Cell Phones, Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) & the Risk of Cancer

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We currently live in an environment that’s never existed in nature before. Today’s environment is loaded with electrical pollution, or electromagnetic fields (EMF) from radio frequency communication devices like cordless phones, wireless devices, cell phones and cell phone towers as well as wiring in your walls, electric outlets, extension cords, lamps, and other sources of electricity. You could also be affected by power lines near your home or your bedroom. A WiFi router in your kitchen or a “free” WiFi hotspot at the coffee shop and even wireless baby monitor can all contribute to the electromagnetic pollution that affects everyone you know.

In the book, Public Health SOS: The Shadow Side Of The Wireless Revolution, Camilla Rees writes, “It turns out that most living things are fantastically sensitive to vanishingly small EMF exposures. Living cells interpret such exposures as part of our normal cellular activities (think heartbeats, brainwaves, cell division itself, etc.) The problem is, man-made electromagnetic exposures aren’t “normal.”

There are both natural and man-made sources of non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF). The earth’s magnetic field is one example of a natural EMF.  Man-made EMFs can come from a number of sources. Source of extremely low frequency EMFs (ELF-EMFs) include power lines, electrical wiring and appliances like shavers or hair dryers. Common sources of radio frequency radiation include wireless telecommunication devices such as cell phones, radio/tv signals, radar, microwave ovens, wireless networks, smart meters, as well as tablets and laptop computers.

For things you use every day at home, magnetic field levels are highest near the source and decrease rapidly the farther away you get. Just one foot from most appliances will dramatically lower exposure. Non-ionizing EMFs are everywhere in your home. WiFi local area networks are almost always “on” and are common in homes, schools, libraries, offices and many public places.

You usually can’t feel electromagnetic fields (EMF) in your environment, but your cells are extremely sensitive to  them! Here’s just a partial list of diseases associated with EMF exposure:

Many cancers Neurological conditions Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) Sleep disorders Depression
Autism Cognitive problems Cardiovascular irregularities Hormone disruption Immune system disorders
Metabolism changes Stress and Mineral disruption Fertility impairment Increased blood-brain barrier permeability DNA damage

The Problem with Cell Phones

The shear number of cell phones alone is growing by leaps and bounds every year. The last study just a few years ago showed over 327 million cell phone users in the U.S. (Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Assoc.). The number of cell phone users worldwide is estimated at over 5 billion.
It took 20 years after cell phones hit the market before a billion were in use. That was in 2004. Then it only took another 18 months to reach 2 billion. Just 9 months later, the number explodes to 3 billion. After 6 months there were 4 billion cell phones … and the world is already showing the signs of a brain cancer epidemic! If you manage to avoid brain cancer you may still find yourself battling headaches dizziness, Alzheimer’s disease, autism and even impotence.
Cell phones emit both electric and magnetic fields — invisible areas of energy or radiation. Electric fields are produced whether or not a cell phone is turned on. Magnetic fields require that a device is turned on. Electric fields are easily shielded by objects like walls. However, magnetic fields can pass right on through buildings, living things and most other objects. Together, these fields are called electromagnetic fields (EMF).
There are two main types of EMFs:

  1. High-frequency EMFs like x-rays and gamma rays. that are also called ionizing radiation. These can directly cause damage to your DNA or cells.
  2. Low- to mid-frequency EMFs, such as static fields (do not vary with time), magnetic fields from electric power lines or appliances, radio waves, microwaves, infrared radiation and visible light. These are in the non-ionizing part of the electromagnetic spectrum and are not known to damage DNA or cells. These EMFs include extremely low frequency EMFs (ELF-EMFs) and radio frequency EMFs.
electromagnetic fields (EMF)

Though the corporations involved have worked long and hard to make everyone believe that cell phones are safe, here’s what really happens — cell vibratory receptor proteins sense electromagnetic radiation and react to them as a danger. Within a few seconds they respond with cell membrane compression which eventually impairs intercellular communication and organ function. Long-term exposure can cause cell death due to the build up of free radicals in the cells. It can take 18 months for such damaged cells to be replaced with good cells assuming the source of electromagnetic radiation is gone.

