Given that cell phones and WiFi have been in widespread use for barely 20 years, it’s no surprise that there are fierce advocates on both sides regarding their safety.
Do cell phones cause cancer? The World Health Organization has determined that there’s enough evidence to label them as a Group 2B carcinogen to humans. Meaning, they’re possibly cancer-causing. (2)
Of course we all hope they’re wrong, but why wait decades for more data to answer the question?
The prudent thing you should do now is make simple life changes, to reduce EMF (electromagnetic field) and radiation exposure created by your mobile devices. Particularly those which are directly next to your head and body.
Forgoing phones is impossible, we all know that.
One simple step you can take is to use radiation-reducing headphones. They’re known as air tube and blue tube technology. You can even buy radiation-free Bluetooth headphones which incorporate this feature.
Well, technically there’s still some radiation from the Bluetooth RF, but it’s designed in a way the distance it from your head.
What is an air tube headset?
A regular headset contains a wire which leads from the phone to your ears. The wire, being metal, conducts radio frequency radiation. As such, some of the radiation being generated by your iPhone or Samsung Galaxy actually travels up the wire and into your ears.
Whether a wired headset is better or worse for you than holding a cell phone to your ear is debatable.
On one hand, there’s less radiation.
On the other, the transmitted radiation is even closer to your brain. That’s because the earbuds go into your head.
The consensus seems to be that a wired headset is safer than holding a phone against your head, but it’s still not ideal. (3)
An air tube headset is similar to a regular cell phone headset, except the wire does not travel all the way to the earbuds. Instead, the wire’s path is broken with an air gap (known as the air tube). This gap does not conduct radiation. As such, it minimizes radiation exposure. The metal wire stays further away from the brain.
A Blue Tube headset is the same thing as an air tube headset. It’s merely a branding term, presumably a play off of the Bluetooth moniker. Dr. Mercola Blue Tube headsets are the most well-known brand which uses that name.
Most manufacturers simply call them air tubes.
EMF-free wireless headphones?
The only radiation free-headphones will be those that are wired with an air tube or blue tube.
There is no such thing as radiation-free wireless Bluetooth headphones. This is because Bluetooth itself is a form of radio frequency (RF) transmission. As such, radio frequency radiation is generated.
Bluetooth uses the 2.4 GHz to 2.4835 GHz, which is the same as WiFi and what microwave ovens use to cook food. This may sound alarming but the good news is that Bluetooth headphones and headsets generate relatively weak radio waves.
A Bluetooth device will only have a range of 10-30 feet. An iPhone 11 has a cell signal which may be communicating with a tower that’s 10 miles away. Obviously the latter is a powerful transmitter.
The safest option will be to use a wired air tube.
Admittedly, that’s easier said than done if you want to stream Spotify at the gym, or if you’re on a job where you’re moving around a lot. Sometimes, hanging cords with a phone in your pocket isn’t feasible.
The next best option will be radiation-reducing Bluetooth headphones. They utilize an air tube between the headphones and the transmitter.
With these, the transmitter is at the end, in the form of a dongle that hangs, or an apparatus that sits a couple inches from your body. This offers two benefits:
- It moves the radiation generator from your head to another part of your body. Not ideal, but exposing your chest is better than your brain.
- Your shoulders, chest or other body part is exposed to exponentially less radiation, if the dongle is held a few inches away.
In fact, one can easily calculate how much the radiation is reduced.
It’s called the Inverse Square Law; the intensity is inversely proportional to the square of the distance to that force.
In plain English…
Let’s say n = 1 inch away from your phone. That’s where you make your first radiation measurement.
At 10x that distance (10 inches) the amount of radiation would be 99% less.
Since we workout at home, we haven’t needed to buy an anti-radiation Bluetooth headset. If we ever do end up needing one, this is the brand and model we like best from research and reviews.
What are the best air tube headphones?
Aircom, Dr. Mercola Blue Tube, and DefenderShield are some of the bestselling brands offering an air tube headset with mic. Lesser known names which are primarily found on Amazon include Tuisy, Kinden, SYB, Honest EMF, and RadiArmor Anti-Radiation.
Reviews of the Dr. Mercola Blue Tube headset are mixed. Retailing for around $30 to $35, it’s reasonably priced and gets the job done.
The drawbacks are that it was launched in 2016 and doesn’t appear to have undergone any cosmetic or major ergonomic upgrades. There are many complaints about the headphones breaking and Dr. Mercola refusing to honor a warranty unless purchased directly through them.
In addition to making anti-radiation cell phone cases, DefenderShield air tube headphones are a popular product. Retailing for around $75 makes them overpriced, given that they offer few advantages over cheaper headphones. The one distinct benefit is that they come with over-ear hooks for the earbuds.
What we choose to use at Superfoodly is the brand Aircom. Their A3 Active Stereo headsets offer excellent performance and functionality at a reasonable price.
Unlike some of the cheap blue tube headphones, with these you get 3 sizes of earbuds. They use a patented sound delivery design in the tube which they call “Airflow” so the sound can full develop before reaching your ear.
We bought ours on Amazon in black, here’s the link for it. There’s also white and yellow.