Jeanne M. Wallace, PhD, CNC
Do electromagnetic fields (EMFs) cause cancer? Maybe that’s the wrong question. The majority of mainstream research on cancer etiology assumes that worrisome substances are only those agents known to damage our DNA. Public concern about environmental chemicals, pesticides, EMFs and other contaminants is regularly dismissed because the agent in question has not been definitively shown to damage DNA. But wait! This presupposes that our understanding of carcinogenesis is an established scientific fact. In truth, the DNA mutation theory is merely one HYPOTHESIS about the genesis of malignancy.
Numerous other hypotheses exist, including Metabolic Theory (think Otto Warburg and his long-ignored but now very-much-in-vogue finding that cancer cells are obligate sugar feeders).
A growing number of scientists believe that cancer arises from a disarray in cell-to-cell communication. Our cells communicate with each other via a delicate and well-coordinated dance of hormones, biochemical signals and electrical potentials. Healthy cells receive a steady flow of signals that direct their development, behavior and senescence. What happens when these normal guiding signals are disrupted? Might tumors develop because the symphony of signals that organizes healthy tissue is missing or corrupted? Imagine you’re a cell, relaxing after a long day at work, with your favorite classical music station, but instead someone is blaring heavy metal so loud next door you can’t hear yourself think. Perhaps the disease we call cancer is merely confused cells, unable to tune in to the normal checks and balances that guide and coordinate their daily lives. They are literally marching to the beat of a different drummer! If this theory proves correct, an important goal of cancer treatment would be to restore normal cell-to-cell communication, presumably by removing anything that interferes.
Evidence supporting this theory—technically called TOFT or the Tissue Organization Field Theory of cancer—is mounting. Consider, for example, that cells taken from one environment and placed in another take on the characteristics of their new locale. Though it sounds like science fiction, human cells embedded in living mouse tissue will morph to look and act like murine cells. Stem cells are a great example of the pleomorphic nature of cells. And consider the process of differentiation, when cancer cells revert to healthy cells. Re-differentiation might explain cases of Spontaneous Remissions that have stumped medical experts.
So what could be interfering with the normal cell signaling that regulates healthy cells? Many environmental chemicals may contribute to this interference, and EMFs are also a potential culprit.
Proximity to EMFs or artificial light during the night-time hours is known to interfere with melatonin. This fabulous Master Hormone is secreted by our pineal gland when we sleep in complete darkness and away from EMFs, the field of electromagnetic energy created around appliances and gadgets when they are plugged in, whether they’re turned on or not. The circadian cycle of melatonin secretion (low during daylight, high during night) functions as our body’s time keeper, regulating the daily and monthly cycles of all other hormones. When it comes to tumors, melatonin is oncostatic (e.g., it seems to put cancer cells to sleep). The pineal gland is sensitive to EMFs. So sensitive that in nature, migrating birds rely on their pineal gland to read the earth’s geomagnetic fields for navigation. While you can’t “hear” the blaring waves of the electricity pulsing through wires to your alarm clock, cell phone, computer, lamp and TV, your pineal gland does. And it responds with reduced melatonin secretion. Protect your melatonin by keeping electrical gadgets at least 6-8 feet away from your bed. Don’t sleep with your cell phone next to your pillow! Choose a battery-operated clock for the night stand. Avoid electric blankets (I know, it’s cold this winter…try a hot water bottle for your feet).
While the debate continues over the carcinogenicity of EMFs, we prefer to embrace the Precautionary Principle! In the U.S., chemicals and toxins are presumed “innocent until proven guilty.” Historically, the track record is dismal, with a long list of substances released for public use which are later shown to be unsafe. I’m not willing to trust the companies that profit from these substances and technologies to run their own testing, admit their product is unsafe, and remove it from the market. I don’t want to risk my health. I prefer to avoid a long list of chemicals, pesticides, and new technologies UNTIL THEY ARE PROVEN SAFE!!!
We’re working diligently at PoSH to offer our retreat guests a healthy environment during their stay…and to educate you so you can create a healthier home.
One of the many considerations we’ve explored during the PoSH renovation is indoor electromagnetic pollution. So we’re busy ensuring that the bedrooms at PoSH are sited far from the incoming power box, internet router, and major appliances. What’s on the other side of the wall from your bed? Go look now! It might be time to move the bed if the answer is your refrigerator, TV, microwave oven, wifi router, or breaker box. If you can, make a hub for necessary electrical appliances at one side of your home, and keep places of rest and relaxation on the other side of your domicile.
Want more practical tips for avoiding EMFs? Watch this quick video for tips from EMF expert Jeromy Johnson on how to protect your home and family while still staying “connected.”