"air is our first         
nutriment & medicine"         
(Hippocrate, 400BC)         
Print E-mail

Benefits of Negative Air Ions on the vital body functions


Only small air ions can penetrate the blood and consequently be biologically active. Scientific studies proved that exclusively the NAIS (Negative Air Ions) improves body health and that excess of PAIs (Positive Air Ions) weakens body health. (see general bibliography).

Every person reacts differently to air ions, which means that the benefits may not appear at the same time.

Negative Air Ionisation has some general benefits that help to prevent disease apparition:

1. Body Blood Oxygenation and Blood Circulation Trouble


(for a better understanding, please read first “how does oxygen flow through our body” and “Blood Circulation Trouble")


Diseases often appear when the blood is badly oxygenised and when our immune system is depressed.


NAIs enter the Red Blood Cells (RBC) or erythrocytes via special “anion channels” and restore the natural small negative electric charge of the RBCs, that helps them to repel each other and consequently prevent their aggregation. The oxygen absorption surface is higher and the blood is better oxygenated. The single RBCs better penetrate the very small capillaries

When the blood contains more oxygen, several benefits appear (Robert, 1991):

  • it contains less carbon dioxide, a larger molecule than oxygen, and is consequently less viscous; the blood pressure as well as the cardiac rhythm drops
  • its pH increase, what facilitates the oxygen solubility. A mild alkali solution can absorb over 100 times as much oxygen as a mild acid solution.
  • the glucide and lipid (triglyceride, cholesterol) concentration as well as the serotonin concentration decreases, preventing artery strengthening and arteriosclerosis
  • the cortisone content increases, an powerful anti-asthma and allergy molecule
  • the production of white blood cells is stimulated and consequently the whole immune system

Flooding the blood with oxygen helps to prevent Blood Circulation Troubles leading to arteriosclerosis and consequently heart infarct and brain stroke (Yutsis, 2003). In an extensive double blind study on hundreds of post operative patients, carried out over a period of 28 months in Jerusalem hospital, Prof F. Sulman found that only one case of blood clotting occurred in the negatively ionised rooms compared to 12 in the non ionised room. (Sulman, 1980)


2. Defence systems


2.1. Immune system

Our immune system works in closed collaboration with our nervous and hormonal system. A healthy immune system not only means no or very little illnesses but also stress stability and constant vitality.


A healthy immune system is able to secrete a multitude of therapeutic drugs, like immunoglobulin, interleukines, interferons,… that can fight foreign pathogenic micro-organisms, viruses and cancer cells. They are secreted by the White Blood Cells (WBCs) or “lymphocytes”. Some of them, the macrophages, phagocytes foreign micro-organisms and kill them by injecting hydrogen peroxide.


The La Trobe University in Melbourne (Australia) found that NAIs significantly enhance the production of immunoglobulin A, an important immune factor guarding against viral and bacterial attachment and colonisation of mucous membrane. (www.negativeions.com).


Dr Yutsis (2003) also found that using small amount of H2O2 strengthens the immune system, stimulating the production of lymphocytes and of gamma interferon, a virus growth repressor. Consequently, the boosting effect of NAIs on the immune system is probably due to its conversion in H2O2


2.2. Anti-oxidant system

Our metabolism, the biological process that converts the nutrients we absorb into energy, produces oxygen radicals, like superoxide (SO) ions, similar to NAIs. It occurs in the cell mitochondria. Human beings have a very efficient anti-oxidant system able to quickly neutralize these oxygen radicals and consisting in a cascade of 3 enzymes:


                                   SOD                          CAT, GPx

             4 O2- + 4 H+     =>     2 H2O2 + 2 O2     =>     2 H20 + 3 O2


Superoxide (SO) is rapidly converted by the enzyme “superoxide dismutase” (SOD), the first enzyme that meets SO in the organism, in hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), a more stable oxygen radical that does not damage the mitochondria wall phospholipids. H2O2 can be converted by Catalase (CAT) or Glutathione Oxidase (GPx), a selenium requiring enzyme, in O2 and H2O.

