Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Let's Ban Innerspring Mattresses

One of our competitors, Organature, have written to us threatening to take us to the ACCC for making misleading claims that metal springs in mattresses create electromagnetic fields which can affect our health. Organature state that there is no scientific evidence to prove this.

We at Blessed Earth believe there is considerable evidence.

Blessed Earth used to make organic cotton innerspring mattresses and futons, just as Organature do. We then graduated to wool mattresses and futons, which, for reasons we will spell out below, we believe to be superior to cotton ones.

About 3 years ago, we noticed that Naturopaths and other "alternative" therapists were increasingly referring their clients to us. When a close friend was diagnosed with cancer and advised by her Naturopath to immediately get rid of her innerspring mattress, we started to look more closely at the situation.

Within days of researching we had ceased all production of innerspring mattresses. This was a costly decision for us, as at the time, we were selling 4 times more mattresses than futons. The motivation that inspired us to start an ethical business like Blessed Earth made it impossible for us to knowingly sell a product which we believe to be harmful to the well-being and potentially to the physical health, of our customers.

We don't claim to be experts. However there are people who are experts and we have invited one of them, Richard Giles, to give us a definitive report on the subject. It makes interesting reading.

First, here is the letter from Organature.

Blessed Earth 29 April 2011
To whom it may concern
Please be advised that before I send this email I have spoken to officer ACCC and it was recommended that I first addressed this complaint to you.
a/ On your website, other websites and other advertising you state 'ORGANIC COTTON MATTRESSES', your firm does not supply these and therefore that statement is classed as misleading and false advertising.
b/ On your website, other websites and other advertising you have an article: 'SPRINGS IN MATTRESSES', this article is misleading, there is no scientific proof of the statements made in that blog.
Under the circumstances we request that you make every effort to delete these statements/blog from all your websites, associated websites and any advertising.
If these points are not rectified by 6 June you leave me no option but to pass the matter onto ACCC.
Peter Byl
Managing partner Organature 315 Bartons road Buffalo Victoria 3958

(P.S. With regard to Organature's claim that we advertise organic cotton mattresses, we have no knowledge of this. We have no reason to advertise what we don't sell? Futhermore, we have no possible interest in selling them any more. Cotton lacks resilience and it absorbs moisture and bacteria. It's a wonderful fibre - as long as you can wash it.
If Organature or anybody can point out to us where we say we are selling these products, which we now believe to be unhealthy, please let us know and we will happily withdraw the material immediately.)

Now here is the report from Richard Giles:
Sleeping As Though Your Life Depended on It.
by Richard Giles

Bedrooms are the most important room in your house as that's where you regenerate your health, remove the cares of the previous day and prepare yourself for tomorrow. Many people today have their bedrooms loaded with electronic equipment which is likely to be causing problems with sleep, tissue repair at night and may even be contributing to longer term illnesses and general poor health. Electrical equipment can have subtle but profound effects on your health. Here's a run down on it.

Your body has the ability to repair itself while it sleeps. This is accomplished with your own internal electrical system that functions for you with very weak electrical impulses. Electrical impulses are generated by your brain and are used for cell and tissue communication. This happens because your body is 70% composed of water with a high mineral content making it very electrically conductive.

In the normal bedroom of a modern home, electrical exposure from external sources (such as live wiring in ceilings, walls and floors, plus electrical equipment like computers, electrical clocks, iPads and mobile phones and TVs) is thousands of times stronger than your body's own system. Plus the presence of radiation from radio and TV signals, broadcasts from neighbours mobile phones and WiFi plus the general EM fields in modern society all contribute. Long-term exposure to these fields (EMF - electromagnetic fields) can impair your natural ability for the cells to communicate within, and impact on your health in a number of ways. The average person spends approximately one-third of their life sleeping, which is why it's key to protect your bedroom from EMF disturbances.

All the cells in your body vibrate at different rates, and these tiny electrical impulses are for intracellular communication throughout the body. Because of its electrical functioning, your body acts just like a tuning fork. External electrical field influences (EMF) can cause your cells normal frequency rate to be disrupted and they start vibrating to the frequency of the outside source. A book called "Energy Medicine: The Scientific Basis" by Dr James Oschman (PhD in Biology) explains this in much more detail.

