Keeping the body hydrated is an important component to living a healthy life. For one, hydration helps the body maintain its equilibrium, and nothing beats the feeling of drinking cold water after doing a strenuous workout or quenching your thirst during a hot day. And since the human body is primarily made up of water, getting your fill feels absolutely right.
With the progress of science, a number of innovations about hydration and health have popped out of thin air. There’s the lemon water craze, raw water trend, coconut water and a few more. This makes sense because it’s a known fact how crucial it is to keep your water levels in check.
But just a few years ago, the alkaline water trend started to gain traction both in mainstream and social media because of the health benefits that it’s supposed to have. But the big question is, can it really do the wonders it’s said to do?
What is Alkaline Water?
Alkaline water is just purified water that is more alkalized than regular water. Drinking water, in particular, has a neutral pH level. This means this type of water is neither acidic nor alkaline. It doesn’t have the acidic properties of substances that fall below 7 pH, neither does it have the alkalinity of those above 7 pH.
However, alkaline water is different because it has an eight to nine pH level. It’s slightly more alkaline than purified water, but that minor increase in alkalinity makes up for the fad that goes around this type of water.
To make water more alkalized, companies usually make the process artificially by splitting water molecules and straining out the acidic ones. This leaves the water with the more ‘alkalized molecules’ which then undergoes the process of being treated with chemicals such as magnesium, calcium, potassium, and sodium bicarbonate.
These chemicals change the pH level of water from 7 to somewhere between 8 and 9. Although the process may seem complicated, alkalization can be done even at home. For example, a company like Filtap has filtration and purifier systems that feature a multistage filtration which involves alkalization in the process.
What Are The Benefits?
One of the bases of the alkaline water fad is the acid-ash hypothesis which posits that the human body is slowly becoming more acidic, therefore, introducing an alkaline-rich diet can maintain the pH level of the body. And since alkaline water is alkalized, it easily becomes part of a diet to counteract the acidity of the body. And while the human body has its own pH level regulating systems, introducing alkaline water will generally not affect those.
That said, drinking alkaline water still has its own merit and is not exactly bad for consumption. For one, alkaline water is known to temporarily relieve acid reflux. If you’re someone who has experienced it before, a temporary relief is as good as having it treated.
Fortunately, according to a 2012 study, alkaline water can help deactivate a digestive enzyme called pepsin which triggers the mortifying feeling of an acid reflux. Although alkaline water will not provide a permanent fix to reflux disease, it’s a win-win situation to get hydrated while having to turn-off that acid reflux switch (albeit shortly).
In addition, alkaline water helps in regulating blood viscosity. Less viscous blood means being more efficient in carrying oxygenated blood throughout the body. This will help you recover quickly after a straining workout, especially after doing heavy cardio exercises.
And although there are factors that affect blood viscosity, fret not since alkaline water will not significantly lessen the viscosity of the blood. This means that alkaline water is not a blood-thinning agent, therefore the regulating effect of alkaline water should not have any debilitating health effects.
Also, it’s water. No matter the form, drinking water is always the healthier option. Hydration is an important thing to maintain, especially because most of your bodily systems rely on it to properly function. Water also helps your skin glow and maintain its youthfulness while keeping dark spots and breakouts from appearing. In the meantime, check out this post to know more about acne scars.
Alkaline water, like any water, has its own benefits. It hydrates you, helps your body achieve equilibrium, it helps your bodily systems to function properly, and a lot more. Whether the alkaline water you’ll drink next is natural or artificial, ensuring that your water is clean—that is, it’s free of contaminants and comes from a clean source—would still give your body the refreshment that it always needs.