How Cell Phones and Wireless Routers Mess Up Your Gut

cellphones routers mess up your gut

cellphones routers mess up your gut

I’d like to make a connection that few are making these days, between electromagnetic frequencies (EMFs) and gut health. Lately, so much research has been done on the vast implications and applications of the gut microbiome’s effects on every system of humans—not just digestive. Also, a great amount of research is being done on what affects the balance of good and bad bacteria. Very little research has been done, however, on the effects that wireless device usage might have on the gut.

I am personally affected by this connection (or lack thereof), because cell phones give me stomach aches. More specifically, when exposed to a certain level of electromagnetic radiation in the RF range far below the FCC standard, I get a sensation in my lower abdomen of my gut getting all tied up in knots. It’s very unpleasant, and though I find cell phones extremely entertaining, convenient, and addictive, I’ve had to give them up except for emergencies and incredible inconveniences that would set me back several hours (like needing to meet someone downtown and not being able to find them).

Wireless devices in the RF range (~2.4 GHz, but range from 900 MHz – 2.4 GHz):

  • Cell phones and cell phone towers
  • Wireless routers
  • Microwave ovens
  • Bluetooth devices (headsets, Roku remotes, and Apple TV remotes)
  • Baby monitors
  • Cordless, portable, or DECT phones/bases
  • Wireless printers
  • Laptops
  • iPads/tablets
  • GPS
  • Wireless video game controllers (Wii, PS3, Xbox 360, PS4, and Xbox One)
  • Xbox and PS3 consoles
  • Smart meters

I react to all of these devices similarly and constantly have to ascertain whether they are around. Usually when I’m feeling nauseous, getting indigestion, or I feel a cold coming on all of a sudden, I turn on my Cornet ED78S meter and find out there is a rogue frequency agitating me. There have now been three separate occasions where I developed either severe digestive distress, a cold, or both and found out after a week that I had been exposed to double or more wireless devices than I was used to. Upon removing them in each scenario, the health problems quickly dissipated. Finally, I have removed all of them from my living space, but I still check around once in awhile to see if there’s anything new.

By avoiding these frequencies as much as possible, particularly at night, I’ve become less sensitive. I no longer experiencing things like heart palpitations and sweating when exposed to these devices for more than a minute. When I’m out and about, in church or at the mall and there are tons of people using their phones, as long as I’m not right next to them (particularly within a car or sitting down where they’re texting level with my gut), I don’t have too much discomfort.

Research on EMFs and the Gut

Though there’s virtually no data on this connection that I’ve become certain of, I’m not the only one who has made it. One of the subjects of a very good classic documentary on electromagnetic radiation from cell phones, Resonance: Beings of Frequency, claimed to experience immediate effects resembling ulcerative colitis and IBD when in the presence of them. Sadly, this poor gentleman ultimately succumbed to colon cancer after taking part in a study trying to ascertain the existence of electrosensitivity. He was a true martyr.

Lloyd Burrell from, whom we have interviewed in the past, harbors the same theory as I about this connection. Almost identical, actually. First of the year, I received an e-mail with the subject “EMFs attack your gut — here’s what to do about it.” I was so psyched to open it up and see what study had come out in support of this crazy idea I’d been nursing for awhile. Unfortunately, this bloke had simply (however cleverly) made a logical connection based on existing studies, just as I had, but similarly turned up nil upon perusing PubMed for any leads. Here is what he said, which you will find to be very compelling:

In a 1975 study American neuroscientist Dr. Allan Frey revealed that microwaves (a.k.a. radio frequency radiation) could cause leakage in the barrier between the circulatory system and the brain. Breaching the blood-brain barrier (BBB) can have a devastating effect on your immune system and your health – since the 1975 study at least a dozen laboratories around the world have corroborated Dr. Frey’s findings.
I believe that EMFs can damage the lining of your gut in a similar way that they damage the BBB.

Dr. Frey’s work is discussed in detail here, and it has also been written about in Devra Davis’s bookDisconnect. Here is an in-depth report corroborating his research.

So this concept of a leaky Blood Brain Barrier, which was also proposed by the writer of Grain Brain, fits in very neatly with the concept of leaky gut. The latter disorder results in proteins, allergens, toxins, and other unwanted things getting into the bloodstream, while the former (a leaky brain), allows the same offenders into the brain from the bloodstream through an otherwise protective membrane. It is logical that anything that makes one biological barrier more porous would do the same for another. Research scientists just yet to look at it specifically for the gut.

Indeed, even cell membranes themselves have been shown to become “leaky” in a way, through a disruption of the VGCC. This is the “voltage-gated calcium channel,” which functions as a gateway of certain ions into and out of the cell, whose excessive activation can result in excitotoxicity. The particular study I’ve linked also discusses the DNA damage caused by EMFs, which is clearly visible in “comet assays.” DNA damage is one crucial step on the way to cancer. Here is a visual comparison between the assays showing DNA damage from already-accepted-as-harmful Gamma radiation and the damage from microwave radiation.

comet assays


It is important to note that low-level Gamma radiation results in gastrointestinal effects and intestinal bleeding as an immediate effect (whereas cancer is something that happens down the line after exposure). Indeed, cancer itself is known to be associated with disruptions in gut bacteria. Making some logical connections, there should be little dispute, therefore, over the good possibility of the immediate effect of EMFs on gut health.

