The Value of Magnetic Fields and Energy (Abridged extracts from the book "Magnet Therapy" by Gloria Vergari, the founder of Norstar BioMagnetics)
Think of all those planets, moons and stars out there, just hanging around in space. What is it that keeps them up in their own particular place? It is gravity and magnetic fields continually pulling and opposing, holding the planets in their appointed place and orbits. The Earth is in fact a giant magnet. From physics, four forces give and maintain order on our planet and in the universe: the weak nuclear force, the strong nuclear force, gravity and the electromagnetic field.
The earth, mankind, animals, cells, atoms - life itself - are exposed to, and charged with, terrestial magnetic fields. Every cell in our body has some energy or force flowing through it. This magnetic energy field we were born into is crucial, indeed vital for our health and well-being.
In today's modern world and lifestyle, put simply, we are receiving less energy from the terrestial magnetic fields than we have in the past, in the days when we would live and work outside, in what was to us our natural environment. The changes we have made to our lifestyle have been major; they have occurred in a relatively short space of time, not giving us time to evolve and adapt physiologically. The changes made over the last two generations means that we expose ourselves constantly to un-natural magnetic environments, isn't it true we commute everywhere in metal capsules, work in metal framed buildings, expose ourselves to electrical appliances, lights, computers and TVs all with their own magnetic environments.
Modern electromagnetic pollution causes a new type of stress on our bodies. Radio waves, microwaves, electric fields from overhead cables, mobile telephone masts and even our own home lighting and power are presently surrounding us.
This cocktail of electromagnetism is now known to be depleting our own natural energy source. How much is the subject of intensive research. In Japan, links to "modern" diseases (e.g. ME, Myalgic Enchephalomyelitis or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and others) are being heavily researched. More widely, links to a variety of disorders including neck and shoulder tension, headaches, lassitude, chest pains, lumbago, insomnia and constipation are being established.
The History of Magnetic Therapy Magnetic Therapy is not new. 4,000 years ago, Chinese Medicine was based on the understanding that good health depended on the circulation of vital energies, these being known as Qi (chi). The first major work on healing was called The Emperor's Book of Internal Medicine, within which was recorded how imbalances could be corrected by the use of acupuncture and magnetic stones.
In Eygpt, Cleopatra who was known for her youthful looks and beauty, used a lodestone (magnet) in an amulet on he forehead to preserve her youth. We know today through science, that at the back of the forehead lies the pineal gland, home to the chemical melatonin (now used as an anti-jetlag drug) which is also known as the "youth hormone" due to it's potential for cell repair and anti-aging.
History of medicine is dotted with anecdotal evidence of the power of magnets. But when did we really understand the therapeutic power of magnets?
Modern or Therapeutic Magnets When man first ventured into space in the 1960s, this was the first time man had left the intensity of the earth's magnetic field. On return to earth, even after a very short period in space, it was discovered that the astronauts were losing bone density, their immune systems were being affected and they were experiencing calcium deficiency, meaning that they needed intensive medical treatment on return to earth.
The solution was discovered to be magnetism and the need to place the astronauts within an environment that simulated the earth's magnetic field. However, traditional magnets made of iron were too heavy, so this led to the development of extremely high-powered magnets that were lightweight. These are the magnets and materials that are now widely used in modern magnet-therapy.
Today, when astronauts go into space, they wear suits lined with flexible magnetic materials and the spacecraft has a magnetic lining. The difference to the astronauts on return from space today, they go straight from the space-craft to the press-conference.
The strength of the magnets used is important. A magnet that may hold a note on the refrigerator door is about -100 gauss (gauss is the term for measuring magnetic strength), whilst a magnet now used in health care (of the same size and weight) can hold a magnetic strength of -12,300 gauss. What this means to us is that it is now possible to have lightweight, portable magnets that are strong enough to stimulate changes in the way our cells behave and react.
How do Magnets Work? The science of Magnotherapy indicates that two vital things happen when a magnet is placed on the skin:
First, the soft tissue will lengthen and help to relax down a muscle or ligament that is damaged or traumatised. It will work in an area and depth directly proportional to the type and strength of the magnet used. Depending on the strength, you should be able to effect a change to a radius of between 3-5 inches around any one magnet and to a similar depth.
Secondly, the tissue relaxes, oxygen and blood flow that has so far restricted access to the damaged site is allowed in and is increased. This effect can be seen using thermal imaging techniques.
Normally an injured site, whether from arthritis, torn muscles or any other condition, will be surrounded by inflammation. This can comprise of lactic acids, calcium and other deposits. Basically the site is "hot" with acidity. The increase in oxygen and blood flow brings with it increased alkalinity. This neutralises the acidity, allowing the body to start its own healing abilities. Magnets merely encourage this in a truly dramatic way.
Once the area is being detoxified, the thermal benefits of magnets begin. As the blood in our body is continuously circulating, periodically, it comes close to the magnet placed on the skin above. In this magnetic field, the ions in the blood become agitated and are attracted to the magnet, atomic particles begin to spin inside the cell (known as the Hall effect). This switching-on, causes the body to stimulate its own beta-endorphin (pain relieving systems).
So, in summary, we expect magnet therapy to activate the following responses in the body: 1. Lengthen and relax tissue 2. Commence the process of flushing out debris and inflammation from the site 3. Start the body's own pain relieving system.
These are the key points you should understand about magnetic products if you wish to successfully treat yourself and your family. If you understand that the product works where it is placed you will not fall into the trap of buying a wristband to help with pain in your knee. If a magnet is going to work for you, it can happen within hours when quality magnets are placed over the damaged area. Normally, improvements would be seen within 1 - 7 days, when you are directly treating the site of pain. With magnet therapy, it must be remembered that is it necessary to drink at least 3-4 glasses of water a day, this being needed to flush from your system the toxins being released from the cells.
What can we use Magnets for?
To allieviate Pain, increasing mobility in arthritic joints
To ease stress and depression
To promote sound sleep
To aid the recovery of nerve sensation
To aid recovery of torn ligaments, muscle and tendons
To reduce bruising and swelling
To speed recovery in sports injuries
To increase resistance to infection
To improve circulation/body and extremity warming
To assist removal of waste products from the blood, i.e. lactic acids, calcium, cholesterol and fat deposits