Last week, I finally got around to watching a documentary that’s been on my watchlist for some time, Generation Zapped. I really enjoyed the film, and thought it was a great overview for those who are new to the dangers of electromagnetic frequencies (EMF). In this article, I’ll touch a bit on what I learned from the documentary and introduce you to the experts from the film.
What is “Generation Zapped” About?
According to the website, “Generation Zapped investigates the potential dangers of prolonged exposure to Radio Frequencies (RF) from wireless technology; it’s effects on our health and well-being, as well as the health and development of our children. From its links to breast and brain cancer, to its associations with increased infertility and genetic mutations related to autism and ADHD, to newly developed illnesses, such as Electrical Hyper-Sensitivity (EHS).”
Here Are the Takeaways I Had From the Documentary:
- The wireless industry in the United States is enormous! With 200 million cell phones in the U.S. alone, the industry is responsible for 3.8 million jobs and generates over $146B annually.
- Prior to 1984, all wireless technology was the exclusive domain of the military, now this invisible energy is everywhere.
- We evolved in environments with exceedingly small levels of microwave radiation, now our bodies are bombarded with levels 8 million times higher.
- One of the biggest misconceptions about EMF radiation, is that in the absence of heat (non-ionizing radiation), there can be no damage. Nothing could be further from the truth.
- Despite a growing number of patients and doctors speaking out, electro hypersensitivity (EHS) is still not a recognized medical condition.
- Similar to big pharma and the FDA as well as chemical giants and the EPA, there is a revolving door between executives in the telecom industry and the FCC. Many EMF experts consider the FCC to be a captured organization.
- When testing cell phones for safety, the FCC used a dummy called SAM (standard anthropomorphic mannequin). Not only was SAM designed based on the 90th percentile of military recruits (ie. much larger than the majority of the population), he “used” the phone without touching it to his ear (ie. the way that everyone uses a phone)!
- Exposure to certain EMFs, including cell phone radiation, compromises the integrity of the blood brain barrier (BBB), allowing all manners of viruses, bacteria, metals, and other toxins to reach your sensitive brain tissue.
The only thing that I wish Generation Zapped had focused more on was the issue of 5G. The topic was glossed over, but I don’t feel that there was enough time spent on how the technology is so drastically different from 4G, or the plan-in-progress to blanket the world with that weapons-grade EMF.
Meet the Experts from Generation Zapped
I thought the documentary did a great job of bringing in a variety of experts about the subjects of EMF and health. In order of appearance:
Martin Blank, PhD
Associate Professor of Physiology and Cellular Biophysics
Dr. Martin Blank is an expert on the health-related effects of electromagnetic fields and has been studying the subject for more than 30 years. He earned his first PhD from Columbia University in physical chemistry and his second from the University of Cambridge in colloid science. From 1968 to 2011, he taught as an associate professor at Columbia University, where he now acts as a special lecturer. Dr. Blank has served as an invited expert regarding EMF safety for Canadian Parliament, for the House Committee on Natural Resources and Energy (HNRE) in Vermont, and for Brazil’s Supreme Federal Court.
In 2015, Dr. Blank published a very understandable book about EMFs called Overpowered. In June 2018, sadly Dr. Blank passed away of natural causes. Donations may be made in Dr. Blank’s honor, by family request, to the Electromagnetic Safety Alliance.
- Overpowered: The Dangers of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMF) and What You Can Do about It
- Faculty Profile, Columbia University
- Electromagnetic Safety Alliance
Jonathan Samet, MD, MS
Dr. Samet, a pulmonary physician and epidemiologist, has centered on epidemiologic research on threats to public health using research findings to support policies that protect population health. He chaired the Working Group of the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer that evaluated radio frequency electromagnetic radiation. Dr. Samet is now the Dean of the Colorado School of Public Health.
John West, MD
Oncologist and Director of Breast Surgery
A general surgeon by training, Dr. John West became fascinated with the multi-disciplinary team approach to breast cancer care in the mid 1980’s. His previous experience as a pioneer in the development of regional trauma systems set the stage for his interest in developing a team approach to breast care. Dr. West is a tireless advocate for the early detection of breast cancer and is a leading pioneer in the development of a comprehensive breast cancer treatment practice.
David Carpenter, MD
Co-Editor of the BioInitiative Report
David O. Carpenter is a public health physician who serves as director of the Institute for Health and the Environment, a Collaborating Center of the World Health Organization, as well as a professor of environmental health sciences at University at Albany’s School of Public Health.
