EMF protection seeks to shield the body from exposure to electromagnetic energy, such as low- or high-frequency radio emissions (RF) generated by devices such as power lines, cellphones, broadcast or cellular towers, or any wireless electronics like routers that transmit data over the air.
Advocates for reducing or eliminating exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) worry about the growing popularity of devices that produce these emissions. When the human body, which produces its own low-intensity EMF, is hit with EMFs from electronics, some research suggests it can potentially cause harmful biochemical reactions that may lead to discomfort or more serious health problems.
Does Anyone Regulate Electromagnetic Fields?
The Federal Communications Commission, as required by the 1969 National Environmental Policy Act, sets standards for RF emissions created by devices used by consumers. However, the FCC does not review the safety of consumer products, such as cellphones, prior to sale.
Instead, it is the job of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to address concerns about RF exposure after devices enter the marketplace. The FDA also has the authority to require device manufacturers to notify, repair, replace, or recall devices found to exceed emissions standards or pose other risks. For construction, the medical field, military, or other non-consumer industries, other agencies regulate electromagnetic fields.
In total, five U.S. government agencies form the Radiofrequency Interagency Work Group to research emerging technologies, evaluate biological research, set standards for RF and other emissions, and work with international communities.
Internationally, the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), a non-governmental organization, which is formally recognized by the World Health Organization, works to evaluation scientific results from around the globe and make recommendations to governments. There is no universal set standards for RF emissions, and individual nations may have different standards.
How Do Electromagnetic Fields Affect The Body?
How electromagnetic fields affect the body has no simple answer. Emissions can take the form of waves or particles, can be ionizing or non-ionizing, operate at different wavelengths (expressed as frequencies ranging from 3 kilohertz to 300 gigahertz), and the source of emissions and how we use them affect how they interact with the body. Because the emissions from each device vary and how they are used can differ so greatly, pinpointing what if any symptoms result from electromagnetic fields is difficult to determine.
Additionally, individual body weight, body-mass index, bone density, and the levels of water and electrolytes can alter the conductivity of and biological reactivity to EMFs.
It’s already well understood that gamma rays, x-rays, and ultraviolet rays are some of the most dangerous forms of electromagnetic waves. Even short term exposure can be deadly without protection (this is why you wear a lead vest at the dentist’s office). The dangers posed by other forms of electromagnetic waves is less understood, but early research points to a number of potential risks.
The Potential Health Risks of EMFs
The danger of electromagnetic fields from other sources, like power lines and radio frequency transmitters (used by radio, television, wi-fi, cellular communication, etc.,) are still debated. But the primary concern of exposure related to RF emissions are the “thermal effects.” Much the same as placing a cold meal in the microwave and heating it using a frequency that falls between radio wave and infrared light to stimulate the molecules to move rapidly and cause heating, researchers warn that something similar happens in our bodies when we are hit with EMFs from the devices we have in our homes and encounter during our daily lives.
Research has looked into how of continuous exposure to EMFs change the behavior of cells and tissue, which can have a larger impact on the body. More research is being conducted to study these claims.
- Decreased sexual function
- Reduced antioxidant function
- Fetal abnormalities
- Damage to DNA
- Chromosomal abnormalities
- Blood disorders
- Congenital disabilities
- Cellular mutation
- Hormonal balance
- Respiratory system weakness
- Decreased organ activity
- Decreased pineal gland function
- Protein synthesis
- Amino acid disruptions
- Cold or flu-like symptoms
- Heart arrhythmia
- Changes to blood-pressure
Worried About EMF? Here’s What You Can Do
Current guidelines try to balance consumer safety while also taking into account the demand by consumers for new technologies that grant them greater access to digital content and expanding communication capabilities. This can make it challenging to reduce or eliminate exposure.
Keeping electronic devices away from you when not in use may be the easiest options. You can also choose to use wired internet instead of wireless, and consider setting your phone to speaker instead of holding it by your ear. Moving away from powerlines, broadcasting towers, or urban environments altogether may be ideal if it’s possible.
Alternatively, you may not need to change your daily habits at all. Given the limited research and evidence linking EMFs and health problems, you may prefer to seek health and wellness through other means, such as daily exercise, a healthy diet, and good nutrition.
You can also use products that are believed to reduce EMF emissions. EMF Protect & Balance is daily tincture that you apply under the tongue 3 times day to help balance the body. Q-Disc is applied to the back of your cellphone and may help to block exposure to EMFs; the same company also makes QC Coin, a metal disk that you carry with you to help balance your body’s natural energies.