Alternative Medicine
Energy Medicine: Stages of Healing

Up until 10,000 years ago, all of us had the essential ingredients for healthy living, namely: oxygen, water, food, a controlled body temperature, and the free flow of electrons from the earth. 10,000 years ago the first shoes were made, posing a problem for a few people. During the Middle Ages royalty built lavish stone castles, and for the first time in history, a small group of people, namely kings and queens, were no longer in direct, barefoot contact with the earth. The result was that royalty was always sicker than the rest of society. Soon, you'll understand how the barefoot disconnection affected royalty—and all of us regular folk today.

Fast-forward 10,000 years. Between 1957 and 1960, our carpets and the soles of our shoes became synthetic. At that point in history, en masse, we became completely disconnected from the earth's natural bioelectrical fields, which I wrote about in the May issue with “Earthing: Re-Connect to the Earth and Heal.” Since that article was printed, many have wanted to share their new “barefoot” experiences. My office phone and e-mail have been flooded with people who have begun spending as much time as possible in barefoot contact with the earth.

To briefly summarize what the barefoot connection is all about: when we are in barefoot contact with the earth, we connect to the earth's bioelectrical fields. The body is like a battery. When standing barefoot on the earth, billions of free electrons per second pour into the body. It takes about 30 minutes to fill that “battery,” but the battery quickly drains, unless we are sleeping on an Earthing™ product or on the earth. When we sleep on the earth (unlikely) or an earthing product, for hours a day, significant changes often begin overnight. There is a good deal of scientific data and thousands of individual reports on the benefits of earthing. All of us are suffering from a shortage of free electrons in the body, a problem that could eventually lead to the development of chronic illness. Inflammation is now recognized as the cause of 80 chronic illnesses. Earthing has been scientifically shown to decrease or eliminate inflammation, through the flow of free electrons from the earth into our bodies. We are now poised for a depth of healing that was unthinkable just 10 years ago.

Benefits: The Data

A 90-day study in 2003 showed that people who slept on an earthing fabric or product developed normal adrenal function. That alone was a tremendously helpful discovery, since most of us live with degrees of adrenal stress, exhaustion or burnout, and it now appears highly likely that a solution has been found for adrenal stress. The results of the 2003 study led Lance Armstrong and the American Tour de France team to sleep in earthing recovery bags for 3 straight years. Those cyclists slept well, performed well, and recovered from injury quickly.

Science has demonstrated that barefoot contact with the earth, either directly with our bare feet, or through earthing fabrics (which include several varieties you can put on your bed, and others that you put under your feet while you work at your computer) has a number of important benefits, including:

1.Relief from pain and chronic inflammation

2. Decreased stress and muscle tension

3. Improved circulation

4. Improved athletic performance

5. Improved emotional and mental balance

6. Improved sleep

7. Restoration of normal biological rhythms

8. Improved ability to handle stress

As a physician, I have been interested in many aspects of earthing. Free electrons affect every physiological process in the body, an effect that has caught the attention of some of the finest minds in Energy Medicine, including James Oschman, Ph.D., author of “Energy Medicine: the Scientific Basis.” Dr. Oschman has authored several papers on Earthing and Energy Medicine.

Energy Medicine deals with the effect of energies, both measurable and not-measurable, on healing. Earthing and magnetic therapy involve measurable energy. Reiki, therapeutic touch, acupuncture, remote healing, prayer, and energy healing involve subtle energies that cannot be measured. Earthing, being in contact with the earth's bioelectrical fields, is now an emerging topic in energy medicine.

Stages of Earthing

I have begun to map out some of the early stages of earthing. Here is what I have observed. Understand that these impressions and conclusions are not the result of controlled, double-blind studies, but are my personal observations. I will be directly quoting people, rather than simply analyzing and interpreting, so that you can have a more intimate feel about earthing.

1. Instantaneous Earthing: Speed of Light

When physical objects are in contact with the earth, it's called “grounding.” When living systems are in contact with the earth, it's called “earthing.” The moment we make barefoot contact with the earth, our body vibration, which is normally 60 hertz (the same as the AC current in our walls) instantly drops to around 10 hertz, which is identical to the earth's vibration. I am quite concerned that we are “synched up” with the electrical grid, (60 hertz frequency) and not the earth's vibration. An earth rhythm of 10 hertz is like a drum beating 10 times per second. Imagine that your DNA is vibrating 6 times faster than it is intended to, beating 60 times per second, rather than 10. It reminds me of a car that can comfortably travel at 75 miles an hour, but we are driving it at 110 miles an hour, all the time. The car won't last. It will vibrate so hard that it will fall apart years before it should. Therefore, I don't drive my car at 110 miles per hour, and similarly I don't drive my DNA at 60 hertz. Through earth contact with earthing products, at least 12 hours a day, my DNA is humming along at about 10 hertz, in synch with the earth's natural, healing vibration.