While virtually everyone you know has a cell phone, and probably has for a decade, you probably don’t know anybody that has a brain tumor. Every year about 80,000 men, women and children in America are diagnosed with a brain tumor. Comparatively, almost 10 times more people (800,000) die annually from heart disease. So the rarity of brain cancer may make you think that your cell phone is safe to use. When over 90% of U.S. adults has a cellphone and only 0.02% get brain cancer, you might think that it’s OK to use a cell phone. Except, however, the real damage is not actually brain tumors … the real danger is from the reactive nitrogen species peroxynitrites which can damage your mitochondria.

Peroxynitrite is the Real Culprit in Cell Phone Damage

Peroxynitrite is an unstable ion produced in your body after nitric oxide is exposed to superoxide. This complex chemical process starts with low-frequency microwave exposure from your cell phone and Wi-Fi router, as well as from nearby cell phone towers. In your body, peroxynitrites react with certain proteins creating changes visible in human biopsies of atherosclerosis, myocardial ischemia, inflammatory bowel disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and septic lung disease.

First, microwave radiation stimulates the production of calcium inside your cells and mitochondria. With this extra calcium present, nitric oxide is then activated in the cells. Nitric oxide is requires calcium to activate. It’s present in all animals and has numerous health benefits, but it can be destructive when an ionized oxygen molecule is released during pathological change, producing peroxynitrites, believed to be one underlying causes for some of today’s chronic diseases.

Reactive nitrogen species like peroxynitrite can remove an electron and damage the DNA inside the mitochondria and nucleus of your cells. This pathway of oxidative destruction triggered by low-frequency radiation emitted from mobile devices may explain the phenomenal growth rate of chronic diseases in the last 25 years. This is a far, far greater problem than brain tumors when it comes to cell phone hazards.

There are several ways to protect yourself from EMFs from electronic devices. The main concerns in your home are cell phones, portable phones and Wi-Fi routers/modems. Remember, even though you feel safe to use your phone since you don’t feel the health effects immediately, but that is most definitely not the case!

  • Keep your phone away from your head: You can use a selfie-stick, turn on the speaker phone or use a headset. Try to keep your conversations short and do more texting than talking to minimize exposure.
  • Increase your distance from sources of EMF: The closer the device, the more EMF you are exposed to. Avoid putting your phone in your pants pocket or on your belt. And please don’t keeps phone and tablets by your bedside.
  • Certain spices help reduce damage: Spices rich in phenolics, such as cloves, rosemary, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger, have shown some protective capacity to protect from damage caused by peroxynitrites.
  • Turn off your Wi-Fi: When not in use, turn your Wi-Fi, modem and cell phone off.

Please don’t count on any of the many products that promise to block EMF radiation — they do a terrible job at blocking this energy. There may have a small biological benefit, but are not a good alternative for the four suggestions above.

Why Government Agencies Can’t Stop This

Over the past few decades, government regulatory agencies have become financially entangled with the corporations they are  regulating. In fact, agencies like the FDA and FCC are actually in part funded by the very businesses they are supposedly regulating. Even worse, the heads of these agencies are looking forward to cushy jobs in the private sector when they “retire” from their Federal jobs  — or conversely you’ll find corporate executives appointed to these sensitive Federal positions. At the very least, this is a huge breach of public trust.

In Dirty Electricity: Electrification and the Diseases of Civilization, Sam Milham, MD, shows how the diseases of modern civilization — heart disease, cancer, diabetes, etc. — are related to this overlooked cause. Dr. Milham shows us why so many of these diseases have been increasing during the last 100 years, explaining the connection between disease and electricity. Government has failed to do anything or has been bought. So the industry completely ignores the risks while increasing our exposure. Industry leaders show no concern as our declining health bankrupts the country.

The cell phone industry likes to claim thousands of studies on their safety. But the original studies were about microwave ovens NOT cell phones. Sneaky buggers — you see, microwave ovens and cell phones have similar radiation, but not identical! And, of course, microwave ovens are not held next to your ear.

The media began to complain about the lack of serious studies on the health effects of cell phones when Congressional hearings made it clear there actually were no studies on their safety at all — and no FDA or EPA oversight.  So the cellular industry promised to do their own research — the fox guarding the hen house principle. Surprisingly, after a massive research project the result of all their work contradicted the industry’s claim that cell phones were safe. The study showed that brain cancer was 3 times more prevalent in heavy cell phone users. Non-malignant tumors of the auditory nerve (behind the ear where we hold our phones) and chromosome damage were more probable. A few other researchers also found troubling results, such as DNA damage in human blood cells from cellular radiation. But these studies were very new at the time so their reliability was unknown.

