PEMF, The Basics

Understand how PEMF works

PEMF, magnetic fields and your cells

A weak electrical current sent through copper coils produces a pulsed electro magnetic field. Lying in that field re-energises the membranes around your cells, boosting inter-cell communication, release of toxins and absorption of oxygen and nutrients.

Each of our trillions of cells is like a miniature city with many different parts doing different jobs. DNA inside the nucleus is probably the best known component and is obviously important in terms of our genetic blueprint.

But the hub of the cell is its outer membrane. This is where it absorbs oxygen and nutrients, releases toxins and carbon dioxide, receives and issues instructions, largely through hormones, enzymes and neurotransmitters.

It’s obvious how important good circulation and oxygen levels are, but some of these neurotransmitters are vital to our sense of well being, moods, stress and anxiety levels:

  • Endorphins are our natural pain killers, as well as mood enhancers.
  • Serotonin affects our emotions, sleep, mental health and immune system.
  • Oxytocin is another happiness booster, helping us feel connected and loved.
  • Dopamine also feels good but especially boosts motivation, learning and memory.

A person deficient in these neurotransmitters, some of which also depend on levels of certain bacteria in our gut microbiomes (something we emphasize in our protocols), is much more susceptible to pain, depression and loneliness than someone who is in balance.

So the cell membrane is where electromagnetic field therapy has its main effect. By re-energizing every cell in the body, a whole-body mat system is able to ensure that many processes work better.

In just 15 minutes a day, pain and inflammation reduce, circulation and immune systems improve, bone and tissue repairs speed up. 

Crucially, this process also includes the energy output from mitochondria, the little power plants inside every cell.

So there in a nutshell you have three of the main components of a happy life: less pain, better moods, strong motivation and plenty of energy.

In modern society, all of these processes, and some very serious health issues, are affected by our cells being constantly bombarded by artificial energies, or electrosmog, causing excessive fatigue and premature ageing at the cellular level.

If you’re at all skeptical about this, please do a little research — there’s a huge shock waiting for you! Some of the solutions are so simple, you’ll kick yourself for not knowing. And having a PEMF system is one of the most powerful steps you can take, like having your own body battery charger. Your cells will appreciate it.

How does PEMF feel?

This depends on your overall state of health, your age, and the level of intensity you choose.

Many people feel very little when bathed in a low-intensity PEMF field, although it often produces a feeling of warmth, especially in affected areas when using local applicators. In a high-intensity field, you will probably feel your muscles twitching rhythmically with the pulses it produces.

Among the sensations most people first notice are either deep relaxation or feeling energized. Getting this balance right (so that for instance you don’t stay awake after using it at bedtime), and delivering results at a speed and power that match your state of health, is the main challenge in your early days of using a PEMF mat. Fortunately, we can draw on much experience to help you select settings, and design a treatment program that suits you and any other family member who wants to use the system.

How soon can I expect results?

Most people notice two things quite quickly: more energy, and better sleep. However, your response, and how quickly you feel it, will depend totally on your age, overall health, and the type, stage, duration and response level of any health challenges you may have. If you’ve had a health challenge for 10 years, it may take more than a few weeks for your body to really respond.

On the other hand, when PEMF is applied soon after a fresh injury or acute flare-up of an existing condition, a huge reduction in pain and increase in mobility can sometimes happen within minutes. How often you use your system, and at what intensities, will also have a major impact on what results you see.

What happens in the body during a PEMF treatment?

Bathed in a PEMF field, the cell membranes become more energised, with a better balance between positive and negative ions. Greater cell membrane potential means better absorption of nutrients and oxygen, and better elimination of wastes. Blood circulation increases as the vessels dilate and as red blood cells repel each other more strongly, so the oxygen content of the blood increases.

Calcium is also released from the protein layer of the cell membranes, and this sets off many reactions, including greater immune system activity.

Under the influence of PEMF (and even more so if you use our system’s Brain Entrainment and Bio-feedback options) the autonomic nervous system should move from some level of stress (sympathetic mode) towards relaxed (parasympathetic). It then better able to release the many neuro-transmitters required for adequate tissue repair, pain relief and health maintenance.

Many of these effects continue for several hours after treatment, which is especially important during sleep, when cellular repairs are at their peak.

What results can I expect?

