We already know that hydration is important for optimal health. Water helps us maintain energy and regulate our body temperature, but with so many different types out there we’re left wondering which is best. Is all water created equal? Turns out, alkaline water may offer benefits above and beyond the already long list of hydration benefits.
Alkaline water is water that’s less acidic than the basic tap water that we’re accustomed to drinking. It has many alkalizing compounds including calcium, silica, potassium, magnesium, and bicarbonate. These compounds are said to be incredibly good for your body and can help slow the aging process, give us more energy and prevent chronic diseases.
“By adding alkalizing compounds like calcium, magnesium and bicarbonate to water, the pH becomes higher,” says Dr. Jennifer Stagg, a biochemist turned naturopathic physician, and author of Unzip Your Genes: 5 Choices To Reveal A Radically Radiant You. Because of this, many believe drinking alkaline water can neutralize acid in the bloodstream and help metabolize nutrients more effectively. Overall, this leads to better health and performance.
There are a number of commercially available alkaline water products and filtration systems. Some experts even believe that serious health problems like osteoporosis, heart disease and cancer could be prevented through consuming a more alkaline diet (PH friendly) and water. Unfortunately, there have been no long term controlled studies to support claims that drinking alkaline water can have these types of outcomes.
Normal tap water has a pH level close to 7, whereas alkaline water has a pH level above 7. Data proves that consuming alkaline water can increase overall body alkalinity. “Human life is heavily dependent on maintaining an appropriate pH level in and around the body’s living organisms and cells,” says Dr. David Greuner cardiovascular surgeon of NYC Surgical Associates.
“Alkaline water helps detoxify your body by removing normal acidic waste products that are accumulated daily,” says Dr. Greuner. “It also helps remove toxins that accumulate in your body from your environment, prescription drugs, unnatural foods, and the “normal” process of aging.”
There have been a handful of studies looking at specific health effects of drinking alkaline water. “One study showed improvements in blood viscosity after strenuous exercise, indicating that consuming alkaline water helps with rehydration. Other studies in athletes that suggest this population may benefit from mineral supplements and drinking alkaline water. For the general population, significant health benefits of alkaline water consumption have not really been scientifically established,” says Dr. Stagg. While the evidence is mostly anecdotal for now, many experts agree that alkaline water seems to have health benefits.
How much water do you drink per day?