Most of us spend a significant amount of our time wearing shoes or covering up our feet. While wearing footwear is somewhat unavoidable, there are surprising health benefits associated with giving our feet the freedom to roam the ground barefoot as well.
The term “grounding” refers to walking on surfaces with direct skin contact. One of the consequences of grounding that many people don’t realise is the exchange of electrons between our bodies and the ground. This exchange creates an antioxidant effect in the body.
Antioxidants come in many forms. Some of the more common types that people find in their diet are tea, blueberries and even dark chocolate. Antioxidants block the chemical reactions that produce free radicals which can cause damage to the body.
The production of free radicals is associated with many chronic health conditions from cardiovascular disease to cancer. They are also associated with the production of inflammation in the body. It is easy to see why it is advantageous to control free radical production and its negative health impacts!
The benefits of grounding can even be seen after exercise. A pilot study looking into the effects of grounding on muscle recovery after exercise showed that those participants who used grounding techniques after exercise had reduced inflammatory markers in the blood. This led to a faster recovery and less “collateral damage” to the healthy cells nearby.
The best news about grounding is that it is relatively easy to do, and doesn’t require any equipment! Simply take off your shoes and socks and walk or stand on either soil, sand or grass. While concrete also conducts electrical charges, the best effects are experienced when you are on natural substances. Just 30mins a day can lead to improvements in sleep, pain and circulation. So what are you waiting for?