Ways to Reduce Exposure to Dirty Electricity

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist March 23, 2014


Electricity was originally intended as a “clean” and safe source of power for homes and businesses through standard usage of the steady electrical frequency of 60 oscillations per second, or 60 Hertz (Hz).

Modern energy efficient devices, electronics, and other reasons such as earth currents can cause significant deviance from the 60 Hz frequency, however, and this pulsed exposure to spiking and unsafe frequencies of electromagnetic radiation (EMFs) on overloaded wires is what has become known as “dirty electricity”.

Exposure to dirty electricity has the potential to cause and exacerbate existing health problems in some people. It is not something that can be smelled, touched, seen, or felt and yet it is very real and very problematic for those who experience it on a daily basis.

The health effects of dirty electricity were first identified as early as the 1950′s in rural areas when the behavior and feeding patterns of animals were negatively affected by stray voltage caused by poor grounding and lack of utility infrastructure.

In humans, symptoms of exposure to dirty electricity can include:

  • Headaches
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Body aches and pains
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Worsening of symptoms from multiple sclerosis or ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease)

In Sweden, sensitivity to dirty electricity is a recognized disability affecting approximately 3% of the population.  In Switzerland, a survey of doctors concluded that 5% of symptoms in patients could be traced to dirty electricity exposure.

Ways To Reduce Your Exposure Today

While the concept of dirty electricity is a complex one that practically requires a degree in Physics to fully understand, ways to reduce your exposure are simple and easy to implement.

  1. Get rid of all the fluorescent light bulbs.   Compact fluorescent light bulbs or CFLs, as they are known, have a very large EMF field compared with simple incandescent light bulbs.  CFLs also produce a lot of dirty electricity.   Getting rid of them and all sources of fluorescent lighting in your home and business will reduce your exposure to dirty electricity immediately.
  2. Replace all dimmer switches with simple on/off switches.  Dimmer switches produce a lot of dirty electricity!  Replace them with simple on/off switches or if that is not in the budget, just leave them off all the time.
  3. Turn off your wireless router at night.  While getting rid of exposure to all wireless communications is futile in this day and age when it is literally everywhere, you can at least give your body a rest at night while you sleep by turning them off in your home.
  4. Make sure your home does not use a Smart Meter.  Power companies all over the United States are installing smart meters to simplify the meter reading process.  Call your local power company and find out if you have already gotten one and if so, make sure to opt out and go back to the analog meters.

I initially thought our home had a Smart Meter, but after investigating, discovered to my great relief that the automated meters in our area were not Smart Meters and were one way communication devices which allowed meter readers to drive down our street and pick up a weak radio signal and thereby read the meter without entering a person’s property.  They were not two-way Smart Meters constantly pulsing and sending information to the power company about our electrical usage.

The American Academy of Environmental Medicine recently adopted a resolution which formally opposes the installation of Smart Meters in homes and schools “based on a scientific assessment of the current medical literature. Chronic exposure to wireless radiofrequency radiation is a preventable environmental hazard that is sufficiently well documented to warrant immediate preventative public health action.

Dirty electricity was identified as a possible carcinogen in 1999 by the US National Toxicology Program. What’s more, existing safety limited for pulsing radio frequency are insufficient to maintain public health according to the Radiofrequency Interagency Working Group.

More Ways to Protect Youself From Dirty Electricity

If you feel that dirty electricity is seriously impacting your health and want to know more, please click here to investigate information on a line of Earthing products that can protect you in your home or business.

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

More Information

Harvard Medical Doctor Warns Against Smart Meters

The Health Hazards of Wireless Baby Monitors

Sources:  
Wise Traditions 2011 Conference, Dirty Electricity, Jules Klapper

Swiss EMF Study

What Causes Dirty Electricity?

Picture Credit

 

Comments (84)

  1. swordfishtrombone April 12, 2014 at 9:18 am

    I forgot to mention: If, after reading my previous comment, you’re still worried about “dirty electricity”, one very practical way to avoid it would be by wearing a tinfoil hat with an earth lead.

