by Dr. Joseph Mercola
January 15, 2019
Persistent exposures to microwave frequencies like those from
cellphones can cause mitochondrial dysfunction and nuclear DNA
damage from free radicals reacted to peroxynitrite
Excessive exposures to cellphones and Wi-Fi networks have been
linked to chronic diseases such as cardiac arrhythmias, anxiety,
depression, autism, Alzheimer’s and infertility
Devices that continuously emit EMF radiation at levels that damage
your mitochondria include your cellphone, cellphone towers, Wi-Fi
routers and modems, baby monitors and “smart” devices of all kinds,
including smart meters and smart appliances
EMF exposure has increased about 1 quintillion times over the past
100 years. Most people experience biological impacts but have no
appreciation of the damage it’s causing until it's too late. Even
then, it’s extremely difficult to link the exposure to the symptoms
or the disease
5G relies primarily on the bandwidth of the millimeter wave, known
to penetrate 1 to 2 millimeters of human tissue and has been linked
to numerous health problems, including eye and heart problems, pain
and suppressed immune function
The potential ramifications of unchecked exposure to electromagnetic
field (EMF) radiation are immense.
As explained in the featured
interview with Martin Pall, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of
biochemistry and basic medical sciences at Washington State
University, the primary danger of EMFs - and what drives the
processes of chronic disease - is the mitochondrial damage triggered
by peroxynitrites, one of the most damaging types of reactive
Devices that continuously emit EMF radiation at levels that damage
your mitochondria include,
Types of Damaging EMFs
EMFs can be broadly divided into three categories:
Electric fields: AC electric fields at 60 Hz (50 Hz in Europe) from
house wiring and corded appliances (especially ungrounded ones:
cords that have only two prongs rather than three). Electric fields
are the most challenging to measure accurately and significantly
contributes to the confusion about EMFs
Magnetic fields: AC magnetic fields at 60/50Hz Hz from power lines,
wiring errors on house wiring, current on grounding paths, and from
motors and transformers
Radio frequencies (RF) from cellphones, smart meters, Wi-Fi,
Bluetooth and other wireless devices
In addition to these three categories, you also have
electricity, or EMI (electromagnetic interference) caused by
transient voltage spikes.
If we go back in time to the end of World
War I, around 1918 or so, and use that timeframe as a baseline of EMF exposure among the general public, you come to the astonishing
conclusion that EMF exposure has increased about 1 quintillion times
over the past 100 years.
You'd have to be irrational to assume that this radical increase - an increase of 1 billion times
- couldn't have some adverse effects.
The reality is that most people are experiencing biological impacts
as a result of EMF exposure, but have no appreciation of the damage
it's causing until it's too late.
Even then, it's extremely
difficult to link the exposure to the symptoms or the disease.
Unrelenting EMF Exposure Can Wreck Your Health
Pall has published research 1,2,3,4 showing low-frequency microwave
radiation activates voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) - channels in the outer membrane of your cells.
Once activated, the VGCCs open, allowing an abnormal influx of calcium ions into the
cell, which activates nitric oxide (NO).
NO is the only molecule in your body produced at high enough
concentrations to outcompete other molecules for superoxide and is a
precursor for peroxynitrite. 5
These potent oxidant stressors are
associated with an increased level of systemic inflammation and
mitochondrial dysfunction, and are thought to be a root cause for
many of today's chronic diseases.
For an in-depth understanding of peroxynitrites and the harm they
inflict, see "Nitric Oxide and Peroxynitrite in Health and Disease" 6
- a 140-page paper with 1,500 references by Dr. Pal Pacher,
Beckman and Dr. Lucas Liaudet.
It's an epic paper and one of the best reviews I've ever read...
One of its most significant downsides of peroxynitrite is that it
damages DNA. Your body has the capacity to repair that damage
through a family of 17 different enzymes collectively called poly
ADP ribose polymerases (PARP).
