Modern society is so removed from nature that many children who grow up in built-up urban environments think of soil as dirt – as something yucky that you can’t possibly touch with your bare hands or feet. Sadly, they often don’t make a connection between that dirt and the plants and trees that grow in it, feeding our lungs and our stomachs and beautifying our surroundings.

And being used to artificial surfaces in the playground or rubberized athletic tracks, they won’t guess at the sheer pleasure of running barefoot through long grass or along a dusty path.

Adults too, thanks to the use of insulating materials like rubber soles, are separated from the Earth’s energy field.

This simple pleasure and the benefits we can derive from it, like so many other ordinary things, has acquired a more “scientific” sounding handle, namely “earthing”.

Did you know?

The Earth is negatively charged and when you put your feet on the ground you absorb large amounts of negative electrons through the soles of your feet which, in turn, can help to maintain your body at the same negatively charged electrical potential as the Earth.

Earthing, or grounding as some people call it, holds innumerable benefits for us. Putting our feet on the ground allows us to absorb large amounts of negative electrons through our soles.

Walking barefoot is as good for us as sunshine and clean water, even essential to our health. It’s common sense, but we seem to need a reminder.

An article in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health reminds us of the benefits of connecting with mother earth. This includes better sleep, reduced pain and a potential treatment for many chronic degenerative diseases.

Citing many studies, the article concluded that simple contact with the Earth, through being either outside barefoot or indoors connected to grounded conductive systems, could serve as a natural and “profoundly effective environmental strategy” against chronic stress, ANS dysfunction, inflammation, pain, poor sleep, disturbed HRV, hyper-coagulable blood, and many common health disorders, including cardiovascular disease.

The article states: “The research done to date supports the concept that grounding or earthing the human body may be an essential element in the health equation along with sunshine, clean air and water, nutritious food, and physical activity.”

A multicenter study at Nature’s Own Research Association, Dover, University of California at Irvine and the University of Oregon gives a long list of grounding benefits, including the ability to improve sleep, normalize the day–night cortisol rhythm, reduce pain, reduce stress, shift the autonomic nervous system from sympathetic toward parasympathetic activation, increase heart rate variability, speed wound healing, and reduce blood viscosity.”

There is a reason why walking barefoot feels so great: it’s healthy; it supports the body and our health.

Now remember to take off your shoes every now and then when you go outside.

If you’re looking for practical advice to break the cycle of anxiety, stress and unhappiness, check out Hack Spirit’s eBook on the Art of Mindfulness. Here's what you will get:
  • Learn what 'mindfulness' really is and the scientific benefits to practicing it daily
  • Practical exercises to be mindful throughout the day (even at work)
  • How to practice daily meditations to enhance peace and clarity of mind
  • Learn how to practice Yoga and Ujjayi Breath
  • Understand and implement the 7 key steps to practicing mindfulness
Check it out here.