and, perhaps, from the Earth.

Or, it used to be.

Humans used to touch the Earth constantly.

Throughout history, we walked barefoot more, constantly absorbing small amounts of electricity from the ground.

Shoes had leather soles — which conduct electricity when moist. People often slept directly on the ground at night, on wool blankets that are conductive when moist.

Round the clock, this intimate contact with the Earth provided us free energy, helping us be more healthy, less inflammed, and more energized — to fight diseases better, to sleep more deeply.

It’s plausible to suggest that historic humans were supplementing free electrons nearly all day.

Ancient humans were never far from the earth’s electrical supply.

As a result of less inflammation, deeper sleep, and more efficient metabolism, it’s likely they were able to maintain energetic homeostasis with slightly lower food requirements .

Nowadays, we almost never touch the earth — and subsequently, never receive any electricity from it.

That is, unless, we dip in the ocean, or walk barefoot on the beach or in the grass. That’s when we get electricity from the earth.

Q: How is the body so electrically conductive?

Great question! Here’s how:

  • The body is made of semiconductive tissues.

Collagen and other structural proteins are semiconductors.

Water plays crucial roles in enzymatic activities and semi-conduction

Hydrated proteins actually are semiconductors, and have become important components in the global microelectronics industry.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

In recent studies, given awards by the Materials Research Society in both Europe and the USA, scientists from Israel made flexible biodegradable semiconductor systems using proteins from human blood, milk, and mucus.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

Yes! Your entire body is made of water, minerals (electrolytes), hydrated proteins, and collagen. Your entire body is made of semi-conductors!

You are incredible — and electrical.

More evidence that you’re a walking, semi-conducting battery.

Check out five fascinating facts about how our electrical body works:

Fact #1

  • The whole body has a semiconductor network

Moreover, research in cell biology and biophysics reveals the human body is equipped with a system-wide collagenous, liquid–crystalline semiconductor network known as the living matrix,31 or in other terms, a ground regulation system32,33 or tissue tensegrity matrix system (Figure 11).34 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
It’s known as “the living matrix.”

Fact #2

  • This network delivers electricity to the whole body
  • This electricity protects the body from stress and injury

This body-wide network can deliver mobile electrons to any part of the body and thereby routinely protect all cells, tissues, and organs from oxidative stress or in the event of injury.23,31 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
A body without electricity cannot function.

Fact #3

  • Free electrons are able to arrive inside cells

The living matrix includes the extracellular and connective tissue matrices as well as the cytoskeletons of all cells.31 Integrins at cell surfaces are thought to allow for semi-conduction of electrons to the cell interior, and links across the nuclear envelope enable the nuclear matrix and genetic material to be part of the circuitry

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
Cells need energy for biological activity.

Fact #4

  • Connective tissues are particularly conductive and behave like batteries

Ground substance polyelectrolyte molecules associated with the collagenous connective tissue matrix are charge reservoirs (Figure 12).

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
  • “Ground substance” is simply gelatinous material in connective tissue
  • “Charge reservoirs” are essentially batteries, where electrical charge can be stored for later use
All bodies are like walking batteries.

Fact #5

  • A “redox system” serves the entire body — a system which oxidizes (steals electrons) for energy, and transports that energy around the body, as needed

The matrix is therefore a vast whole-body redox system.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
All bodies oxidize — steal electrons — for energy.

Your body has as much electricity as an entire thunderstorm.

Bill Bryson, A Short History of Everything

What are the full benefits of touching the Earth?

In the past decade, the benefits of touching the earth have become clearly evident in published research.

Free electrons promote “intriguing” physiological changes & well-being.

Reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28987038/
There’s a “surprisingly positive” effect on health.

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. Modern lifestyle separates humans from such contact. The research suggests that this disconnect may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwellness.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28987038/
The worst and most prevalent disease — and aging itself — is linked to chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, something free electrons can directly address.

Modern biomedicine has discovered that many of the most debilitating diseases, as well as the aging process itself, are caused by or associated with chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28987038/
Free electrons — rapidly — calm our inflammation, in ways that dietary antioxidants and standard medical care perhaps cannot.

Electrons from the Earth quickly attenuate chronic inflammation not resolved by dietary antioxidants or by standard medical care, including physical therapy (Figure 3). 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
Free electrons significantly alter the inflammatory response — even resulting in faster wound healing.

Taken together, these observations indicate that grounding or earthing the human body significantly alters the inflammatory response to an injury.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
Free electrons reduce pain.

Grounding reduces pain and alters the numbers of circulating neutrophils and lymphocytes, and also affects various circulating chemical factors related to inflammation.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
feet sand
Free electrons treat both symptoms of inflammation, including swelling, pain, and loss of function.

Grounding reduces or even prevents the cardinal signs of inflammation following injury: redness, heat, swelling, pain, and loss of function (Figures 1 and ​and2). Rapid resolution of painful chronic inflammation was confirmed in 20 case studies using medical infrared imaging (Figure 3).2,3

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/
walk barefoot
Chronic inflammation prevents healing — but free electrons can restore it.

“Classical textbook descriptions also refer to an “inflammatory barricade” that isolates injured tissues to hinder the movement of pathogens and debris from the damaged region into adjacent, healthy tissues.

…This barrier also hinders the movements of antioxidants and regenerative cells into the blocked-off area.

Repair can be incomplete, and this incomplete repair can set up a vicious inflammatory cycle that can persist for a long period of time, leading to so-called silent or smoldering inflammation that in turn, over time, can promote the development of chronic disease.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

All of these benefits — along with those mentioned at the beginning of this article — point to a dramatic potential impact on the body.

Clearly, free electrons from the earth promote health, well-being, cognitive improvement, deeper sleep, better digestion, stronger immunity, more energy, and even improved mood.

So how do we take full advantage of these findings?

How to touch the Earth

and reap the health benefits most optimally

The following recommendations are designed to achieve maximum results — effects that we can notice and feel.

Truly beneficial habits produce excellent results and don’t have to be abandoned later — because we can observe the improvements.

First, let’s identify the best locations for free electrons:

  • Grass (especially wet grass)
  • Bare dirt or sand (especially moist)
  • Concrete (especially wet concrete)
  • Bodies of water, rivers, & streams

Notice a trend there? Moisture — water — enables electrical flow.

There are two other important variables that matter for optimal results.

  • #1 — Time spent touching the Earth
  • #2 — Amount of skin surface area
Variable #1

Time Spent

touching the Earth

The electricity in the earth is definitely there, but it’s gentle. It won’t electrocute you, and it won’t shock you, either.

So, while it’s true that there is a “vast supply of electrons on the surface of the Earth” (source) the amount of electricity we can be exposed to in the earth is still relatively low.

Which means that “earthing” takes time — lots of it — spent in contact with the ground to receive these free electrons, and to charge up the human body. Some studies suggest two hours is needed.

Consider the hours spent in nature by prehistoric humans, nearly always in contact with the planet. Our bodies are similar to theirs, and benefit from being connected to this electrical source virtually around the clock.