In 1997, an Australian researcher published the first significant scientific evidence that cell phones could cause cancer in mice. But many “scientists” still questioned whether mouse studies could be applied to people. In 1998,  a Swedish scientist reported that increased use of cell phones showed a corresponding increase in headaches and fatigue. The study of over 15,000 people showed as much as a 600% increase in dizziness, headaches and discomfort as usage increased from 2 minutes a day to over an hour. Leakage in the blood brain barrier was cited as a possible cause.

Soon, another alarming study found that cell phone radiation caused genetic damage in human blood cells. The relationship between cancer and cell fragments, called micronuclei, is so powerful that doctors all over the world test them to see if patients are likely to develop cancer. The preliminary results showed almost 300% increase in genetic damage when human blood cells were exposed to cell phone radiation.

Of course the industry didn’t want to believe this so they repeated the study with tighter controls, but the still saw genetic damage. In another study, cell phone users were almost 2.5 times more likely to develop these neuro-epithelial tumors.  And yet another study looked at a rare noncancerous tumor affecting the auditory nerve —  and saw a 60% greater chance of acoustic neuromas for people who had used cell phones for 6 years or more. The longer they used a cell phone, the greater the risk. Finally, a study, of 285,000 cell phone users found a higher rate of brain cancer deaths among cell phone users who hold the antenna next to their heads.

Around 2009, researchers at the National Toxicology Program (NTP) exposed rodents to radio frequency radiation levels at around what heavy cell phone users get every day. The researchers discovered that as the rats were exposed to greater intensities of electromagnetic fields (EMF), more of them developed rare forms of brain and heart cancer — demonstrating a direct dose–response relationship. Conversely, none of the rats in the “control group” (not exposed to the radiation) developed such tumors.

Earlier studies had never found that this type of radiation was associated with such cancers, but none of those studies followed as many animals for as long or with the same  intensity exposures. The findings shocked some scientists who had been closely tracking the study. “I was surprised because I had thought it was a waste of money to continue to do animal research in this area. There had been so many studies before that had pretty consistently not shown elevations in cancer. In retrospect the reason for that is that nobody maintained a sufficient number of animals for a sufficient period of time to get results like this,” one scientist stated.

The Damage from Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) is Alarmingly Real

Electromagnetic fields (EMF) is associated with cancer, concentration problems, ADD, tinnitus, migraines, insomnia, arrhythmia, Parkinson’s and even back pain.  For people sensitive to EMF just walking into a coffee shop with WiFi can trigger an array of symptoms such as headache, fatigue, nausea, burning and itchy skin and muscle aches. A cordless phone base station 2 feet from your head for three minutes can noticeably disrupt your heart rhythm, triggering higher heart rates, arrhythmias and other issues. The EMF effects on the heart in one study were found at only .3% of the FCC’s recommended exposure limits

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Cell Phone Health Risks

Today, electromagnetic fields (EMF) are surrounding us all the time. Some are natural like the sun, which gives off energy throughout the entire electromagnetic spectrum. The earth’s atmosphere is very selective about which radiations and light to let in and which to keep out and all living organisms have adapted to this. But in the last 100 years humans have been busily adding their own forms of electromagnetic energies — usually without even a thought about the biological consequences. For example, the protective ozone layer in the stratosphere is getting depleted and letting in more dangerous energies from the sun.

The toxic effects of ionizing radiation, such as X-rays  gamma rays and ultraviolet radiation (UV) are well understood. However, non-ionizing radiation (radar, radio frequency radiation, lasers and extremely low frequency ELF’s) can have very detrimental effect at surprisingly low exposures. This is particularly true when low exposure levels are combined with long periods of exposure (chronic exposure).

In our fast-paced, industrialized society, we spend most of our time indoors or in cars, away from the natural background radiation that is normally life-sustaining. Instead, we replace that healthy radiation with electronic gadgets, digital devices and a whole range of unnatural sources of electromagnetic fields (EMF) that rarely occur naturally. This results in a deficiency of natural radiation exposure, replaced instead with unnatural, unhealthy radiation exposure from man-made sources alien to our natural world and our bodies.