2. Improved Circulation: 5-10 minutes

Within 5-10 minutes of being in barefoot contact with the earth, circulation in hands and feet dramatically increases. People with poor circulation in their hands and feet are used to feeling cold, but after 5 or 10 minutes of earthing, they often say, “My hands are warm now.” Some people experience the increased circulation as a tingling sensation. The increase in circulation has been documented through medical thermography.

Improved circulation extends beyond hands and feet. Total body circulation improves, and many people with high blood pressure notice a drop in blood pressure. One 70-year-old woman noticed that her vision was improving after 2 weeks of sleeping earthed. The mechanism? She had high blood pressure, which led to high eye pressure, that led to poor vision. Earthing lowered her blood pressure, and then her eye pressure.

3. Battery Full: 30 minutes

After barefoot contact for 30 minutes, the body becomes filled with free electrons (like a fully-charged battery), which is our natural state. At this point, which is how we feel after a walk on the beach, we feel a sense of peace and relaxation in the body. Our mind starts to quiet down, and aches and pains may diminish.

4. Initial Healing: Days 1- 3

After 1 - 3 nights of sleeping on an earthing product, most people report positive changes, especially improved sleep. No one would suggest that, after one night sleeping on the earth or on an earthing product that wonderful things would happen. But, here are a few first person reports, some after one night of sleeping earthed.

Case A.­ —Multiple Sclerosis. Mary, 50-year-old.

“Stiffness much reduced. My body feels calmer. Previously each morning it was difficult to get out of bed — too much stiffness and pain. This morning the stiffness and pain were greatly reduced and energy was much better.”

Case B. —Good Health. Gary, 67-year-old.

Day 1: “I'm feeling so good.  Mellow.  A rich earth connected feeling.  And sleep so deeply.”

Day 5: It is so good to wake up so ready for the new day and charged up, after a deep wonderful sleep each night, the past five nights.”

Case C. —Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Ruth, 55-year-old.

Day 2: “Wow.  My experience this a.m. is much different than my first 12 hours.  I slept much better last night.  But what's amazing is what I'm experiencing on the level of well-being.  No matter where I am, I feel ‘a part' of nature.  It's much more than feeling ‘in tune' with nature. My breathing is spontaneously slower and deeper. I'm calm.  I don't recall ever feeling this wholeness — may I say Oneness.  It's not airy, mental or dreamy.  It's me.  Hard to express this in words.”

As you can tell from Ruth, after 2 nights of sleeping earthed, she began to undergo changes beyond better sleep. Over the course of the next few months, her experience deepened. For her, earthing quickly became part of a healing of body, mind, and spirit.

More than 90% of people sleeping earthed report significantly improved sleep. Many people describe having the best sleep in decades, a deep, restorative sleep. For some people, it can take several months for sleep to improve, especially if ongoing stress in life is not dealt with.

Why does sleep improve with a barefoot connection? The mechanism for better sleep probably relates to improved adrenal function. Our adrenal glands are connected to the earth's bioelectrical rhythms. When you normalize cortisol, which earthing does, sleep improves.

Case D.­ —Stress. Corinne, 50 year-old.

Corinne is married to a famous, very busy musician. She manages all the details of his busy concert tour, which is quite a stressful job for her. After sleeping earthed for 3 nights, she said that her ability to handle stress was the best it had been in as long as she could remember, and that the small things that usually set her off, were not affecting her like they had been for the past 20 years.

Case E .­—Arthritis Pain. Maria, 97 year-old female.

Maria has extensive degenerative arthritis in multiple joints. I called to speak with her son after Maria had been sleeping earthed for 3 nights. Maria only speaks Spanish, so her son interprets for me. After 3 “earthed” nights, Maria said that her pain was down by 80%, and she was waking up feeling much less stiffness. In addition, her energy had increased and her mood was much brighter than it had been. Because barefoot contact with the earth decreases inflammation, illnesses that are clearly inflammatory, like arthritis, multiple sclerosis, or arthritis show a good response to earthing.

5. Natural Healing State: 72 hours

After 3 days of sleeping earthed for 8 or more hours a day, the body is put into its “natural healing state.” The body is “prepared for healing.” The body's natural healing state is one in which: 1) the body's natural rhythms are starting to synch up with the earth's rhythms and bioelectrical field, so that we are filled with free electrons and our body frequency is much more connected with the earth frequency of 10 hertz (and is disconnecting from the electrical grid of 60 hertz) and 2) the fight-or-flight sympathetic nervous system calms down and the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) becomes more active. The PNS is activated through rest, yoga, reiki, massage, earthing, etc. Going on a vacation in nature also turns down the sympathetic (stress) nervous system.