    Reply
  2. swordfishtrombone April 12, 2014 at 9:13 am

    There is no remotely-convincing evidence of any causal relationship between non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (which is what I assume you mean by “dirty electricity”) and human health at the very low levels encountered in everyday life. The Swiss study you link to is an extremely weak telephone survey of doctors’ opinion and proves nothing. The only plausible effect that typical EMFs could have on the human body is to heat it up by a tiny and unnoticeable amount. The fact that many comments here complain of vague symptoms which could be attributable to nearly anything also proves nothing. If you want an example of a real, genuine health problem, of the sort faced by millions of people on this planet every day, what about dirty, bacteria and parasite-infested water?

    Reply
  3. I knew there was a reason I hate fluorescent lights! They have an aggravating sound, make me noticeably more anxious as soon as they are turned on, and, in big-box stores, cause headaches and make me feel like I am brain-dead after a while (I’m sure we’ve all had the experience anyway).

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  4. Hi, Also this lighting contains mercury, and is also the worst lighting you can use for your eyesight because of the flicker!

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  5. This is an amazing post. I have several people who work for me that get terrible headaches from the florescent lights in our offices. I have had half the lights turned off to try and help, but that hasn’t worked well. I usually end up buying them regular floor lights. Some end up working in the dark, just by the light of a table lamp or the light of their computers.

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  6. DH loves his dimmers so that is about all we have, but we (almost) always use them at full power. Our router happens to be all the way in the other end of the house from where we sleep so I don’t worry so much, though I may begin turning it off for the night. I’ll have to ask DH about the fluorescent lighting… I don’t think we have any. I’m still off the smart meter and paying extra $20 a month for that.Thanks for this info Sarah.

    Reply
  7. Pingback: How To Avoid “Dirty Electricity” | Natural Green Oasis

  8. We live in Ontario, Canada, where they are installing these meters into our homes compulsory. We just had one put in our home. Do you have any suggestions to lessen the harmfulness of it?

    Reply
  9. Pingback: Ways to Reduce Exposure to Dirty Electricity » Nourishing News

  10. Pauli Tyrrell via Facebook March 23, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    I always turn my wirless off at night. I used to sleep in a room that had the wirless router and a cable that ran under my bed. After a while I started to feel like I had worms burrowing in my legs and I could not sleep. It was the creepiest feeling. I decided it must be due to the electrical levels in the room and moved into the spare room. I have not had the problem since.

    Reply
  11. Green Bank, West Virginia is in the National Radio Quiet Zone. I recently saw this article:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2308193/The-cell-phone-free-town-West-Virginia-sees-influx-residents-allergic-electronic-devices.html

    My friend tried and tried to fight against getting her Smart Meter installed and lost. Similar to the other person’s story above (from Texas also).

    The effects of EMFs are not imaginary to my high schooler and it hampers her ability to be online and do school work, research, etc. When I would feel really bad after being online a while I would go out and walk barefoot around our slab patio and feel immediately better.

    Reply
  12. Tracy AndDustin via Facebook March 23, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    If I didn’t have sleepless nights and have sleepless children – since we’ve moved here, (they wake up consistently each night) – I wouldn’t be on the lookout for reasons. I never remember doing that as a child, I always slept! We don’t do tvs in the bedroom, we have a good amount of outside time and down time, yet nighttime is a nightmare … especially for me! I’m glad someone mentioned Dr. Mercola, I’m going to check out what he says, also. I wish we didn’t have to tamper with every livin’ thing on the planet… instead of new and improved (and often bad for sensitive folks) let’s find pioneers inventing! grrr

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  13. Christa M. Wells via Facebook March 23, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    Thank you for posting. I believe Dr. Mercola has also written about this. It appears that those with Lyme disease also suffer from EMF issues. A reality.

    Reply
  14. What percent of people are affected from the stress of reading false information on the internet???? If people repeat false information enough it somehow becomes believed to be real.

    Get out and enjoy life and quit stressing about every thing!