However, while PARP work well, they
require NAD+ for fuel and when they run out of NAD+ they stop
repairing your DNA, which can lead to premature cell death.
Heart, Brain and Male Reproductive Organs Are at Greatest Risk
According to Pall's theory, the physical locations where VGCCs are
the densest are indicative of the diseases you might expect from
chronic excessive exposure to EMFs.
As it turns out, the highest
density of VGCCs are found in your nervous system, your brain, the
pacemaker in your heart and in male testes.
As a result, EMFs are likely to contribute to neurological and
neuropsychiatric problems, heart and reproductive problems,
including but not limited to cardiac arrhythmias, anxiety,
depression, autism, Alzheimer's and infertility.
signaling produced by EMF exposures also has important roles in
producing pathophysiological effects of EMFs, including each of the
effects listed above.
For the past 25 years, the industry has claimed that nonionizing
radiation is harmless and that the only radiation worth worrying
about is ionizing radiation.
Pall's research unequivocally proves
that this assumption is false.
Thanks to Pall's work, we now know that VGCCs are 7.2 million times
more sensitive to microwave radiation than the charged particles
inside and outside our cells.
This means the safety standards for
this exposure are off by a factor of 7.2 million. In terms of
oxidative damage, research shows 3G creates the same level of
cellular stress and oxidative damage as about 1,600 chest X-rays.
Disinformation by Industry Threatens Public Health
Unfortunately, negative health effects from EMFs are usually not
immediately noticeable, as the damage accrues over time, similar to
that from smoking.
It's important to note that researchers are in
general agreement that there's a latency period of about 10 years or
more before the damage shows up, which places children at greatest
risk, since their exposures are earlier in life and longer.
There's no doubt in my mind that cellphones are one of the greatest
public health threats of the 21st century.
But, like the tobacco
industry before it, the telecommunication industry has manipulated
federal regulatory agencies, public health authorities and
professionals through powerful and sophisticated lobbying efforts,
leaving consumers confused about the health risks.
In an investigative report for The Nation, Mark Hertsgaard and Mark
"the disinformation campaign - and massive radiation
increase - behind the 5G rollout." 7
By early 1999, findings from more than 50 studies were already
raising "'serious questions' about cellphone safety," and this
evidence was shared with the CTIA 8 (the trade association for the
wireless industry) board of directors.
They ignored it, and have
consistently fought to prevent public discussion and knowledge about
the possible effects.
5G Rollout Will Significantly Magnify Health Risks
The industry touts
5G, the "5th Generation" wireless network, as a
way to create faster internet and streaming services, and "better"
The problem is that 5G relies primarily on the
bandwidth of the millimeter wave (MMW), which is known to penetrate
1 to 2 millimeters of human skin tissue 9 and has been linked to
numerous health problems, including: 10
Eye problems such as lens opacity in rats, which is linked to the
production of cataracts
Impacted heart rate variability, an indicator of stress, in rats and
heart rate changes (arrhythmias) in frogs
Suppressed immune function
MMW is actually what's used in crowd control weapons (Active Denial
Systems) by the U.S. Department of Defense, as it has the ability to
cause a severe burning sensation. 11
Unlike the "4th Generation" (4G)
technology currently in use, which relies on 90-foot cell towers
with about a dozen antenna ports on each, the 5G system uses "small
cell" facilities or bases, each with about 100 antenna ports.
Once it's installed in your neighborhood, you won't have a choice to
opt out of continuous 5G exposure, and research 13 compiled by EMF
coach and author Lloyd Burrell shows the proliferation of 5G for the
sake of faster internet could be a public health disaster.
