Many of us walk barefoot at our homes. But some may find it difficult due to various reasons. However, did you know that walking barefoot benefits your health in many ways? The practice can have a positive impact on overall health.
While all of us walked barefoot as kids, we probably got accustomed to the different types of footwear as we grew up. It probably is time to revisit that forgotten habit. Here, we have discussed the many advantages of walking barefoot. Continue reading to know more.
Walking barefoot in natural surroundings brings you in contact with the earth. This transfers the earth’s electrons into your body, inducing therapeutic effects. These include reduced inflammation, stress, and pain and improved mood and sleep.
1. It Can Help Fight Inflammation.
Grounding (another name for direct skin contact to the surface of the earth) has been found to produce measurable differences in cytokines, compounds involved in the inflammatory process. Interestingly, this effect can be attributed to the earth’s electrons.
Skin contact with the earth’s surface facilitates the spread of electrons from the earth to the human body. These electrons enter the body through specific acupuncture points and mucous membranes (residing right under the skin).
The antioxidants in our body are made of electrons, which help neutralize free radicals and eventually fight inflammation.
2. May Promote Cardiovascular Health.
Various studies have shed light on the physiological effects of walking barefoot (grounding) in improving cardiovascular health. They also showed a decrease in the blood viscosity levels, an effect that may lower hypertension. However, more research is warranted to highlight the beneficial effects of walking barefoot on cardiovascular health.
3. Can Relieve Anxiety.
Grounding was also linked to lower anxiety levels. Subjects dealing with anxiety and depression, when grounded to the earth during sleep in their own beds (using a conductive mattress pad), experienced improvements in their condition. Though the experiment wasn’t performed on subjects actually walking barefoot, the mechanism involved was the same.
4. Can Boost Immunity.
The transfer of electrons is the key, again. The body is capable of absorbing and donating electrons to the areas that need immune support.
Reports suggest that the disconnection from the Earth could be an important cause of the rise of inflammatory-related diseases that have everything to do with a weak immune system. Walking barefoot may correct this.
This is because lack of sufficient electrons in the body can weaken the mitochondria (structures in the body’s cells that are responsible for energy production), eventually leading to chronic fatigue and other issues. Even a minor injury can become a long-term health problem.
5. May Help Heal Chronic Pain.
The effects of grounding could alleviate pain levels. Some research shows that walking barefoot may reduce pain by altering the numbers of circulating neutrophils and lymphocytes. It also modulates various other factors linked to inflammation.
In another study, grounding lead to rapid resolution of painful chronic inflammation. It could even prevent the signs of inflammation following heat, swelling, and pain. However, we do not recommend you take a walk (let alone walking barefoot) if you have a serious injury.
6. Can Promote Better Sleep.
Walking barefoot can also induce better sleep. The earth’s electrons spread to your body and cause multiple beneficial psychological changes, including enhanced sleep every night. Grounding also helps normalize the day-night biological rhythms. This helps you relax and sleep better.
7. May Promote Eyesight.
There is little research to establish this aspect. This effect might have more to do with the reflex points on the foot that are connected to the optic nerves.
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