Alkaline Water Benefits Explained
As more scientific research is done, more alkaline water benefits are being uncovered and shown to help prevent and improve a variety of health conditions. In fact, drinking alkaline water is one of the easiest ways to improve your health and stay well going forward.
People who drink alkaline water not only get better results on their medical tests, they also report that they feel better and have more energy.
Drinking alkaline water is a holistic approach to improving your health because it affects every system in the human body simultaneously.
The positive effects on each system or organ may be direct or indirect. Alkaline water helps prevent disease and can also be used to help treat many diseases.
In this guide, we will review the research behind many of the known alkaline water benefits. We’ll also give you practical tips throughout the guide on how best to use alkaline water to improve your overall health, prevent disease, and treat disease.
Before we delve into each alkaline water benefit, we need to point out a few important facts about alkaline water.
A few important facts about alkaline water…
Alkaline water is water that has a pH of greater than 7.0 on the pH scale of 0-14.
This alkaline pH may be achieved through the buffering effects of minerals dissolved in the water or through the ionization of the water by electrolysis in an alkaline water machine, also called a water ionizer.
Some home use alkaline water machines actually do both. They first filter the water, then ionize it, and then run this purified ionized water across a filter that adds healthy minerals to the water.
Drinking alkaline water will help you balance and maintain optimal pH inside your body, keeping most of it in an alkaline state and parts of your gastrointestinal system at a healthy acidic pH.
This will have the effect of lowering the oxidation of your tissues and reducing the production of free radicals in your body. These effects will improve your health on many levels, including preventing disease.
It will also improve your natural biome, the beneficial bacteria that live on your skin and inside your body. These beneficial bacteria retard the growth and proliferation of pathogenic organisms that cause many health problems on your skin and inside your body.
They also boost your immune system and help your gastrointestinal system function better.
As you learn more about the health benefits of alkaline water, you should be aware that in scientific research papers, alkaline water created in an ionizer is often referred to as “reduced water,” “electrolyzed reduced water,” or “electrolyzed-reduced water.” It may also be referred to as “restructured water” in some contexts.
This is important to know because if you do a search for “alkaline water benefits” in Google or in scientific databases, you will miss many of the most important health benefits you can get from alkaline water simply because scientists use a different term for the same type of alkaline water that you can create with a home based alkaline water machine (a water ionizer).
Now, let’s talk about specific benefits of alkaline water!
Alkaline Water For Cancer
Probably the scariest diagnosis a person can get from his or her doctor is “the C-word” — cancer. Traditional cancer treatments include procedures like chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery.
Unfortunately, these traditional treatments for cancer usually don’t ultimately work, and almost always, they significantly lower one’s quality of life.
This is why people are so interested in reducing their odds of getting cancer and in learning about alternative ways to treat cancer.
Here’s a key fact you need to know about cancer: for cancerous tumors to grow and metastasize (spread to other areas of the body), they must first send out newly formed blood vessels into the surrounding tissue(s).
These new blood vessels will feed the new cancer cells as the tumor grows. Without these new blood vessels delivering fresh blood to the area, the tumor cannot spread because the new cells will die without this nourishment.
Thus, one of the primary directions cancer research has taken is to prevent the formation of these new blood vessels. If this can be achieved, the tumor will be stopped from spreading!
So, how does this key fact relate to using alkaline water for cancer?
In January 2008, a research study out of Kyushu University in Japan, published in the Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, showed that alkaline water (electrolyzed reduced water) was able to stop the “vascular endothelial growth factor” (VEGF) in lung cancer cells.
Translated into everyday speech, this means that alkaline water was able to stop new blood vessels from forming off a lung cancer tumor! Without these new blood vessels, the tumor could not get bigger! This is a very significant finding and other research studies have shown similar results.
In addition to blocking the growth of new blood vessels from cancerous tumors, it seems alkaline water can also stop the DNA impairment that leads to the formation of malignant cells in the first place!