As a clinician I have begun the process of integrating earthing with other treatment modalities. It is my unproven belief that 3 to 7 days of direct barefoot contact with the earth, or through earthing products, prepares the body for any kind of treatment, whether that treatment is nutritional, chiropractic, medication, chemotherapy, surgery, or anything else. I believe that 3 – 7 days of earthing puts the body into a state in which the “active treatment” is “invited into our system.” Many of us start treatment, of any kind, kicking and screaming. That is not the ideal way to embrace any treatment modality.

6. Quantum Shift I

During the first month of earthing, the adrenals are healing, sleep is improving, circulation is improving, free radicals are being neutralized in huge numbers, inflammation is being turned down (or off), pain and its associated depression are decreasing, and total body chemistry is assisted by having enough free electrons to facilitate normal metabolism. People report a variety of things during the first 30 days, including improved memory and concentration. Around day 30, Quantum Shift I occurs, in which all the gradual changes that have taken place — solidify. The individual is now operating at an entirely new level. The changes have locked in place. Quantum Shift I may occur at around day 30 or perhaps in 6 months. This first “solidification of healing” is important, although the timing is going to vary from person to person.

Case F. —Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Hypertension. Joann, 68-year-old.

Joann is a patient of mine who e-mails me every day. I requested daily contact due to the complexity of her symptoms and in order for me to monitor her blood pressure daily. She is an example of Quantum Shift I. Here are some of her reports:

Day 3: “Ankles are not nearly as swollen!

Day 13: The last several days I have noticed an increased ability to communicate without stumbling over forgotten words and fumbling with inadequate sentences! This is a wonderful accomplishment, which I attribute to my earthing recovery bag. I have actually made several telephone business calls, speaking well and answering questions quickly and thoroughly. I had stopped socializing because of the problem with word-finding, and I am just now reaching out to make social contact again. I can hardly tell you how thrilled I am.

Day 27: Today I can triumphantly report that I had short sessions of feeling really good! I had forgotten what it was like to feel this way.

Day 37: I can breathe again! I have noticed an increase in air intake through bronchial airways.

Day 45: This morning when I put on shoes and socks, I realized I was not grunting, groaning and cussing as I have done in the past 10 or 15 years when dressing. I have been free of stiffness in the hips and legs for a couple or three weeks and didn't even realize it! Now I am going to have to find something else to gripe about, by golly.”

Energy Medicine Meets Nutritional Medicine

My observations have not taken me past Quantum Shift I. But, I have some hunches. I have met a number of people who have been experiencing the Barefoot Connection for many years. The changes are transformational. Hair color has started to revert back to a younger age; hair has grown back in people who were going bald; people with serious, debilitating diseases such as multiple sclerosis, CFS, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, or inflammatory lung disease have been totally cured. In order to be cured of a chronic problem, one has to have their bio-electrical fields normalized for a long time. Their total body biochemistry has gone through several stages of healing. The clock has rolled back and these people who have been sleeping earthed for 4 to 6 years have grown younger and have vibrant energy.

It will take decades of research, or perhaps even hundreds of years, to fill in the details. For now, these are my observations about the stages of healing that earthing takes us through over the first 3 months. For more than 90% of people the benefits are extremely positive. There are no side effects. The side effects of earthing are the same as laying on the ground, the grass, or the beach — namely “none.”

For 25 years, my clinical work has involved testing for metabolic abnormalities, and then correcting them. For the last year I've wondered how the flow of free electrons into the body relates to biochemistry? Eventually, I “saw” that bio-electrical fields and biochemistry are completely intertwined. Normal metabolism requires a full supply of free electrons and healthy bio-electrical fields.

I believe that the relationship between metabolism or biochemistry and bioelectrical fields is such a close relationship that the two cannot be separated from each other. Without healthy bio-electrical fields, biochemistry cannot take place. And without biochemistry and the correct balance of nutrients (amino acids, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids), bio-electrical fields would simply fall apart, returning the body to dust or ashes.

Getting to Know the Earth for the First Time

Making barefoot contact with the earth is not the latest miracle drug. I have had people contact me, asking what is the best time of day to stand barefoot on the earth? Can you spend too much time? Is there a way of being in contact with the earth that provides the greatest healing benefit? These questions are simple and innocent, but they reveal a confused underlying belief system. After reading about the science of earthing, the new earthing products, and barefoot contact with the earth, it seemed as if these people were thinking of the earth as a quick fix, another alternative therapy to try out. “What is the best time to try out this new treatment, called “Earth?” Mother Earth is not a drug, nor an herb, or a vitamin. The more contact we spend in barefoot contact with the earth, the better. The time of day does not matter. The location does not matter. Don't “try” to get anything from the earth.