James Oschman says in the book: "From the work of Frolich and others, we now know that all parts of the living matrix set up vibrations that move about within the organism, and that they are radiated into the environment. These vibrations or oscillations occur at many different frequencies, including visible and near-visible light frequencies. These are not subtle phenomena; they are large, even gigantic in scale. Moreover, their effects are not trivial, because living matter is highly organised and exceedingly sensitive to the information conveyed by coherent signals.

The Bio-Initiative Report (see, published in August 2007 by an international working group of scientists, researchers and public health policy professionals, documents serious scientific concerns about radiation emitted from power lines, cell phones and many other sources of exposure to radiation and EMFs in daily life.

It concluded that the existing standards for public safety are completely inadequate to protect your health. The report includes studies showing evidence that electromagnetic fields can: affect gene and protein expression, have genotoxic effects (e.g., DNA damage), induce stress response (stress you out), affect immune function, affect neurology and behaviour, cause childhood cancers (leukaemia), impact melatonin production, cause Alzheimer's disease, and promote breast cancer.
Why Your Metal Spring Mattress or Bed May be Dangerous
The vast majority of beds contain metal springs and/or frames. Unfortunately, these metal frames and metal springs can amplify and distort the earth's natural magnetic field, which often leads to a poor sleep and a range of other symptons including - headaches, hyperactivity, depression and fatigue, eyestrain, muscle cramps and even nightmares.

Other biologicial problems associated with EMFs fall into two major categories: 1) the brain (behavioural abnormalities, learning disabilities, altered bio-cycles and stress responses), and 2) growing tissue (embryos, genetics and cancer). Research has shown that the body during sleep must be more alkaline, and that high EMFs lead to acidity. Acid chemistry in the body contributes to more disease.

The metal springs in all modern mattresses are coiled and these regularly arranged sets of coils can actually amplify the EMF in your bedroom and as well as distort the earth's natural energy fields. There are two effects - one is having a magnetised set of coils in your bed and the other is to have the coils resonate to whatever equipment is radiating EMF around your room. The difference is that a magnetic field is generally due to a moving charge while an electric field is generally due to a charge with no net movement. Both impact on your body's natural fields.

In my work as a Feng Shui and Earth Energy practitioner over the last 12 years I have encountered many problems with people's sleeping positions and their beds. The worst is when a fuse box is located directly outside the bedroom near the bed. Then there is the location of a bed behind a wall where other EMF equipment is being used or when the bedroom is full of electrical gadgets. Your bed's metal coils will respond to these fields and resonate with them thus setting up a disturbance pattern in your vital sleeping area. The length of a bed and coils is often in tune with the wavelength of radio frequency waves.

Metal coils resonate to EMF fields. They will create what's called a 'sympathetic' resonate field and this field will impact on the body's natural fields. With rooms of EM equipment and wiring in walls plus items like WiFi routers nearby, your body can be subject to a wide range of EM pressures at night.

The Chinese see all matter and phenomena as definable into Five Elements. They describe the makeup of life into Water, Wood, Fire, Earth and Metal. This is a cycle which repeats itself endlessly. Each element gives birth to the following one and continues the process of life. In the Five Element understanding too much of the next element can drain the one before. Your bedroom and bed comes under the element of Earth due to comforting, relaxing, supportive nature of sleep and the room. Bedclothes and mattresses made of natural materials also come under th element Earth. If your bed is run through with metal as inner springs or frames, then too much metal drains the Earth element and the function of your bed which is to relax, rest and support you. Metal in mattresses drains the body in Feng Shui terms and is not recommended by any practitioners.

The Bio-Initiative Report (2007) in its summary concluded - "New regulatory limits for ELF (electrical fields) are warranted. ELF limits should be set below those exposure levels that have been linked in childhood leukaemia studies to increased risk of disease, plus an additional safety factor. It is no longer acceptable to build new power lines and electrical facilities that place people in ELF environments that have been determined to be risky (at levels generally at 2 mG and above). While new ELF limits are being developed and implemented, a reasonable approach would be a 1 mG (milliGauss) planning limit for habitable space adjacent to all new or upgraded power lines and a 2 mG limit for all other new construction. It is also recommended for that a 1 mG limit be established for existing habitable space for children and/or women who are pregnant".

