An article about Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) published in Townsend Letter, The Examiner of Alternative Medicine (November 2014) highlights the new environmental landscape we find ourselves and the insidious impact EMR is wreaking on health. The article serves as a reminder of a real and present danger of our time and the role EMR could play in the health picture of anyone facing illness. The article’s value lies in alerting us to a developing consensus in certain parts of the scientific community and our ability to read between the lines of what is known about this new landscape and where the trend is heading. This article hopes to draw your attention to the fact that there are certain workers in the general populace who are more vulnerable to the effects of EMR than others. In this instance I am referring to business travellers and anyone who has global travel as part of their job description.
In the latter part of the twentieth century we began a large-scale experiment by making use of artificial electromagnetic radiation waves to drive technology and industry which gave us some very nifty advantages. The upside has been the accelerating rate of globalisation of the world and the world economies. The downside is that we have become more out of touch with our innate health supporting environment. As the world has globalised it mobilised; Technology is an enabler of a mobile world and EMR is a necessary feature. The Industrial Revolution of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries saw our society transform from an agrarian one to an industrial one. Now we have transformed from an industrial society to a technologically driven society with some not so desirable consequences. Artificial EMR waves we use in daily life to power our gadgets and connect globally are disruptive to human health because they severe our link to the natural geomagnetic wave profile that has nourished Man from time immemorial.
The article goes on to describe the author’s health challenge with Lyme’s disease and the role EMR played in it. It is the research material quoted in the article,which is of more interest to us in terms of what it says about the risks of EMR pollution to business travellers. The most detailed research quoted was the BioInitiative Report compiled by scientists and researchers of ten nations. It notes thousands of studies which demonstrate the damaging effects of EMR from cell phone radiation and other sources. It is damning because it shows the depth of the problem across various fields of study.
Digging into the details of some of the other research used we find a quote from the late Dr Professor Neil Cherry a pioneer in environmental health who said, “EMR confuses and damages the cells signalling system, which produces symptoms such as headaches, concentration difficulties, memory loss, dizziness and nausea, and long-term diseases such as Alzheimer’s dementia, brain tumours and depression.”
In a quote from an interview published in 2009 with Dr Thomas Rau of the renowned Paracelsus clinic in Switzerland he says ” … cultures of normal human endogenous bacterial cultures grow much less when exposed to EMR”. Rau’s comments are a reflection that our immunity is compromised in the presence of EMR. Herein lies the problem. EMR messes with immunity which has harmful effects on long-term health.
The article also quotes a Lynn Quiring (RPh, CCN, NMD) paper titled “The Cell Phone Poisoning of America.” In it Lynn cites over 66 scientific references proving the relationship between prolonged EMR exposure and a host of health conditions including hormonal imbalances, low sperm count, immune system disorders, memory loss and sleep disorders.
Not only are we changing the environment externally, but its influence on our internal environment is what is most worrying. Our ability to control and determine our internal environment is our ability to maintain health. It is our first line of defence against stress and the challenges we face on a daily basis.
Business travellers have many challenging scenarios to negotiate in pursuit of a successful business trip. They can include anything from the geopolitical nature of the world, the weather, industrial action, personal security while on the road and more. The constant shift in any of these variables is enough to cause stress, especially when you can’t control them. For the most part we brush them off and get on with the business in hand however, being able to do this is reliant on our stress coping mechanism. Yet here we have evidence that one of the tools that enables our functionality in the global economy is the very thing which is eroding our much-needed resilience. If this seems a bit too far-fetched take a look at the following Infographic from PC Housing – Mobile Dependence.
Where is this heading? To zero in on what one kind of future scenario could look like we only have to look at a group of people who are now being diagnosed as Electro-sensitive. Electro-Sensitives cannot be in close proximity of or endure long periods of time in the vicinity of EMR or gadgets using them. Electro-Sensitivity and Electro-Smog have entered the popular lexicon. In the face of EMR ruling our airwaves and environments our immunity is taking a battering. When you put this in perspective with figures from the American Autoimmune Related Disease Association (AARDA) you get a sense of where the trend is headed and how EMR is a factor we should reckon with. See their document “A Briefing Report on Autoimmune Disease and AARDA: Past, Present and Future”. To get an even more specific take on how stress is affecting Business Travel see the industry specific white paper by AirPlus called “Traveller Productivity: How to tailor your travel policy to improve traveller performance.”
How is this affecting the global economy now? It is serious enough to get a mention at the open forum at the World Economic Forum in 2011 in a talk titled Burnout – The Latest Fashion? While the talk didn’t directly mention EMR as a causative factor its role as an enabler of efficiency in the workspace makes it a contributing factor.
The Business Travel industry and business travellers need to lighten the stress of business travel for the sake of all involved. The Carlson Wagonlit metric the Travel Stress Index (TSi) puts the hidden cost of business travel at over $600 per trip. For companies with large mobile workforces making multiple trips a year that is a big financial incentive. Mitigating costs takes a combined approach, which involves acknowledging the environment we find ourselves working and living in and a sense of individual responsibility towards our health that supports health and therefore productivity.
BioInitiative Report: A Rationale for a Biologically-based Public Exposure Standard for Electromagnetic Radiation, December 31, 2012.
Cherry N. Evidence that Electromagnetic Radiation is Genotoxic: The implications for the epidemiology of cancer and cardiac, neurological and reproductive effects. Neil Cherry, Extended from a paper to the conference on Possible health effects on health of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields European Parliament, Brussels, 2 March 2001.
Rau T. Transcript interview with Dr Thomas M. Rau of the Swiss Paracelsus Clinic – online article, accessed – 01/11/2014.
Quiring L. The cell phone poisoning of America [online article] 2008, accessed 01/11/2014.