Sunday, May 17, 2009

Radiation Health Risks

In an article written about an interview with Dr. Neil Cherry, he discusses scientific research he has observed when human cells are subjected to extremely low frequency (ELF) electromagnetic fields (EMFs). The article is posted at

Many companies make serious amounts of money from products where EMF is a byproduct, and stand by the belief that electromagnetic radiation is capable only of heating. They insist that if the heat is properly removed, which in many electronic devices it is, radiation can have no negative effects on the body. In his research experiments, Dr. Cherry attempts to debunk these claims, and prove that EMF has far deeper reaching implications than just heating damage.

Dr. Cherry prefaces his experiment by explaining how the human body takes care of itself. He states,
"Every night when we go to sleep our melatonin levels rise and melatonin goes
through our blood and cleans our cells up. For example, it scavenges out
free radicals which are highly damaging chemicals. If the free radicals persist
for very long they damage DNA and cause damaged cells and are shown to be

In his experiments, he found that ELF electromagnetic radiation exposure consistently and repeatably reduced the amount of melatonin in the blood. This lack of melatonin then, in turn, reduced the amount of repair to human cells, allowing them to become damaged and deteriorate. It is in this damage and deterioration that cells fail to perform the duties the body's DNA naturally selects them to do. The body's natural repair system was shut down by the EMF exposure.

The concerning part is that the amount of radiation these cells were subjected to ranged from 2 to 12 milligauss. A laptop computer can emit up to 175 milligauss when running just a common virus scan. EMF is an invisible, odorless, and tasteless, which allows it to be swept under the rug and ignored. The long term effects are yet to be seen in humans, and more and more people are not waiting around to see what happens.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

RF vs. EMF

Radiation. It's something we know is bad for us....but it seems that with so many types of radiation, they're often collected into one large group as being one in the same.

So let's start with a definition: What is radiation? Radiation, put simply, is the emission of energy from an object. The absorption of that energy by the human body is most often the target of conversation when it comes to health and radiation.

The kind of radiation that the HARApad product is linked to is electromagnetic radiation. Electromagnetic radiation is explained in detail in this blog's post "What is electromagnetic radiation and how can it be dangerous?" The HARApad functions by attenuating, or acting as a ground, to the circulating EMF surrounding electrical devices. EMF is particularly concerning because there is no defined maximum safe level as issued by any authoritative body. The more demanding the performance of an electrical device, the more electricity (and therefore EMF) is present. There is no legal limitation on electrical currents in home products, so EMF continues to increase dramatically.

Another type of radiation that some people are also voicing concerns about is RF radiation. RF stands for Radio Frequency, and is emitted by radio and television signals, cell phones, and wireless devices. RF is measured in cycles per second, or Hertz, and the radiation levels are measured by Specific Absorption Rate (S.A.R.). The FCC has put regulations on safe levels of RF exposure, at a S.A.R. of 1.6 Watts/kilogram. That means that no wireless transmitting devices are allowed to exist on the market with a higher S.A.R. than 1.6 W/kg, exceeding the safe level of exposure. A device does exist to block RF radiation, called the LapShield. While it is marketed to block EMF, testing shows that it does not block any EMF at all, but is very effective against RF radiation. The proof is in Winston Technologies' cell phone test; wrap a cell phone in their product and it will eliminate the signal. Radio signals are emitted by antennae; be it a radio station tower, a cell phone tower, or a wireless router in your own home. Radio frequencies exist anywhere a cell phone gets reception, or anywhere a laptop can pick up a WiFi signal. The body is continually immersed in this RF wave, at safe levels according to legal codes set forth by the FCC, and exposure could only possibly be eliminated if one were wearing a suit made from the shielding material found in the LapShield. Alternately, EMF is emitted only by electrical devices, and exists in dangerous quantities nearest the source, or the device itself. EMF fades to safe levels with distance, and protection against negative effects can be achieved with the proper blocking device between you and that source.

The lesson here is this: All radiation is not created equal. EMF is very different from RF, and the only test to determine a product's effectiveness against EMF is to use a Gaussmeter. The HARApad does not block against RF, and the LapShield does not block against EMF. We are subjected to EMF as we get closer to electrical components, and we are subjected to RF in any location where a wireless internet signal can be picked up, or cell phone service received. EMF levels will be allowed to soar towards infinity so long as electronic devices are allowed to progress in strength. RF emission is limited by the FCC, and products with these signals are regulated. It is our belief at HARApad that these EMF fields are the more pertinent and dangerous waves that the public needs to be educated about and protected against.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Electromagnetic Sickness

The article we're spotlighting today is one regarding electromagnetic sickness symptoms as reported by Medical News Today. The link to the article can be found at

It appears that people are asking more and more about the effects, both long term and short term, of electromagnetic radiation. While it is true that we have been exposed to this radiation for a number of years, rarely are any of us subjected to the zero-distance that laptops can require. Distance is a key factor in the strength of an electromagnetic signal. It's been long said that microwaves are dangerous and harmful to humans while running, but it's likely that you aren't pressing your face against the glass of the microwave for hours at a time while it's heating (if you are, stop!). Segue to a laptop: as the requirements of the average laptop user increase to accommodate faster browsing, streaming media, and demanding programs, the internal electronic components of the laptop increase as well. With the increase of electric draw to these components follow the naturally occuring increase in electromagnetic radiation. Couple that increase in EMF to a distance of zero inches from the body, and radiation exposure exceeds that of even the most powerful electronic devices in the average household.

