Over the last couple of years, a new craze around alkaline water has buzzed around the internet. Some people say that the refreshing taste has boosted their immune system, revitalized their skin, and helped them lose weight!
It seems like we have finally found the holy grail! But let’s take a step back. A year or so has passed since this crazy first took off, which means that researchers have had time to study the supposed benefits.
Let’s have a look at what they found.
First off, let’s explain what “alkaline water” is. “Alkaline” refers to a liquid’s pH level. A pH level measures how alkaline or acidic a substance is. The scale ranges from 0 to 14, where 1 is very acidic and 14 is very alkaline.
For a sensory example, acidic foods have a sharp taste, like lemons, grapefruits, and pineapples. Alkaline foods have an earthy taste, like nuts.
Water has a neutral pH level of 7, which is why clean and fresh water often tastes like nothing. Alkaline water sold in shops will likely have a pH level of around 8 and 9.
However, pH levels are not the only difference between regular water and alkaline water. Alkaline water should also have a negative oxidation reduction potential (also known as ORP). Having a negative ORP means that the water will have more antioxidants.
It is these antioxidants that have sparked a health interest in the food and skincare world. Antioxidants reduce diseases like heart disease and cancers. They also protect cells against corroding skin issues like smoking or excessive exercise. Although we know that antioxidants have these effects, does alkaline water produce enough antioxidants to create any benefits? This is what we wanted to find out.
Alkaline water has become a bit of a controversial topic among researchers. We have compared studies by Mayo Clinic, Jamie Koufman and Nikki Johnston, and, lastly, Wang Yu-Lian. Although all three groups came from different sides of the table, both for and against alkaline water, they all ended up confirming the same conclusion. There are benefits to alkaline water if drunk by the right people.
So who are the right people, and what are the benefits?
The Mayo Clinic study showed that the majority of people would not benefit from alkaline water. Their meta-study showed that regular people who don’t move around much or have any pressing medical conditions would not see a change in their day-to-day life.
The Jamie Koufman and Nikki Johnston study said the same thing but from a different angle. They showed that people didn’t have any changing benefits, but those with activated pepsin showed a significant reduction in symptoms. Pepsin is the enzyme that causes common medical issues like acid reflux. It is a problem that affects 20% of Americans. The pH level of 8.8 helped to deactivate the enzyme causing instant relief.
As alkaline is ionized water, the study also looked into people who suffer from ion-related illnesses, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes. Because of the additional ionization added to their daily diet, they could regulate their conditions with more ease.
The study by Wang Yu-Lian also moved away from the idea of a “regular person” and instead compared regular water to alkaline water when drunk after strenuous workouts. In this study, he compared each participant’s viscosity. The viscosity is the measurement of blood flow efficiency in the vessels. Good viscosity levels mean the body can get oxygen faster and recover quicker.
Wang Yu-Lian discovered that the participants who used alkaline water had a reduced viscosity of 6.3 percent, and the normal water participants were reduced by 3.36 percent. This means that the alkaline water group had a more efficient blood flow.
Using these studies, we can show that alkaline water has these proven benefits:
- Regulates High Blood Pressure
- Regulates High Cholesterol
- Regulates Diabetes
- Rehydrates Bodies Quickly After A Workout
- Helps Bodies Recover Quicker After A Workout
However, some alkaline enthusiasts suggest there are more benefits. We are waiting on studies to prove them, however, we shall list them below:
- Anti-Aging Properties
- Immune System Support
- Colon Cleansing Properties
- Help With Weight Loss
- Helps Build Cancer Resistance
Alkaline water is considered a safe product, however, an excess of anything can cause health issues.
Overuse of alkaline water can cause:
- Gastrointestinal Issues
- Skin Irritations
- Muscle Twitching
- Tingling Sensation On Your Face
If you are wondering how to use alkaline water bottle, the process is super simple. You simply add regular water to the bottle and give it a shake. The movement forces the water through materials in the filter cartridge, turning the neutral water into alkaline water.