Earthing/Grounding as a Treatment for Reducing Headaches?

Dear Friends,                         Date Composed: August 18, 2010

I got an email this morning about being interviewed as an expert on air ions and their physiological effects for a Discovery program.  My response was “Good topic, but I know way too little to be an expert.  I was interested in effects of atmospheric ions on biological and psychological reactions, and read the literature, such as it was, 40 years ago!  I imagine there’s been an immensely greater amount of research since then, and I know nothing about it nor do I know who the current experts are to refer you to….Sorry.”

And then I remembered that later this afternoon I had planned to write a little report to send out to my lists and friends and correspondents about a, to me, amazing event.

For the last year and more I have had bad tension headaches every day, requiring large amounts of both Tylenol and codeine to control. For the three and a half weeks since starting an unusual electrical treatment, which probably affects how my body deals with air ions, I have had almost no headaches! I can still hardly believe it, it even feels odd to not have my head hurting, I’ve gotten so used to it.

If this works for me it may work for other headache sufferers, so I’m sharing this info!

What did I do?

Last year I was asked to be the President of ISSSEEM (International Society for the Study of Subtle Energy and Energy Medicine), as their Board felt I was an outstanding example of openness to unusual ideas and discoveries while still remaining scientifically rigorous and creative.  At our meeting in June, the former President, Jim Oschman (thank you Jim!) handed me a recent book he had written a preface for, “Earthing,”  by Clinton Ober, M.D., F.A.C.C., Stephen Sinatra, and Martin Zucker.   It’s about health effects of electrically grounding ourselves.  The subtitle is pretentious, “The Most Important Health Discovery Ever?” but you get used to that kind of puffery as publishers try hard to grab our attention.  The book claimed that all sorts of diseases involving tissue inflammation, which have been more and more prevalent since the Second World War, may be partly due to the fact that we no longer walk barefoot on the earth, or wear shoes with leather soles, which are fairly electrically conductive.  Our shoes since the war usually have soles of synthetic materials which are strong electrical insulators, so we walk and live ungrounded in the earth-ionosphere static potential field (about 200 to 300 volts per meter – a generally  accepted scientific measurement).  The authors of the book claimed to have at first accidentally, and then more systematically, discovered that if they ground people, all sorts of disease problems lessen or cure.

I’ve always been interested in and pretty knowledgeable about electricity, and this didn’t sound too pseudo-scientific to me, although I am generally skeptical that most alternative medicine stuff is psychological healing effects.  But I could see it wouldn’t be dangerous to try having my bare feet on a grounding mat while working at my computer during the day*, and if there was any chance that it worked – boy, was I tired of constant headaches…..

(*The mat is grounded thru a one megohm resistor, so even if you touch a defective piece of electrical equipment you won’t get a dangerous shock.)

Incidentally I am not a placebo reactor, and I’m not hypnotizable, although I was an expert in hypnosis research in the early part of my career.

Bottom line: nothing happened for a few days, just the usual heavy headaches, and then I suddenly dropped to hardly any headaches, have had many headache-free days, and it’s held up! I’ve been plotting my level of headache pain, based on how much medication I have to take, for years, and I attach a chart of the 24 days since the headaches stopped and 24 days earlier as a control.  A too typical bad day for me before could mean I needed to take something like 90 mg of codeine and 6 Tylenols throughout the day….

I hope this  keeps working for me.  If you have a lot of headaches, I hope it will work for you!  The grI hope thisounding mat you can buy on the web at ( for sixty bucks isn’t much of investment for years free of headaches….  I have  no financial interest in the book or the mat, incidentally.

Is this a “pure” experiment in the sense that the only thing of possible significance that changed in my life was the grounding?  No, on July 30th I had a visit to the Kaiser Oakland pain clinic because of sleeping poorly due to a combination of pains waking me up, viz. night-time headaches, bursitis in my hip, and an old shoulder injury aching.  Since I’ve been taking 60 mg codeine at bedtime, maybe another 15 to 30 mg during the night if the hip or shoulder gets bad, but haven’t had but one nocturnal headache in all that time.  The pain ratings in the above chart are strictly for Tylenol and codeine taken during the day for headache.  I doubt if this increased codeine at bedtime is related to the enormous drop in daytime headaches, though, as that started a few days before I started the higher codeine dose at bedtime, and any codeine taken early in the night should have been pretty much metabolized out by morning waking. anyway…  But I mention it to be thorough.

Am I enthusiastic?  You bet?  Could my headaches come back?  Maybe, but I hope not.  Heck, I’m going to get a second ground mat that you can put under the sheet in your bed so I’m grounded at night….


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