    Reply
    • Posting links to articles that, in their opening paragraphs, take the generalized stance that any caution or skepticism of any new technology can only be based on fear, stupidity or paranoia; or implying that all rational and educated people will accept all new technology is absurd. Ad hominem makes the user look foolish. Rational discussion of ideas, anecdotes and various types of evidence is actually a good thing to the truly rational people.

      Since there is so little of the right type of two way discussion to be had, I guess I’ll have to start experimenting in my own life and trying to remain slightly skeptical of both sides; I know I will remain especially skeptical of the status quo side. I’m growing increasingly sick of the prevalence of close-minded-status-quo-thinking that puts me in mind of villagers with torches and pitchforks hunting down Galileo or Copernicus only to subject them to modern internet style mocking in the end. Internet discussion is hard enough without all that farcical and highly ironic anger at people who question and research.

      Looks to me like the so-called “earthing” theory is a good place to start testing in my own life. Then there are some other ideas listed here too. There is a lot of scope here for a curious mind to explore.

      Reply
  15. The statement you make about the Swiss study that “a survey of doctors concluded that 5% of symptoms in patients could be traced to dirty electricity exposure” is not true and misleading the readers. Instead, the conclusion states that “no obvious symptom-EMF source pattern could be extracted” and that the relation was just “plausible” in half or so cases. “Five percent” refers to a general belief of 5% of the Swiss public and not 5% of symptoms – it is just their “belief”, nothing scientific about it.

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  16. So I will remove all the dimmers and CFLs from my house. Now, can I use LED bulbs or are incandescent the only ones which are safe?

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  17. They installed our smart meter yesterday. We do not have the option of opting out AND they are charging me a mandatory surcharge of $3.05 per month for the stupid thing. Ridiculous!!! I am sending the power company a letter today. i am furious!!!

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  18. Sarah – are you on Tampa Electric? I called to ask what meter I was on. They told me smart meters are being phased in and I have no “opt-out” option. Have you gotten a different response? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Lynda, good luck and hold your ground (er, sorry for the pun). Give your power company a copy of the letter from the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (link above) and other sources above. Bring the issue to your state legislators – just look up on the FL state gov website to find the rep and senator for your neighborhood/district, and share your concern (and give them copies of the info above).

      Reply
  19. That’s great advice for home but does nothing to protect my child when he’s in school 6 hours a day. I’m going to look into things I can do to lessen the negatives of exposure; eating clay or having a ball of clay on oneself is where I’m going to start. I do think our nation needs to figure out ways to use less electricity but not in such a way that it damages our bodies.

    And try and do my part to cut down on electricity. I keep the house cold in the winter and hot in the summer. I use drying racks instead of the dryer. I use cold water to wash my clothes. I use the natural sunlight to light my house when I can.

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  20. Wow, I have never heard of this before. But this makes total sense to me. I cannot go to certain stores, they make me dizzy, nauseous, and give me headaches. Our local mall, I dread going, by the time I am done I feel so sleepy, I don’t feel able to drive, and that is if I only stay 30-40 minutes. I always wondered why this happens, but I would say there was this humm, noone else could hear it. This explains a lot, and if our local power company goes to smart meters, I just dread the thought of feeling that way all the time.

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  21. We have one of those anti pest things that plug into an outlet and are supposed to turn your wiring into a subsonic system to keep bugs and rodents away. I sleep terribly and have most of the symptoms you list. Do you think that device is causing an increase in the emf fields?

    Reply
    • We had one for about four hours once. In our basement, which is mouse heaven for some reason. But our (then) nine-year old son was frantic. He could hear a high-pitched buzzy whine the whole time and it gave him a terrible headache. So we use the traditional old-fashioned mouse traps and gave up on anything making noise or using electricity! You might find you sleep better… our son certainly was thrilled when we removed it. (We did it when he wasn’t aware and he noticed immediately that it was gone.)

      Reply
  22. This is so important. Smart Meters in California have resulted in thousands of complaints of all kind of illnesses. Currently, Pacific Gas @Electric Company, after forcing the installation of millions of these meters, now has a proposal before the Utilities Commission that would allow people to return to the use of Analog meters., but they would charge a lot of money for changing back. The commission is dragging it s feet on taking any action, The chairman of the commission is a former CEO for a power company.

