Proponents of earthing sheets say they can improve your sleep quality and duration, reduce stress, enhance mood, relieve pain, and even boost your immune system, among many other benefits.
By connecting your body to the ground as you sleep, these particular sheets are said to restore the electrical equilibrium with the earth and boost the beneficial negative ions with which our ancestors have evolved to enhance our physiology.
It’s reasonable to think that this all sounds too good to be true, but do earthing sheets work? We’ll answer this question by looking at what scientific research has discovered. Several studies have been conducted, and while the proof isn’t 100% concrete and agreed-upon, many people find firm benefits from sleeping on earthing sheets.
Earthing is all about getting our bodies back in contact with the ground. In our busy lives, we rarely have the opportunity to go walking barefoot or take a nap lying directly on the grass.
Our ancestors grew up walking barefoot on the floor and slept directly on the ground, and it’s believed that our bodies have evolved to benefit from this, which we miss in our modern lives.
The earth has a mild negative charge, but without touching it, we build up a potentially harmful positive charge in our bodies. When we’re in direct contact with the ground, the electrical energy that has built up equalises, and it’s believed that the resulting rebalancing of electrons has many positive benefits.
Earthing bedding provides an electrical connection between the earth and your body. Hence, as you sleep, you gain all the benefits of earthing and removing the built-up positive charge without having to lie on the ground outside.
All You Need to Know About Earthing Sheets
So, before evaluating if earthing sheets work, what benefits are they supposed to provide and how do these devices function?
If you are considering using earthing sheets, the main benefits you’re probably looking for are improvements connected to your sleep. Resting on these devices throughout the night could reduce insomnia and improve sleep depth and duration, resulting in less fatigue in the morning and more energy during the day.
In addition, the earthing effect can also:
- Reduce chronic inflammation
- Reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol
- Reduce anxiety and depression
- Chronic pain relief caused by chronic disease
- Improve immune system function
- Enhance circulation
- Help with weight loss
- Promote faster wound recovery
- Reduce the effects of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) after exercise
Doctors believe that around half the people on earth suffer from a chronic disease of some kind. These are long-lasting and often can be kept under some level of control but can’t be cured. Some examples would be heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis.
It is acknowledged that many chronic diseases and other physiological problems begin with inflammation which is the body’s response to damage, pathogens, stress or irritation from the environment.
Your immune system becomes filled with free radicals as inflammation develops. This can cause a deficiency in negatively-charged electrons, creating and promoting disease development and other negative symptoms.
Making an earth connection between the body and the ground is thought to resupply our bodies with the negative ions and free electrons, reducing inflammation, removing free radicals and subsequently providing all the other positive effects we’ve mentioned.
How Do Grounding Sheets Work
Using earthing sheets lets us take advantage of the grounding effect during the most extended period of a day that we stay still. Walking around barefoot on the earth all day might not be practical, but we all need to sleep. So, you’ll likely find lying in bed the most convenient and easiest way to ground yourself.
These devices are like a regular cotton sheet, except they have an electrically conductive contact material woven inside them. The conductive material is connected to a ground wire, which, in turn, plugs into an electrical socket in your bedroom.
Don’t worry, though. You won’t be getting an electrical shock as you sleep. The grounding wire and plug only connect to the earth pin in the electrical outlet. They use the earth wire of the electrical supply to connect the sheet and, consequently, your body’s electrical charge to the earth.
As you sleep, the theory is that while your body is rebuilding, as usual, it also recharges with negatively-charged electrons from the earth and, by doing so, can reduce inflammation and experience all the other health benefits we’ve already talked about.
Is There Any Evidence That Grounding Sheets Really Help the Human Body?
OK, so that’s the theory of the benefits dealt with. But do earthing sheets work for real? Several scientific studies indicate that grounding isn’t just a theory; it actually works.
A 2004 study in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that grounding the human body to earth during sleep reduced cortisol levels to natural levels. The authors also found earthing “during sleep improves sleep and reduces pain and stress.”
Other studies have found that sleeping on a grounding mat lowered stress levels, improved morning fatigue, reduced nighttime pain, increased daytime energy, and dramatically improved sleep insomnia. It has also been found to reduce the effects of jet lag.
Scientists studied the effect of grounding therapy on the human body and mood in 2015, and the results suggested that “pleasant and positive moods statistically significantly improved among grounded participants.”
Muscle Recovery After Exercise
Sleeping on earthing sheets after exercise may help reduce delayed onset muscle soreness. Studies in 2015 found that grounded participants “demonstrated shortened duration of pain” and improved muscle recovery.
Much evidence promoting grounding for general health is somewhat anecdotal and needs to be studied further to gain full acceptance. However, reports have shown improvements in “blood glucose, osteoporosis, immune function, blood flow, and stress reduction.”
Another 2011 study revealed that earthing subjects improved electrolytes, thyroid hormone levels, glucose levels, and immune response while they slept.
Being grounded while sleeping has also been proven to reduce blood pressure and viscosity and improve blood flow which can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Because grounding resets the body’s electrical charge with that of the earth, it appears that general body stress and, therefore, chronic inflammation decreases. Earthing can correct imbalances across the entirety of the body’s systems which is why many people find deep and impressive results from sleeping while earthed. It has even been suggested that grounding can contribute to an enhanced antioxidant environment that can encourage wounds to heal faster.
In short, there is evidence that getting back in contact with the earth can significantly improve our health and wellbeing.
What Are the Differences Between Grounding Sheets and Grounding Mats?
Grounding sheets are specifically designed to fit onto your bed just like a regular sheet. You find manufacturers offering fitted sheets, a flat sheet, or a half sheet (so you only earth half your bed).
A grounding sheet has the benefit of being the most comfortable option to sleep on. However, this can only be used for one purpose, and it can be relatively delicate and require special care when washed.
A grounding mat can be more practical, although maybe a little less comfortable to sleep on. You’ll be able to choose your grounding pad from a variety of sizes, and they tend to be pretty hard-wearing and longer-lasting than sheets. They are also more versatile than earthing sheets: you could use the same mat to earth you while you sleep and then during the day underneath your bare feet while sitting at a desk for work.
Feel Better With the Help of Earthing Sheets!
Walking barefoot in contact with the earth undoubtedly has wide-reaching positive physiological benefits for our bodies and minds. Similarly, sleeping while grounded by using an earthing sheet or earthing mat to create an electrical connection between your body and the earth can cause dramatic health improvements.
Although the mechanism isn’t completely understood and further research needs to be done, scientific studies have demonstrated that earthing can improve sleep quality and duration and reduce insomnia. It may also improve mood, lower stress and anxiety, relieve muscle soreness after exercise, and limit the impact of jet lag.
For many people, the essential benefit of grounding bedding is that it can reduce pain and inflammation from chronic disease. This and the many other health benefits we’ve detailed mean that earthing sheets may be well worth considering as a straightforward way to improve your general health.