Magnets and High Blood Pressure – an attractive proposition?


 

Today I am going to take a look at a natural way to treat blood pressure which has recently become more popular.  Namely Electro-Magnetic and Static Magnet Therapy.

magnetFrom the research I have done into this subject, it is clear that this particular form of therapy is still quite controversial with proponents of the approach praising the amazing healing effects of magnets on the human body.

Whilst in the other corner there is an equally vocal group who believe that the science just does not support the theory that magnets can have any real health benefits on the body whatsoever.

My post is going to look at whether magnets can have a significant enough effect on blood pressure to make it a worthwhile treatment option!


Magnetic Healing Theory

There are several theories involving the use of magnets and how they are able to help in the management of hypertension.

  1. The Diuretic Mimic Theory – This theory maintains that magnets work to help control blood pressure because when applied they have a similar effect as that of diuretic medication, which is often the first line of treatment by physicians when prescribing medications to help control BP.  Magnets contain diuretic properties which help the body to remove excess fluid from the body.  Since excess fluid is thought to lead directly to increased blood pressure, then removal of the surplus fluid should cause less pressure and thus lower BP.
  2. The Boost in Blood Flow Theory – The magnetic pulses emitted by the magnet have been associated with increased blood flow and improved oxygen absorption, which ultimately allows the heart to work less strenuously, thereby reducing blood pressure.
  3. The Electro-magnetic Blood Viscosity Lowering Theory – This theory is based on the concept that the iron-based protein contained in hemoglobin, which is found in the body’s red blood cells, can be magnetized to align itself according to the direction of an electro-magnetic field.  Just as iron filings will align themselves along the field lines of a bar magnet.  This orders the blood cells in a more streamlined way so they take on a less viscous property and thereby allow the blood to flow more freely through the blood vessels, thereby reducing blood pressure.  Blood cells will also clump more efficiently together which again allows for smoother flow.

How Magnets are used to treat High Blood Pressure

There are three main types of treatments which make use of magnets:

  • Magnetic Therapy Wrist Bands and other static magnetic products, e.g.mattresses and sheets interwoven with magnetic strips
  • Magnetized Water
  • Electro-magnetic Therapy

MAGNETIC WRIST BANDS/ OTHER PRODUCTS magnetic wrist band

These products are used externally to produces a magnetic field around the body which then exerts a positive influence on blood flow and enhances the oxygenation of the body.

For example, the magnetic Wrist Band is designed to be worn, as its name suggests, on the wrist over the radial artery.  This causes the magnetism to be absorbed and then distributed quickly around the body.  In turn this improves the circulation of blood around the heart and the body which leads to increased oxygenation of the organs and tissues.  With an increase in the flow of oxygen the heart is not required to beat as frequently and consequently, due to the diminished workload, blood pressure will naturally fall.

Magnetic Mattresses, sheets with magnetic fibres, or small magnets sown into the fabric, and a whole array of magnet jewelry, straps for ankles, knees and back, and also magnetic insoles are all designed to achieve this same beneficial effect on the body’s circulatory system.

MAGNETIZED WATER

Magnetized water is commercially available, and you can even buy a Water Optimizing Machine and make magnetic water at home for yourself which in the long run is probably a much cheaper proposition!!

Water which has been magnetized is seen to have a detoxifying effect on the body when consumed regularly which can help removed excess fluids and accumulated toxins from the tissues.  Thus, it mimics the effects of certain diuretic medications which are also designed to rid the body of built-up fluids.  The net result of this is to relieve pressure on the heart and thereby reduce blood pressure.

electromagnetic device

Biomag magnetic therapy device

ELECTRO MAGNETIC THERAPY

This type of therapy which uses pulsed magnetic fields of a certain potency is usually carried out at a professional clinic by trained medical staff, although home devices are also available.  One such company who produces this type of equipment is called BioMag.  If you are interested in learning more about the services and products they offer, please click HERE

The devices used specifically for helping lower blood pressure employ low frequency pulsed electro-magnetic therapy to dilate the blood vessels so that blood can flow more freely.  This reduces pressure on blood vessel walls which directly and positively affects blood pressure.  In addition, a spasmolytic effect can be induced which helps keep the vessels from contracting and narrowing.




How Well Does Magnetic Therapy Work?

Well this really is the 64,000 dollar question.  This is an area where not a large amount of study and research has been conducted to date.  And what research there is available suggests that a lot more investigational work still needs to be carried out.  But some initial work with static magnets and their effect on blood pressure has been undertaken – and it has produced some cautiously optimistic results.

In this study undertaken by researchers at the Monash University in Melbourne, Australia*, magnets were used on the test subjects to see if their use would have a direct influence on the subjects’ blood pressure. The subjects were exposed for ten minutes to 2 bracelets consisting of 6 x 800G (4800G) static magnets. Their BP was taken prior to and after exposure to the bracelets.   And the results clearly indicated that there was indeed a decrease in blood pressure in 83% of the test subjects.

In another experiment by two American Physicists** blood was pumped through a tube for one minute which itself was located within an electromagnetic field with a power of 1.3 teslas.  (For  comparison’s sake, a typical hospital MRI machine uses magnets of the power range of 1-3 teslas.)  So we are talking about a pretty strong magnetic field here.

The researchers discovered that after only one minute the viscosity of the blood was reduced by 20 – 30% and did not return to its original viscosity for a further 2 hour!

(*Ravneet Kaur, Irena Cosic (Bioelectronics Group) Monash University, Melbourne.)

(**Rongjia Tao of Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Ke Huang of the University of Michigan)

Admittedly this is only preliminary research, and as Mehmet Toner, a Medical Engineer at Harvard, commented of the viscosity experiment mentioned above, the researchers now need to do:

“a lot more work to prove that the magnetic field can reduce blood viscosity under physiological conditions, and do so in a manner useful for clinical applications,”

However the results are promising and may open up possibilities in the future for magnetic therapy to play a serious role in helping people with hypertension manage their condition.



Summing Up

Well in my opinion the jury is still out on this subject.  There is not enough scientific date yet available to conclude that using magnetic therapy, whether electro or with static magnets, is a completely effective stand alone treatment for reducing blood pressure.  I feel however that it could be a potential adjunct to other treatments, either natural or pharmaceutical, but not more than that at this point.

It seems to me that further research into the use of electro-magnetic pulse therapy is the way to go.  Frankly, the weak nature of static magnets used in bracelets, wrist bands etc.. is not likely to exert a strong or enduring enough influence on blood pressure levels.  Static magnets may offer some mild health benefits, but for someone dealing with serious hypertension, it would be unwise to rely on this alone as an approach to managing such blood pressure issues.

On the other hand electro-magnetic therapy takes advantage of magnetic fields which are much more potent and thus considerably likelier to represent a more realistic alternative to controlling blood pressure.  But, as already stated, this still needs a great deal more investigation and research.

However, it does offer some hope for the future.  And I will definitely be watching how developments in this area play out as time goes on – and reporting back on them.


If you have any opinions of today’s post and would like to discuss further, I would love to hear from you.  Please feel free to add a comment below.

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