These enzymes are highly compartmentalized:

  • MnSOD in mitochondria
  • CuZnSOD in the cytoplasm and nucleus
  • ECSOD extracellular
  • CAT in peroxisome
  • GPx in many subcellular compartments

H2O2 insures that the immune system functions effectively and stimulates the body’s processes to revitalize. It is also needed to break down carbohydrates, fats and proteins and to regulate hormone production, assisting in the production of estrogen, progesterone, and thyroxin, among others. (Yutsis, 2003).


Kosenko & al (1997) and Kondrashova et al (2000a&b) confirmed that NAIs activate the superoxide dismutase (SOD), and consequently the H2O2 production.

2.3. Respiratory tract defence system

All inhaled particles, like pollen, dust or micro-organisms adsorb on the mucus film covering our trachea. Vibrating cilia coating the trachea continuously expel airborne particulate contaminants by lifting them up to the outside.


Cigarette smoke have been found to inhibit the mucus production and consequently the good working of this expel process, leading to toxic deposits in the trachea and the bronchia. This leads to cough problem, body oxygenation reduction and illnesses like cancer (Robert, 1991). On the other side, NAIs have been found to promote mucus production and the good working of the cilia.


3. Metabolism & energy production process activation

The ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) is the “energy” carrier in our body and is produced by the oxidative phosphorylation process occurring in the inner membrane of mitochondria. This process is activated by oxygen, which is converted into water.


Kondrashova et al (2000a&b) observed that superoxide, the main NAI, increases the H2O2 concentration by activating the superoxide dismutase. This increase in H2O2 activates the oxidative phosphorylation process, both processes occurring in the mitochondria.


H2O2 is also needed to break down carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins and minerals en to convert them in energy.


This metabolism activation explains why sportive persons, breathing regularly NAIs, recover faster after an effort and are less subjected to cramps caused by an oxygen shortage that promotes the synthesis of lactic acid (Reilly & al., 1993; Ryushi & al, 1998).


4. Body regulation

ROS at high concentration are cytotoxic, whereas, at low concentration, they are involved in the regulation of several key physiological processes (Oberley, 2001). Forman (2002) found that ROS, like H2O2, have the property to modify cell-signalling proteins important for cell growth and survival. The enzyme catalase, scavenging H2O2 , may function in the ‘turn-off” when sending a signal. During its transient elevation, H2O2 may act as a modifier of key signalling enzymes through reversible oxidation of critical thiols (Forman, 2002).


Recent studies have shown that ROS activate cell survival signal. They modulate Ca2+ signalling and protein phosphorylation events, and function as regulators for various biological processes, including gene expression, cell growth, differentiation and cell death (Takada, 2002)


Consequently, NAIs may play a role in activating some beneficial signals in the human body (the author).