In another study to come out of Kyushu University (the Japanese are leaders in alkaline water research), and published in 2005 in the journal “Cytotechnology,” a line of cells from Balb/c mice, predisposed to develop into cancerous cells, was shown to uptake alkaline water inside the cells in such a way as it gave a protective effect and prevented the formation of a cancerous tumor.
As you contemplate these exciting results, keep in mind that the water inside your cells comes from the water you consume.
Other interesting studies demonstrating that alkaline water suppresses cancer are coming from the Institute of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical University, in Taiwan.
In 2009, a study from this university and published in the journal “Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry,” showed that alkaline water had an “enhanced inhibitory effect” on leukemia cells.
Moreover, the alkaline water only affected the abnormal blood cells (leukemia cells), NOT the normal blood cells. This is very different than traditional cancer treatments where all the cells, cancerous and non-cancerous, are killed!
Obviously, it is hugely advantageous for a treatment to zero in on the cancer cells and not affect normal cells.
Most naturopathic physicians and alternative treatment centers for cancer highly recommend that cancer patients immediately switch to alkaline water.
In fact, the American Anti-Cancer Institute (AACI) recommends restructured alkaline water, i.e. alkaline water produced in an ionizer, as their number one natural product to fight cancer.
They stress the ability of alkaline water to alkalize the body, making it less hospitable to cancer cells (so they stop growing). They also stress the ability of alkaline water to help detoxify the body and produce a strong antioxidant effect which helps prevent the spread of the cancer.
Alkaline water also helps to reduce the negative effects of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery.
Alkaline Water For Alzheimer’s Disease
One of the best alkaline water benefits is its neuroprotective effects, i.e. its protective effect on your brain and your nervous system.
Many scientists now believe that alkaline water has the ability to reduce the probability of developing neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
They also believe that alkaline water can help slow the progression of these neurological diseases once they start.
Unfortunately, neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s disease not only lower the quality of life for the person who develops them, they also have a deep impact on that person’s family and friends.
A person with Alzheimer’s begins to forget the times they have spent with their own spouse and the childhood memories they share with their siblings.
At some point, they may not even recognize their own children or grandchildren.
For these reasons, Alzheimer’s is one of the most difficult diseases families deal with and one of the most dreaded of all diseases to get.
The good news is that drinking alkaline water is one of the easiest ways to lower your odds of getting Alzheimer’s disease.
This news was announced at the twenty-second Proceedings of the European Society for Animal Cell Technology held in 2011 in Vienna, Austria. A Japanese research group, led by Hanxu Yan, reported that they had demonstrated that alkaline water (electrolyzed reduced water) provided neuroprotective effects on several types of neural cells, brain cells included.
In their presentation, they explained that the brain is the most vulnerable organ in the human body to succumb to the negative effects of oxidative stress.
They also explained that oxidative stress is thought to be the most important factor leading to neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
But here’s the best part of what they said: their research specifically showed that cell death rate was significantly decreased in neural cells exposed to oxidative stress when they were allowed alkaline water uptake.
Put another way, brain cells that contained electrolyzed reduced water did not die as frequently when exposed to oxidative stress! Keep in mind too that alkaline water reduces the occurrence of oxidative stress.
This is huge news that should be on the front page of every major newspaper, along with the cancer research discussed above, and the diabetes research reported below! Why is this amazing research not reported widely?
Could it be that the pharmaceutical companies and medical products companies, the biggest advertisers in these publications, with their multi-billion dollar profits every year, want these kinds of stories kept out of the media?
Keep in mind, alkaline water is dirt cheap compared to prescription drugs!
Remember too, your brain is composed of about seventy-five percent water. When you drink water, that water becomes incorporated into your brain cells!
If you want to protect your brain cells from diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, drink alkaline water to ensure this is the kind of water your brain cells uptake.
Practical Tip #1:
After making your alkaline water at home, do not store it in plastic containers, especially if you plan to store it for a long time.
Instead, store it in glass containers or metal containers for optimum safety and taste.
The water molecules in alkaline water are smaller than those in tap water. This gives them the ability to interact more with the harmful chemicals embedded in the plastic and actually draw them out into the water.
