What is Alkaline Water?
If you visit a grocery store or pharmacy, you will find alkaline water bottles filling the shelves. The beverage market offers several brands of alkaline water, including the popular Essentia, Core, and Bai. But what is alkaline water?
To understand alkaline water, you must first understand pH, which is a measure of the acidity or basicity of a substance. In summary, the pH ranges from 1 to 14. A pH of 7 is neutral, 1 to 7 is acidic, and 8 to 14 is considered basic (or alkaline as it is also known).
For every increase in pH, you get a 10-fold difference in acidity and alkalinity.
According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the pH of the elements is as follows:
pH 10: baking soda
pH 6: milk
pH 5: coffee
pH 3: tomato juice, soda
pH 2: lemon juice, vinegar
In recent years, the popularity of following an alkaline diet and drinking alkaline water has increased. but does it really work?
How is alkaline water produced?
The pH of water changes according to its composition of chemicals and gases. Adding content of minerals, sodium and calcium can change the pH of the water.
This means that just by passing over rocks and streams, the water can become more alkaline. However, the alkaline waters on the market generally go through a process called electrolysis.
Electrolysis occurs when alkaline water manufacturers use a product called an ionizer. An ionizer uses electricity to filter out the most acidic molecules.
Skeptics of a beverage organization putting an alkaline label on a regular water bottle simply to add to the cost need not worry.
Bottled water sold as alkaline water is subject to strict regulations from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The FDA monitors all bottled water products under the food safety program and the administration determines whether beverage companies adequately control water sources.
Potential benefits of alkaline water
The substantial health benefits of alkaline water are still unclear, according to scientists and researchers. However, some studies have concluded the following potential benefits of making alkaline water a hydration option.
It can improve digestive health
Alkaline water may improve gastrointestinal symptoms, according to a 2018 study published in Medical Gas Research.3 In a double-blind, randomized, controlled study that lasted four weeks, patients drank purified tap water (placebo group) or electrolyzed alkaline water .
The researchers conducted blood tests, assessed physical condition, and asked patients to complete a full questionnaire. The results showed that alkalized water contributed to intestinal regularization to a greater degree than tap water.
It can provide a better night's rest
In the same Medical Gas Research study, researchers found that a large percentage of participants who drank alkaline water said they felt they could sleep soundly and wake up feeling much better than before they started drinking alkaline water.
You can rehydrate more effectively after exercise
Alkaline water can help rehydrate you after exercise better than regular water, according to survey conducted by the Journal of the International Society for Sports Nutrition.4 In this study, researchers examined 100 healthy adults, divided 50/50 between men and women.
They all exercised in a warm environment until they became a bit dehydrated. Then the participants drank alkaline water or standard water in an amount of 2% of body weight. After a two-hour recovery period, the researchers evaluated them.
They found that after experiencing exercise-induced dehydration, drinking electrolyzed, High pH alkalized water reduced the amount of water loss by an average of 6 percent, compared to 3.36 percent for standard purified water.
May increase anaerobic performance
For anaerobic exercise enthusiasts, alkaline water can enhance your performance. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, researchers studied well-trained combat athletes and the effect of alkaline mineral-based water on anaerobic capacity.
In the study, the researchers divided the participants into two randomized groups: an experimental group that drank alkaline water for three weeks and a control group that drank normal water for the same amount of time.
They collected blood samples, urine pH, acid-base balance, and electrolyte status.
The results showed that drinking alkaline water improved acid-base balance and anaerobic exercise performance better than normal water.
May relieve acid reflux
An Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laringology study 6 found that alkaline water at a pH of 8 disrupted an enzyme linked to acid reflux disease and reduced the acidity level of stomach contents in a laboratory study.
The researchers noted that conventional drinking water lacks these characteristics and that alkaline water should be studied more closely as a complementary treatment for reflux disease.
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