What is EMF and How Does it Work?

What is EMF? It’s not a stupid question. None of us grew up hearing about it. I first heard about it in 1996 when a friend was staying over and had to unplug the VCR, all the lamps, and the computer in the spare room in order to get to sleep. That person was a classic “canary in the coal mine” because not many knew about Electric Magnetic Fields back then. 

Today, SaunaRay answers the question “What is EMF?” all day long. Our saunas are the original medical-grade sauna and we’ve always made EMF leakage a very important part of our toxic-reduction strategy in building our saunas for medical doctors, naturopaths and other health care practitioners.

For the record, all electrical devices emit EMF. It’s impossible not to. Electricians use a measuring device called an amp meter which measures the electrical flow without even touching the electrical wires. When EMF is unusually high it can cause some people to feel certain symptoms. It’s estimated 3% of the human population is extremely sensitive to EMF. Another 10% is somewhat sensitive. If you have to ask “What is EMF?”, you’re probably not sensitive. But if you have headaches or dizziness when you’re using a cell phone, or sleeping in a room with powerful Wifi, or even sitting in an electric car, you might try reducing your exposure to see if the symptoms go away.

SaunaRay first became aware of infrared saunas with high EMF problems in 2005 when people started calling us asking to tear out the heaters of their discount imported saunas and replace them with SaunaRay’s low EMF sauna heaters. Our heaters are made in North America so they comply with the local electrical standards. Imported saunas are made for the Asian electrical grid or designed to operate on a low voltage like 12 volts, so they require transformers to operate on North American soil. Those transformers can leak high EMF and make people feel woozy or give them headaches. That’s why it’s always better to purchase any electrical device from a North American manufacturer. 

In the early 2000s, work by public health researchers such as Dr. Magda Havas from Canada and Dr. Devra Davis from the USA showed that the longer you are exposed to a high EMF, the higher your chances of becoming sensitive when you’re around it. Today many people are starting to hear about it and it leads many people to start researching based on the simple question; What is EMF?

Lately the biggest culprit of EMF is cell phones, Wifi, cell towers and especially the new 5G cells. None of it is properly tested or regulated for its effect on human health. One of the most common effects is the oppositional disruption of melatonin and serotonin production in the human body. Melatonin helps us get to sleep after the sun goes down and serotonin helps us to wake up when the sun rises. When the normal time of day production is reversed, as it can be by exposure to microwave radiation from cell phones and Wifi, it makes you feel sleepy during the day, and awake at night. One of the biggest health problems in North America today is the inability to sleep through the night. And that can lead to a host of other health problems. This is one of the many common effects of EMF. 

SaunaRay saunas will never have microwave radiation of any kind because we build our own saunas and choose not to install health hazards into them, no matter how fun or convenient they might be. SaunaRay does however use electric heaters which have a very small EMF emission at low frequency and are never strong enough to be harmful. SaunaRay’s ceramic elements are hot enough that you can’t really get close enough to notice the EMF.  When measured inside our saunas the EMF where you sit, near your face or your stomach is always lower than 3 MilliGauss. That’s the safe zone according to studies out of Sweden. In most places it’s lower than 1 MilliGauss inside your SaunaRay.

Imported saunas can have a very high EMF not only because they are made on another continent, but because they use low voltage carbon fiber heating systems that require a heavy-duty transformer that is usually installed on the roof, out of sight but not out of mind if you can feel it when it’s on. Some of them have been measured as high as 90 MilliGauss!

So, these days when you ask; What is EMF? You are asking a very important question. One that is increasingly relevant to human health and staying healthy. If you can minimize your daily EMF exposure you can minimize the number of agitants to your health.

Harmful levels of EMF are typically found coming out of cell phones, Wifi transmitters and from living in proximity to a cell phone tower. These are microwaves. The same ones used in your oven. In fact, Wifi operates on 2.4 GHz the same frequency used to cook food in microwave ovens. Cell phones operate around 600-900 MHz but you put them so close to your head that they’re even more harmful than Wifi. A lethal and growing brain cancer called glioblastoma has been causally related to cell phone exposure.

Many cell towers are mounted on the roofs of apartment buildings where tenants living on the top floors can grow suddenly and chronically symptomatic. There was a famous story in the news in Toronto a few years ago about an apartment that kept getting vacated when the new tenants repeatedly got sick when they moved in. One day a new tenant contacted all the old tenants and they shared stories and traced it back to the new cell phone antenna the landlord had installed on the roof. 

However, noticeable levels of lower frequency EMFs are commonly emitted from toasters, clock radios (too close to your head at night) and any receptacle in your house when something is plugged into it.

The new manufacturing concept called “the internet of things” has put wireless communication into fridges, stoves, cars, televisions, and you name it. This has increased the daily exposure to the average person to such a sea of microwave radiation that we should all be asking the very important question: What is EMF? We need to know about it as much as we need to understand second hand smoke, or air pollution. If it’s here to stay, it’s healthier to be educated about it than to ignore it.  

The doctors who understand the human health effects of EMF say that all we can do is try to reduce it in our homes and daily lives. Create a sanctuary where you don’t use Wifi on home computers, or at least unplug your router at night so you and your children can sleep. Keep your cell phone on airplane mode as much as possible, use it on speaker phone so It’s not touching your head, and don’t hold it near your belly when texting. 

At SaunaRay we understand the question; What is EMF? We lower the EMF output of your sauna so you have a safe option to choose from when making the very important decision of which sauna to buy. We don’t want to add to the EMF load in your household. And we want to make sure the doctors and their patients who rely on SaunaRay have an option that is toxin free, which includes being free of electrical fields that people are trying to avoid as much as possible in their daily lives.  

Thanks for reading! If you’re interested in a SaunaRay product don’t hesitate to contact us in whatever way works for you – we’re happy to pick up the phone and answer any questions you might have too!