While MMWs have not been widely used before, it's already been
suggested that sweat ducts in human skin act as antennae when they
come in contact with MMWs. 14
In 2017, more than 180 doctors and
scientists from 35 countries signed a petition 15 to enact a
moratorium on the rollout of 5G due to the potential risks to
wildlife and human health, which include an increased risk for:
Cellular stress and increase in harmful free radicals
Two years earlier, in 2015, more than 230 scientists engaged in the
study of biological and health effects of non-ionizing EMFs in 41
nations signed an international appeal to
the United Nations,
calling for protection from non-ionizing EMF exposure due to evidence
of health effects even at low levels. 19
20 Facts About 5G's Impact on Human Health
In this video, Paul Ben Ishai, Ph.D., a senior lecturer with the
department of physics at Ariel University in Israel, reviews the
potential risks to human health from sub-MM communication systems.
The Environmental Health Trust has also published a list
20 of 20
facts you need to know about 5G wireless.
5G coverage requires "small cell" antennas to be placed in
Millions of small cells must be built into people's front yards.
The radiation from 5G small cells is not minor, and will increase
EMF radiation near homes, causing aesthetic deterioration of the
environment in addition to health risks.
5G will not replace current wireless technology but add to it,
increasing exposure exponentially.
Community authority is being overruled at every level of government
in the name of boosting cellphone coverage and internet speeds.
Cellphone companies have confirmed that 5G small cells will work at
a distance of 3,000 feet and do not need to be placed every 100
feet, necessitating them being placed near homes.
Scientists worldwide are calling for a halt to the rollout of 5G.
Cumulative daily radiation exposure is associated with serious
health effects, including cancer, 21,22 altered brain development in
children and reproductive damage in men.
Indeed, thousands of studies showing biological effects from
low-intensity EMF were summarized in the BioInitiative Report 23
(2007 and 2012), demonstrating immune system effects, neurological
effects, cognitive effects and much more. Another important study,
funded by the U.S. government, was published in the Journal of the
American Medical Association in 2011.
Using a positron emission tomography or PET scan capable of
detecting alterations in glucose, the researchers determined that
cellphone radiation triggers your brain cells to metabolize glucose
at an increased rate.
Glucose metabolism equates to cell activation, so the findings
indicate that radiation from your cellphone has a well-defined
measureable influence on your brain. Essentially, each time you put
a cellphone up to your ear, you're artificially activating your
Multiple papers have concluded wireless radiation is a human
carcinogen; the International Agency for Research on Cancer
classified cellphones as a Group 2B "possible carcinogen" in 2011,
and two recent studies (one by the U.S. National Toxicology Program
(NTP) 26 and one by the Ramazzini Institute in Italy)
27 confirm its
The NTP study found heart tumors (malignant schwannomas) in male
rats, "similar to acoustic neuromas, a benign tumor in people
involving the nerve that connects the ear to the brain, which some
studies have linked to cellphone use."
According to experts, 5G small cell wireless streaming bills do not
make financial sense.
Antennas near homes also decrease property values.
Microwave antennas in front yards pose several worker and public
Wireless companies warn investors of risks, but do not inform people
living near cellphone towers.
Antennas near homes will cause a deterioration of sleep for the
occupants, resulting in decreased performance and health.
Cellphone radiation has been shown to have an adverse impact on
birds, bees, trees and plants.
Many U.S. cities and entire countries are voting to halt 5G.
The Federal Communications Commission does not monitor radiation
exposures from cell installations and many cell towers already
violate radiation limits.
The International Association of Firefighters officially oppose cell
towers on fire stations, and have done so since 2004, after research
showed firefighters with antennas on their stations suffered
neurological damage, including memory problems, intermittent
confusion and feelings of weakness. 28
The American Academy of Pediatrics and many other medical
organizations are calling for federal action to protect children
from EMF exposures, citing research showing that living near mobile
phone base stations is associated with an increased risk for
headaches, memory problems, dizziness, depression and sleep
Research 29 by Pall published in 2016 detail how, when VGCCs are
activated in the brain, they release neurotransmitters and
neuro-endocrine hormones. Hence, consequences of chronic EMF exposure
to the brain also include anxiety, depression, autism and
Preliminary results from the largest long-term study
brain development and youth health in the U.S., the Adolescent Brain
Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study, 33 also reveals the brains of the
users of electronic devices look different compared to
those who use smartphones, tablets and video games less frequently.