You will therefore have a safer supply of alkaline water if you store our alkaline water in glass or metal containers.
Alkaline Water For Diabetes
The rate of type 2 diabetes is growing at epidemic proportions in the United States and other industrial nations. More than ninety-five percent of all diabetes is type 2.
Fifty years ago, it was unheard of for a child, or even a teenager or young adult, to develop type 2 diabetes. Alarmingly, it is growing more common every day for grade school children to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts that more than forty percent of the American population will have type 2 diabetes by 2040. In fact, some scientists believe the percentage will be even higher.
So, what is going on? Why do we see this enormous increase in type 2 diabetes? Many scientists believe it is due to the changes in the food supply, as well as the environmental toxins we are all now exposed to.
With this crisis situation, it is imperative we do everything we can to avoid this disease. While type 2 diabetes doesn’t kill you overnight, it will cut 15 years off your lifespan on average and very significantly lower your quality of life.
It is important to do everything you can to avoid this disease and or reverse it if you already have it!
Most people know that those who suffer from type 2 diabetes have high blood sugar because this is the symptom that traditional doctors try to control with pharmaceutical drugs, as well as the symptom most often talked about on commercials for diabetes medications.
However, those concerned with treating diabetes naturally typically try to address the underlying problem: insulin resistance. They try to make cell membranes sensitive to insulin again.
Keep in mind too that that prescription diabetes medications almost always make the problem worse over time by forcing the body to produce more and more insulin until the body just wears out.
These prescription drugs also create additional problems like low blood sugar (very dangerous), weight gain, and high blood pressure.
It is much better if a diabetic can reverse their insulin resistance without the side effects of prescription diabetes medications.
The cell membranes in a person who has type 2 diabetes become resistant to the effects of insulin, i.e. insulin resistance.
Insulin is the hormone that facilitates the movement of glucose, created from the breakdown of food, into your cells for energy. If the cell membranes do not work cooperatively with insulin, you can develop a whole host of metabolic problems.
Glucose will also build up on the walls of your smallest blood vessels causing cardiovascular disease. Your nerves will also be damaged by this build-up of extra glucose.
Ultimately, diabetes affects virtually every part of your body and it kills you a little at a time. Most diabetics die of the complications of diabetes than from the disease itself.
For example, a diabetic may die from a heart attack or kidney failure caused by the damage to blood vessels caused by their diabetes.
The research for using alkaline water to improve insulin sensitivity on cell membranes looks very promising. An interesting and convincing study was performed in Nov 2006 in the Department of Obesity management, Dongduk Women’s University, in South Korea. The results were published in the journal, “Life Science.”
In the experiment, a genetic strain of mice called the streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic mouse were used because these mice have insulin resistant type 2 diabetes. The only variable (change from the normal routine) used in the experiment was to provide the mice with alkaline water (electrolyzed reduced water) instead of their normal drinking water.
Just by drinking alkaline water, these diabetic mice showed reduced blood glucose levels and higher insulin sensitivity!
The Dongduk Women’s University study, and another study by the same research team published in the Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin in 2007, also demonstrated another amazing effect of alkaline water that can potentially prevent and reverse diabetes.
They showed that alkaline water exhibited a protective effect on the beta cells of the pancreas. Beta cells are the specialized cells that produce insulin in the human body. Protecting the beta cells has a positive effect on both type 1 and type 2 diabetics!
The most amazing thing about these diabetes studies is that they clearly show that diabetes, both type 1 and type 2, can benefit from drinking alkaline water. This is a much easier change to make in one’s everyday life than cutting down severely on carbohydrates and doing daily rigorous exercise.
In other words, drinking alkaline water is so simple to do, and has such a positive effect, that every diabetic should be doing it! Even if you do not have diabetes, you should be sharing this valuable information with every family member and friend you know who has diabetes.
Furthermore, given the alarming statistics on this disease, you would do yourself a great favor by drinking alkaline water as a preventative measure against developing type 2 diabetes in the future.
Alkaline Water For Acid Reflux
When the acidic gastric juices from your stomach are regurgitated into your esophagus, this is called acid reflux.