Selected References

  1. https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk/radiation/cell-phones-fact-sheet
  2. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/major-cell-phone-radiation-study-reignites-cancer-questions/
  3. H. Lai and N. P. Singh, “Acute exposure to a 60 Hz magnetic field increases DNA strand breaks in rat brain cells,”Bioelectromagnetics 18 (2) (1997): 151-165.
  4. L. G. Salford, A. E. Brun, K. Sturesson, J. L. Eberhardt, L. and B. R. Persson, “Permeability of the blood-brain barrier induced by 915 MHz electromagnetic radiation, continuous wave and modulated at 8, 16, 50, and 200 Hz,” Microscopy Research and Technique 27 (6) (1994): 535-542.
  5. M. Repacholi, “Low-level exposure to radio frequency electromagnetic fields: health effects and research needs,”Bioelectromagnetics 19 (1) (1998): 1-19.
  6. M. Sandström, J. Wilen, G. Oftedal, and K. Mild, “Mobile phone use and subjective symptoms: Comparison of symptoms experienced by users of analogue and digital mobile phones,” Occupational Medicine (London) 51 (1) (2001): 25-35.
  7. R. R. Tice, G. G. Hook, M. Donner, D. I. McRee, and A. W. Guy, “Genotoxicity of radiofrequency signals: Investigation of DNA damage and micronuclei induction in cultured human blood cells,” Bioelectro-magnetics 23 (2) (2002): 113-126
  8. G. Carlo and R. Jenrow, “Scientific Progress – Wireless Phones and Brain Cancer: Current State of the Science,” Medscape General Medicine 2 (2) (2000).
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  14. Oberto G, Rolfo K, Yu P, et al. Carcinogenicity study of 217 Hz pulsed 900 MHz electromagnetic fields in Pim1 transgenic mice. Radiation Research 2007; 168(3):316–326.[PubMed Abstract]
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  17. The INTERPHONE Study Group. Brain tumour risk in relation to mobile telephone use: results of the INTERPHONE international case-control study. International Journal of Epidemiology 2010; 39(3):675–694.[PubMed Abstract]
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  19. Schüz J, Jacobsen R, Olsen JH, et al. Cellular telephone use and cancer risk: update of a nationwide Danish cohort. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2006; 98(23):1707–1713.[PubMed Abstract]
  20. Frei P, Poulsen AH, Johansen C, et al. Use of mobile phones and risk of brain tumours: update of Danish cohort study. British Medical Journal 2011; 343:d6387.[PubMed Abstract]
  21. Benson VS, Pirie K, Schüz J, et al. Mobile phone use and risk of brain neoplasms and other cancers: Prospective study. International Journal of Epidemiology 2013; 42(3): 792-802.[PubMed Abstract]
  22. Benson VS, Pirie K, Schüz J, et al. Authors’ response to: the case of acoustic neuroma: comment on mobile phone use and risk of brain neoplasms and other cancers. International Journal of Epidemiology 2014; 43(1):275. doi: 10.1093/ije/dyt186.
  23. Coureau G, Bouvier G, Lebailly P, et al. Mobile phone use and brain tumours in the CERENAT case-control study. Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014; 71(7):514-522.[PubMed Abstract]
  24. Hardell L, Carlberg M, Hansson Mild K. Pooled analysis of case-control studies on malignant brain tumours and the use of mobile and cordless phones including living and deceased subjects. International Journal of Oncology 2011; 38(5):1465–1474.[PubMed Abstract]
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  26. Aydin D, Feychting M, Schüz J, et al. Mobile phone use and brain tumors in children and adolescents: a multicenter case-control study. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2011; 103(16):1264–1276.[PubMed Abstract]
  27. Inskip PD, Hoover RN, Devesa SS. Brain cancer incidence trends in relation to cellular telephone use in the United States. Neuro-Oncology 2010; 12(11):1147–1151.[PubMed Abstract]
  28. Deltour I, Johansen C, Auvinen A, et al. Time trends in brain tumor incidence rates in Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, 1974–2003. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2009; 101(24):1721–1724.[PubMed Abstract]
  29. Deltour I, Auvinen A, Feychting M, et al. Mobile phone use and incidence of glioma in the Nordic countries 1979–2008: consistency check. Epidemiology 2012; 23(2):301–307.[PubMed Abstract]
  30. Little MP, Rajaraman P, Curtis RE, et al. Mobile phone use and glioma risk: comparison of epidemiological study results with incidence trends in the United States. British Medical Journal 2012; 344:e1147.[PubMed Abstract]
  31. Howlader N, Noone AM, Krapcho M, et al. (eds).  SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2012, National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD. Retrieved January 11, 2016.

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