If we didn’t have technological advances (which we’ll explore below), it would seem logical, then, that we should spend hours per day outside, in nature, touching the ground — certainly not mere minutes.

After all, this is what humans historically benefitted from, constant contact with the Earth.

Remember, though, we’re shooting for substantial health benefits. Without technology, hours spent outside and touching the ground is the best answer.

Now, let’s look at the other important variable:

  • #2 — Amount of skin surface area
Variable #2

Amount of

Skin Surface Area

touching the Earth

Your skin is quite conductive, but in order to maximize electrical flow, we need to maximize surface area between Earth and your body.

This is for two big reasons:

  • Skin can only (comfortably) allow a certain amount of electricity at a time in a small area
  • There’s only so much electrical current available in one small area of Earth

The more skin is touching the earth, the more free electrons can flow into your body.

For example, when we walk barefoot in the grass, only the bottoms of the feet receive electrons.

  • But if you sit or lay down, more skin can be exposed to the ground. In fact, the entire length of your legs and arms could be in contact with the Earth while sitting — much more surface area.

So, what’s better? Sitting & laying down beats walking — for free electrons. Of course walking is restorative movement, and that’s a major benefit.

But here’s where things get interesting. We’ve been discussing our body posture on dry land. Let’s think about something else: water.

Consider how superior water is as a conductor (particularly when it includes minerals as electrolytes, as it does in nature).

In bodies of water (lakes, rivers, streams) are easily the best locations to ground. These are the most conductive places on the planet.

Actual water is superior for both the bottoms of our feet, alone, but also because they represent an opportunity to submerge more of the body — which drastically exposes more skin to free electrons.

My personal experience indicates that submersion in water is perhaps 10X (or higher) more effective at supplying free electrons than standing on the ground.

Submersion Speeds Up the Process

I’ve found that noticeable positive effects can be achieved in water in much less time, compared to standing on the ground — perhaps 15-30 minutes instead of 2-3 hours.

The Best Methods

to benefit from free electrons

Let’s explore the best ways to receive free electrons — into the body.

Here’s what researchers suggest as a place to start:

Earthing is as simple as routinely walking barefoot outdoors and/or using inexpensive grounding systems indoors while sleeping or sitting, practices that restore a lost and needed electric connection with the Earth.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31831261/

What an easy start!

  • Routinely walk barefoot outdoors
  • Use inexpensive grounding systems while indoors

While that is a really good start, but let’s think even bigger. Let’s be interested in clear-cut, superior methods — both the best natural method and what new technology is offering.

Let’s check out three superior options to receive free electrons. If you’re interested in Earthing, these are the best ways to do it.

Option #1

Submersion in Water

This is, hands-down, the best method for receiving free electrons.

In a body of water, virtually the entire body is in contact with electron-abundant water — meaning the entire surface area of your skin becomes a pathway for electricity to enter the body.

Even if you’re only dipping your feet — or your lower legs — in the water, this is still a fantastic source of free electrons, and will always be superior to simple bare feet on the ground.

I have found a therapeutic dose to be much shorter in water — as little as 15 minutes — but, the longer the better. Spending hours in the water is powerful, powerful stuff.

The ocean, pristine lakes and rivers, and streams are all fantastic natural sources of water for free electrons.

Pools, especially those with concrete construction, are also excellent sources of free electrons.

Your only requirement to get started, here, is a body of water nearby. If you can regularly, it’s absolutely, hands-down worth doing.

Consider 1-2 sessions per day, at 30+ minutes per session.

Option #2

Revitive

Medical Device

Every now and then, a product comes along that offers a chance to shift how you feel — through your entire body.

That product is the Revitive.

A souped-up TENS unit — with large electrode foot pads — the Revitive is capable of delivering impressive quantities of free electrons to your body.

Best of all, it feels really, really good while using it.

Electrical pulses stimulate the muscles and tendons in your feet and calves to move and flex, providing an automatic, gentle workout in your feet, ankles and lower legs. This is also great for circulation and muscle/tendon strength.

But the primary benefit, in my mind, is the free electrons — and this device delivers them in droves to the entire body.

I feel a difference even in my cognition after regular use, as well as energy levels, and fluid balance around the body. Inflammation generally feels lower after use.

This device requires virtually zero effort to use — simply rest your feet on it while you:

  • work at your desk
  • relax on the couch
  • watch TV
  • read a book
  • eat meals
  • chat with friends or relatives
  • before bed

It’s been two years since moving away from regular, daily access to a pool for my grounding. Getting the Revitive has been a complete game-changer for me, and my opinion of it is this:

It is virtually as good as spending hours in a pool each day.

What makes the Revitive so effective? Two things:

  • the amount of electricity the device delivers
  • the size of the electrodes

The Revitive provides much more electricity (free electrons) than the Earth provides.

The Earth’s electricity isn’t readily noticeable, and it certainly isn’t enough to make muscles contract. The Revitive is and does — you can feel it (it feels really, really good), and it readily makes muscles contract, enough to increase their strength.

The Revitive also has large electrode pads — they will touch the entire bottom of your feet. By comparison, TENS units (which provide similar amounts of electricity) use pads that are typically only 1-2 inches in size. Your feet are much bigger than that, and therefore, can absorb much more electricity over their surface area — and send many more free electrons into your body.

Comparing the Revitive to the Earth (or a TENS unit)?

On one hand, a TENS unit delivers high amounts of free electrons, but is somewhat limited by the amount it can deliver via small electrode pads.

On the other, the Earth delivers much lower amounts of electrons — which is why scientists recommend 2+ hours per day (or my recommendation to submerse in water) to be powerful and effective for your health.

By contrast, the Revitive can both deliver high amounts of free electrons, while also utilizing a much larger electrode pad than a TENS unit. Two or three (30 min) sessions per day can be similar to spending 30+ minutes in a pool or body of water, in terms of the free electrons provided to the body.

How to Use the Revitive

Revitive recommends up to six 30-minute sessions per day.

For maximum effect, I suggest a minimum of 2-3 sessions (60-90 minutes) daily — though more is certainly even better.

I believe this minimum threshold of 60-90 minutes daily (2-3 sessions) can be surprisingly achievable — it requires no effort, only sitting. You can do anything else while you sit and receive free electrons.

You can also walk away from the Revitive — the device will pause until you return.

Further, Revitive is extremely logical for anyone who is not able to be very active due to health challenges.

Purchase Revitive on Amazon (link) or on Revitive.com (link).

Option #3

Sleeping while Grounded

This is an excellent option if you can figure out how to make it work for your bedroom.

Remember, the Earth’s free electron supply is quite low. It takes hours of exposure to it — daily — for noticeable effects to occur.

This is why sleeping while grounded is such a fantastic way to touch the earth. You can easily achieve 7-9 hours of grounding occur — without much effort.

Many “grounding” systems exist, for purchase, to help you ground while you sleep. Real research (source, source) supports this as beneficial.

