Dr. Al Danenberg ● Nutritional Periodontist
June 4, 2018 [printfriendly]
Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy may be a game-changer when it comes to the health of our mitochondria.
PEMFs are low-frequency, pulsating magnetic fields with wavelengths that can completely penetrate the body. They are supportive to the body’s natural functions. PEMFs are different from dirty electromagnetic fields (EMFs), sometimes called “electro-smog”.
Dirty EMFs are constant and are contaminated with very high frequency, short-wavelength surges, all of which are damaging to cellular health. Some sources of dirty EMFs are power lines, metal plumbing, and wireless communication devices.
Mitochondria are organelles inside the cytoplasm of all the cells in our body except red blood cells. These mitochondria have various roles, one of which is the creation of energy so that our cells can function. Just as a flashlight requires fresh and strong batteries to shine its light brightly, so do our cells require healthy and peak-performing mitochondria to create the energy for our cells to do their jobs efficiently.
Creation of Energy
Most of the energy for our body is created in the mitochondria. Energy is produced through a biological process called the “Electron Transport Chain” (ETC). Electrons are transferred through the ETC in steps – starting with a protein complex called Complex 1 and then progressing to Complexes II, III and IV. The process ends with Complex V, where energy is produced in the form of ATP (Adenosine triphosphate).
If damage occurs in any of these Complexes, then there is dysfunction in the mitochondria. Dysfunctional mitochondria could lead to decreased ability for a cell to do what it was designed to do. Ultimately, chronic disease would be the result of dysfunctional mitochondria.
My Study of N=1
There is some evidence that PEMF therapy may improve the health of mitochondria., However, based on my search of PubMed, there has never been a study to demonstrate that damage to the ETC in mitochondria could be repaired by PEMF therapy.
One challenge has been that there was no non-invasive test to determine the health of the ETC in mitochondria – until now. A recently commercialized, non-invasive test for mitochondrial dysfunction is called MitoSwab Plus. I wrote about this test HERE.
I set out to do my own human research.
My wife was my test subject to study the effects of a PEMF Mat. While there are many PEMF devices in the marketplace today, some are not as “clean” and “biologic” as others. I chose the PureWave Full Body Therapy System
While I am reporting the results of only one person, I believe I had control of all potential “confounding factors”. The only change in my wife’s daily routine over the course of my continuing study was her sleeping on the PureWave PEMF Mat every night.
This PEMF mat has a shape and feel of a soft yoga mat. I placed the mat under the mattress-cover on our bed. The mat is controlled by a timer that turns itself on for a 24-minute session just after my wife goes to bed and then turns itself on for another 24-mintue session just before she wakes.
To begin, I tested her mitochondrial function at the start of this experiment and repeated the test 4 weeks later using the MitoSwab Plus test. The Lab results were impressive.
The baseline data at the start of my Study showed that her mitochondria-per-cell from the sample that was taken were overproducing mitochondria. The test also documented deficiencies in Complex I and Complex III. The overproduction of mitochondria was to compensate for her deficiencies in both complexes. I performed a second MitoSwab Plus test at the 4-week mark.
The results from the 4-week mitochondria test reported a significant decrease in the overproduction of mitochondria and significant improvements in both Complex I and Complex III.
I will continue to test my wife’s mitochondria over the next couple of months for more confirmation of improved mitochondrial function. However, these are only the results from one individual. I did not have any control group.
My Next Step
My next step will be to design a Protocol for a double-blind, randomized controlled trial to study the effects of the PureWave PEMF Mat on the health of the electron transport chain in mitochondria. Then, I will present it to an Institutional Review Board to get the ball rolling.
To prove the PureWave PEMF Mat is repairing the ETC in dysfunctional mitochondria, my Protocol will consist of a control group and an experimental group. The control group would lay on a mat that was not generating a magnetic field, and the experimental group would lay on a mat that was producing PEMFs. MitoSwab Plus testing would be performed at the beginning and at the end of the study period.
My goal at the completion of the study is to prove a causal relationship between PEMF therapy and the repair of dysfunctional mitochondria.
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