Children who use electronic devices for seven hours or more each day
have premature thinning of the brain cortex, the outer brain layer
that processes information from the five physical senses (taste,
touch, sight, smell and sound). As little as two hours of screen
time per day may impact cognition, resulting in lower scores on
thinking and language tests.
Fiber optic connections is the solution and the safe alternative to
boost internet speed and reliability.
Learn More About the Health Risks of 5G
You can download a 2-page fact sheet 34 on 5G from the Environmental
On their website, you can also access a long list of
published scientific studies showing cause for concern. 35
Wireless Telecommunications Expansion - Public Health and
Environmental Implications," published in Environmental Research in
August 2018, Dr. Cindy Russell, executive director of Physicians for
Safe Technology,36 writes: 37
"Like other common toxic exposures, the effects of radiofrequency
electromagnetic radiation (RF EMR) will be problematic if not
impossible to sort out epidemiologically as there no longer remains
an unexposed control group.
This is especially important considering
these effects are likely magnified by synergistic toxic exposures
and other common health risk behaviors. Effects can also be
Because this is the first generation to have cradle-to-grave life
span exposure to this level of man-made microwave (RF EMR)
radiofrequencies, it will be years or decades before the true health
consequences are known.
Precaution in the roll out of this new
technology is strongly indicated."
Protect Yourself and Your Family From Excessive EMF
There's no doubt in my mind that RF-EMF exposure is a significant
health hazard that needs to be addressed if you're concerned about
The rollout of 5G would certainly make remedial action
all the more difficult, which is why we all need to get involved and
do what we can to prevent it.
Apart from that, here are several suggestions that will help reduce
your EMF exposure and help mitigate damage from unavoidable
For even more do's and don'ts, see the infographics by
the Environmental Health Trust below.
sources of EMF, such as your cellphone, cordless phones,
Wi-Fi routers, Bluetooth headsets and other
Bluetooth-equipped items, wireless mice, keyboards, smart
thermostats, baby monitors, smart meters and the microwave
in your kitchen. Ideally, address each source and determine
how you can best limit their use.
Barring a life-threatening emergency, children should not
use a cellphone or a wireless device of any type. Children
are far more vulnerable to cellphone radiation than adults
due to having thinner skull bones, and developing immune
systems and brains.
Research 38 also demonstrates that infants under the age of 1
do not effectively learn language from videos, and do not
transfer what they learn from the iPad to the real world, so
it's a mistake to think electronic devices provide valuable
desktop computer to the internet via a wired Ethernet
connection and be sure to put your desktop in airplane mode.
Also avoid wireless keyboards, trackballs, mice, game
systems, printers and portable house phones. Opt for the
If you must use
Wi-Fi, shut it off when not in use, especially at night when
you are sleeping. Ideally, work toward hardwiring your house
so you can eliminate Wi-Fi altogether. If you have a
notebook without any Ethernet ports, a USB Ethernet adapter
will allow you to connect to the internet with a wired
wireless chargers for your cellphone, as they too will
increase EMFs throughout your home. Wireless charging is
also far less energy efficient than using a dongle attached
to a power plug, as it draws continuous power (and emits EMF)
whether you're using it or not.
According to Venkat Srinivasan, director of Argonne
Collaborative Center for Energy Storage Science, keeping
your cellphone or tablet fully charged at all times will
also reduce the life of the battery, which will necessitate
the purchase of a brand-new phone. 39
As a lithium ion battery charges and discharges, ions pass
between a positive electrode and a negative electrode. The
higher the battery is charged the faster the ions degrade,
so it's better to cycle between 45 percent and 55 percent.