    Smart meters should be avoided when ever possible. In addition to the health hazards, the ultimate purpose of Smart Meters appears to be giving the power company the ability to turn off any electronic device in your home, remotely, whether you consent or not., It will take more than just Smart Meters, but Smart Meters are the first step.
    Stanley Fishman\’s last post: 7 Grassfed Foods that Can Really Improve Your Natural Functions

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  23. Fascinating. During a Pedestrian Safety meeting with city representatives last year, I brought up the noise I hear from “energy efficient” street lights – I was laughed at because I complained about the noise they let off. And, I can hear the same sound from CF bulbs indoors.

    Anyway, I appreciate this article, and wish I knew more about how to reduce the”dirty” electricity in our home. We have some “salt” lamps which use only a small night light bulb, which my Mom bought for us to supposedly reduce the negative energy of electronics…any insight on those?
    Holli\’s last post: Recipe Review: Roasted Walnuts

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  24. Thanks for writing this! I began to think Dr Mercola was a little off his rocker on the electricity thing…but this makes sense. Also, you list practical ways to reduce exposure, whereas Mercola’s seem, in my opinion, a lot less convenient.
    I have been wanting to avoid CFL’s just because I’ve read that they also off-gas.

    I’m curious…how will you avoid CFL’s once the incandescent bulbs are phased out in the next few years?

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  25. I’ve heard about the problem of dirt electricity (EMF radiation) before, but didn’t really know what to make of it or if it was true at all. Afterall, like you said it practically takes a physics degree to figure out how this dirt electricity works and affects us. But the dangers are real still.

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  26. Thanks for writing about this important topic. As a Swede I grew up hearing about several people that were “allergic” to electricity and had to move out in the middle of nowhere and be off the grid. I think there is a case going on back home about a local government cutting the cell phone reception in a small village due to one person being sick. Unfortunately the neighbors have no understanding so it is a struggle about it now..

    Reply
    • I’m sorry but if it is only one person involved then that one person needs to move a bit farther out. The rest of the people who are not affected shouldn’t have to pay the price of no cell reception just because of one person.

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  27. Sarah: How about static electricity? Do you know any safer ways to reduce it? I do notice when I wear certain clothes/fabrics I’m prone to get more shocks. Any advice?

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  28. Hi everyone,

    Thanks for this Sarah. I was wondering when you were going to talk electricity actually.
    I have just deactivated our wifi and bought these plugs where the internet passes through our electricity circuit instead and is accessible by plugging in a special plug. Of course it isn’t as practical but I thought I should do it for my kids too.
    Does anyone have any info on this? Is it better than wifi? Are we honestly being less “blasted”?
    Thanks a lot if anyone does have some knowledge on the matter.
    Helen

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  29. We put a lock on our analog meter, sent a certified formal “denial of consent” letter to our power provider to refuse a smart meter, and taped a laminated copy of that letter to the meter. In response to our efforts, the company cut our lock off and installed the smart meter anyway. Sitting in our living room places us anywhere from 4 to 10 feet from the meter. I’ve called the company and the Public Utilities Commission, all to no avail. They said if we want to purchase electricity in Texas, we HAVE to use their smart meter. I’ve had ringing/throbbing in my ears since it was installed, and it’s interfering with my sleep. I don’t know what else to do! I have 3 kids, also (ages 8, 6, and 4), and we homeschool, so we are home almost all the time compared to other families.

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      • We were told that the public’s opportunity to protest it was back in 2008 — BEFORE any smart meters were installed and people realized how bad they were. How convenient. They told us that if we attempt to change our meter, they will cut off our electricity.

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      • Yes, we all need to do more to speak up and influence policy change. Perhaps knowledgeable readers could comment on effective steps to take to bring this to the attention of legislators and media. I think sharing copies of the letter (referenced in the post above) from the American Academy of Environment Medicine and other sources listed is a great idea, along with your own personal reasons for change.