5. Regulation of hormone secretion

Most of the hormones are produced by the endocrinal glands. The others are produced locally by specific cells.
5.1. Hormones secreted by the endocrinal glands (Robert, 1991)
The hypothalamus is a part of the brain that directly controls the pituitary gland or hypophysis and indirectly all the other endocrinal glands. NAIs have been reported to increase the activity of the hypothalamus that is also involved in the control of the autonomous nervous system, of the bodily temperature and of certain metabolic processes.
All endocrinal glands are surrounded by an extended capillary network that facilitates the hormone diffusion in the body. Consequently, the improvement of the blood fluidity by the NAIs plays an important role. The positive effects of the NAIs observed on the hypothalamus and on some endocrinal glands (see below) let assume that they have a positive effect on all the endocrinal system.
  • Pituitary gland or Hypophysis:
The hypophysis controls the other endocrine glands and influences growth, metabolism and maturation. It releases hormones both in the blood and in the neurones. Its maximal activity occurs during the night.
NAIs have been shown to increase its activity by a factor 5. On the contrary, PAIs exhaust the hormone reserve and prevent their renewal.
  • Thyroid gland 
The thyroid gland produces the thyroxin hormone that regulates the body metabolism. H2O2 stimulates the activity of this gland by combining with iodine (Yutsis, 2003). Since NAIs promote the H2O2 formation, they may also influence the production of those hormones.
  • Suprarenal glands 
The 2 suprarenal glands have an external and an internal part, respectively called the cortex and the medullar:
  • The cortex secretes:
- the gluco-corticoid hormones, like cortisone, that are vital for the body, controlling the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and lipids, the response to stress, the immune response and the anti-inflammatory activities against allergies, inflammation and rheumatism.
- the mineralo-corticoid hormones, like aldosterone, that regulates the blood volume and pressure
NAIs stimulate the secretion of gluco-corticoid hormones, which protects the body against allergies, asthma and help to better control stress (Livanova & al, 1999b).
PAIs stimulate the secretion of mineralo-corticoid hormones and reduce the secretion of gluco-corticoid hormones.
  • The medullar secretes: 
- the epinephrine or adrenaline
- the norepinephrine or noradrenaline
Both hormones are secreted in the blood during the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. They both belong to the hormone family of the catecholamines.
In case of stress, the hormones produced by the suprarenal glands provoke the following stimuli:
Adrenaline, Noradrenaline
-   raise heart rate
-   raise blood pressure
-   dilate bronchioles, increasing oxygen uptake
-   orient the blood to the essential organs by dilating their blood vessels and by constricting the blood vessels of less essential organs
-   accelerate the metabolism
-  water & salt retention
-  raise blood pressure
-  raise blood volume
-     raise glucose in the blood
-     raise fat & protein catabolism
-     reduce inflammatory response
-     reduce immune response
Udermann & al. (1982) observed on mice that excess of PAIs causes stress after short time application, resulting in an norepinephrine increase within one day. If this excess is maintained, the concentration of norepinephrine starts dropping, leading to a state of exhaustion.
Goldstein & al (1997) observed on animals that prolonged deficiency of NAIs led to an accelerated rate of death, that seems to be related to disturbances in neurohormonal or catecholamine regulation and pituitary insufficiency.
  • Ovaries 
NAIs activate ovulation and regulate the menstrual cycle; milk secretion is also increased; H2O2 promotes the progesterone synthesis, an essential hormone in reproduction
  • Testicles 
Studies on bull sperm have shown that NAIs increases the sperm quality
5.2. Local Hormones
  • Serotonin 
Serotonin is a neuro-mediator that binds on blood platelets and produces neurovascular, endocrinal and metabolic effects throughout the body and plays an important role in mood and sleep patterns.
Abnormally high level of serotonin in the bloodstream:
- provokes “smooth muscles” constriction, like vascular (blood vessels), bronchial and intestinal muscles, resulting in migraine, higher frequency and hardness of heart pulsation …
- increases pain sensation, inflammation, allergic reactions and oedemas apparition
- increases acidic secretion in the digestive organs
- disturbs our nervous system (Giannini, 1986) and negatively interferes with the memorisation, the concentration and the production of other neuro-mediators and provokes irritability, insomnia, depression
These disturbances, reported under the name Serotonin Irritation Syndrome, are frequently due to poor air quality (Wallach, 1986).
Krueber & al (1976) first discovered that PAIs provoke the serotonin unbinding from the blood platelets. On the contrary, NAIs prevent its unbinding and initiate the enzymatic oxidation process of serotonin via the monoamine oxidase into an inactive metabolite: hydroxyindolacetic acid (Diamond & al, 1980; Charry & al, 1985).
Tal & al (1976) have proven this theory by treating individuals with 3.6x105 ions/cm3 during 10’.

Positive ions
Negative ions
Total blood
+ 40%
- 30%
+ 90%
- 43%
Red blood cells
+ 50%
- 42%
+ 240%
- 72%
Sulman (1980), Hawkins (1985) and Wallach (1986) confirmed these effects.
·  Prostaglandine
Prostaglandine in an essential hormone controlling the powerful hormones and hormone like substances that are involved in maintaining vital body processes.
Its synthesis is stimulated by the presence of H2O2 (Yutsis, 2003).  Since NAIs promote the H2O2 formation, they may also influence the production of this hormone.

© 2008 Air Quality Concept