WBGW: Shoes are overrated.

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Vampire feet…yup, they’re mine!

This is my very unscientific post about Earthing. Bare Feet + Earth = Healthy You.

In this day and age it seems as though we don’t get enough time outdoors. We are a culture of couch occupying, internet surfing, tv watching, cement walking, treadmill running, car driving humans. This is not to say that I never enjoy a good tv show or indulge in a little R&R on my couch. But I have come to realize how very important it is to also be “down to earth.”

I was horrified when I went through my weekly routine and discovered that I had probably not had my feet directly on the dirt, grass, or sand in months. Horrified! In my defense, it rains here…A LOT. And it is very cold. I can’t quite see the appeal in walking barefoot on my cold, wet grass. I have also thought that it’s possible that during my beach bum years I stored up enough feet-groundation to last me a lifetime. I don’t think that’s quite how it works though.

So I’ve started to make an effort to put my bare feeties on the cold ground a little bit. During the summer, I plan to do it much more. My first adventure going barefoot in the Pacific Northwest went like this: walked around for a bit, got the shovel, dug some dirt, distributed my kitchen scraps to the ground, walked around a little more and went back inside where I promptly covered the kitchen floor in twigs and leaves. I guess my feet were so cold I hadn’t realized they were there (the twigs/leaves, not my feet). Oh, Pacific Northwest, how I love you so…

You are probably wondering why the heck am I so concerned about putting my bare feet on the darned ground.

There is emerging evidence that our generation is dirt-deficient since rarely do we partake in the growing process of any food. I wrote about some of the benefits of dirt in my previous post, 5 Reasons to Have an Edible Garden. I mentioned that dirt has excellent beneficial bacteria, many of which work wonders for gut health and some that are even shown to reduce depression. I also mentioned that dirt is great immunological exercise.  There are a few other magical reasons to put your feet on the ground, though. I have been reading of the benefits of earthing, and for the most part I support it. I do not, however, recommend buying an earthing mat or something that will allow you to be grounded while still indoors. It all seems a bit fadish to me, and I have it on good authority it can actually do more harm than good. Besides, why try to replicate indoors what we have in abundance outdoors? I say, get outside!

Being connected to the earth has been shown to be of great aid in the healing of many chronic illnesses. In fact, some believe that illnesses in our modern time are due in large part to our being disconnected from the earth. The book Earthing: the most important health discovery ever? illuminates many of the healing properties of the earth. According to one cited reviewer:

“Earthing introduces the planet’s powerful, amazing, and overlooked natural healing energy and how people anywhere can readily connect to it. This eye-opening book describes how the physical disconnect with the Earth creates abnormal physiology and contributes to inflammation, pain, fatigue, stress, and poor sleep. By reconnecting to the Earth, symptoms are rapidly relieved and even eliminated and recovery from surgery, injury, and athletic overexertion is accelerated.”

I was first introduced to earthing by Ann Marie of Cheeseslave, one of my favorite bloggers who wrote this post about earthing: Can walking Barefoot Lower Cortisol and Balance Hormones?

So go outside and get some dirt between your toes!

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2 thoughts on “WBGW: Shoes are overrated.

  1. I whole heartedly believe in going barefoot outdoors as much as possible! Nothing brings me out of the doldrums as quickly as feeling soil beneath my feet. When I’m completely stressed I take myself outside and bring my feet, hands or both right down to the soil level. I’ve worked as a preschool teacher for over a decade and I’m seeing the fall out from children who have become completely disconnected from the outdoors and nature in general. A great book along those lines is Robert Louv’s Last Child In the Woods:Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder. Wonderful post, Olivia.

    • Thank you, Linda 🙂 I will definitely have to check out that book, it sounds great. It just makes so much sense to me…we are part of mother nature…why isolate ourselves from that? I believe YOU are the perfect example of healthy, happy, and dirt-lovin! you rock.

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