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Abstract  The physical effects of negative air ions on humans were determined in
an experimental sauna room equipped with an ionizer. Thirteen healthy persons
took a wet sauna bath (dry bulb temperature 42° C, relative humidity 100%, 10 
min exposure) with or without negative air ions. The subjects were not told when
they were being exposed to negative air ions. There were no differences in the
moods of these persons or changes in their blood pressures between the two
saunas. The surface temperatures of the foreheads, hands, and legs in the sauna
with negative ions were significantly higher than those in the sauna without ions.
The pulse rates and sweat produced in the sauna with ions were significantly higher
than those in the sauna without ions. The results suggest that negative ions may
amplify the effects on humans of the sauna. Watanabe1, Hiroshi Noro1,
Yoshinori Ohtsuka1, Yukio Mano1 and Yuko Agishi1

Male and female subjects (undergraduate students) participated in two studies designed to
investigate the impact of negative air ions on cognitive performance. In the first experiment, they
worked on three different tasks (proofreading, memory span, word finding) in the presence of
low, moderate, or high concentrations of such ions. Results indicated that among men,
performance on two of these tasks (proofreading and memory span) was enhanced by
moderate but not by high concentrations of ions. In the second experiment, undertaken to
extend the generality of these initial results, male and female subjects performed two additional
tasks (letter copying, decision making) in the presence of low, moderate, or high concentrations
of ions. Output on the letter copying task increased significantly as ion level rose among both
sexes. With respect to decision making, the tendency of male (but not female) participants to
select initially preferred alternatives was significantly enhanced by moderate concentrations of
negative ions. Together, the findings of these studies suggest that negative air ions can indeed
exert appreciable effects on cognitive performance. However, contrary to claims often
associated with advertising for commercially produced ion generators, these effects are neither
simple nor uniformly beneficial in nature. (20 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all
rights reserved) Baron, Robert A. Journal of Applied Psychology. Vol 72(1), Feb 1987, 131-137.

An experiment was conducted on electric ions and the permeability of the cell
membrane. In the experiment, skin was used to exemplify the cell membrane. When
positively charged ions were permeated into the surface of the skin, its pores and
sweat glands began to contract. However, when Negative Electric Ions were
permeated into the surface of the skin, its pores and sweat glands expanded, which
demonstrates good metabolism of the cell membranes. This is phenomenon is
called Prototype Plasma Membranes of Dermal Reflectivity. Dr. Arudoman of
Germany also conducted a research regarding the influence of ions to the human
body. He proposed the following hypothesis - Negatively Charged Ions are beneficial
to the human body in four major ways: It helps to strengthen the functions of
autonomic nerves, reinforces collagen (tissues that are resilient and tension-
related), improves the permeability of the cell's prototype plasma membranes
(improves metabolism), and strengthens the body's immune system.

The human body is surrounded by ions; therefore, the function of electrons
inside and outside the cells has significant influence on the human body. It makes
the body strong if good ions are taken. When the amount of Negative Electric Ions
contained one c.c. of air inhaled reached 5,000 to 50,000, it strengthens the body's
resistance and immunity; and when the amount of Negative Electric Ions contained
in one c.c. of air reached 100,000 to 500,000, it relieves illnesses. Negatively
Charged Electric Ions in our body are essential in sustaining and improving our
health. Whereas 85% of the Negative Electric Ions are absorbed from our skin, only
15% is inhaled and absorbed through our lungs. (quoted from page 56 of Negatively
Charged electric Ion Treatment, issued by Youth Publishing)

Benefits of Negative Ions
How Negative Ions Purify the Air
Negative ions help prevent respiratory-related illnesses
Negative ions counteract the effects of smoking
Negative ions are a natural anti-depressant
Negative Ions help us to sleep better
Air Purifiers using Negative Ions

Science 101

Ions are molecules that have gained or lost an electrical charge. . They are created
in nature as air molecules break apart due to sunlight, radiation, and moving air and
water. You may have experienced the power of negative ions when you last set foot
on the beach or walked beneath a waterfall. While part of the euphoria is simply
being around these wondrous settings and away from the normal pressures of home
and work, the air circulating in the mountains and the beach is said to contain tens
of thousands of negative ions -- Much more than the average home or office
building, which contain dozens or hundreds, and many register a flat zero.

"The action of the pounding surf creates negative air ions and we also see it
immediately after spring thunderstorms when people report lightened moods," says
ion researcher Michael Terman, PhD, of Columbia University in New York.

In fact, Columbia University studies of people with winter and chronic depression
show that negative ion generators relieve depression as much as antidepressants.
"The best part is that there are relatively no side effects, but we still need to figure
out appropriate doses and which people it works best on," he says.

Vitamins of the Air?

Generally speaking, negative ions increase the flow of oxygen to the brain; resulting
in higher alertness, decreased drowsiness, and more mental energy," says Pierce J.
Howard, PhD, author of The Owners Manual for the Brain: Everyday Applications
from Mind Brain Research and director of research at the Center for Applied
Cognitive Sciences in Charlotte, N.C.

"They also may protect against germs in the air, resulting in decreased irritation due
to inhaling various particles that make you sneeze, cough, or have a throat

And for a whopping one in three of us who are sensitive to their effects, negative
ions can make us feel like we are walking on air. You are one of them if you feel
instantly refreshed the moment you open a window and breathe in fresh, humid air.