This very simple DIY system involves three components:

  • A conductive sheet — laid under your bedsheets
  • An connector cable — that connects this sheet to a “ground” source
  • A ground source — that is touching the Earth

The conductive/grounding sheet can be purchased here: here. You’ll want to use the HertzCloth™ option.

The connector cable can be purchased here: here. You’ll want to use the “Plug to clamp” item if connecting to your electrical 3-prong outlet, or the “Gator to clamp” item if connecting to a stake outside a window.

The ground source needs to be either 1) the ground wire in your 3-prong electrical system, (purchased here: item #A295-4 or item #A295-12), or 2) a stake driven into the ground outside a window.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6360250/

GRD was shown to result in faster recovery and/or less pronounced markers of muscle damage and inflammation. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6360250/

Sleeping while grounded: three drawbacks:

First, the Hertzcloth — like all conductive fabrics — are delicate and must be washed by hand, with natural soaps (no detergents), and promptly removed from water to open air dry. This conductive fabric will likely need to be replaced every 18-24 months, if only for sanitary reasons — they cannot be washed normally.

Second, the system is a bit convoluted. It involves a grounding sheet under your normal sheets, so making the bed has an extra step: making sure the grounding sheet is situated. There will also be a wire going from under the bed sheet to either an electrical outlet or out a window (to a stake in the ground). For some people this will be fun, for others it will be worth the trouble, and for others it will look and feel like a mess.

Third, there is a strong argument that grounding like this is not advisable in areas of high EMF. Some areas, especially large cities or close to major power grid stations, have high-powered EMF fields in the ground (near power stations) or in the air (near cell towers). It is debatable whether grounding in these locations is actually helpful; some argue it could be harmful.

All that said, if you can manage this system — it can be highly worthwhile. The steady supply of electrons all night can be a powerful force for healing, energy, sleep, and inflammation-busting. I personally noticed extensive dreaming in my first nights sleeping on a grounded bed.

Touching the Earth & free electrons

Final Thoughts

Receiving electrons directly from the Earth — or from a device like the Revitive — has the potentialy to level-up your journey toward health.

Of course, the business of harvesting free electrons is, mostly, a daily routine — whether being outside with the Earth, or using a Revitive. This routine also will require time spent each day for maximum effect.

Of course, I will always insist that even five minutes of exposure to free electrons is better than nothing. Certainly!

Yet, when done with wisdom — to maximize effectiveness — significant benefits are real and verifiable by research, and anecdotally.

There are other ways to receive free electrons, too — truly fresh air, and water, for instance. We’ll share those methods soon; some of them are perhaps as powerful as intense Earthing.

What happens when the body doesn’t have enough electrons?

A lot happens biologically in an electron deficit!

In fact, this is likely the end result of most diseases: a lack of energy supply — potentially created by pathogens, inflammation, poor sleep, nutrient deficiencies, and gut dysbiosis.

Of course, when the body’s energy supply is undermined, immunity suffers dramatically. This is likely why chronic fatigue, hypothyroidism, aging, and pathogenic activity are so interrelated.

A lack of electrons can also de-saturate the electron transport chains in mitochondria, leading to chronic fatigue and slowing the cellular migrations and other essential activities of the cells of the immune system

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4378297/

Consider, again, that the body steals electrons from food.

What if your gut health is compromised? Electrons cannot be efficiently harvested from the diet, but will instead feed pathogens in the gut (which then release endotoxin into the blood stream, causing chronic inflammation).

Oh, how the weakened body needs pure electricity — free electrons — without the price it pays when it attempts to digest food.

Enter a potential solution: free electrons from the Earth. They enter directly through your skin — you can supply the very energy your body works so hard to extract from food.

This energy the body can receive from the environment — capable of cooling inflammation, rapidly healing the body, boosting immunity, deepening sleep, and making us resilient — is available to you without the toxins and inflammation produced by a dysbiotic gut. Simply by Earthing.

And of course, a steady and strong supply of free electrons will improve the gut microbiome, too — improving gut health and all the biological and metabolic activity that depends on it.

The health implications of accessing the Earth’s free electrons are vast — and apply to the entire population.

For instance, cardiovascular health is of particular importance as we age — cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the US.

Unsurprisingly, free electrons have been shown to improve cardiovascular health, and could even reduce the need for blood thinners like Warfarin:

Grounding increases the surface charge on RBCs and thereby reduces blood viscosity and clumping. Grounding appears to be one of the simplest and yet most profound interventions for helping reduce cardiovascular risk and cardiovascular events.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3576907/

My Experiences

I’ve done “hacks” such as grounding for nearly fifteen years. I’ve tried some pretty ridiculous ideas!

Many of them, especially when focused on diets and silver bullet theories, were largely fruitless. Unfortunately, some were harmful to my progress, and many distracted me — for much too long — from what matters for health.

Yet, I can unequivocally say that focusing on free electrons — especially when done wisely, to maximize their effect — has been one of the most impactful “hacks” I’ve ever done. Few things come close.

My only challenge with sharing this information has been that most people I speak and work with do not have access to nature and free time to pursue touching the Earth — at least not enough to change their lives. This is why I’m so excited to have the Revitive in my own arsenal; it opens the door to share these concepts with a population who will legitimately be able to act on this information.

For years, I’ve personally noticed tremendous improvements in inflammation, muscle strength and endurance, cognition (a major reduction in brain fog), deeper sleep, better digestion, and better vitality overall. These results were not achieved in mere minutes per day — free electrons don’t work that way.

Rather, it’s wise to recognize that 60-90+ minutes (or, two hours per day of Earthing, as the research suggests) is a reasonable threshold for the major, full-body improvements we seek — whether touching the Earth, submersing in bodies of water, or using a device like Revitive.

Down the road, I’m excited to share with you a few other methods I love for receiving free electrons. They, too, have been major boons to my health — propping me up when I lived in sick buildings, and hastening my recovery once in a healthy space.

My hope for you is that you can find the boost you need to hasten your progress — whatever your goals might be, whether they be improved gut health, cooling of chronic inflammation, deeper sleep, pain relief, or a clearing of brain fog.

I believe in you, and I know your body is strong. You can do things that will amaze you, by giving your body what it needs.

Interested in learning how to implement the Revitive device in your routine?

A few more pertinent studies:

Some 20 studies to date have reported intriguing evidence of wide and significant physiological improvements when the body is grounded vs. non-grounded. 

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31831261/

Multi-disciplinary research has revealed that electrically conductive contact of the human body with the surface of the Earth (grounding or earthing) produces intriguing effects on physiology and health. Such effects relate to inflammation, immune responses, wound healing, and prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25848315/

However, 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. Modern lifestyle separates humans from such contact. The research suggests that this disconnect may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwellness. Reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being. Earthing (or grounding) refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced pain—from walking barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth’s electrons from the ground into the body. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/

This body of research has demonstrated the potential of grounding to be a simple, natural, and accessible clinical strategy against the global epidemic of noncommunicable, degenerative, inflammatory-related diseases.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28987038/
Categories
Big Picture Nutrients

What I Do

Here’s what I’m currently doing to improve my health.

