Recently we bought a blue LED light to find out if it has the healing affects that health researchers have been reporting for years. We purchased a Zadro Sunlight 365, Artificial Sunlight 365 Days a Year. So far, we have found that the blue light makes us feel more energetic especially on days of thick VOG (volcanic smog) here on the Island of Hawaii.
Researchers have been finding significant healing effects from specific wavelengths or light color. Though the healing affects reported are exciting, the lasers to create the exact wavelengths of light were so expensive it was not practical for home use. Recently very bright and inexpensive LED lights that generate enough light at the specific wavelengths to heal have become available so that anyone can buy them and find out for themselves if the healing properties are real. Blue LEDs produce light in the 430 to 485 nm. spectrum and have been shown to help with periodontal disease, acne, and bacterial infections. The blue LED light also helps reduce inflammation, pain, and kill bacteria. Below are some of the studies on the healing power of blue light.
The antibacterial affect of blue light at wavelengths of 400–500 nm was reported in Photochemistry and Photobiology (Vol 80 Issue 3 Page 412-415, November 2004) and described how they showed blue light sources to be toxic to the oral microorganisms P. gingivalis and F. nucleatum. The British Journal of Dermatology (Vol 142 Issue 5 Page 973-978, May 2000 ) published a study that used blue light (peak at 415 nm) in the treatment of acne reporting that patients treated with blue light and mixed blue and red light improved by 76% in inflammatory lesions over 12 weeks. The FDA has approved blue LED for treatment of both acne causing bacteria (P.acnes) and inflammatory acne vulgaris.
The most surprising studies were done by Dr. Chukuka S. Enwemeka and his colleagues at the New York Institute of Technology. They found that MRSA (the drug resistant staph superbug) died when exposed to blue light from an LED. The researchers tested two MRSA strains: one typical of the strains that are invading hospitals, and one of the strains found in the community. Both strains were susceptible to the blue light. Relatively low doses of blue light (about 100 seconds) killed off about 30% of MRSA in laboratory cultures. Longer doses were more effective, although with diminishing returns. It took about 10 times longer exposure to kill off 80% of the MRSA in culture dishes. The study was published in the April 2009 issue of Photomedicine and Laser Surgery.
We wonder if these new LED lights will turn out to be a revolutionary development in health or if it will be just another gadget that looks great but does not work as promised. For the moment we are enjoying being bathed in blue light on mornings that it is overcast to help us wake up.