Electricity Matters

Day 324, 158-166

Dr. Sunshine

11/22/20232 min read

The weather went sideways in a big way today, almost literally with respect to the wind! But before it did, we got one more beautiful sunrise that I was not expecting. What a treat!

In other news, I am still working my way through Sally Adee's We Are Electric. The part I am reading now is triggering flashbacks to med school, trying make sense of embryology, the study of development of a human starting from the fusion of egg and sperm. At the time it was very difficult for me because it was just presented as a cookbook list of sequential events of this tissue becoming that body part to be memorized and regurgitated. Adee makes a great analogy to building a Lego set, with very clear instructions presented in an orderly fashion. But all the while I was trying to figure out how it all happened. There was a next level of understanding that was beyond the scope of our limited time in Gross Anatomy aside from a cursory mention of some theory. So how does this process get duplicated so perfectly hundreds of million times every year? Where is the instruction manual? It's not DNA. DNA codes for all sorts of proteins, but (as far as we know) it does not dictate that we have two arms and two legs and ten digits and ten toes, not to mention all the other intricacies of being human. Turns out, it's electricity. Tons of studies over the years have demonstrated electrical potential in all cells (they're not just for neurons!), as well as the ability to manipulate cells by applying external electrical stimulus. In a developing fetus, each new cell added influences the next one via electrical potential. There is biochemical stimulus at play as well, but electrical phenomena show up every step of the way.

So we can see electrical currents choregraphing the Swan Lake caliber dance of embryonic development, but what is directing the electrical currents? I suspect there is another level to this, and we have not yet distinguished causation from correlation. Perhaps we will get some clarity as we dive deeper into quantum biology.

Solving that riddle of "how" is beyond the scope of this little blog. What I feel we can take from this though is a thought experiment. After all, some of the best theoretical physics comes from thought experiments! If our development from embryos and our ongoing viability is so dependent on electrical potentials within and between cells and their associated magnetic fields, then we absolutely can be affected by external electromagnetic fields, whether natural or man-made, such as electrical wiring, wi-fi, cellular signals, and artificial light. I'll even call out natural light in excess, lest you think I am totally wacky. For example, me trying to extend my day by starting a campfire before sunrise is probably suboptimal and would catch up to me at least in the form of sleep disruption if I did it consistently. Not to say all these sources need to be completely eliminated, but there is definitely a case to be made for listening to one's body, and if something doesn't sound right, exposure to external non-native EMF's may be the issue and mitigation the solution.

I suppose I need a disclaimer now: This blog is meant for general information and entertainment purposes only and should not be considered personal medical advice. By all means, throw away your television, but please talk to your doctor to find out if living in a dugout house without electricity is right for you.