There’s a new type of water to hit the health world. Yep … water.
Didn’t think it was possible to change the design of plain old drinking water? The newest water trend on the market is alkaline water and it’s all about the acidity level! While most drinking water hangs out in the neutral range of the pH (or acidity) spectrum, alkaline water is purposefully created to be less acidic and more alkaline.
There’s a lot to be learned about this new health fad before diving in, so let’s get our feet wet and figure out all we can about alkaline water!
What is Alkaline Water?
The short and simple idea of alkaline water is that its regular drinking water that has been infused with a higher pH level.
Alright, let’s take a step back. What does pH level mean?
This term refers to the “number that measures how acidic or alkaline a substance is on a scale of 0 to 14.” If a substance has a pH level of 1, it is very acidic, while a substance on the opposite end, let’s say a pH level of 13, would be very alkaline.
Why does the acidity level of water mater?
Turns out that some studies and advocates say that “alkaline water … can neutralize the acid in your body.”
Of course, this is not all there is to alkaline water. In order to actually obtain the title “alkaline water,” the product must also “contain alkaline minerals and negative oxidation reduction potential (ORP),” which refers to the “ability of water to act as a pro- or antioxidant.”
How Alkaline Water is Made
Looking at the technicalities of alkaline water, it gets a bit scientific. For instance, “by definition, a substance is alkaline if it has a pH of over 7,” which means, in order for alkaline water to be alkaline water, it must have a pH over 7. To get to that pH level, there is the all-natural, Mother Nature way and then there’s the lab-created variety. In nature, water becomes alkaline when it “passes over rocks — like springs — and picks up minerals, which increases its alkaline level.”
In the lab, chemicals and gases are used, which have the ability to make a substance “more acidic or more alkaline.” This chemical process is called electrolysis. Through electrolysis, an ionizer is used to “raise the pH of regular water” by infusing it with electricity to “separate molecules in the water that are more acidic or more alkaline.” To create alkaline water, acidic water is funneled out.
Scientifically Researched Health Benefits
Alright, we know all there is to know about what alkaline water is and how it’s made, but why would we want to consume alkaline water over plain old regular water? There definitely is hype around this new health trend due to its purported links to certain health benefits. Of course, alkaline water is somewhat new to the health world, which means there’s lots more research to be done, but preliminary findings show some promising health-boosting effects of consuming alkaline water!
1. Better Bone Health
One of the more surprising health benefits of consuming alkaline water is improved bone health.
Specifically, a study that was published in Bone “found an effect on bone resorption,” which is the “process where old bone cells are broken down and replaced by new ones.” The study discovered that “a bicarbonate- and calcium-rich alkali mineral water decreased bone resorption more than a calcium-rich acidic mineral water.”
With that said, further research is necessary to add a solid foundation to these findings.
2. Helps with Acid Reflux
Acid reflux, heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) — all conditions that involve “the contents of the stomach, which are acidic, [splashing] up the food pipe” and causing a burning sensation, nausea, upset stomach, and even throat pain. No matter what variety or severity you suffer from, this condition can be debilitating, painful, and distrustful. Turns out that alkaline water may be able to help out with acid reflux.
In a study “published in Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology” it was discovered that alkaline water could be a “supplement to other [reflux] treatments.” Alkaline water helps treat heartburn by reducing the acidity in the stomach, as well as blocking a specific “enzyme that is connected to reflux disease.”
3. May Lower High Blood Pressure, Blood Sugar, and Blood Lipids (Fat)
Alkaline water may also help lower high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and high blood lipids (fat). This was discovered in a study out of Shanghai that followed alkaline consuming participants for three to six months. All participants had “high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and high blood lipids on the onset of the study. At the conclusion of the observational study, the scientists found that all participants had “lower measures in each of these factors.”
Negative Side Effects
As alkaline water is a relatively new product, there is still lots to be learned. With that said, there have been some downsides or negative side effects linked with the consumption of alkaline water.
First and foremost, alkaline water is considered safe to consume, but it’s always best to speak with your doctor beforehand.
