Alkaline water is pure drinking water with a pH level higher than 7.0. It is different than your plain tap water, which is usually acidic, contains many toxins and contaminants and is not pH balanced. Alkaline water, also known also as ionized water, it is generally produced with the help of a faucet-based water filter and alkalizer, or various other unique methods that you could choose from. Drinking ionized water may produce a lot of health benefits because it balances pH and is pure. In the Western world, most people consume liquids that are acidic, such as sodas, tea, coffee, concentrated fruit juices, alcohol, which causes over acidity in our bodies.
Now let’s get to the specifics. What are the major benefits of drinking this type of water? Alkaline water has been shown to slow down the ageing process, prevent tooth decay and bone loss, detoxify your body, make your immune system much stronger and help combat ailments and diseases. It is also said that regular alkaline water consumption, prevents arthritis, kidney disorders, and osteoporosis and normalizes your blood flow because of the boost in alkalinity of your blood which occurs, without your body having to use its ‘alkaline buffers’ to do it. It is better at hydrating your body since it’s full of healthy ions that can energize you and fully hydrate you. Additionally, it can also be very useful for dry hair and skin conditions.
Dr. Mercola in his blog articles.mercola.com shared some comments about alkaline water. He states that “Clean, pure water is a cornerstone of good health. Your body is mostly water, so the ongoing intake of water is essential to your every function.”
He is right about this. We must hydrate ourselves with high quality water, since our bodies are made up of so much water and it is required to regenerate our cells every hour of every day. By drinking the right type of water, which is clean, pure and well balanced, we can make sure that our bodies are well protected from unwanted diseases.
Dr. Mercola also states that balance is key to everything. He says that “As is true with many things, in the end it’s a matter of balance. Water that is too acidic or too alkaline can be detrimental to human health and lead to nutritional disequilibrium. This was demonstrated in a Swedish well water study, which found both pH extremes to be problematic. Your body simply was not designed to drink highly alkaline water all the time. So I believe it’s best to be VERY careful when it comes to something as foundational as the water you drink on a daily basis.” So moderation, rather than extremes, is key. As he says, our bodies are not capable of too much acidity and too much alkalinity. Our blood is maintained at only a slightly alkaline pH of 7.35, no 11 or 12 or higher, so we’d do best to choose moderately alkalized drinking water or just pure balanced water.
So how is alkaline water made? There are different ways of producing it. The most common ways are with a water ionizer you can use, distillation, the use of Kangen Water alkaline machine, reverse osmosis (RO) machine or other alternatives that can be a lot cheaper – such as adding lemon juice or bicarbonate of soda to tap water.
By popular recommendation, the water ionizer is still the most widely used alkaline water machine nowadays. It is probably the most popular source of alkaline water since water ionizers tend to be cheaper than RO and Kangen Water machines, they are easily purchased online or at stores and they are easy to set up – it simply attaches to your taps (faucets) at home.
Ionizers work by firstly filtering and then ionizing the incoming water by running it over positive and negative electrodes. They filter out inorganic and organic chemicals, lead and many heavy metals, pesticides, trihalomethanes and volatile organic chemicals (e.g. chloroform and radon gas), detergents, asbestos, some viruses, pollens.
Filters are relatively inexpensive and need to be replaced every six to twelve months, dependent on volume usage.
Water ionisers, however, do NOT filter out the minerals which are soluble in water (this is a benefit). This means that unlike distillers or reverse osmosis devices, they will leave in all of the minerals your body requires for proper functioning. You are left with nothing but clean, mineralised water, which is ready for the ionization process.
During ionisation, the soluble minerals are attracted to either the positive electrode or the negative one, depending on their own electrical energy. When this happens, the water separates into alkaline and acid streams.
A cheaper way to make alkaline water at home is by adding ½ a juiced lemon or lime to your glass of water. When you mix the juice with your regular water every morning when you wake up, this has a highly alkalizing and liver cleansing effect on your body. Also, bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) can be of help too. A teaspoon added to a gallon of water can alkalize it. However, neither lemon/lime juice nor bicarb will remove any toxins or heavy metals from your water, so it’s not the most effective method of obtaining pure water by any means, but it’s a start.
So how can you be sure that these methods really do alkalize your water? You can determine the pH level of your regular water before and after you alkalize it using a simple and inexpensive pH testing kit, which you can buy from Amazon or in some health food stores. This kit contains pH strips and a colour chart. The strips turn different colours when dipped in liquids, depending on its pH. This method is a great way to check that alkaline water you make at home is in fact alkaline but not too alkaline.
Tap water should be neutral at 7 on the scale but it’s likely to be less than 7 because of the acidity and contaminants it has. So you want your pH level to be more than 7 and should preferably be on the scale of 8-9. Remember that water above 7 is basic and below 7 is acidic.
So is alkaline water better than pure water? For some people plain water is still the best. If you’re eating a highly acidic diet then it’s best to address some of these issues first. There’s no point in drinking pure alkaline water in one instance and then a can of cola the next – you’d be wasting your time and money and the cola would completely cancel out any benefits the water may have. But then again, according to many research studies, it clearly commends alkaline water to obtain more benefits than just pure plain water. Yes, tap water can be good and is certainly better than coffee, alcohol and soda drinks but alkaline water has more benefits than just your plain tap or purified water. Alkaline water can easily alkalise your bloodstream, help prevent certain diseases mentioned earlier and helps boost your metabolism.
Achieving an alkaline body can make your life easier, happier and full of energy since an abundance of negative ions and antioxidants are great for your health. Antioxidants are important since they work as a neutralizer for free radicals which can be a source of unhealthy mutations that may occur on our body cells and may cause conditions like auto immune diseases and cancers. Furthermore, having an alkaline body is having a lean body and strong immune system, thus having strong resilience in combating unwanted diseases and ensuring your longevity.