        Thanks for posting this, Sarah! : )

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    • Whether you have success in opting out or not, you might want to look into Earthing. I read a book review on another WAPF blog last week about it and took some more time to read and research the topic. I think the American website is http://www.earthing.com (I am Canadian). Earthing is basically utilizing the earth’s abundance of negative electrons to counteract all of the positive charge that “dirty” electricity gives off and then collects in our own electrical field, thus neutralizing all of the effects of EMF’s.
      Clint Ober, the man who discovered this, has created some technologies that can make it so that we can experience the earth’s energies even when indoors. I decided to try some of them out and they arrived last week. I can’t praise my experience enough thus far with using them (I feel so much better and have so much more energy!). I can’t decided which I like better, earthing or fermented cod liver oil…

      Good luck with it all.

      Reply
        • I ordered them from Earthing Canada (www.earthingcanada.ca) in Calgary. It seems to be a one person business–Kurt was the man I spoke with. He was great, really helpful and was ready to answer all of my questions and very flexible when I needed to make a change to my order. My package came much faster than I expected and it was all super easy.

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    • Have you considered making a “Faraday cage” for your meter? Here’s a link about it: (Look near the bottom of the page). The idea is to wrap the meter with aluminum foil or metal screen and “ground” the foil/screen with a wire to the ground (or to a pipe that goes into the ground). This blocks the radio waves. But I’m not sure whether it would be a good solution for you because it would probably prevent the Smart Meter from communicating with the electric company altogether.

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    • I don’t know if this is a solution but many companies are selling solar systems. We are considering that in a year or so. You can buy it right out or pay monthly service charges which are said to be much lower than electric companies. I don’t know if they allow you to “remove” your smart meter when you have solar. Worth looking into.

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      • Keep in mind that solar panels are not environmentally beneficial. The manufacturing process produces way more toxic waste than what you save over the life of the panel.

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        • It’s true. My husband has a friend who works in a company which manufactures solar panels. They have a rule whereby you need a minimum of 3 persons to enter the manufacturing line. The reason is, in case one, or two persons fainted due to accidental inhalation of toxic fumes, you got the 3rd as a backup.

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    • Angela, there is one way to thwart the smart meter’s RF (Radio Frequency) waves. If you wrap the glass in metal and ground it. The steel box the meter is mounted to is already grounded, so attaching the metal, (aluminum foil would work), to the case would disrupt the RF signal. Cut a small window in it so the display can be seen. Lets see if they will just come and tear it off.

      Reply
      • Would it matter which way the foil is facing? Would love to see a photo of this.

        I’ve heard of lining the wall on the side of the meter with metal (I guess under the sheet rock?). I read of one person who was remodeling and was going to line several of the bedroom walls to block out EMFs as much as possible.

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  30. Orgonite. This will turn the DOR into POR (Deadly Orgone Energy into Positive Orgone Energy); DOR is created by just about everything that runs on electricity thus producing EMF) Dr. Wilhelm Reich was where it all started. You can make it yourself or purchase it already made. My plants LOVE the POR, and I have a small piece of Orgone on top of my WIFI router, one in the living room by the TV, Computer, ect…I have read that one every 15 feet is sufficient. They can also be placed onto the Smart Meters to deter the effect, and should be placed onto the neighbor’s Smart Meter as well if it is facing your home. There are small pendants as well, which can protect someone 24/7 from the harmful effects of EMF. Also, a book called Blinded by Science talks in great deal about dimmer switches, EMF, ect – I highly recommend it (for what that’s worth…lol)

    Reply
  31. I always thought I was crazy when I could hear fluorescent bulbs sometimes, but lately it’s come to make sense…fluorescent bulbs do transmit a vast EMF spectrum and sometimes you can physically hear it.

    Another thing to think about – if you don’t believe that dimmer switches are a problem, let me regale you with this story. My old church had dimmer switches for the lights. If the lights weren’t in the full on or full off position, the speakers for the sound system would buzz. The dimmer switch’s stray voltage was being picked up by a poorly-insulated wire in the sound system. That voltage is all over for everything to be felt by!

    Also, Smart Meters were recently linked to pacemakers failing. Just a thought!

    Reply

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