Everyone is different in terms of their overall health, energy levels and well being but PEMF technology has been shown to offer a wide range of benefits, including:

  • Better blood circulation and oxygen utilisation
  • Increased metabolism and energy levels
  • Improved immune response, helping to prevent infection and disease
  • Reduced pain and inflammation
  • Greater psychological well being in case of stress, depression and anxiety
  • Deeper relaxation and stress reduction
  • Better sleep
  • Accelerated healing of wounds and injuries
  • Greater bone density
  • Faster recovery from illness
  • Slowed down ageing process
  • Overall wellness and vitality

Can everyone use PEMF?

PEMF is an extremely safe therapy in most situations and there are very few contra-indications. However, you are conservatively advised to not use it with the following:

  • During pregnancy
  • With epilepsy
  • When a heart pacemaker or other electrical implant has been fitted
  • Following an organ transplant
  • With children younger than two weeks old

And to only use it with the approval and supervision of a doctor, in case of:

  • Presence of tumors
  • Serious cardiac arrhythmia
  • Acute attacks of hyperthyroidism
  • Extreme sensitivity to electromagnetic fields

Can PEMF do harm, cause pain or trigger a healing reaction?

This partly depends on what intensity level you use but in principle the only way PEMF can cause any pain is when an old injury or other condition is not fully resolved: as the cells become more energised, long-delayed healing processes may be activated, causing pain in the same place as the original injury. We don’t see this often but it can happen, briefly, from time to time.

The body can also go through a short de-toxifying phase, which is usually just a day or two of fatigue and cold-like symptoms. Overall around 10% of our clients with chronic symptoms will see an initial healing reaction, especially if they have been receiving medication for a long time. If this happens, drink plenty of water, and get lots of rest and sleep. Such phases are usually followed by increased energy and a sense of well being.

There are no other negative side effects documented from using PEMF, especially at the low intensity and frequency levels used by Life Mat systems. They simply re-create the same type of energy, with the same un-adulterated frequencies, as would have been experienced by humans living in Earth’s magnetic field thousands of years ago. This energy is crucial to life on Earth — experiments have shown that the body starts to close down when totally shielded from it.

For people who have a complex, long-standing issue, especially of a neurological type, or a very nervous disposition, we recommend a slow, cautious approach to avoid the risk of an overly strong healing reaction. Our mats have a “Sensitive” setting which we often advise such individuals to use initially. Even using this weaker magnetic field, they will still have desirable effects, and gradually tolerate higher levels.

You can not overdose by going on a Life Mat system too long or too often (but you can certainly waste your time: the body will not benefit from having treatments more than every few hours). We’ve had clients who ignored our advice and in every session cranked up the intensity on the mat to levels usually reserved for the local applicators. It can feel wonderful at first but there can also be a price to pay later in terms of lowered stress thresholds.

How does PEMF compare with magnetic mattresses and bracelets?

Static magnets, the type used in magnetic mattresses and bracelets, have been used in healing for thousands of years (in the form of magnetite crystals). PEMF systems instead pass a pulsing electric current through metal coils to generate their magnetic field.

It’s testament to how much we react to magnetic fields that even the simplest, crudest form of magnetic therapy can be effective, especially for short-term relief, and especially for activating shallow-depth tissues and acupuncture points.

However, traditional magnetic therapy has many shortcomings, especially compared with what we can now achieve with pulsed electromagnetic therapy:

1) By using a fixed, unchanging magnetic field, static magnets are uni-dimensional: they have only one frequency, one intensity, one effect. Just because magnetic minerals are found in the Earth, doesn’t mean that they create Earth’s magnetic field. Unlike a PEMF system, static magnets are far from mimicking Earth’s weak but dynamic field, or the dynamic frequency bands in the atmosphere above it. These dynamic fields are what our bodies evolved in.

2) Manufacturers often emphasise the polarity of their magnets, yet there is almost no scientific research backing up these biological effects from static magnets. However, dynamic polarity switching, as used in some PEMF devices such as the iMRS, can help to avoid the body becoming used to the field and therefore un-responsive.

3) With static magnets, the body soon becomes used to a constant, unchanging field, so the health benefits recede with time. And in order to have an effect deeper than skin level, modern magnetic mattresses typically have to expose the body for long periods to much higher field strengths, often thousands of times higher than is required for the same effect using PEMF. Even weak PEMF fields are able to pass through the entire body, including dense tissues like bone and cartilage.

