5G waves increase the risk of diabetes? Fake

Catherine Crépeau – The Rumor Detector Agence Science-Presse

SCIENCE. The rollout of 5G has prompted numerous claims of human health risks. One of the most surprising is that the technology would cause diabetes. the Rumor Detector wanted to know why we could imagine this link.

The origin of the rumor

It is called 5G because it is the 5th generation of mobile telecommunications. It increases the speed of data transmission, reduces network access time and increases the number of devices that can connect to the same network at the same time. It uses two types of radio frequencies: the first are comparable to those found in previous “generations”, while the second, millimeter waves, are higher frequency and have greater intensity.

However, this higher intensity does not make them more dangerous for the human body: they are still part of the category of so-called “non-ionizing” waves, so named because they do not change the electrical charge of the ions as they pass. through matter and therefore cannot cause mutations in our genetic makeup.

At most, it has been established that these waves – long before 5G – can increase the temperature of skin tissue – what is called a “thermal effect”. This effect of electromagnetic waves has even been calculated for a long time by the health authorities so that the devices respect maximum thresholds.

Regarding the possibility of effects other than thermal, a systematic review published in 2019 revealed that approximately 80% of studies involving wave frequencies similar to those of 5G had detected them on living beings, and 58% on cells (in vitro). But there was no consistent relationship between signal strength, exposure time, frequencies involved, and the effects measured. And the majority of these studies do not meet the quality standards necessary to draw satisfactory conclusions. Another literature review carried out in 2016 had already concluded that the more rigorously the studies are carried out, the fewer the effects detected.

What is the link with diabetes?

In 2014, a study published in Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology concluded that exposure of rats to radio frequencies from Wi-Fi devices induces metabolic disorders and a state similar to diabetes through an alteration of the oxidative response. But the study aimed above all to demonstrate that olive oil reduced the effects of this exposure.

In Canada in 2008, a study of four type 1 and type 2 diabetics concluded that electricity generated by electronic equipment and wireless devices could contribute to elevated blood sugar levels in diabetics and prediabetics. Besides that the sample was tiny, the author was a toxicologist who campaigned for a reduction in our exposure to electromagnetic fields.

But other studies have gone in the opposite direction, suggesting that exposure to combined static magnetic and electric fields may improve insulin sensitivity. Remember that it is precisely the production of insulin that is problematic in diabetics: in type 1 diabetics, the pancreas does not produce insulin, whereas in type 2 diabetics, the quantity produced is insufficient or poorly produced. used by the body.

However, researchers at the University of Iowa, who exposed diabetic mice to such fields for a few hours a day, observed a normalization of glycemia (the level of sugar in the blood) and resistance to insulin. These effects, which would therefore be beneficial, appeared within three days of exposure, without undesirable adverse effects.

These researchers also treated human liver cells with static magnetic and electric fields for six hours and observed an increase in glycogen, a surrogate marker of insulin sensitivity, suggesting the possibility of a similar antidiabetic effect in humans. ‘man.

These data therefore suggest that these fields could constitute an angle for the treatment of diabetes. Provided that the results obtained are transposed to humans, which is currently a big unknown.

It is also possible that it does not apply to all types of waves.


It is possible that waves and magnetic fields affect blood sugar and insulin production, but the scientific data seems to go in both directions, in addition to being clearly insufficient to determine what the link could be. from cause to effect.

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