More Connections and More Research

One other bright fellow from another country (this time the former British colony of India) published an article that implied a possible connection between poor digestion and EMFs, among many other known physical effects from cell phone usage. It’s not the most cutting edge article I’ve seen on the subject, mostly focusing on what the distraction of cell phones and visual stimuli of them can do. There is some stuff there on the effect it might have on your child’s brain, which is always good to cover. I originally honed in on the first paragraph, where he used some compelling terms like “sick in the stomach,” “can make you feel woozy,” and “dull headache, dizziness or creeping nausea” as some possible effects from using your cell phone too much. Yeah, that just about describes me.

I do actually have some studies to share that directly suggest the effect of EMFs on actual bacteria and yeast:

  • Dr. Klinghardt, an important figure in the field of research on ther harmful effects of EMF, has discussed studies where EMFs had been shown to agitate mold and cause them to release 600 times the mycotoxins. This would logically have an effect on the cohabitant beneficial species of bacteria (probiotics) in your gut.
  • This piece from 2014 is the most extensive review of the matter, citing all kinds of effects from microwave radiation on the growth and destruction of microorganisms. This is a smoking gun in my opinion that the main negative effect of EMFs on human biology is through their symbiotic microbiology (gut and other resident bacteria).

Since you have bacteria and yeast in your gut, you can be sure that these waves are reaching them. Waves travel through solid material, especially softer, organic matter. You have soft, fleshy tissue in your gut, unlike the skull which is hard and can bounce a lot of the signal off, just like a brick wall does.

Significance and Application

The medical industry, regulatory agencies, and the general public seem to understand two things, but have yet to combine them:

  • Things that cause cancer (carcinogens) are a health concern
  • Things that disrupt gut bacteria, like antibiotics and many chemicals, are a health concern

If we can make a more direct connection (though I believe the connection I’ve made here should suffice) between microwave EMFs and bacteria in the gut, you can be assured that there will be more appropriate regulations on power levels of wireless devices. Until then, only those who feel immediate effects will take any immediate action. And people who do feel these effects are very often criticized and told they are imagining things.

Those already feeling these effects have become extremely isolated, even though these individuals are a portent of what will happen to everyone eventually. Even the strongest of human bodies can take that much bacterial, gut, cell, and DNA damage. However, just as it is with Gamma radiation, mold, asbestos, and cigarette smoke, everyone gets affected eventually. So it’s the canaries in the coal mine who have to carry the torch (and the burden) for now.

Until then, do your best to limit your exposure by keeping your distance from and limiting use of the wireless devices I listed above. I guarantee you will start to notice a difference in your and your children’s digestion, sleep, and general health if you do so. 


About Rob 70 Articles
Rob was the valedictorian of his high school (his last claim to fame), but now believes that academics are overrated. He is a musician and former copy editor, and is now studying independently as an amateur nutritionist, businessman, and writer/rocker against world government and for liberty. He is also attempting to obtain a PhD in squats, deadlifts, shoulder raises, rows, bench press, dips, and pull-ups.


  1. Rob, great article. I’m convinced that your hypothesis is correct. My own experience is that if I get zapped I will have some kind of gut disturbance for several days afterwards. A friend of mine has similar experiences. The paper on micro-organisms etc is interesting, and one I had not seen before. I think it’s not just the bacteria and moulds – Andrew Goldsworthy also talks about the membranes around the gut and how they can be weakened by radiation (similar to the blood/brain barrier). Another possible cause of ‘leaky gut’?

    “The recent increases in allergies and allergy‐related conditions may also be due to
    membrane leakage. Our bodies are normally protected from the ingress of foreign
    materials by ‘tight junction’ barriers where the gaps between the cells are sealed. They
    occur in the brain, skin, nose, lungs and gut. Mobile phone radiation or the chemical
    removal of calcium makes them more permeable to large molecules and can let in
    allergens, toxins and carcinogens. Increased permeability of the gut barrier has also
    been linked to autoimmune conditions such as multiple sclerosis, IBS and type‐1
    In addition to this, virtually all of our other body surfaces are protected by cells with tight junctions, including the nasal mucosa (Hussar et al. 2002), the lungs (Weiss et al. 2003) and the lining of the gut (Arrieta et al. 2006). A similar electromagnetically‐induced increase in the permeability of any of these would allow the more rapid entry into the body…..”
    Prof Andrew Goldsworthy

    • Thanks so much, Peter! You were part of the inspiration for this article. Thank you so much for these additions. I may move them up into the article as an update, or perhaps I’ll put them in the next EMF-gut article I do.

  2. It seems with gsm cell phones I get a heartburn or indigestion feeling after being on them just using the internet. CDMA phones like sprint phones doesn’t do that though. Have you heard or experienced this or got heartburn from phones?

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