Updated: 2019, Aug 10

Walking Barefoot Can Make You Happier & Healthier

By - Reviewed by CHD Team
This article talks about how walking barefoot or "earthing" can protect and improve our health in as little as 30 minutes a day.
Health benefits of walking barefoot. Shutterstock Images

Did you know that walking barefoot not only can make us happier but healthier too?

This might sound a little “new age” or “hippy” to you but hear me out!

Since the beginning of time, walking barefoot or sometimes referred to as “Earthing” – or “grounding”[1] – has been working FOR humans and animals in many ways.

We were just unaware of Earth’s amazing health benefits[2].

Throughout history, our constant connection to the Earth has helped balance our total body health.

The Man Behind The Idea

One simple question that started a holistic movement.

It wasn’t until 1998 that retired cable TV executive named Clint Ober had a thought come to mind.

As he sat on a park bench in Sedona, Arizona a tour bus pulled up, and as he watched the people get out and walk by, he noticed that most of them, including himself, were wearing rubber-soled shoes.

He wondered if humans not being naturally grounded due to wearing rubber soles could be interfering with our health.

The Earth gives off a negative electrical surface charge.

Plastic or rubber soles act as a “ground.”

Because of his background, Clint Ober recognized how these types of soles were keeping us insulated from the Earth and benefiting from this natural negative charge.

Ober’s next question then prompted years of scientific studies that continue today.

Could this energy field help improve our health?

After years of investigations, these studies have shown a direct link to the Earth’s surface energy does indeed have a powerful and positive effect on the human body.

Woman Walking Barefoot on Seashore

Woman Walking Barefoot on Seashore. Canva Images

The Science Behind It

Each of our basic functions- brain, heart, muscles, immune system, and nervous system depend on electrical currents to function.

Any disruption in these electrical currents can lead to illness.

For example, our heart would not beat, and we would lose the ability to think, feel, or move because our brain would no longer be able to communicate with our body.

There would be no way for the body to transfer vital nutrients.

When we walk barefoot on dirt, sand, or grass, large amounts of negative electrons are given off from the Earth’s surface, which then enters our bodies through the soles of our feet.

Humans give off a positive charge, so when the two come together, our internal electrical systems become balanced.

As the Journal of Environmental and Public Health states: “It is an established, though not widely appreciated fact, that the Earth’s surface possesses a limitless and continuously renewed supply of free or mobile electrons. The Earth’s negative charges can create a stable internal bioelectrical environment for the normal functioning of all body systems which may be important for setting the biological clock, regulating circadian rhythms, and balancing cortisol levels.”

Why We Are Less Grounded Than Our Ancestors

In the past, humans mostly walked around barefoot, or their shoes were made from the skins of animals.

There were no sleep number beds or memory foam pillows.

People slept straight on the ground or on skins.

An abundance of negative electrons was able to absorb into their skin either through direct contact or through animal skins moistened through perspiration that they used as footwear or sleeping mats.

In the late 18oo’, synthetic rubber-soled shoes became the preferred choice
of footwear forcing leather-soled shoes to become a thing of the past.

Today, we very much disconnected from the earth than ever before.

We spend most of our time indoors, eat more unnatural and processed foods and are surrounded by technology wherever we go.

Technology alone can cause our electrical systems to become off-balanced.

The more detached ourselves from the outside world, the more ungrounded we become.

Because of this, we experience more illness, aches, and pains.

Woman Putting Hands on Soil

Woman Putting Hands On Soil. Canva Images

Primary Benefits of Earthing

One of the primary benefits of earthing is the large amounts of antioxidants we receive from the Earth’s surface that helps alleviate inflammation throughout our body.

A well- known cardiologist, Dr. Stephen Sinatra discusses earthing in the film “Down to Earth.”

“In simple terms, what Earthing does, is literally it squelches the fires of inflammation, and if inflammation is the source of all root illnesses, including Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, heart disease, diabetes — I mean the list goes on and on — if you can impact inflammation and … stop it; we’re going to be healthier beings.” – Dr. Stephen e Sinatra

Other Benefits From Earthing

  • Positively charged free radicals in our bodies that lead to disease from exposure to pollution, cigarettes (first hand and second-hand smoke), radiation, pesticides, and processed foods, just to name a few rob our bodies of electrons. They then become neutralized when they come in contact with the Earth’s negative charge
  • Lowers blood pressure and regulates heart rate
  • Immune system booster – Researchers are now discovering that the Earth’s electrons are some of the most potent antioxidants available
  • Reduces the risk of heart disease
  • Regulates nervous system and emotions
  • Boosts energy levels by allowing the discharge of excess positive ions which makes the body feel tired
  • Regulates blood sugar levels
  • Improves balance
  • Restores natural gait
  • Improves sleep quality
  • Reduces chronic pain- often eliminating it entirely
  • Thins the blood and increases its flow
  • Stabilizes daily cortisol (stress hormone) and rhythm
  • Aides in faster muscle recovery
  • Eases menstruation symptoms
  • Regulates hormones
  • Slows aging

In 2014, a placebo-controlled double-blind study was given to 40 participants in La Mesa, California at Total Thermal Imaging to determine if grounding would improve blood flow to the face.

They were split into two groups where each participant was given the same grounding pillow, stimulating nerve patches, and blanket.

Neither group nor researcher knew which group the placebo was and which was receiving the grounding charge.

Thermal imaging was then used to measure the blood flow in the face.

Gaétan Chevalier, from the Developmental and Cell Biology Department, at University of California at Irvine, explains what they found: “The results demonstrate, for the first time, that even one-hour contact with the Earth restores blood flow regulation to the face that may enhance skin tissue repair, health, and vitality, and optimize facial appearance, which may also have broad implications for overall cardiovascular function and health.”

Tips for Effective Grounding

Spend at least 30- 80 minutes a day walking barefoot in the grass or beach

  • Exercise barefoot outdoors
  • While indoors use grounding products such as- pads, blankets, or shoes
  • Allow your hands to come in contact with the soil while working in the garden or flower beds
  • Swim in a lake, ocean, or river
  • Sit or lay in the grass or on a sandy beach
  • Go for a hike and sit on a large tree branch or boulder
  • If flying, take off your shoes and place them on the metal support frame in the seat in front of you. This can also help with radiation damage at high altitudes.

This one simple act of walking barefoot on the Earth has the potential to lead us into living happier and healthier lives fast.

Best of all it’s FREE and will never run out!

However, despite the many benefits that earthing has to offer, Dr. Mercola states that it is not a “treatment” for any disease or condition.

“Like eating right, exercising and sleeping, grounding can be described as yet another lifestyle habit that supports optimal health.”

Your body will thank you for it!

References
https://draxe.com/health/article/earthing/
https://www.hindawi.com/journals/jeph/2012/291541/
https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/11/21/grounding-effects.aspx
https://www.healthline.com/health/walking-barefoot
Chevalier, G. (2014) Grounding the Human Body Improves Facial Blood Flow Regulation: Results of a Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Pilot Study. Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences, and Applications, 4, 293-308. http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/jcdsa.2014.45039
https://grounded.com/earthing-grounding-studies
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Jessica Gonzalez

Jessica Gonzalez is a mother of three and full-time blogger at JessHappy2BeeMe.com.

  

She has studied health and wellnes

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