It’s been found that alkaline water may lower “natural stomach acidity, which helps kill bacteria and expel other undesirable pathogens from entering your bloodstream.” Plus, there are also theories that low stomach acidity — as well as high stomach acidity — are both causal factors of heartburn or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD).
On top of that, too much or an excess of “alkalinity in the body may cause gastrointestinal issues and skin irritations,” along with agitating “the body’s normal pH, leading to metabolic alkalosis, a condition” that has the ability to produce a variety of symptoms including nausea, vomiting, hand tremors, muscle twitching, tingling in the extremities or face, and confusion.
Make Your Own Alkaline Water!
If you’ve received the thumbs up from your doctor, you’ve tried out alkaline water and it works for you, and you’re ready to go all in, it’s probably time to save some cash and learn to make your own!
The cheapest and easiest way to make your own alkaline water is by adding baking soda to water. Add half a teaspoon of baking soda to 4-fluid ounces of water. This will create strong alkaline water. For a milder version, add about one-third of a teaspoon of baking soda to 8-fluid ounces of water. Make sure the water you use is purified for the best results!
Another easy way to make your own alkaline water is by adding a few pH drops to water. These drops are “liquids with highly concentrated minerals and electrolytes” such as this D.R.P. Organic Trace Minerals Alkaline Liquid Supplement Electrolyte Drops. The really cool thing about this method is that you can carry pH drops wherever you go — work, the gym, running errands, to a restaurant — and make any filtered water into alkaline water. Plus, you only need a couple of drops per glass of water, which means it’s cost-effective!
If you’re loving alkaline water, then the water ionizer method may be the best option for the highest quantity and quality. You’ll need to shell out some cash at the beginning for a good ionizer, but it’ll last you for the ages and will create on-demand alkaline water.
An ionizer “works by taking advantage of the electrolysis phenomenon” and separating “negative and positive electrodes in the water.” If you go this route, make sure you buy a high-quality ionizer that can produce the right pH — not too high and not too low.
Buy Alkaline Water
If you want to give alkaline water a try, it’s probably best to start with a few premade bottles or go for the more environmentally friendly glass water bottle that creates alkaline water for you — yes, this exists! Here are a few high-quality alkaline water options to get you started!
1. Essentia Water Ionized Alkaline Bottled Water
While we all want to avoid plastic water bottles, if you’re simply trying out alkaline water this Essentia Water Ionized Alkaline Bottled Water is a great way to go. Just remember to recycle those plastic water bottles! Essentia Water optimizes their alkaline water with electrolytes for better rehydration. Plus, they use an innovative, unique ionization process that sets it apart from the rest. A 12-pack of 33.8-fluid ounce bottles costs $17.98.
2. Invigorated Water pH HYDRATE Alkaline Water in Glass Water Bottle
If you’d rather not go the plastic bottle route, but you still don’t want to fully invest in an ionizer, then opt for an environmentally-friendly glass bottle with an alkaline water creation component. This Invigorated Water pH HYDRATE Alkaline Water in Glass Water Bottle is in the mid-range price-wise — one of these awesome alkaline water creators and filters costs $38.97 — yet it delivers pH alkaline water anywhere, anytime. It includes a multi-stage pH, on-the-go alkaline water filter, which also adds minerals such as “zinc, magnesium, selenium, iron,” while “eliminating heavy metals and reducing fluoride, chlorine, and chloramine.”
3. GoFiltr Alkaline Water Bottle Hydration Kit
Looking for something a bit higher quality? This GoFiltr Alkaline Water Bottle Hydration Kit is definitely pricier — a single bottle and hydration kit costs $54.97 — yet you’ll get your money’s worth for the long haul! Not only does this water bottle create on-demand alkaline water, but it’s stainless steel, vacuum insulated bottle keeps liquids chilled for up to 24-hours. The kit comes with two GoFiltr alkaline infusers providing a 9.5 pH level — these should last you up to 6 months — as well as a free download of the GoFiltr mobile app to help you track your alkaline water usage and get refills.
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