"You may be one of them if you feel sleepy when you are around an air-conditioner,
but feel immediately refreshed and invigorated when you step outside or roll down
the car window," Howard tells WebMD. "Air conditioning depletes the atmosphere of
negative ions, but an ion generator re-releases the ions that air conditioners

Generating Negative Ions

In fact, every home has a built in natural ionizer -- the shower.

But when it comes to springing for that negative-ion generator you saw advertised
in the local paper or on the web, buyer beware, says Columbia's Terman.

"There is a major problem with advertised units," he tells WebMD. "Output levels are
not ... specified in a way that could advise antidepressant dose."

And, he says, the cost of apparently equivalent units ranges from $100 to $1,000.

"The safest course of action, in my opinion, would be to use units that have been
demonstrated effective in our clinical trials and trials to come," he advises WebMD

Room air circulation, heat and humidity, the proximity of grounded devices that may
emit counteracting positive ions (such as computer monitors) may affect output
levels (of a negative-ion generator), he explains

"We have tried to minimize the influence of these factors by adding grounded wrist-
straps [commercially available] or grounded bed sheets [not yet available] for
connection to the ionizer," he says.
The possible interaction of negative-air ion therapy and antidepressant drug or light
therapy for seasonal depression has not yet been investigated, he says. "It stands
to reason, for example, that drug ... dose could be tapered [even to zero], if the
patient responds to negative ion exposure.

"I would advise anyone who experiences clinically significant depression to try
negative-ion therapy only under doctor's guidance, and that doctors read up on this
methodology before O. King such a trial, especially if the patient is already receiving
other treatment," he advises.

What about Allergies and Asthma?

Harold Nelson, MD, professor of medicine at National Jewish Medical Center in
Denver, was so excited when he first heard of negative-ion generators 20 years ago
that he went out and bought one to study among allergy and asthma patients.

Unfortunately, the findings were "not terribly encouraging. We couldn't demonstrate
anything," he tells WebMD. "I was disappointed. I had high expectations and they
did not pan out, " he says.

The best bet for people with allergies and/or allergic asthma is to try to eliminate
exposures, he says. "If you can't, or if you still have symptoms, then medication is
the next step and fortunately we now have excellent medications," he says.

Published June 2, 2003. This article is from the WebMD Feature Archive Scientific
Research about Negative Ions.

1. Detailed information about negative ions and their effects
2. Causes and effects of negative ion depletion
3. Air ion effects Reported evidence concerning the effects of air ions on human performance and health.
Serotonin hypothesis. Ion effects on other organisms. Discussion of issues relevant to the motor vehicle

Negative Ions Enhance Health: Air Ionizer Can Improve Mental Health Studies
on the effects of negative ions in the home and work environment report that:

• negative ions improve learning in normal and disabled children
• cattle were able to be over 90% protected against respiratory disease with negative air ionization
• negative ions resulted in more than 40% reduction of airborne microbes in dental clinics
• visual test performance in college students improved when negative ion exposure was increased
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the ai r by gener atin g mi lli ons of neg ati ve ions . Purely Anion™ Energy Efficient Light Bulbs are
the new revolutionary light bulb with a built-in negative ion generator. GNE

More about Negative Ions
...from the book Proof Positive, by Neil Nedley, M.D. Indoor Waterfalls and Negative Ions

Why Are There So Few Negative Ions in the City? This disparity between "city air"
and "country air" actually has much to do with the modern devices we use, and
even the fabrics we wear. Synthetic materials like plastics, and man made fibers like
nylon carry their own positive charge which can neutralize the negative charge of
beneficial ions in the air. Electronic devices, or more specifically, the
electromagnetic fields they produce, also have the effect of neutralizing negative
ions in the air. The buildings in which we spend most of our time also tend to be
sealed to the outside world, so they don't allow for proper ventilation. The average
office, typically a sealed environment with an abundance of computers and plastics,
will generally have a very low negative ion count; only a few hundred negative ions
per cubic centimeter. Since Americans spend approximately 90% of their day
indoors in environments like this, it’s no wonder we feel better on a hike in the

Information on Negative
Ions and the Benefits of Negative Ions to Our Health. Negative ION Articles and

Studies Proving the Effectiveness of Negative Ion Generators, U.S. Dept. of
Agriculture - A recent study by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture found that ionizing a
room led to 52% less dust in the air, and 95% less bacteria in the air (since many of
the pollutants found in the air reside on floating dust particles).


ATMOSPHERIC IONS The bactericidal effects of negative ions in air
The use of negative ions to improve indoor air quality has attracted increasing
attention in recent years. Although the physical action of air ionisers is accepted,
there is still debate over their apparent biocidal action. A recent clinical trial in an
intensive care unit suggested that air ionisers may have a role in reducing the
transmission of infection in healthcare environments1 and several authors have
reported that ions inhibit the growth of a range of microorganisms. A further
understanding of this process was gained through bench scale experiments
exposing sessile cultures to positive and negative ions2. The aim of the work
presented here was to follow on from the bench scale experiments to investigate
the efficacy of negative ions with aerosolised microorganisms. Fletcher, L., Noakes,
C.J., Sleigh, P.A. and Beggs, C.B. (2008) The bactericidal effects of negative ions in air. In:
IA2008 Proceedings. Indoor Air 2008 ; The 11th International Conference on Indoor Air
Quality and Climate, 17-22nd August 2008, Copenhagen, Denmark. , Copenhagen.

Negative ion generators have proven to be a
much better antidepressant, since the negative ions allow the body and brain to
convert excess serotonin into a harmless chemical (known as 5-HIAA)
[END- PEA RESEARCH, IAeSR, 9/8/2009]