Alkaline Water Review – Is it Better For Your Health?
You may have heard some of the various health claims about alkaline water. Some say it can help slow the aging process, regulate your body’s pH level, and prevent chronic diseases like cancer. But what exactly is alkaline water, and why all the hype?
The “alkaline” in alkaline water refers to its pH level. The pH level is a number that measures how acidic or alkaline a substance is on a scale of 0 to 14. For example, something with a pH of 1 would be very acidic, and something with a pH of 13 would be very alkaline.
Alkaline water has a higher pH level than regular drinking water. Because of this, some advocates of alkaline water believe it can neutralize the acid in your body. Normal drinking water generally has a neutral pH of 7. Alkaline water typically has a pH of 8 or 9.
Are There Side Effects When Drinking Alkaline Water?
Although alkaline drinking water is considered safe, it may produce negative side effects.
Some examples of negative side effects include the lowering of natural stomach acidity, which helps kill bacteria and expel other undesirable pathogens from entering your bloodstream.
Additionally, an overall excess of alkalinity in the body may cause gastrointestinal issues and skin irritations. Too much alkalinity may also agitate the body’s normal pH, leading to metabolic alkalosis, a condition that may produce the following symptoms:
- hand tremors
- muscle twitching
- tingling in the extremities or face
Alkalosis can also cause a decrease in free calcium in the body, which can affect bone health. However, the most common cause of hypocalcemia is not from drinking alkaline water, but from having an underactive parathyroid gland.
Are There Benefits to Drinking Alkaline Water?
According to a study in the Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology, alkaline water with a pH of 8.8 can help sooth acid reflux because the higher pH level kills pepsin, an enzyme involved in breaking down food proteins and a main cause of acid reflux.
On top of soothing acid reflux, other claimed benefits of alkaline water, according to Levine, are that it helps neutralize acid in the bloodstream, which leads to increased oxygen levels and improved energy and metabolism; it contains antioxidant properties (anti-aging and anti-disease); cleanses the colon; rejuvenates the skin; and lubricates muscles and joints. Evamor, a popular brand of alkaline bottled water, states that “increased dietary alkalinity reduces body fat and fatigue, protects bones, supports the immune system, and achieves better overall health.”
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