Dr. Carpenter’s research focused on the relationship between exposures to a variety of chemicals and ionizing radiation on incidence of several human diseases, including diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and diseases of the nervous system. Carpenter, who received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School, has more than 435 peer-reviewed publications, 6 books and 50 reviews and book chapters to his credit.
- BioInitiative Report
- Faculty Experts, University at Albany
- Effects of Persistent and Bioactive Organic Pollutants on Human Health
George Carlo, PhD., JD
Epidemiologist & Public Health Scientist
Dr. George Carlo is a world recognized medical scientist, best-selling author, and attorney. He has advised a wide range of federal elected officials and has testified before Congress on a number of public interest issues. His discoveries have been incorporated into U.S. and global patents in areas including anti-viral vaccines, medical devices, and environmental protection technologies. Dr. Carlo headed the $28.5 million research program funded by the cell phone industry, the Wireless Technology Research program, from 1993 to 1999.
- Cell Phones: Invisible Hazards in the Wireless Age: An Insider’s Alarming Discoveries about Cancer and Genetic Damage
Magda Havas, PhD
Associate Professor of Environmental & Resource Studies
Dr. Magda Havas is a professor, a research scientist (environmental toxicologist), author, and international speaker. Her research since the 1990s is concerned with the biological effects of electromagnetic pollution including radio frequency radiation, electromagnetic fields, dirty electricity, and ground current. Dr. Havas has been an advisor to several public interest groups and educational groups concerned with the health of the environment. She is currently a science advisor on EMF-related issues to several non-profit organizations.
Olle Johansson, PhD
Associate Professor of Neuroscience
Dr. Olle Johansson, is a world-leading authority in the field of EMF radiation and health effects. Among his many achievements, he coined the term “screen dermatitis,” which was later developed into the officially recognized functional impairment, electrohypersensitivity. His studies have been widely recognized in the public media, including newspapers, radio, and TV as well as on the Internet.
Lennart Hardell, MD, PhD
Oncologist & Professor of Cancer Epidemiology
Dr. Lennart Hardell has a long career as a clinical and medical research doctor, currently at the Department of Oncology, University Hospital, Örebro, Sweden. He is specialised in oncology with a focused interest in environmental risk factors for cancer that he has studied in epidemiological investigations. In recent years much of his research has focused on use of mobile phones and cordless phones and the risk of brain tumors. He has published more than 300 peer-reviewed scientific articles.
Dafna Tachover, Esq., MBA
Attorney with Electro Sensitivity
Dafna Tachover is an attorney both in New York and in Israel who received her degree in the UK. She also has an MBA and has had a diverse international legal and business career. She gained a technical understanding of wireless networks and infrastructures as a communications and computer officer in the Israeli Defense Forces where she was the commander of the computer center for their Operations Center and Headquarters.
In 2009, she developed electromagnetic sensitivity from wireless technology radiation. Since then, she has dedicated herself to exposing the epidemic of sickness caused by this technology; to protecting the rights of the injured; to eradicating the misrepresentation that wireless technology is safe; and to pursuing those who betray the public’s trust. She has also been fighting against the deployment of Wi-Fi in schools.
Founder California Brain Tumor Association
Ellen Marks became active in EMF activism after her husband was diagnosed with a malignant brain cancer, which has been attributed to his cell phone use. She has testified to Congress, attends International Expert Conferences, and has appeared on the Dr. Oz Show, Larry King Live, and many other national newscasts. Ellen is an outspoken advocate for educating, advocating, and legislating nationwide. Ellie is one of the lead authors of a legislative Briefing Book, which has been translated into 8 languages worldwide. Her work focuses on prevention of primary brain tumors which are caused by radiation.
Erica Mallery-Blythe, MD
Emergency Medicine Doctor
Dr. Erica Mallery-Blythe, founder of Physicians’ Health Initiative for Radiation and Environment (PHIRE), is a UK trained medical doctor with a decade of experience within hospital medicine of various disciplines within multiple countries. In 2008, she began researching biological effects of non-ionizing radiation . This research included copious literature appraisal, conducting her own research via medical histories, medical examinations and provocation testing of those with Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS). She has provided expert witness statements regarding EHS, and been invited to discuss the public health concerns of radiation exposure at the highest political level both in the UK, and in Europe. She has provided support for schools and parents who require advice to better protect the health of children and information and advice for doctors and their patients.
Devra Lee Davis, PhD, MPH
Founder and President of Environmental Health Trust
Dr. Devra Davis founded non-profit Environmental Health Trust in 2007 in Teton County, Wyoming to provide basic research and education about environmental health hazards and promote constructive policies locally, nationally and internationally. Dr. Davis also was the founding director of the Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology of the U.S. National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences and the only woman to serve as Scholar in Residence, 1983-1993.