As of: 7-28-19

(check back for updates)

Some Rules I Follow

  • Try one new idea at a time. Problems almost always arise from trying too many things in too-short of period.
  • Understand how each component of my health regimen fits together. If I don’t understand it, it’s more risky for me.
  • Never do something (especially long-term) just because another person is doing it. That person could easily be harming themselves, doing things that only work given their personal challenges, or about to find out that their current regimen creates imbalances.
1

Current Areas of Emphasis

What really seems to be working.

I’m always trying new things — each and every week. Sometimes I find things that definitely help.

  • More gut supplements (taking throughout the day).
  • Early to bed, early to rise.
  • Daily vitamin A & copper (w/extra vitamin A after sun).
  • Meal timing (w/bigger breakfast/lunch).
  • More movement, daily.
  • Heat lamps while working.

2

Gut health needs constant attention, even when healthy — to protect the progress I’m making.

If you’re struggling with chronic illness, gut health likely needs to be a major focus for your recovery.

Prebiotics

  • Apple Pectin (daily)
  • Colostrum (2-3 pills/day)

Probiotics

4 pills/week
3

Therapeutic light keeps my thyroid humming, weakens pathogens, and syncs my circadian rhythm.

Heat Lamp

  • 2-4 lamps
  • Background light (2-5 hours/day)

Sunlight

  • 2 hours/day (1 hour morning, 1 hour afternoon… or so)
  • (Obviously only available on drier days. I still get outside in cloudy weather for sunlight.)

Sauna

  • 1-2x/week
  • 15 minutes/session
4

My circadian rhythm is impacted by elements that I can control.

Blue Light

  • Blue light-reducing glasses.
  • F.lux on screens.
  • Adjust TV monitor for warmer color temperature.

Heal The Gut

  • Pre’s
  • Pro’s
  • Killers
  • (see above)

Bedroom

  • Dark, dark, dark
  • EMF — turn off wifi. No cell phone in bedroom, or on airplane mode. Turn power off to bedroom at night.
  • Fresh Air
  • Clean
  • Temperature
  • Firm mattress

Morning Sunlight

  • 10-15 minutes/day
  • Sunlight or heat lamps.
5

The food I eat is balanced: carbs and protein and fats — and digestible.

  • I am now eating food with virtually zero food restrictions.
  • I do avoid artificial sweeteners and flavors.
  • I eat mostly whole foods, although I don’t restrict added sugar. I do eat refined grains — in fact, starch is essential for me to feel my best, sleep well, and stay regular.

Macro Ratio

  • Roughly a 2:1:1 ratio (by calories).
  • I eat intuitively (I don’t measure calories or macros anymore, although I did for some time). I generally get a feel for where “2:1:1” probably is. If I want a little more protein, or carbs, or fat… I’ll add more. After years of paying attention to this, I can figure out what I want/need.
  • I think about what my gut will need to digest well… not just what my taste buds want.
6
The Thyroid Section -- Learn about how the thyroid affects human health, as well as what to do to restore it to proper function.

I have been able to restore my thyroid without the use of thyroid hormones.

  • Eat early.
  • Moderate-to-high calories.
  • 2:1 Carb to protein ratio.
  • Lots of light.
  • Protect sleep.
  • Clean environment (especially mold/EMF).
7

I’ve gotten myself into endless conundrums with nonsensical, extreme nutritional supplementation.

Therefore, it’s become a core concept for me to never find myself lost and confused about nutrients, ever again.

Fat Solubles

1-2x/week. I seem to need more Vitamin A than the other Fat Solubles. Therefore, I take this more frequently (daily).

  • Vitamin A — 1x/day (at night)
  • Vitamin D — from sunlight, daily.
  • Vitamin E — 1x/week
  • Vitamin K — 2x/week

B-Vitamins

The Naturelo multivitamin is an excellent source of balanced B-vitamins.

  • B1 — 1x/week (allithiamine)
  • B2 — 1x/week
  • B6 — 1x/week
  • Choline — 1x/week
  • I don’t seem to need more B12 than this supplement provides.

Minerals

  • Sodium — Moderate intake.
  • Potassium — Lowish intake (what’s in the Ultima powder and veggies).
  • Calcium — Moderate/high intake. Mostly from dairy.
  • Magnesium — 3-6x/week.
  • Zinc — I avoid zinc. It makes me feel bad. (UPDATE Fall 2019: When I stopped visiting a moldy environment regularly, zinc tolerance improved, and supplemental zinc gave noticeable energy and calmness).
  • Copper — 1-2x/day. Chlorophyllin. Has long balanced out my high zinc. Consistently makes me feel great.
  • Iodine — Not needing much right now.
  • Selenium — About once per week.

  • Lithium — 1x/week
  • Strontium — 2x/month
  • Molybdenum — 1x/week (to lower high sulfur)

Amino Acids

  • Glycine — currently not taking/(is present in magnesium glycinate)
  • Lysine — currently not taking
  • Proline — in colostrum
8
The Mold section -- Learn about mold illness and how your environment can affect your health, longevity, and recovery from illness.

Sick buildings completely wrecked my thyroid, my gut, my brain function, and my sleep.

Therefore, this is now a daily thought for me: What can I do to improve my environment?

Awareness

  • I am always aware of the health of the buildings I am in — especially my own home.

Clean

  • Keep things clean.
  • Dust a lot.
  • Keep the floors dusted and wiped down.
  • Change sheets a lot.
  • Shower frequently.
  • Keep car very clean.

Minimize

  • Don’t own many possession I don’t use frequently.
  • Always looking to throw things away.

Protect

  • I “de-contaminate” when I return from buildings I suspect/know were “sick buildings.” (Or, even borderline “sick buildings”).
9

Final Thoughts

What might be even more important than the actions I take each day? How I think about my health.

Organizing my thoughts — into important topics — is one of the most important habits I developed as I came back into health.

I stopped viewing everything through a single lens — whether it be the thyroid, the gut, mold, or something else (various diets, perhaps).

Instead, I came to understand these essential topics, each its own standalone pillar of health that matters deeply and universally for all people.

That means I couldn’t simply focus on one area — gut health, or light, or the circadian rhythm — and expect to recover.

Of course, there’s so much overlap between each area — so envisioning these clearly defined “essential topics” helped me delve into health zones without becoming lost in the weeds, or overwhelmed by dozens of ideas.

These days — and for many years now — I don’t worry about doing a million health activities each day. I just think of these essential topics: light, sleep, the gut, food, nutrients, etc.

Often, I keep it super simple: Just make sure I’m doing something for each pillar every day.

I take stock — how I’m doing lately — for each topic. For example: “What’s my therapeutic light been like recently?”

Sometimes, I’ll focus more on one area than another.

Other times, I’ll also take a break from certain areas periodically — to see how doing less affects me.

Viewing these Pillars of Health as “essential topics” also allows me freedom from health-group dogma. I know a given essential topic is important, and I can maintain my focus on it, even as I explore various approaches within that subject — exploring advice from many sources.

This way, I can take or leave advice about, say, the circadian rhythm without changing my appreciation for the topic, itself. I know it’s important.

