If you haven’t been following the health news lately you may not have heard of alkaline water. But if your finger is firmly on the beat of all things health then you too may also be questioning this new fad. Is Alkaline water going to solve our health problems, or is it just another trend?
When it comes to new water trends we believe it’s vital to have all the information.
After all, you’re making a decision about something which can impact the health of your body.
That’s why we’ve decided to weigh up all the facts that are out there so that you can decide whether alkaline water is a fad or health fix.
If you’re new to the concept of alkaline water let us introduce you.
As you may have already guessed, the ‘alkaline’ refers to its pH level.
A pH level is a number that measures how acidic or alkaline a substance is on a scale of 0 to 14. For example, a fluid with a pH of 1 would be very acidic and a fluid with a pH of 13 would be very alkaline.
Alkaline water is water that is less acidic than regular tap water. It is rich in alkalizing compounds such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium.
As alkaline water has a higher pH level than most household tap water or bottled water, some believe it can neutralize the acid in the body.
Regular drinking water from a tap generally has a neutral pH level of 7. Whereas alkaline water has a pH level of 8 or 9.
The science does get slightly more complicated, as the water must also contain alkaline minerals in order to act as an antioxidant.
The trend of alkaline water has been steadily growing since 2002.
In 2002 an alternative medicine practitioner claimed that the acid-ash hypothesis should be the basis for an alkaline diet.
The practitioner produced a number of books called the pH miracle, which claimed that an alkaline diet could cure an array of illnesses. From poor digestion to cancer.
However, these claims are not supported by any scientific evidence.
Despite the awareness built around the false claims, alkaline water gained popularity with celebrities.
In 2013, Beyonce catapulted the trend to fame when the media revealed that alkaline water was on her rider for her world tour.
Sports star Tom Brady is another celebrity who has been outspoken in his love of the water, as well as superstar wellness guru Gwyneth Paltrow.
With celebrities accelerating the trend, it’s no surprise that this trendy water market is now worth $678 million.
While there have been many water fads that have reached on the bizarre, alkaline water is surprisingly common and naturally occurring.
For example, water can be alkaline if it passes over rocks and through springs, collecting minerals as it goes. This naturally increases its alkaline level.
However, shop purchased water is where the trend is particularly pushing people.
The bottled water that is often found in health food stores has been through a chemical process called electrolysis. The electrolysis technique uses an ionizer to raise the pH level of regular water.
However many argue that while this process can create alkaline water, for the purest quality, it should be alkaline at the source.
Many researchers believe there is still much more to learn about the process before claims can be made that alkaline water is better for our health.
There are a number of claims across the internet on how alkaline water can support health.
For example, there are claims that alkaline water can help those suffering from acid-reflux or protect us from toxins. However, there is still no solid evidence from the science community to verify any of these existing claims.
Further research must be done, as each organ in the human body has a unique pH range. Since there are various ways that the body maintains its pH balance, it is far more complex than many may imagine.
If pH in the body is off balance it can cause serious health consequences.
Claiming that everyone needs to ‘alkalize’ their body might be an attempt to simplify the human body, when in fact it is a very complicated decision.
Without truly knowing your own body and own health it is difficult to understand if this water fad could truly support your health.
In an investigation by The Guardian, Dr. Tanis Fenton dismissed alkaline water as a fad that was nothing more than over-priced water.
She commented, “While you can’t change the pH of your blood, your diet does affect the pH of your urine. Most people’s urine is about 6, which is acidic. However, that’s natural. While it’s possible drinking the water may make your urine less acidic, that doesn’t make a difference. You’re literally flushing money down the drain.”
At present, there have been no reports about the safety of alkaline water, but rather its health claims.
Currently, there is not enough scientific evidence to support the use of the water. This includes its use as a treatment for health conditions and better wellness.
Many medical experts are concerned that people are believing marketing claims that have no real evidence.
Drinking alkaline water is generally safe, as it contains naturally occurring minerals. However, every individual should take precautions when making major changes to their diet.
There are little known negative side effects of drinking the water, but it can still produce negative effects on some. For example, the lowering of natural stomach acidity which helps kill bacteria.
Effects are also dependant on the individual. An excess of alkalinity in the body may cause gastrointestinal issues and skin irritations.
Alkaline water may be the latest health fad to hit the western world, but the jury is still out on whether it can make a true impact on our health.
There are currently no in-depth studies on the rising trend of this water, just many claims.
Thanks to the internet there are stories from individuals who believe it has become their elixir of life. But it’s essential that when you consider any health change you do your own research and get to know what is right for your body.