It is estimated that about sixty-four million people in the United States suffer from acid reflux on a regular basis.
Even more people experience acid reflux on an irregular basis.
While acid reflux isn’t life threatening, it cause considerable discomfort and is usually a sign that there is a serious underlying gastrointestinal issue.
It can also cause considerable damage to your throat and esophagus.
The pepsin in your gastric juices, the principal enzyme that breaks down proteins, is what causes damage in the throat and esophagus of people who have acid reflux on a regular basis.
People will often drink water to soothe the effects of acid reflux.
However, pepsin remains active when you drink tap water or most bottled beverages which usually range from about 6.5 to 7.5 on the pH scale.
However, alkaline water can have a pH of 8.0+ which can immediately render pepsin completely inactive, and thus, can instantly counteract the harmful effects of acid reflux in throat and esophagus.
Additionally, drinking alkaline water on a regular basis can prevent acid reflux from occurring due to its buffering effect on the stomach.
Both of these positive effects of alkaline water on acid reflux were show conclusively in a 2012 study published in the journal, “Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology.”
In fact, drinking alkaline water has become a popular natural method for treating acid reflux.
Practical Tip #2:
Not only can you drink glasses of pure alkaline water, you can also use alkaline water in your cooking and food preparation.
So, for example, if you are making soup, instead of running tap water into your soup pot, you can use alkaline water.
Likewise, you can make your rice with alkaline water. Instead of soaking your dry beans in tap water, you can soak them in alkaline water.
You can also prepare coffee and tea with alkaline water.
Of course, the more you prepare food and beverages from scratch, and avoid eating processed foods that contain “industrial water,” the better this tip will work for you.
Canned soup, bottled teas, and frozen foods will not contain alkaline water, even if they are labeled as “healthy” or “natural” products.
However, if you make these foods and drinks yourself, you can use alkaline water and improve even more than just by drinking alkaline water.
Alkaline Water For Anti-aging and Increasing Your Lifespan
Aging is a process we all wish we could avoid… but of course that’s not possible.
What we can do, however, is slow the aging process down as much as possible.
In order to do that, you must first have a basic understanding of what causes aging. First, you need to know that in the scientific literature, “aging” is often referred to as senescence.
Aging, i.e. senescence, is directly related to the formation of free radicals in your body.
Free radicals are highly reactive molecules that form when your tissues and cells are oxidized. They are highly reactive because they contain an odd number of electrons which gives them a charge.
This charge gives them the tendency to bind in weird ways to other molecules and actually attack your cells and tissues in the process.
As you age, free radicals gradually damage every tissue and every system in your body. The visible sign that this is happening is how we look older as we view ourselves in the mirror over the years.
Every system in our bodies also gradually slows down and begins to malfunction in various ways. Our bodies begin to ache as this aging process takes place.
Of course, this doesn’t happen overnight… it creeps up on you over several decades.
If you are looking for the fountain of youth, (a real one, not the theoretical one Ponce de León thought he found in Florida), then you need to incorporate strong antioxidants into your body.
Hopefully, one of the most important take away lessons you will learn from this guide is that ionized alkaline water is one of the strongest antioxidants you can ingest, so in a way, you could call alkaline water a fountain of youth.
Another advantage about alkaline water, compared to other antioxidants, is the fact that water gets into every cell, every organ, and every system in the human body! Your body is literally bathed in it from the inside out!
Pay close attention to this. The slower the oxidation rate and the less extensive the oxidation in your body, the slower you will age!
Thus, it follows that the more alkaline water you incorporate into your fluids and diet, the slower you will age, because you’ll get more alkaline water into your body!
This does not mean you won’t age at all if you drink alkaline water religiously. Of course, you will age!
HOWEVER, the progression of the inevitable aging process will be slower if you incorporate alkaline water into your body on a consistent basis.
Fountain of youth? Well, not exactly but you will increase your lifespan and you will feel better late in life when most of us have more time and resources to really enjoy life!
There is actual proof in the scientific literature that alkaline water increases lifespan and slows aging.