As I work through different approaches, I keep the best ideas — and weed out those that didn’t help, or those that made me feel worse.

Over time, the way I view these essential topics has become only about the universally-good ideas discovered along the way.

I improved my health dramatically — from near-complete debillitation, brain fog, fatigue, insomnia, hypothyroidism, and gut dysbiosis — to feeling better than ever.

I know you can too! How you think about your health information is the key to utilizing it, rather than it overwhelming you or trapping you.

Instead, build your own approach — one that resonates with your interests and innate wisdom, and thus will provide you sustainable results.

In your future, there is energy, vitality, and freedom. If I can recover my health, you can too.

(click logo to return to home page)

Appreciating this information?

Sign-Up Today for the Pillars of Health

As a member, you will:

  • Access the complete PILLARS of HEALTH (endlessly updated)
  • Join our thoughtful Facebook Discussion & Support Group
  • Send personal questions (via e-mail, apps)
  • (SAVE 40%) on each 45-min Consultation
  • (SAVE 10%) National Board Certified Health Coaching

See testimonials.

Categories
Big Picture Light Nutrients Sleep Supplement Reviews

Basic Immune Checklist

The immune system needs all the support it can get during a crisis.

In this uncertain time, strategies to shore up biological weaknesses and nutritional imbalances are at the very top of the list for boosting immunity.

Everything mentioned in this article has been shown to be effective for boosting immunity against viruses and even past coronaviruses in published studies.

We can strengthen the immune system from the ground up — via two avenues foundational to general health: nutrients and lifestyle.

Adults

Immune function may be improved by restoring deficient micronutrients to recommended levels, thereby increasing resistance to infection and supporting faster recovery when infected. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30336639
1

A Great Multivitamin

A strong multivitamin has A) whole-food based, high-quality ingredients at B) biologically-appropriate, balanced doses — not megadoses, which can create imbalances.

Naturelo’s formulation is well-balanced, absorbable, w/adequate zinc content — the only one of its kind among a vast ocean of subpar multivitamins.

Naturelo MEN’S MULTIVITAMIN

(Amazon)

View on iHerb.com

NATURELO WOMEN’S MULTIVITAMIN

(Amazon)

View on iHerb.com

Women’s includes iron.
Women’s (50+) is iron-free.

Take a quality multivitamin daily, with or without meals, before 2 pm.

Read more:

Poor nutritional status predisoposes to certain infections.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30336639
2

Vitamins D & A

Vitamin D and Vitamin A are partner nutrients which are central to immune function.

Poorly represented in most diets (D is only available from sunlight and A is only available from liver), they are both critical for metabolism, sleep, and hormone production.

A deficiency in these can make you extra susceptible to illnesses.

D

Vitamin D is a hormone produced when the body receives UVB light.

Vitamin D is perhaps the most important immune nutrient.

Solaray, Soy-Free Vitamin D-3 + K-2, 120 VegCaps
Solaray 5000 IU (with K2)

This is a moderate-to-high dose of Vitamin D3 (the biologically-active form) with a small amount of cofactor Vitamin K2, needed to allow Vitamin D work in the body.

It’s an excellent idea to take absorbable magnesium to support Vitamin D. Magnesium is not readily found in modern food, so it’s a good idea to supplement it daily, anyway.

WHEN SICK, Take 5000IU Vitamin D daily — with a meal.

(Consider avoiding Vit D if supplemented heavily in the past — to avoid overdose).

NOTE — Sunlight is a superior form of Vitamin D, but is only available around midday, in the summer.

A

Vitamin A is the sister hormone to Vitamin D, enabling it to work optimally.

The two must be balanced with about a 1:1 ratio.

Carlson Labs, Vitamin A, 10,000 IU, 250 Soft Gels
Carlson Labs (10,000 IU)

This is the premier form of Vitamin A (preformed, fat-soluble). Does not require the liver to convert from carotenes.

When Sick, Take Vitamin A every Other day — with a meal, before 2pm.

(Consider avoiding Vit A if supplemented heavily in the past — to avoid overdose).

It is well-established that nutritional inadequacy greatly impairs the functioning of the immune system.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6340979/
3

Vitamin C

Along with Vitamin D, Vitamin C is a most critical immune nutrient, because it supports the system’s energy as a whole.

Solaray 1:1 Ratio Vit C
Solaray, Vitamin C Bioflavonoids, 1:1 Ratio, 250 VegCaps

View on iHerb.com

My favorite Vit C supplement anywhere.

Solaray Liposomal Vitamin C
Solaray, Liposomal Vitamin C, 400 mg, 100 VegCaps

View on iHerb.com

Fat-soluble Vitamin C, an incredible product.

Take 500-1000mg daily, at any time, with or without a meal.
Higher doses should be used with caution, up to 1000-2000mg/day.

Various micronutrients are essential for immunocompetence, particularly vitamins A, C, D, E, B2, B6, and B12, folic acid, iron, selenium, and zinc. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30336639
4

Zinc & Copper

5

Antimicrobials & Immune Boosters

These supplements can be powerful in improving your body’s ability to fend off infection.

  • Monolaurin (amazon)
    • Try 1-3 small pellets with meals
  • Glutathione (iherb)
    • The most gentle glutathione on the market
6

Heat

Heat is incredibly therapeutic for nearly every health condition — especially for supporting the immune system.

Why? In part, because pathogens are severely weakened in high heat. Look no further than what your own body does when sick: It raises the temperature in your tissues, a fever.

Venture Soft Far Infrared Heating Pad

UTK Ultra-Soft Far Infrared Heating Pad

Exposure to warmth is critical when fighting off illness and preventing it. The heat will also help you feel better in the process.

Apply heating pad for 20 minutes on chest, then 20 minutes on the back. Optional: Sit on pad for several hours.

Did you know? Heat is infrared light.

Read more about the stunning health effects of light.
7

Sunlight

If you’re sick, get outside.

UV light is naturally germicidal — especially against viruses. UV frequencies can penetrate into the skin, and can even inactivate viruses that have worked their way into skin tissues.

Blue light from sunshine, as well, is “highly antimicrobial.”

Infrared, the immune-boosting and germicidal to pathogens, is also metabolism boosting and makes up 50% of sunlight.

Sunlight is a premier tool to:

all important for recovery from illness.

UV radiation kills viruses by chemically modifying their genetic material, DNA and RNA.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17880524
Morning light is the healthiest light you can get — even without any UV.

Don’t wait until you’re sick to spend time outdoors. Ward off illness — before it arrives — with regular sunshine.

Get outdoors every day — for as long as possible.
8

The immune system activates at night — functioning best when we sleep deeply.

Research is finding that when you sleep is more important than how many hours you sleep. Thus, the circadian rhythm is more important than the total hours of shuteye.

Fix the circadian rhythm to fix sleep. Explore the Sleep section for more.

Read more:

Children

When it comes to children, it’s important to simplify.

Kids are smaller bodies that require smaller doses of nutrients. Children’s health needs are different than an adult’s — they are often more sensitive, and thereby susceptible to harm caused by excessive supplementation.