The earth gives us billions of free electrons per second, without our asking. Wherever you plant your feet, as long as your feet are in contact with the earth, you are in the right place at the right time, and your entire system will begin to move into its natural state. The greatest “healer” ever, the earth, has been with us all along, but unable to connect with us or help us due to our synthetic shoes that disconnect us from the earth, her healing frequencies and her endless supply of free electrons.

David Gersten, M.D. practices transpersonal psychiatry and nutritional medicine out of his Encinitas office and can be reached at 760-633-3063. Please feel free to access 1,800 on-line pages about amino acids and nutritional therapy at www. You can find more information about earthing research and products at


Dear Louise

Dear Louise,

I'm doing affirmations for more prosperity in my life, but they don't seem to be working. What do you suggest I do to keep the prosperity coming?

D.A., Chicago, Illinois

Dear D.A.,

I'm glad to hear you've been doing prosperity affirmations, That's a good beginning. How many do you do a day? 100 isn't too much. If you feel you're not getting results, then something must be blocking your affirmations. I wonder how many poverty affirmations you're also doing. Begin to notice what you say to yourself during the day that could be negating the positive statements. If you're saying,

“My prosperity is increasing,” this is very good. If later in the day you find yourself saying, “There's almost nothing in my checkbook” or “I wonder if the money will ever come,” then you're just negating it all. You can't say both yes and no to the universe and expect to get any movement at all.

Really begin to pay attention to your thoughts—all of them! You don't want to fight your thoughts, but you do want to guide them. Spend one month noticing every thought, and replace any poverty thoughts with prosperity thoughts. Affirm: All my thoughts support my growing prosperity.


Dear Louise,

I've read YOU CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE more times than I can remember and have bought many copies over the years. I feel that I'm at the point where I really need to talk to someone who can help me get back to feeling okay about myself. I know you no longer work with people one on one. Is there anyone who carries on your style of counseling that you can recommend?

B.H., Miami, Florida

Dear B.H.,

Making changes is more than just reading a book, but doing the exercises in my book is also important. It's called good old practice, practice, practice. I've been practicing every day for over 25 years, and it has paid off for me handsomely. Too many of us do the affirmations half-heartedly for a while and then fall by the wayside and later come back to doing “some” of the work. But this system never pays off. It's as though you're handed the script for a play where you were to be the star and you only learned half of the lines. Opening night would be a disaster because you hadn't fulfilled your part.

I began my own spiritual training with the Church of Religious Science in New York. The first year not too much happened because I played with the ideas. The second year I was sincere about the work and miracles began to happen in my life—and they've never stopped. The three-year program I took at this Science of Mind church changed my life. If you want to contact someone who thinks and counsels the way I do, then I suggest you look for Unity or Religious Science churches in your area. The Websites are: and . I know you'll be guided to the perfect one for you.


Dear Louise,

I've suffered from hyperhidrosis since the age of ten. This is excessive sweating of the hands, feet, and underarms. I'm now 57 years old and have learned to live with it, even though it's been emotionally very difficult to deal with. Could you shed some light on what the metaphysical reason is for this?

S.C., Atlanta, Georgia

Dear S.C.,

I wonder what happened around the age of ten that consumed you with fear and totally blocked your creative energy. No matter how long ago a problem started, remember that it came from nowhere and it can go back to nowhere. It's not a thing; it's a mental pattern expressing as an experience. Like many issues created in childhood, forgiveness is the most important approach to take. Parents do many foolish and even brutal things, but seldom is anything done deliberately. Usually parents really believe that how they're raising you is for your best interest. They could only parent you in the ways that their parents treated them.

I'd focus on making a list of all the negative experiences you had as a child. As the list grows, begin to take each individual experience into meditation and do a healing, forgiving release. You might sit on a beautiful island or beside a river or on a mountain. Enjoy all the beauty in your mind's eye. Place the parent in front of you, and say, “I realize you were doing the best you could at the time. I forgive you and I release you to a life of great happiness.” Then, feel a gentle cooling breeze caressing your body, removing all the old fears and barriers to your own happiness. Say to your own ten-year-old self, “You are safe and free, and I am safe and free.” Do this with each experience. It may take you several days to do so. However, when the list is complete, you will have comfort and freedom in your body and in your mind.

Louise L. Hay is a metaphysical teacher and the bestselling author of numerous books, including You Can Heal Your Life , Empowering Women, and I Can Do It! . Subscribe to the Louise Hay Newsletter! Call for a Free Issue: (800) 654-5126. Questions for Louise? Write to: Dear Louise Column, c/o Hay House, Inc., P.O. Box 5100, Carlsbad, CA 92018-5100 (letters may be edited for length and clarity). Visit Louise and Hay House at: or