Question

Is it safe to wear a wireless pedometer such as the Fitbit One on your body?

Asked by Amy
Washington, DC

I'm worried about the possible health hazards of the wireless device I received over the holidays, the FItbit One. If safety is questionable, is it safer to wear it if I only plug in the wireless receiver dongle once a day to actively sync my information rather than leaving the receiver in all the time? I am wondering if the Fitbit One will act as a regular pedometer if I do this, or if the device will be emitting radiation or dangerous frequencies all the time regardless of whether the receiver is set up and in range.

Answer

Most all electrical equipment radiates some amount of electromagnetic energy or radio frequency. As for the Fitbit, it has been tested by the FCC. See the statement below which can be found in the Fitbit maunual.

FCC RF Radiation Exposure Statement: This equipment complies with FCC radiation exposure limits set forth for an uncontrolled environment. End users must follow the specific operating instructions for satisfying RF exposure compliance. This transmitter must not be co-located or operating in conjunction with any other antenna or transmitter. 'RF' stands for radio frequency. Your cell phone and wireless devices send and receive signals using the same technology. I guess the decission to use the product is an ethical and personal one which you can only answer.

I would like to add if you do have a cell phone and use it, the fitbit can't be any worse.

Harold J Remlinger AIA, LEED BD+C DesignTeam Plus, LLC

Do you have a question about greening your home? GreenHomeGuide invites you to Ask A Pro. Let our network of experienced green building professionals – architects, designers, contractors, electricians, energy experts, landscapers, tile & stone specialists, and more – help you find the right solution.