Multivitamin

Kids need low, balanced doses of high-quality nutrients, too.

Not all children’s multivitamins meet the standards of quality and balanced dosages.

(Alive! brand might taste a little better)

Vitamin D

Give this to children for one week to build immunity — or during illness — then reduce dosage to 2-3x/week.

Echinacea

Give to children for one week to build immunity or fight off infection. Then take one week off before starting again.

Conclusion

A strong immune-boosting regimen is built on a foundation of:

  • A quality multivitamin
  • Vitamins D & A supplements
  • Vitamin C
Optional steps:
  • Zinc and copper
  • Antimicrobials
REMEMBER to utilize these DAILY:
  • Heat
  • Full-spectrum sunlight
  • A strong circadian rhythm

…to optimize your immune health.

Each Pillar matters.

Categories
Big Picture Nutrients Sleep

3 Rules Of Nutrient Supplementation

1

No Single Nutrient Is Safe To Supplement Every Day

Nutrients interact With and Oppose each other.

How common is it to supplement with a nutrient on a daily basis?

It’s extremely frequent.

Across health groups and modalities, each approach often has “favorite” nutrients, which are sometimes taken too frequently, too consistently — and for too long.

It’s a problem on its own, but it’s compounded by the tendency to demonize the very nutrients that might balance out this preferential supplementation. This is often done in hopes of “nudging” hormonal balance in a preferred direction.

Over time this supplementation approach leads to potentially-severe imbalances between various nutrients in the body.

Supplemented nutrients stand the risk of rising too high, while the neglected ones fall too low.

The problem, here, is that all nutrients have myriad interactions with other nutrients — throughout the body. 

In a manner of speaking, all nutrients oppose each other, either competing for absorption or “using up” each other. There are some exceptions (mostly in times of relative deficiency), but even with the exceptions, the general rule still applies: increasing levels of a nutrient ultimately works to deplete other nutrients.

The question, then, is: How long does it take to cause an imbalance between nutrients?

The answer: Not that long — especially when chronic illness is in play.

In chronic illness, there’s a shortage of energy supplied to the body. Related are poor gut health and, with it, poor nutrient absorption. This leads to widespread nutrient deficiency — across the board.

An imbalance between nutrients is easy to create via uneven supplementation when the body is somewhat deficient in all nutrients. It often doesn’t take long for any particular nutrient to cause problems. It may only take a few months or, sometimes, (much) less.

Additionally, widespread nutrient deficiency can be made worse by exogenously pushing the metabolism faster than a compromised gut can absorb nutrients. Elevated toxicity due to mold, chemical exposure, and/or endotoxin creates inflammation that blunts nutrient absorption into both the bloodstream and individual cells.

2

Most Nutritional Supplements Are Only Safe 1-2x/Week

Most individual nutrient supplements provide 100-300% of the recommended daily value.

Some are much higher than that.

These products should almost never be taken daily.

Even a low-dose — say, 100% RDV — will create an imbalance over time if supporting nutrients are not also supplemented at a similar rate. This can happen in mere weeks in the chronically ill. Doses higher than 100% will only hasten the imbalance.

Imbalances happen because each nutrient exists within a family of other nutrients. For example: Minerals interact tremendously with each other. Each mineral has a major partner, with whom powerful interactions, synergy, and opposition are in play.

The ratios of each mineral with A) its partner and B) other cofactor nutrients deeply matter for human health, and the body struggles to keep these ratios in balance during illness — due to aforementioned reasons.

The same is true for the fat-soluble vitamins and B-vitamins, two additional “nutrient families” for whom balance between nutrients is critical. There are even endless interactions between nutrients of different families — too many to properly be aware of on a day-to-day basis.

To supplement one nutrient, while avoiding a partner nutrient or other cofactors, will skew the ratios between nutrients over time.

These imbalances can be theoretically avoided by taking a blend of all nutrients in a family (or simply, all nutrients — as in a multivitamin) in a dosage around 100% of the RDV.

However, problems arise even with multivitamins: Very few multivitamins limit their dosages to around 100% RDV. In fact, most advertise their super-high doses as a selling point. There are other problems with most multi-vitamins, as well, including ingredient quality and imbalanced ingredients in the product, itself. It’s not uncommon to see 150% of one nutrient and 1100% of a partner nutrient.

On the other hand, if we supplement a nutrient at a moderate dose (around 100% RDV), we can usually take that nutrient about twice per week without causing terrible imbalances, provided there are no pre-existing nutrient imbalances (usually caused by uneven supplementation practices).

A twice-per-week dose of any nutrient allows for the benefits of said nutrient to be enjoyed while minimizing the risks of imbalance.

However, two things must be noted about thE 1-2x/week schedule:
  • Over time, imbalances can still occur at this low-dose schedule.
  • At some point, cofactors and supporting nutrients must be considered. We cannot supplement a single nutrient — even at 2x/week — while ignoring its relationships with other nutrients.

Many factors will determine how well a twice-per-week dose improves your health: body size, nutrition in the diet, digestive health, and current nutritional status. It is possible to require weeks or months of ongoing supplementation with a nutrient to iron out pre-existing imbalances. This may continue for a few weeks or months until the imbalance is corrected. However, this can easily result in a “false-positive” as the new nutrient improves symptoms for weeks or months (as an old imbalance is corrected), only to “stop working” and begin to cause problems (as a new imbalance is created). This false positive is also observed in the first-time supplement-taker: Any single nutrient will almost certainly yield noticeable results until problems are created and the product is (hopefully) discontinued.

The most common symptoms of nutrient imbalance as a result of improper, unsafe supplementation are insomnia and fatigue. Dysregulated cognitive and emotional function can also present, as will digestive disturbances such as constipation, diarrhea, or food sensitivities. Nearly any nutrient, when too-high or too-low can and will cause these symptoms.

To maintain already-existing nutrient balance: A low-and-slow regimen is suggested, with infrequent, balanced supplementation of all nutrients. This can be achieved via low-dose multivitamin blends and wise individual nutrient supplementation — keeping in mind the 1-2x/week rule.

Low-dose multivitamins should not be taken daily to A) avoid over-supplementation and B) to allow the body to balance itself without the influx of supplemental nutrition. Perhaps most importantly, regular days off from nutritional products can provide an opportunity for observation of how one feels without the influence of supplements.

3

If A Nutrient Becomes Elevated

You Can Lower It To SAFER LEVELS

The way nutrient interactions work, it’s very possible to overdose on a single nutrient using common supplementation practices.

Just take one or multiple daily doses of a nutrient for weeks or months. Voila — levels in the body will likely become too high.

However, this is partly a “relative” imbalance, meaning an imbalance between one nutrient and its cofactors. This nutrient’s levels may not be terribly high yet, but if the cofactors’ levels are low in the body, we observe all the symptoms of moderate or major overdose.

When the cofactors’ levels are brought up, the oversupplied nutrient levels can begin to fall toward normal as the body metabolizes the excess nutrient.

