Our body functions normally by maintaining its pH balance. pH is a measure of alkalinity or acidity in our body.
Recently, alkaline water has gained popularity on account of its health benefits. Some claim that alkaline water can maintain the body’s pH levels while others say that it detoxes the body, improves hydration, and increases energy.
Due to its health benefits, many companies today manufacture alkaline water and is available commercially in supermarkets as bottled mineral water.
Let’s examine what alkaline water is in detail.
What Exactly Is Alkaline Water
Alkaline water is water that has a higher pH than regular water. The pH level of normal alkaline water for long-term human consumption is said to between the range 8.5 and 9.5. The pH of normal drinking water is 7 at 25 C, which according to the pH scale is neutral.1
Because of its high pH, some claim that it can be useful to neutralize the excess acids that are produced in our body because of the foods we eat on a regular basis.
Water that is naturally alkaline occurs as it passes through rocks, like springs, and picks up minerals that are essential for the body.
With modernization and advancement in technology, alkaline water can be purchased in the supermarkets after water has been gone through a process called electrolysis. The process uses an equipment called ionizers that pass electricity to increase the pH of regular water.
However, doctors and most healthcare professionals claim that they are not as healthy as the naturally-occurring alkaline water. If you are skeptical about commercially available alkaline water but want to give it a try, you can prepare your own alkaline water at home.
Recipe To Prepare Alkaline Water
- 1 tablespoon of Himalayan salt
- 1 lemon
- 2 liters of purified water
- 1 large glass jar
How To Prepare:
- Pour the water into the glass jar.
- Cut the lemon into slices and add it to the water.
- Add the Himalayan salt.
- Cover the glass jar and let it remain at room temperature for 12–24 hours.
- For best results, drink the water early in the morning on an empty stomach.
Possible Health Benefits of Alkaline Water
There is not much scientific evidence to back the benefits of alkaline water. However, few studies have been made and based on the results, alkaline water may have the following health benefits:
- May benefit acid reflux patients: A study reported that alkaline water of a pH of 8.8 can help acid reflux patients by deactivating the digestive enzyme pepsin that has a role to play in acid reflux symptoms.2
- May reduce blood sugar, pressure, and cholesterol: Research suggests that drinking alkaline water may reduce blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels and may be effective in the treatment of hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.3
- May improve blood flow: A study reported that the ingestion of alkaline water improved the flow of blood in those who experienced exercise-induced dehydration. Thus, it may be concluded that alkaline water can help in better distribution of oxygen in the body.4
Apart from these benefits, there are other benefits that alkaline water is believed to have. However, there is no substantial evidence to back these claims. Some of these benefits are as follows:
- Slows the aging process
- Cleanses the colon
- Supports the immune system
- Aids weight loss
- Maintains pH levels
Although alkaline water may be safe to drink, it may have certain negative effects on the body as well. Drinking too much alkaline water may lower the natural acidity of the stomach required for digestion and killing microorganisms. Sometimes, excess alkalinity can cause a condition known as alkalosis.
Drinking natural alkaline water is generally considered safe. However, artificial alkaline water may have to be used with caution even though they are thought to maintain the body’s pH. If overused, they may cause more harm than good to the body.
|↑1||The pH of Water. Water Research Center.|
|↑2||Koufman, Jamie A., and Nikki Johnston. “Potential benefits of pH 8.8 alkaline drinking water as an adjunct in the treatment of reflux disease.” Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology 121, no. 7 (2012): 431-434.|
|↑3||Yu-lian, W. A. N. G. “Preliminary observation on changes of blood pressure, blood sugar and blood lipids after using alkaline ionized drinking water [J].” Shanghai Journal of Preventive Medicine 12 (2001): 005.|
|↑4||Weidman, Joseph, Ralph E. Holsworth, Bradley Brossman, Daniel J. Cho, John St Cyr, and Gregory Fridman. “Effect of electrolyzed high-pH alkaline water on blood viscosity in healthy adults.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 13, no. 1 (2016): 45.|