Alkaline water and it's benefits is one of the newer trends to have made its way into the already overcrowded wellness and healthy eating world. Drinking Alkaline water, it is said, offers more health benefits than one. It helps slow down the ageing process, regulate pH levels of the body and prevent various chronic diseases. Alkaline water refers to neutralising acid levels in the body, which normal water cannot do. This controversial health practice has been argued over its use by many health experts. Let's find out what alkaline water is all about and if it's worth the hype.
What is Alkaline Water?
Alkaline water is water that has been ionized, which means the pH level of water has been increased. The pH level is a number that measures how acidic or alkaline a substance is on a scale of 0 to 14. For instance, if the level is 1, it means the substance is very acidic and if it is 13, it is very alkaline. Alkaline water has pH level of about 8 or 9 and pH level of normal tap water is 7, which is neutral. It is believed that alkaline water helps people with excess acidity as it helps neutralise the acid in the body; thanks to its alkaline nature. This process of neutralising acids in the body helps prevent various ailments. There are ways to increase the alkaline properties of water by using special filters, faucet attachments and additives that raise the pH levels, making normal tap water go from neutral pH to Alkaline.
According to the Bangalore based Nutritionist, Dr. Anju Sood, "Your body secretes out a lot of juices. Now these juices are basically acidic in nature. So at that time alkaline water will neutralise the acid. We always suggest having foods that are at least 70 percent alkaline and 30 percent acidic, so that once it is consumed; the pH of the body will be neutral. Alkaline water is suggested when you are not consuming food that is not balancing your pH levels in the body."
Benefits of alkaline water: Alkaline water is water that has been ionized
According to Mayo Clinic, regular water is best for most people, as there is no scientific evidence that fully verifies the claims made by supporters of alkaline water. According to a study published in the Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology, alkaline water with a pH level of 8.8 may help soothe acid reflux because the higher pH level kills pepsin, an enzyme involved in breaking down food proteins and a main cause of acid reflux. Another study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition has claimed that a significant difference in the whole blood viscosity after consuming high pH water as compared to regular water after a strenuous workout. According to a study published in the Shanghai Journal of Preventive Medicine, drinking alkaline water may be beneficial for people who suffer from high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes.
Benefits of Alkaline water
While there is still a lack of proven scientific research, various proponents of alkaline water claim to believe in the following benefits of alkaline water:
- Alkaline water has ultra-hydrating properties as compared to normal water. This can be a beneficial drink for people who work out on a daily basis and require more amount of water in their body. Scientifically speaking, the water molecules in alkaline water are smaller and more readily absorbed by your cells, which help your body re-hydrate quickly.
- Alkaline water benefits also include boosting immunity. Your immune system may help neutralise the acidity in your body, which is caused by poor diet, stress and environmental toxins.
- Alkaline water is said to have various minerals like magnesium and calcium, both of which are important for maintaining healthy bones.
- Alkaline water has many potent antioxidants that help prevent the growth of cell damaging free radicals in the body, which can further rush up the ageing process.
- One of the most important benefits of alkaline water is that it neutralises the acidity in our body by lowering excessive acidic content in the stomach and gastro-intestinal tract.
Benefits of alkaline water: Regular water is best for most people, as there is no scientific evidence
Alkaline water side effects
Although alkaline water is considered safe for consumption, it may have negative side effects too. One of the side effects is that while it may be alkalizing your body, there is a chance that excessive consumption may ruin the natural acids of your stomach killing the good bacteria. Furthermore, excessive alkalinity in your body may cause problem in the gastrointestinal tract and skin.
How to make alkaline water
How to make alkaline water with baking soda?
In order to make alkaline water, use baking soda which is alkaline in nature and has a pH level of 9. For about four liters of water or a gallon of water, mix in a half tablespoon of baking soda. Shake the water until it dissolves completely. Once it dissolves, gulp down a glass.
Benefits of alkaline water: Use baking soda which is alkaline in nature and has a pH level of 9
Lemon is acidic in nature, but it has a pH level below 7. When added to water, consumed and fully metabolised, its effect is alkalizing and therefore raises the pH level in the body above 7, which is alkaline. Which is mostly why we are asked to kick start our mornings with a glass of lemon water.
Alkaline water may be good for your health; it is recommended that you consult a doctor before switching to it.