What are negative ions?
Have you ever noticed how ridiculously good you feel after swimming in the ocean with the waves crashing around you? Or after washing in a gentle waterfall? Or why you feel exhilarated when it rains after a week of hot and stuffy weather? Or the reason your stress levels plummet when you spend time in a forest or national park.
There are a few reasons for each – partly because being in nature feels wonderful – but one of the main reasons is down to science: negative ions to be precise.
You see, when water molecules crash against one another or when water evaporates or when there are abundant trees in the vicinity, oxygen molecules in the atmosphere are negatively charged and the air becomes electrified.
How can something “negative” be positive?
Studies show that being in a environment rich in negatively charged air ions reduces stress and alleviates anxiety, improves brain function, minimises the chances of ulcer formation and reduces blood pressure and inflammation in the body.
In the Middle East there are windstorms which increase the amount of positive ions in the air and these have the opposite effect on mood to negative ions. It has been documented that negative mood patterns arise during these windstorms because positive ions reduce the levels of serotonin in the brain. A lack of serotonin can lead to anxiety, irritability, stress, depression, migraine, nausea and vision problems. Enough said. Bring on the NEGATIVE ions please!
Inhaling negative ions feels wonderful to the human body because it improves levels of serotonin, thereby revitalising our energy stores and zapping stress and depression.
In spiritual terms I suppose you could say that negative ions contain concentrated doses of prana just waiting to invigorate you in every way possible.
The best sources of negative ions
Get yourself to the following places for a fat dose of your daily “negs”:
- Wavy oceans
- Moving rivers
- Get outside after a thunderstorm
Alternative sources of negative ions
- Jump into your humble shower! Get in there and blast the water onto cold for the best effects.
- Pick up an air ioniser. My parents bought me one when I was 10 because I used to complain about the smell of cigarette smoke in the house. They cared about me but rather than quit, this was the 80’s so they thought this was a sufficient solution. It didn’t really help with the constant smell of smoke but I do recall getting addicted to pressing my nostrils right up against the air outlet for a heady rush of the purest air I ever inhaled. I would spend 20 minutes a day doing this. I am sure it is not recommended but I still remember the practice fondly. Here are a couple of options if you are interested in getting an ioniser for your bedroom:
And here is a very pleasant hippie version which imparts a lovely warm glow but it is nowhere as powerful as the previous options: