The technology surrounding us these days is truly amazing. A few weeks ago I was telling my daughter how we didn’t have remote controls for our television when I was her age, as it wasn’t too long ago when we had to walk over to the television every time we wanted to change the channel. Of course there also weren’t as many channels as there were today, but that’s a completely different story. Speaking of the advances in technology, I wish I had a cell phone when I was in chiropractic school, as back then we used pagers with our patients. So if a patient needed to contact me they would have had to page me, and then I would have had to locate a pay-phone to call them back. And of course my patients also didn’t have a cell phone, and so I would have had to call them back quickly while they were still near their phone, etc.
In any case, while the advances in technology over the last ten to fifteen years is incredible, it is negatively affecting our health. And the reason for this has to do with EMFs, which are electromagnetic fields that are emitted by these wonderful pieces of technology. And while most people reading this blog post have always had a television set, it’s only been recently that everyone has begun carrying a cell phone, many people have multiple computers, etc. It really has gotten to the point where in most households you can’t walk into any room without being directly exposed to EMFs.
Here is a brief list of some of the devices which emit electromagnetic fields:
- Cell phones
- Vacuum cleaner
- Hair dryer
- Fluorescent lights
To be frank, there is still a great deal of controversy as to the effects EMFs have on the cells and tissues in the body. 2.5 mG seems to be the safe limit of EMF exposure, but most of the devices I listed above emit much more than this. Plus remember that these are just some of the devices which emit EMFs, as chances are you are being exposed to other sources in your home and at work that you’re not aware of.
How Can EMFs Affect Thyroid Health?
Once again, there is controversy when it comes to how EMFs affect our health. According to the book “Zapped”, which was written by Ann Louise Gittleman, ” Studies in rats have found that exposure to both 50 Hz and 900 MHz (cell phones) EMFs decrease the production of thyroid hormone, a marker of hypothyroidism”. So perhaps I should just tell my patients with hyperthyroidism and Graves’ Disease to use their cell phones and computers more often? Seriously though, even though these studies were done on rats, there is the possibility that frequent exposure to EMFs can affect the thyroid glands of humans as well. More research definitely needs to be done, but for now it does make sense to do everything you can to minimize your exposure to EMFs.
I realize that people aren’t going to stop watching television, and won’t stop using their cell phones or computers anytime soon. While I’m not one to carry a cell phone everywhere I go, I do have a cell phone, and I am in front of my computer frequently. In any case, I’d like to dedicate the rest of this post to discussing how to minimize your exposure to EMFs.
Five Things You Can Do To Reduce Your Exposure To EMFs
1. Focus on your bedroom. Even if your job requires carrying a cell phone around all day, or if you need to be in front of a computer constantly, at the very least you want to spend your resting hours away from EMFs. So you really want to get rid of all of the electronics in your room, and if you have a television, and perhaps a DVD player or video game system, make sure you unplug them at night. Don’t use an electric alarm clock (or your cell phone), and of course don’t use any electric blankets. If you absolutely refuse to use a battery-operated alarm clock, then make sure that your electric alarm clock or cell phone is at least six feet away from your bed. Electric fans also emit EMFS.
2. Position your refrigerator carefully. Your refrigerator will emit a good amount of EMFs, and while you probably won’t consider getting rid of your refrigerator anytime soon, keep in mind that EMFs emit through walls. So for example, if your living room couch is located on the other side of the wall where your refrigerator is, then whenever you or anyone else sits on the couch they will be exposed to EMFs from the refrigerator. The same concept applies with other devices, as if you have a big screen television in your living room, and if on the other side of the wall is a bed, then assuming this television is plugged in all of the time that person will be exposed to EMFs while sleeping. On the other hand, if the television is unplugged at night then this will help greatly.
3. Don’t carry around your cell phone all of the time. As I mentioned earlier, I don’t bring my cell phone everywhere I go, but I’m usually guilty of carrying my cell phone with me when I leave my house. But when I’m inside the house and I’m not using the cell phone, it is usually in another room. I also don’t bring it into the gym when I work out. When talking on your cell phone, I advise you to use speakerphone or a headset, and to not hold the phone up against your head. The ideal situation would be to stop using cell phones altogether and to use corded phones, but I realize this isn’t going to happen anytime soon. Cell phones are really great pieces of technology, but people really do need to cut down on their usage (especially when driving).
4. Minimize your exposure to other electronic devices. In addition to minimizing your cell phone use, also try to cut down on your usage of other electronic devices which emit EMFs. This includes computers, televisions, e-readers, handheld video games, hairdryers, and pretty much any other electronic device.
5. Read the book “Zapped”. This is an excellent book that talks in depth about the risks of EMFs, and will give even more details about how you can minimize your exposure to them. In this day and age it really is a must read for everyone, and not just those people with thyroid and autoimmune thyroid conditions.
In summary, electronic pollution can potentially affect your thyroid health, but it can also affect the other cells and tissues of your body. Although it is almost impossible to eliminate your exposure to EMFs (you of course are being exposed to EMFS as you read this information), by following some of the advice I have given in this article, as well as in the book “Zapped”, you can at least reduce the potential impact these electronic devices have on your health.