4) By energizing the membranes of every cell in the body, PEMF fields stimulate many cellular processes, including nutrient absorption, oxygenation and elimination of wastes.

5) This ratio of effect between static magnets and PEMF systems has been seen in studies of both phosphorylation (the process by which enzymes are turned on and off) and nerve cell growth. A German meta-study in 2011 evaluated 17 studies using static magnets and 10 studies using pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (all of them randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled). ( Salomonowitz G1, Friedrich M, Güntert BJ, Schmerz. 2011 Apr; 25(2):157-60, 162-5. doi: 10.1007/s00482-010-1005-0). Their conclusion was that “Static magnetic fields are ineffective with respect to pain therapy (while) dynamic magnetic fields show diverse effects (and) this therapy should be researched in depth.”

What is the difference between PEMF and EMF fields?

You may have heard that constant exposure to strong EMF fields can damage our physical and mental health. What PEMF offers is the exact opposite of this, making it a partial antidote to EMF exposure.

The differences are:

  • PEMF is a sub-set of electro-magnetic fields, or EMF’s.
  • The main differences lie in their intended use, how they’re configured, and their effect on our bodies.
  • EMF fields, often called “electrosmog” are emitted by a vast range of modern appliances, either accidentally (all electrical appliances give out some radiation) or intentionally (radio-frequency fields are used as carriers for information, such as from satellites, mobile phone towers, wifi, etc).
  • The problem is that EMF regulatory safety levels are determined almost totally by whether they cause significant heating of our tissues (largely ignoring cellular damage from ultra high frequencies and biological resonance).
  • PEMF equipment is designed (in terms of waveforms, frequencies and intensities) with only one purpose: beneficially affecting our bodies.

To learn more about how our bodies are affected by Earth’s magnetic field, amospheric frequencies and EMF radiation, read Why We Need PEMF.

How can PEMF help when we have so much electrosmog around us?

It’s true that we’re exposed to EMF’s all the time, every day, at levels depending on our overall lifestyles. It’s an unseen but easily measurable pollution, increasing every year. It’s recognised as a major health risk by the World Health Organisation and proven by countless mainstream research studies. And there’s little we can do about this outside our own homes.

Except for avoiding these fields when possible, pulsed electromagnetic field therapy is one of the few ways of addressing this increasing threat to our health and well being. Bathing the whole body in a PEMF field helps to re-set and energise all our cells, hopefully before we cross the threshold and become so EMF-sensitive that it becomes an uphill battle.

Part of the Life Mat service is to give detailed advice on how to reduce EMF exposure at home. Yet many of our clients report strong improvements even if they’ve made little progress reducing EMF’s (often one person wakes up to the dangers while the rest of the family remains in denial).

Given our current environment, every age group can benefit from daily PEMF sessions: from school children and office workers exposed to strong high-frequency WiFi fields all day, to older people trying to reduce age-related health issues.

Can I use PEMF if I’m electro-sensitive?

As with any health condition, we have to point out that our systems are a means of supporting the body in restoring health, rather than a direct cure for the condition. Having said that, with electro-sensitivity, PEMF is directly addressing the main trigger for the condition.

PEMF can definitely help even those who have become EMF-hypersensitive. However, this is a very individual issue and depends on many factors. It becomes much more difficult to address it if you’ve reached a level of extreme sensitivity, a situation that serves as a lesson to us all.

Such people have major problems functioning in modern society: severe headaches occur whenever a mobile phone is used nearby, when they go into a coffee shop with WiFi, when they shop in a supermarket with overhead fluorescent lighting. Some would say they’re neurotic but the people we’ve met with these symptoms were certainly not and were certainly suffering.

If you’ve reached a state of electro hyper sensitivity, there’s a good chance that our technology can help but it depends on what stage you’ve reached and much depends on your patience and willingness to precisely follow our advice on how to use it.

Bear this in mind if you read our PEMF Machines Guide. That page includes an in-depth exploration of the main factors to consider in choosing a PEMF device, especially the huge range of field intensities found in PEMF devices, and how these can affect individuals at different points on the electro-sensitivity spectrum (a spectrum which we contend applies to almost everyone in modern society).