In my own work I have found levels of 5 milliGauses or even higher in bedrooms and this is far too high to be exposed to all night. The accepted community limit is 2 milliGauss per two hours per day. The metal springs in the mattress will resonate to these fields and I've found levels of around a half to 1 and 1/2 milliGauss inside beds. Being exposed in this field all night can begin an accumulation process which affects your body over time and that, coupled with daily exposure to much higher fields in the workplace or school adds up. Today its termed electromagnetic-smog: environments where excessive EMF output is all around you.

Most inner spring mattresses contain highly magnetised steel. Try this experiment at home - take a compass and gently pull it across your mattress in a straight line. If the needle moves more than 5 degrees, your exposure to a distorted magnetic field is high, as the bed considerably outdoes the Earth's own natural field.

Start with your bed and bedroom. Remove all electrical equipment to a least 1 and half metres from your bed. Ban electric blankets, clock radios, TVs and laptops in the bedroom and then look at what your mattress is made of. If it has metal coil inner springs begin the process to replace it.

Happy sleeping.

Richard Giles is an Earth Energies and Feng Shui consultant living on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland.

Richard Giles
Home & Health Feng Shui & Astrology
75/65 Crystal Waters
Kilcoy Lane
Conondale QLD 4552
Ph: 07.5435.0158
email -
Visit the Web - and

SUMMARY: We at Blessed Earth will continue to advertise the fact that we believe metal springs in mattresses are unhealthy. If Organature wish to report us to the ACCC for doing so, we welcome that.

It will be interesting to see if the ACCC acknowledges the information on the subject as being scientifically valid. Of course, the information presented by Richard Giles is only a brief overview of a subject that is generating a lot of interest and research world-wide and if called upon we will be presenting them with a full briefing on the subject.

We are also happy to publish in full any reply from Organature. Naturally we would have preferred if Organature had approached us directly, rather than take the matter to the ACCC. However these exchanges are healthy and the end result is that you the consumer will be better able to make an informed decision if you are preparing to purchase a mattress.

As an ethical business, we believe that innerspring mattresses should be banned and we are confident that they will be banned when public awareness on the subject is raised sufficiently.

Many of our customers are electrically sensitive and cannot sleep on them. They are like the mine canaries warning us that they are harmful - just like our chemically sensitive customers who cannot tolerate legally acceptable levels of chemicals in textiles.

We welcome any contributions from visitors to the website.

Here is just one of the replies we received from customers and concerned people who have not yet purchased from us...
Years ago, there was a meter box installed on my bedroom wall, right behind my bed. I slept in this position for many years before it started to affect my body. I became quite bent, my hands would be clawed and, at one point, I was unable to turn my head because my neck was so stiff.
On moving the bed 6 ft away from the meter box, I noticed (the very next day) that, on getting out of bed, I could stand straight and my hands no longer clawed.
A few years later, I moved to another home where a transformer had been installed in the street behind my home. After 3 months suffering from extreme pain in my body, flu-like symptoms, dizziness, lack of sleep and, would you believe, very noticeable memory loss, I shifted out. Before I moved, I had the house checked over for geopathic stress and electro-pollution. It was found to be “unfit for humans to live in”.
Eventually, I relocated into another home but, only after having it checked over completely before moving in. There were a few things to be changed, such as moving the meter box from behind the bedroom wall, which is where most of them are placed on the new homes being built today. The halogen down lights were replaced with safer globes (which are no longer available today). I was advised to avoid sitting within 7 ft of the air-conditioning unit while it was operating.
My beds were checked with the “electrosmog meter” and the meter would go wild when placed near the springs. The spring bed also started to become problematic, especially during more humid conditions, or when the weather was damp, as in winter. During these times, I would experience a feeling of knives penetrating my back. So, I invested in a latex mattress. I thought my problem had been solved. All I wanted was a decent night’s sleep but after a few weeks I was back to where I started; sleepless nights, due to the excessive heat from the latex building up in my body, creating heat rash and welts on my back, and a stiff neck and jaw.
Now that I have my new wool mattress and pillow, I no longer suffer any of the problems associated with the inner spring and latex beds. In fact, I am experiencing my most comfortable sleep in 30 years.
Testimonial from MK, Adelaide