(How badly a new imbalance affects you will depend on how strong or weak your body is — and whether you’re taking few enough supplements to notice why and when you start feeling worse).

To correct a relative imbalance, you must know which nutrients are needed — which nutrients are the main cofactors of your problem nutrient.

You should also know if you’ve taken any cofactors in excess in the past. If a cofactor nutrient has also already been supplemented in excess, taking more of it will not help, and will only make matters worse.

It requires a wise understanding of nutrient interactions to safely and properly lower an elevated level of any nutrient.

Of course, by far the simplest path is to avoid over-supplementation in the first place.


Let’s Feel Better.

Discussion. Community. Thoughtful ideas.

Supporting members enjoy:

  • Access to all health information & resources
  • Ongoing support in our no-drama discussion group
  • The ability to ask me health questions directly
  • The satisfaction of knowing that you’re supporting a great cause

Travis

(click logo to return to home page)

Categories
Nutrients Product Reviews

REVIEWS: Magnesium Supplements

Magnesium is a most critical mineral for optimal health and recovery.

Electrolytes facilitate the flow of electricity in the body.

Facilitating the flow of electricity throughout the body (that’s actually the definition of an ‘electrolyte’), magnesium partners with other minerals to control fluid balance and hydration throughout the body. 

It’s involved in hundreds of metabolic functions, immunity, gut health, sleep, and brain function.  You name it, magnesium plays a role.

Magnesium is incredibly important to our health — yet alarmingly absent from modern foods.

If you’re having trouble sleeping, muscular cramps, constipation, brain fog, fatigue, or other symptoms, supplemental magnesium could be a step in the right direction.

You’ll need about 300-500mg per day based on your gender and size of your body (males and larger folks need more).

Let’s explore various forms of magnesium supplements — and give each one a grade.

1

Magnesium L-Threonate

This is such a fantastic supplement.

Magnesium L-Threonate was recently developed by MIT researchers. The inventors claim it is a superior form of magnesium, due to its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, which can raise brain levels of magnesium. 

Research has shown Magnesium L-Threonate to boost memory and brain function. 

On paper and in my observations with clients and myself, magnesium L-threonate appears to be the most absorbable form of magnesium available.

Threonate (as an isolated compound) is a metabolite of Vitamin C, with the potential to reduce hair loss — but appears otherwise fairly biologically inactive compared to other chelates.

My clients have found there to be an initial adjustment period as your body becomes familiar with the highly absorbable magnesium. Start slowly with this one, and be ready to drink some water after taking it.

PROs:

  • Highly absorbable
  • Uniquely supplies the brain with magnesium

CONs:

  • Adjustment period for some first-time users
  • This appears unique to this form of magnesium

RATING: 9.8/10

This is a seriously good supplement.

2

Magnesium Glycinate

Fantastic product, but provides a large dose of glycine.

Magnesium glycinate is extremely absorbable. 

The magnesium is chelated (attached) to glycine (an amino acid) that, itself, has many nutritional and therapeutic qualities. Seeing that glycine is a very important, yet under-supplied amino acid in the diet, this can be a good source of glycine. Glycine is the building block of proteins in the body.

The only drawback to magnesium glycinate is that supplemental glycine can cause problems in excess. If you find yourself in this situation, you’ll likely need to take another form of magnesium. Another problem with this supplement: If you feel worse, you won’t know if it’s the magnesium or the glycine — at least not without doing some more thinking about your recent glycine supplementation.

RULE OF THUMB: If you supplement glycine elsewhere, skip the magnesium glycinate.

PROs:

  • High absorbability. 
  • Glycine can be energizing (or calming), and improve protein synthesis.

CONs:

  • People who already supplement glycine (or collagen) may not need even more glycine.

RATING: 9.4/10

This is certainly a fantastic supplement, and I highly recommend it. The combination of magnesium and glycine can be extremely calming (yet energizing) for some people.

3

Magnesium Chloride

New reports from Consumer Labs suggest this product is not as good as it claims, and may be somewhat toxic.

Magnesium Chloride is a highly absorbable, effective way to raise magnesium levels. 

Chloride is important for detoxification, but if you’re low in sodium (many hypothyroid and CFS folks are), taking more chloride could “lower” sodium further.

I have had good results with this product in the past. The magnesium felt extremely absorbable and gave me a boost in energy and cognitive function many times that I took it.

However, I stopped taking this product after only two bottles due to the price and the fact that my body seemed to not “want” it as much by the end of the second bottle.

A report released in late January 2020 by Consumer Labs found high levels of lead and less magnesium per serving than is claimed on the bottle.

Therefore, this product can no longer be recommended. ReMag even offers a certificate of analysis showing very low levels of heavy metals. This would seem to contradict or ignore the high levels of lead found by Consumer Labs.

This goes to show that marketing almost always has one goal: to get you to buy. In this age of information overload, almost all knowledge comes in the form of marketing.

Stay savvy out there.

PROs:

  • High absorbability
  • Seems effective at raising magnesium levels

CONs:

  • Presence of lead contamination
  • Less magnesium than reported on bottle
  • Expensive
  • Awful taste (powder, flakes, and liquid) that is difficult to mask

RATING: 0/10

I have tried Heiltropfen and it seems okay, but it’s hard to trust products that have misspellings in the title — regardless of its German-to-English translation.  If it is — in fact — a clean product, it’s a very, very cost-effective solution.  The powder/flakes can make it difficult to measure dosages.

4

Magnesium Taurate

Magnesium taurate is also well-absorbed, and boasts the benefits of taurine. 

Taurine is a powerful “amino acid” (although it isn’t used to make proteins, instead it is used directly in high-level biological functions like bile production, osmoregulation, muscle repair, and the cardiovascular and nervous systems.  

Don’t take magnesium taurate if you also supplement taurine, or if you are sensitive to sulfur/sulfites.

PROs:

  • Well absorbed
  • Includes the benefits of taurine

CONs:

  • Taurine may improve or harm sleep
  • People who already supplement taurine may not need even more taurine (excess taurine can drive down glycine levels and raise sulfur levels)

RATING: 7/10

5

Magnesium Malate

Only a single ingredient.

Magnesium Malate is highly absorbable and is bound to malic acid — a chemical long thought to improve symptoms for folks with chronic fatigue. 

I suspect energy improvement from malic acid may be short-lived “pyrite” for many people — while malic acid is an ingredient in the Krebs cycle, supplementing individual Krebs cycle ingredients is a good way to throw the Krebs cycle out of balance. 

Studies have also shown malic acid to be rather ineffective at treating CFS.  No surprise there, throwing single compounds at disease is rarely the answer — magnesium included.

PROs:

  • Well-absorbed
  • Malic acid may provide some benefits to metabolism and health

CONs:

  • There are better Magnesium “chelates” out there for long-term use

RATING: 6.5/10

This is probably just fine in small doses, or for a short duration.

6

Magnesium Citrate

A very pure, absorbable product — but citric acid is problematic for some.

Magnesium Citrate used to be the gold standard — a breakthrough product due to its superior absorbability.  It was more expensive and produced better results than other forms of magnesium.

Now?  It’s cheaper and becoming outclassed. A handful of products have eclipsed it and magnesium citrate is on the back-burner — mostly due to its citric acid content (which can be a minor gut irritant, lower blood ceruloplasmin, and is made from various mold species).

I now greatly prefer Magnesium Threonate (or Magnesium Glycinate) over Magnesium Citrate.

PROs:

  • Pretty absorbable
  • Affordable

CONs:

  • Citric acid may be problematic for some
  • No longer the best-performing form of magnesium

RATING:  6/10

If you’re going to take Magnesium Citrate, Pure Encapsulation’s version is about as pure as it gets.

7

Magnesium Spray

Magnesium sprays are virtually always Magnesium Chloride.

Magnesium Sprays are usually magnesium chloride, used topically instead of internally.  

I’m not anti-topical magnesium, but if your body needs magnesium, so do your gut tissues. Magnesium can be incredible for the restoration of the gut. And if taking magnesium irritates your gut, it’s a definitely sign that you have gut health problems that you need to be aware of, and take steps to correct.

Absorption is another factor, here. The skin, while permeable, will always absorb a smaller amount than taking internally.

PROs:

  • Magnesium levels can rise while avoiding the GI system — and potential GI distress.
  • Convenient? — Just rub on the skin and go.

CONs:

  • Potentially low absorbability vs internal.
  • Often uncomfortable/burning sensations on skin.
  • Less likely to increase magnesium levels over time.

RATING: 4/10

8

Magnesium Oxide

Although one company (Coral Calcium) claims otherwise — Magnesium Oxide is probably only useful as a laxative.

While other forms of magnesium boast 25-40% absorbability rates, Magnesium Oxide embarrasses itself by being only 3% absorbable.  Such low absorption suggests that magnesium oxide’s only legitimate reason to exist (at least as a nutritional supplement) is as a laxative.  And let me tell you, it’s extremely effective for that purpose.

PROs:

  • Effective as a laxative
  • Cheap as dirt

CONs:

  • Bottom-dwelling absorbability

RATING: 1/10

If you really want magnesium oxide, here’s one by Vitamin Shoppe. It can be helpful in times of serious constipation, however, don’t depend on it alone. Fix your gut with a full-spectrum approach.

Read more.

(click logo to return to home page)

Statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition

Categories
Nutrients Product Reviews

REVIEWS: Salt Reviews

Sodium gets a bad rap — but is it warranted? After all, sodium is vital to your health.

In fact, the evidence that sodium restriction improves cardiovascular outcomes is appearing to be weak. Instead, balance between important minerals, such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium, may be much safer and more effective than reducing sodium intake.

“There is sound evidence that a low sodium diet leads to a worse cardiovascular prognosis in patients with systolic congestive heart failure or type 2 diabetes mellitus.”

https://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343(13)00594-9/pdf

In hypothyroidism, it’s wasted by the body in high amounts — meaning extra supply is critical. Remember, many chronically ill have some amount of hypothyroidism.

Ultimately, if sodium intake makes one feel worse, it’s likely that higher intakes of potassium and other electrolytes is needed — not necessarily less sodium. When sodium is “high” it’s usually a bandaid approach to simply lower sodium intake. Instead, increase the intake of its supporting cofactor nutrients.

Therefore, sodium is not the bad guy. What do we look for when choosing an excellent source of salt?

Important Variables To Consider

  • No caking agents
  • No iodine (I want to supplement and track this nutrient myself)
  • No pink color
  • No plastic (there are reports of sea salt products and tiny plastic pieces)
1

Sea Salt

Sea salt is made from evaporating ocean water (or salty lake water, such as the Dead Sea).

Sea salt will contain a small amount of trace minerals that may benefit health. These minerals can also improve the salt’s taste.

For the most part, sea salt is an excellent choice for health. There’s only one major downside: Our modern oceans are so filled with plastic. This means that tiny plastic particles are more often appearing in our sea salt — and yes, we’re eating that plastic.

PROs: 

  • No fillers
  • No iodine
  • No pink rust

CONs:

RATING:  9.0/10

2

Pink Himalayan Salt

Pink salt used to be very popular at my house. 

Then came some fears that the pink color in pink salt was due to iron which was oxidized — rust. Now, oxidized iron isn’t a great form of iron to put in the body for most people.  If the body needs iron, there are much better ways to get it.

Upon further research, it appears the amount of iron contained in pink salt is incredibly tiny. In fact, it may only represent about .02% of the DV — if an entire day’s salt intake (3g or so) were from pink salt.

What about the extra trace minerals? Yes, pink salt contains just about every mineral and metal that can be found in the earth’s crust. However, some studies suggest the amounts of trace minerals in pink salt are so minuscule that pink salt is no more helpful than sea salt. Some products claim to have adequate iodine levels — this is a misleading marketing claim.

PROs:

  • No fillers
  • No iodine
  • No plastic
  • Fun (pink color!)

CONs:

  • Tiny amount of oxidize iron (probably not a big deal)
  • No iodine (some claim to have adequate iodine — those claims are wrong)

RATING: 9.2/10

3

‘REAL’ Salt

Made in Idaho, USA, REAL Salt is a great product. 

It’s mined from underground — much like pink Himalayan salt —  and boasts a slightly higher content of trace minerals than sea salt.  This also means it does have some oxidized iron “rust” in it, but significantly less than pink salt — which we’ve already established is negligible, anyway. 

Being mined underground means it is pure of plastic contamination.

PROs:

  • High quality source
  • Higher trace minerals
  • No iodine
  • Incredible taste.  10/10 for taste
  • No plastic particles

CONs:

  • Miniscule, barely-detectable levels of iron

RATING: 9.5/10

4

Kosher Salt

Image result for kosher salt

Kosher salt is all about the size of the crystals — which are perfect for drawing out moisture from meat.

This makes it excellent for the koshering process of meat.

Kosher salt is free of iodine (which is a necessary nutrient), has no fillers (anti-caking agents), and often has a larger granule size (for the koshering process).

PROs:

  • No fillers
  • No iodine
  • No pink rust

CONs:

  • Usually made from sea salt, therefore could have plastic. I do question, however, if the larger particle size filters out more plastic than products with finer crystal size.

RATING: 9.0/10

You really can’t go wrong with a simple Kosher salt.

5

My Recommendation

I happily use sea salts, REAL Salt, or Kosher salt. The difference between the three is not large enough to fret over.

The biggest trade-off is that REAL Salt has a small amount of rust (oxidized iron), and sea salt has a small amount of plastic. How each might affect someone is hard to say — and nobody out there is an authority on that.

Read more.

(click logo to return to home page)

Let’s Feel Better.

Discussion. Community. Thoughtful ideas.

Supporting members enjoy:

  • Access to all health information & resources
  • Ongoing support in our no-drama discussion group
  • The ability to ask me health questions directly
  • The satisfaction of knowing that you’re supporting a great cause

Travis

0
    0
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop
      Apply Coupon