In simple terms, EMFs are invisible low or high frequency forces that emanate from electrical and wireless devices. The electricity and appliances we use on a daily basis all emit low frequency EMFs, while wireless devices like routers generate high frequency EMFs.
Research has linked a variety of problems including headaches, fatigue, digestive issues and sleeping problems to both low and high frequency EMFs. There is also evidence that EMFs cause more serious conditions like autoimmune disorders and certain types of cancer. (Related: Shielding EMFs found to reduce 90% of symptoms in people with autoimmune disease.)
So, why exactly do these common forces cause so much damage? Paul Héroux, Ph.D., a researcher and professor of toxicology and health effects of electromagnetism with the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University in Montreal, recently explained in more detail to Dr. Mercola of Waking Times.
Having studied electrical power transmission lines, Héroux started researching the effects of the electromagnetic fields emitted by such lines.
“I got involved in biology, followed courses in medicine and became, so to speak, a different person from what my supervisors initially would have expected me to be,” he told Waking Times.
His research turned him into an expert on the effects of these fields on the human body, and his desire to help protect the health of humans and the environment moved him to join McGill’s Faculty of Medicine.
The first thing that Héroux explained is that low-frequency fields, high-frequency fields, electric fields, microwaves and magnetic fields all have similar biological effects on the human body.
“It’s true that frequency influences the effects,” Héroux noted, “but basically … I could, using an electric field or a magnetic field, produce the same effect in a cell. Most higher frequency signals have enough low-frequency components to have a lot in common with low-frequency components.”
He also noted that even though EMFs do not generate heat, they nonetheless cause damage – despite what telecommunications companies might claim.
“Covering the whole spectrum, there is no doubt that there are biological effects,” he explained. “There’s no doubt there are substantial health effects that we have been experiencing for a long time, and that have been increasing our health bills.”
Héroux and his team discovered that EMFs at levels as low as 60 Hertz (Hz) can drastically affect the development of cancer cells, impair fertility and increase the risk of miscarriage.
Waking Times explains Héroux’s theory of why this damage occurs:
The mechanism of action proposed by Héroux involves the enzyme ATP synthase, which passes currents of protons through a water channel (similar to current passing through a wire). The protons have to go through about 20 molecules of water to get through this channel. ATP synthase is extremely ancient and common to all living systems. It basically generates energy in the form of ATP from ADP, using this flow of protons.
Magnetic fields can change the transparency of the water channel to protons, thereby reducing the current. As a result, you get less ATP, which can have systemwide consequences, from promoting chronic disease and infertility to lowering intelligence.
Héroux essentially believes that EMFs substantially increase oxidative stress, which damages proteins and cell membranes and breaks DNA bonds.
A study published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine noted that excessive oxidative stress causes chronic inflammation, which in turn causes many diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Unfortunately, Héroux warns that most of us essentially live in an environment where we are surrounded by a dangerous level of EMFs all the time. It is nonetheless wise to try to mitigate the damage as much as possible by lowering exposure to wireless routers, smart meters, microwaves and other non-essential sources of electromagnetic frequencies.