“No shirt, no shoes, no service” is a sign you may have seen in the window of a restaurant or store. While you probably should keep your shoes on when inside such a place of business, walking barefoot outside can do you a whole lot of good. Sometimes called “earthing” – because everything needs a hip name – walking barefoot on soil, grass, sand or any other natural surfaces have gone from just being a childhood joy and new-age trend to a proven way to improve your health.
Studies have concluded that the benefits of earthing are a result of the direct contact between the feet and the intensive negative charge carried by our planet. This charge is full of free-radical destroying electrons which can help the body’s natural defenses and improve overall well-being in a number of ways.
Seven ways that walking barefoot on the earth’s natural surface can help your health are:
- Better sleep. Studies have found that earthing can alter the brain’s electrical activity in a positive way, leading to increased feelings of relaxation which can facilitate healthy, restful sleep.
- Stress reduction. The same positive energy that can help with sleep can also help reduce our stress levels. Stress is a factor in a whole range of health problems, from heart disease to hair loss, so any activity which can keep that stress at bay is beneficial.
- Alleviating foot pain. Electrons aside, getting out of your shoes can help alleviate many foot ailments and leg, hip, or back pain which arise as a result of ill-fitting footwear or shoes which change our natural gait.
- Reduced heart-disease risk. High blood viscosity is a significant contributing factor to heart disease. A study published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that earthing helps increase the surface charge of red blood cells, which in turn reduces blood viscosity and can reduce the risk of blood clots and heart disease.
- Stronger foot and leg muscles. When you walk barefoot, you engage more muscles in your toes, feet, and legs than you would if you were being cushioned and protected by shoes. This can help improve your strength, balance, and appearance.
- Sharpened senses. Being connected directly to the ground can help you become more in tune with the environment around you. When you walk barefoot, you tend to be more conscious, aware, and alert of potential dangers than you would while wearing shoes.
- Free foot massages. The earth may not have all the amenities of a high-end spa, but it provides plenty of ways to treat your feet to a soothing foot massage. Small pebbles, rifts, and stones can provide a gentle massaging as you walk and help energy flow freely throughout your body.
While earthing can be a positive addition to your lifestyle, walking barefoot is not without its downsides, especially for kids. Make sure you and your kids follow these common sense barefoot safety tips next time you leave your shoes behind.
Call JAWSpodiatry Today to Schedule an Appointment
At JAWSpodiatry in Hollywood, Florida, we know how painful and frustrating foot and ankle problems can be. We utilize the most advanced and non-invasive techniques to reduce foot and ankle pain and speed recovery. Please call us today at (954) 922-7333 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.