People subjected to these fields are more and more frequently reporting feelings of lasting vibrations, burning skin, electrical current in the body, and general feelings of unwell-being, to name a few from the article. When the source of the field is removed, the feelings go away. This article also dives into an experiment in which a canary, subjected to EMF waves, stops singing and begins picking at irritations in its feathers. When the EMF signal was removed, the singing resumed and the feather picking stopped. The important question to ask here is, what irritations, noticeable or not, are occurring within the human body when subjected to the same exposure?

Another facet of this article points out that people are reporting physical effects of electromagnetic radiation, but no one is acknowledging these effects. Because science has not pinpointed the exact reason for these effects, or consistency from subject to subject, they are being denied in their entirety by governments and global organizations, like the World Health Organization (WHO).

The fact is, the general public doesn't need a stamp of approval by organizations and governments to understand the science behind the danger potentials (see the previous post, "What is Electromagnetic Radiation and How Can it be Dangerous?"). The general public needs to educate themselves about the risk that can exist and do what they can to mitigate that risk. We at HARApad advocate limiting exposure to strong electromagnetic fields at all costs, and when it's not possible, protect yourself with products designed to do so. Everyone loves a good conspiracy theory, but it doesn't matter; the science of how EMF works is available, and now it's up to the consumer to decide if they want to take action with the knowledge that's been passed on to them.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

What is Electromagnetic Radiation and how can it be Dangerous?

There seems to be much question and uncertainty when it comes to electromagnetic fields (EMF) and how something that surrounds us that we don't feel can be a danger. EMF is a naturally occurring field present with any device carrying an electrical current. That means anything you plug into your wall has an EMF surrounding it. The picture below from Encyclopedia Brittanica shows how an electromagnetic field works.

This picture is the view of the cross section of a wire carrying an electrical current, including its surrounding electromagnetic field. The purple center is the current carrying wire itself, and the dotted lines around the outside show the naturally occurring electromagnetic field that rotates around the wire. The ring nearest the wire, or the innermost dotted line, carries the strongest field, while the purple ring furthest away from the center indicates where the field fades to almost zero. This field is in constant motion, rotating around the outside of the wire. The rotational direction of the EMF depends on which direction the current is traveling. Using this picture as an example, if the current were traveling away from you (or into the screen), the EMF rotation is clockwise, and vice versa. The distance from the center of the wire to that zero EMF ring depends on the strength of the current traveling through the wire.

Today's laptops have many wires inside its body, carrying current to all the components requiring power. This current in the wire is ever increasing to meet the increasing demands of laptop performance, for better web browsing, streaming media, and demanding programs. Thus, as the required current increases, so too does the EMF surrounding the wire. When a laptop is placed directly on the lap, the body is effectively placed within the EMF rings surrounding the current carrying wires inside the casing of the computer. Researchers recommend limiting exposure to these fields to 2 milliGauss (mG), which is the unit of measurement of EMF. Laptops today have been measured as high as 175 mG when running daily tasks, like a virus scan or a disk defragmenting program.

So there's an electromagnetic field surrounding is that dangerous? When we plug in our laptops, the electricity we use from our walls is alternating current. That is, the direction of the current in the wire changes back and forth, and therefore, the EMF rotation goes from clockwise to counterclockwise, back to clockwise, and so on. This back and forth motion creates a vibration in the tissues of the body that are within reach of the EMF.

It is this vibration that is of concern to researchers for two reasons: Heat and mutation. This vibration principle is the very idea of how a microwave works; as the object is vibrated by the microwave, molecules rub together and heat, very much like rubbing cold hands together to warm them up. EMF vibrates cells, and heats them to create a temperature condition they cannot survive under for long periods of time. The temperature generation is especially of concern, due to the temperature sensitive conditions of fertility and conception in both males and females. More information about the temperature sensitivity of fertility can be found here:

The second concern to researchers is mutation. In laboratory studies, cells have been observed to mutate under constant vibration situations. Cancer is simply a cell mutating from a healthy cell into a cancerous cell, though the specific cause for this mutation is yet undetermined, and EMF has long been a topic of suspicion. Cellular mutation is discussed here:

The science of EMF and how it relates to current is a complex one, and the explanation listed above is a brief description of how EMF works and what it means to the average person using electronics on a regular basis.

Welcome to the HARAblog!!

We at HARApad, LLC are hoping to bring awareness to the health risks of exposure to electromagnetic fields, most notably those from laptop computers. It will be in this blog that we will spotlight articles and research by professionals, and also highlight some of the concerns that the general public are voicing. We will use our extensive research on this subject to shed light on a rarely discussed topic, and lend tips and suggestions to minimize associated risks.

Be sure to check back for weekly posts about this hot topic!!