One source comes from a carefully designed scientific study published in 2010 in the journal, “Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry.” It was conducted by a group of Japanese researchers at the Kyushu University in Fukuoka, Japan.
Again, the Japanese are leaders in alkaline water benefits research because their government encourages this type of research both with accolades and funding.
Like their widespread daily consumption of highly alkaline algae, most Japanese people consume alkaline water because their research firmly suggests it reduces disease and extends life.
Drinking alkaline water is actually something of an obsession in Japan and Americans would do well to follow their lead on this matter!
Back to the research study…
The research was conducted on nematodes (C. elegans), a type of simple worm and one of the most abundant creatures on Earth.
Nematodes are tiny enough that most wild nematodes live in the moist interstitial spaces between dirt or sand gains.
In other words, they live in the water clinging to the grains of moist dirt or sand.
Now, here’s a very important fact that scientists know and you need to remember:The lifespan of a nematode very much depends on the type of water it is exposed to!
This is true both when they live in the wild and when they are grown (“cultured” is the term scientists use) under laboratory conditions.
In the lab, nematodes are cultured in petri dishes containing water where the conditions can be very precisely controlled.
In the 2010 Kyushu University experiment, some nematodes were cultured in filtered (purified) tap water with a pH regulated to exactly 7.0.
Other nematodes were cultured in the same filtered (purified) tap water that is then alkalized under precise conditions using an ionizer.
Both groups of nematodes were given the same amount of oxygen in their water baths.
Researchers then carefully examined the two different groups of nematodes each day under a macroscope (magnifies 10-30 times) for several weeks to determine how many nematodes were still alive in each group each day.
They were doing this to determine which group of nematodes, those raised in 7.0 pH filtered tap water versus nematodes raised in ionized alkaline water, lived the longest.
The results of the experiment were highly significant and amazing to those of us looking to reverse aging!
Those nematodes cultured in the ionized alkaline water lived on average 43 percent longer than the nematodes raised in the purified 7.0 pH filtered tap water! That’s a very significant difference!
Additionally, by staining the dead nematodes with a fluorescent dye and then examining them under the transmission electron microscope (TEM), the researchers determined that the nematodes cultured in alkaline water contained far fewer “reactive oxygen species” (ROS bodies), i.e. they were less susceptible to oxidation!
In other words, ionized alkaline water, a powerful antioxidant, incorporated into one group of the nematodes’ bodies, and made them less susceptible to oxidation. Therefore, they lived longer!
Okay, people are not nematodes but sometimes scientists use a simpler animal model to test a theory because it is easier to eliminate all other variables. This is exactly the case with this elegantly designed experiment.
The only variable that could have contributed to the nematodes having fewer reactive oxygen species and living 43 percent longer is the alkaline water that was incorporated into their bodies!
While we might try the same sort of experiment with humans, it would be very difficult to keep all the humans in the experiment under exactly the same conditions, i.e. same temperature, humidity, air quality, bathing regimen, food regimen, exercise regimen, etc, etc….
Plus, a human would be likely to purposefully or accidentally “cheat!” For example, they might grab a cup of coffee at work made with the acidic tap water in the break room!
Bottom line, the water in your body comes from the water you drink and the water in the food you eat.. It’s from no other place!
Therefore, if you drink alkaline water and you cook with alkaline water, your body will incorporate alkaline water into your cells and tissues.
This will be the water inside your brain cells, inside your pancreas cells, inside your lung cells, inside your skin cells, and so on.
If you drink alkaline water and cook with alkaline water consistently, you will age significantly slower and you will increase your lifespan!
Practical Tip #3:
Most Americans drink cold carbonated drinks like soda, which is very acidic (along with other acidic drinks) when they’re out and about.
If they stop off at a convenience store to quench their thirst, it’s likely that carbonated, caffeinated and sugary drinks will be readily available.
When confronted with these choices, they also become consumed with the flavor choices that the bottles of spring water, often the only alkaline choice in the store, do not have.
One way to combat this problem, at least partially, is to plan ahead!