Green America gave her a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012 for her efforts to promote environmental health issues including cell phone safety awareness. She occasionally discusses avoidable environmental health hazards on national and local programming with NPR, Fox News, Good Morning America, CNN, ABC, PBS, BBC, and various major networks in Europe, Australia and Asia.
- Environmental Health Trust
- Disconnect: The Truth About Cell Phone Radiation
- The Secret History of the War on Cancer
Joel Moskowitz, PhD
Director of Center for Family and Community Health
Dr. Joel Moskowitz and his colleagues published a review of the research on mobile phone use and tumor risk in the Journal of Clinical Oncology in 2009. Since then he has served as a resource for policy makers and the press regarding wireless radiation safety.
Martha Herbert, MD, PhD
Pediatric Neurologist and Brain Development Researcher
Dr. Martha Herbert is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School as well as a Pediatric Neurologist and Neuroscientist at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Her main research interests are in addressing autism and various other chronic brain conditions as “dynamic encephalopathies” (that can change) rather than as “static encephalopathies” (that are fixed for life) and in how environmental vulnerability affects brain and body health and function in an ongoing fashion, and not just before birth.
Ernesto Burgio, MD, PhD
Pediatrician and Researcher
Dr. Ernesto Burgio graduated in Medicine and Surgery at the University of Pavia – Italy before specializing in Pediatrics at the University of Florence-Italy. His research focuses on pediatric cancers related to environment pollutants including EMFs. Dr. Burgio is the President of the Scientific Committee of the International Society of Doctors for Environment (ISDE).
Cindy Sage, MA
Co-Editor of the BioInitiative Report
Cindy Sage, M.A. is an environmental sciences consultant and researcher on electromagnetic fields and radiofrequency radiation. She is the co-editor and principal author of the BioInitiative Reports (2007 and 2012) and a founder of the international BioInitiative Working Group. Cindy has developed science-based recommendations for limiting non-ionizing radiation exposures based on scientific benchmarks for adverse health impacts and safety margins, and publishes frequently in peer-reviewed scientific journals. She has testified as an expert witness on electromagnetic fields and EMF computer modeling in eminent domain cases in judicial proceedings of both US federal and state courts.
Environmental Assessment Coordinator
Piazza is the head of risk management and the environmental assessment coordinator for odors and emissions in the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Office of Environmental Health and Safety. He has worked for over a decade to assess the health effects of various emissions in populated areas.
Electrical Engineer & Certified Building Biologist
Lawrence (Larry) Gust is an Electrical Engineer, a certified Building Biologist, Environmental Consultant, and an Electromagnetic Radiation Specialist. He is the founder of Gust Environmental established in 1993 specializing in assessment and correction of indoor environmental health factors. He lives in southern California, teaches for the Institute for Building Biology, and is president of the board.
Mr. Gust got his start in this field in 1987 when both he and his wife were made environmentally ill by their home and work environments. He has learned the hard way – through personal experience about creating an environment that supports health. His expertise includes the areas of in indoor environmental inspection, measurement and interpretation of environmental parameters, safe building practices, air purification systems and water purification systems, and electromagnetic radiation countermeasures.
Victoria Dunckley, MD
Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist
Dr. Victoria Dunckley, is an award-winning integrative child psychiatrist, author, researcher, and forensic consultant based at the Centre for Life in Los Angeles. An active blogger for Psychology Today and speaker to both parents’ groups and clinicians, she emphasizes the impact of lifestyle factors on mental health, particularly the effects of over-stimulating electronic screen media on mood, cognition, and behavior.
Dr. Dunckley has been interviewed on various television and radio programs regarding her integrative approach, and has contributed as a mental health expert for the Today Show and NBC News. In 2011, Dr. Dunckley was named one of America’s Top Psychiatrists by the Consumer Research Council and won several patient care awards, including Vitals.com’s Patient’s Choice and Compassionate Doctor awards.
- Dr. Dunckley’s Website
- Reset Your Child’s Brain: A Four-Week Plan to End Meltdowns, Raise Grades, and Boost Social Skills by Reversing the Effects of Electronic Screen-Time
Igor Belyaev, PhD
Head of Laboratory of Radiobiology
Dr. Igor Belyaev is the Head Research Scientist at the Cancer Research Institute at the Slovak Academy of Science in Bratislava, Slovakia. He was one of only 30 members of the IARC Working Group charged with classifying the carcinogenicity of cell phone radiation, which produced the 2013 IARC Monograph.