Shut off the
electricity to your bedroom at night. This typically works
to reduce electrical fields from the wires in your wall
unless there is an adjoining room next to your bedroom. If
that is the case you will need to use a meter to determine
if you also need to turn off power in the adjacent room.
battery-powered alarm clock, ideally one without any light.
I use a talking clock for the visually impaired. 40
If you still use
a microwave oven, consider replacing it with a steam
convection oven, which will heat your food as quickly and
far more safely.
"smart" appliances and thermostats that depend on wireless
signaling. This would include all new "smart" TVs. They are
called smart because they emit a Wi-Fi signal and, unlike
your computer, you cannot shut the Wi-Fi signal off.
Consider using a large computer monitor as your TV instead,
as they don't emit Wi-Fi.
Refuse a smart
meter on your home as long as you can, or add a shield to an
existing smart meter, some of which have been shown to
reduce radiation by 98 to 99 percent. 41
your baby's bed into your room instead of using a wireless
baby monitor. Alternatively, use a hard-wired monitor.
Replace CFL bulbs
with incandescent bulbs. Ideally remove all fluorescent
lights from your house. Not only do they emit unhealthy
light, but more importantly, they will actually transfer
current to your body just being close to the bulbs.
your cellphone on your body unless in airplane mode and
never sleep with it in your bedroom unless it is in airplane
mode. Even in airplane mode it can emit signals, which is
why I put my phone in a Faraday bag. 42
When using your
cellphone, use the speaker phone and hold the phone at least
3 feet away from you. Seek to radically decrease your time
on the cellphone. Instead, use VoIP software phones that you
can use while connected to the internet via a wired
Avoid using your
cellphone and other electronic devices at least an hour
(preferably several) before bed, as the blue light from the
screen and EMFs both inhibit melatonin production. 43,44
Research clearly shows that heavy computer and cellphone
users are more prone to insomnia.45 For example, one 2008
study46 revealed that people exposed to radiation from their
mobile phones for three hours before bedtime had more
trouble falling asleep and staying in a deep sleep.
Since we now know
the effects of EMFs are reduced by calcium-channel blockers,
make sure you're getting enough magnesium. Most people are
deficient in magnesium, which will worsen the impact of EMFs.
As noted by Pall in the featured interview:
"It is clear that when you're deficient in magnesium, you
get excessive activity of the VGCCs. You also get excessive
calcium influx through the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor,
caused by magnesium deficiency, which is also problematic,
so it's important to allay that deficiency."
Pall has also
published a paper 47 suggesting that raising your level of
Nrf2 may help ameliorate EMF damage. One simple way to
activate Nrf2 is to consume Nrf2-boosting food compounds.
Examples include sulforaphane-containing cruciferous
vegetables, foods high in phenolic antioxidants, the
long-chained omega-3 fats DHA and EPA, carotenoids
(especially lycopene), sulfur compounds from allum
vegetables, isothiocyanates from the cabbage group, and
Exercise, calorie restriction (such as intermittent fasting)
and activating the nitric oxide signaling pathway (one way
of doing that is the Nitric Oxide Dump exercise) will also
Nitric Oxide Dump into your daily fitness routine. According
to Pall, the nitric oxide signaling pathway and the
peroxynitrite pathways inhibit each other, meaning that as
nitric oxide signaling increases, peroxynitrites decrease.
As the Nitric Oxide Dump boosts nitric oxide, it may help
provide some protection against EMF damage.
hydrogen has been shown to target free radicals produced in
response to radiation, such as peroxynitrites. Studies have
shown molecular hydrogen can mitigate about 80 percent of
this damage. 48,49,50,51,52
may help prevent or repair damage from peroxynitrites.
Spices rich in phenolics, specifically cinnamon, cloves,
ginger root, rosemary and turmeric, have exhibited some
protective effects against peroxynitrite-induced damage.
Do's and Don'ts for Safe
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