Get yourself a small ice chest and stock it with ice cold ionized alkaline water from home.
You can also chill some fruit like lemon, orange, or watermelon and squeeze into your cold water or pre-mix this in before your outing.
You can also make these up in batches, throw them in the freezer, and then grab one as you head out the door.
They will thaw in the car just in time to “hit the spot” once you get hot and thirsty!
This will reduce the temptation of buying highly acidic drinks from the convenience store. Once you make this a habit, it will soon become as second nature as taking a raincoat on a rainy day.
Alkaline Water For a Hangover and Liver Detoxification
Hangovers can cause a great deal of pain, as well as dysfunction at work and school, so naturally people are always looking for a way to get over a hangover faster.
Furthermore, it is well known that alcohol consumption is very hard on the liver.
Social media circles and college campuses are abuzz with an effective remedy for a hangover — drink highly alkaline water!
But does this actually work or is it just a hoax gone viral?
The results of an intriguing experiment on this subject looked at the effects of alkaline water (electrolyzed-reduced water) on rats intoxicated with high doses of ethanol (basically the same toxin as you find in beer and hard drinks!).
The results of this study were published in the journal, “Biomedical Research,” in 2009. The results of this study are very compelling and basically prove that alkaline water for a hangover is not a hoax!
The results also proved that alkaline water works very efficiently at liver detoxification, and therefore, body wide detoxification!
In the experiment, there were two groups of rats. Both groups were given the same amount of ethanol, enough to get them really drunk but not kill them.
However, one group (the control group) was also given distilled water in addition to the ethanol while the other group (the experimental group) was given alkaline water (electrolyzed-reduced water) in addition to the ethanol.
The blood alcohol levels were determined after one, three, and five hours.
Here are the amazing results: After only one hour, the alcohol blood level in the drunk rats given alkaline water was less than half (about forty-five percent) what was found in the drunk rats given distilled water.
The differential was even greater after three hours!
What’s even more intriguing about this study is the mechanism on how alkaline water is actually able to help you get over a hangover faster and it has everything to do with the effect of alkaline water on the liver!
A person does not get over a hangover until their liver has successfully broken down the alcohol into benign chemicals, i.e. detoxified your body from the alcohol with which you’ve poisoned it!
There are several liver enzymes that are involved in this process, primarily ADH (alcohol dehydrogenase) and ALDH (aldehyde dehydrogenase).
These enzymes were present at much higher levels in the drunk rats given alkaline water than the drunk rats given distilled water!
Moreover, chemical markers associated with liver cell damage were much lower in the drunk rats given alkaline water.
These markers included ALT (alanine aminotransferase), AST (aspartate aminotransferase), ALP (alkaline phosphatase), and GGT (gamma glutamyl transpeptidase).
It can also be inferred from this study, as well as from other studies, that alkaline water has a highly protective effect on the liver, on a daily basis if you drink it regularly.
In other words, alkaline water can keep your liver functioning at the optimal level and can even improve its function beyond what is typically considered optimal. Keeping your liver functioning at optimal level helps to flush a variety of toxins out of your body.
Practical Tip #4:
Alcohol is very dehydrating. This is why most people have a headache after they drink too much.
It is caused, quite literally, by your brain not having enough water inside its cells!
Thus, if you know you are going to be drinking (such as before heading out to a bachelor or bachelorette party), always make sure you drink plenty of water before you drink alcohol so you start out well hydrated.
Also, be sure to drink plenty of water before you go to bed that night after you drink.
Specifically, drink ALKALINE water so you can speed up the process of liver detoxification and not cause as much destruction to your body.
This way too, you’ll get over your hangover faster and it will likely not be as bad a hangover.
Please note, we are not advocating for getting drunk (it is very bad for you), but are offering advice on what to do if you plan to do so on the rare occasion.
The list of alkaline water benefits goes on an on! There are alkaline water benefits for something as simple as a hangover to something as complex as a disease like Alzheimers.
And because there are so many opportunities to drink and eat throughout the day, we hope this long list of alkaline water benefits will encourage you to start drinking it on a consistent, daily basis!