You may have heard all about alkaline water, but what exactly is it, and what benefits can it give us and our bodies? The pH scale is a scale which is measured by the concentration of ions in a liquid or substance. At the lower end of the scale is pH 1, this is the most acidic a substance can be.
At the high end of the spectrum is pH 14, which is the most alkaline a substance or liquid can be. Every liquid, food and substance has its own level on the pH scale. The pH level of water naturally sits at a 7 on the scale, and this is because it is neutralised in our water systems with disinfectants and other additives.
Alkaline water has a higher pH, usually around an 8 or a 9 on the scale, and is marketed by many as having a host of health benefits for us. But what exactly does alkaline do for us? Below are 5 secrets of alkaline water and pH Levels that can change your life. Later on in this article, you will also be able to see exactly where you can buy alkaline water from, and even learn how to make your own alkaline water from the comfort of your own home.
Naturally, our bodies sit at a pH level of 7.365. And, to keep the balance within ourselves, we ideally need to be drinking water that sits at around 9 or 10 on the scale. This is because it has many health benefits, and can actually detoxify the body. A lot of the time, our bodies can become acidic thanks to an overproduction of pepsin in the stomach. Alkaline water helps to neutralise the over production of this, helping us to soothe heartburn and indigestion.
Toxins are very acidic in our system, and to maintain a pH level when we detoxify, we will need to absorb more alkaline buffers into our system. Choosing alkaline water over the average tap water is important for cleansing our cells of toxins, and allows our systems in the body to rid itself of acidic waste via urine and sweat. If we absorb food, or drink, that has a high acidity level, our body is unable to flush toxins away after a while.
When this happens, our organs can deteriorate over time and cause health issues down the line. Although having a varied diet can enhance the level of pH in your system, you may find that a lot of processed foods hide a high acidic value thanks to small ingredients added to enhance the flavour.
Although we don’t need to drink alkaline water every day or all the time, it’s useful if you’re considering a detox or cleanse in order to release toxins from your system. It’s particularly useful if you are suffering from long term heart burn, or if you suffer from acid reflux and continuous stomach pains thanks to an increase of pepsin in your gut.
As well as being good for cleansing our system, alkaline water is ionized, making it a super helpful by adding anti-oxidants to our system. Anti-oxidants are negatively charged electrons which fight free radicals in the body. Free radicals are understood to be cells in our body that are not complete, and bond with our cells, which can deteriorate them over time.
Anti-oxidants fight free radicals by breaking down their bonds with our cells, allowing them to be flushed from our body in our urine and sweat. It’s unsure exactly how free radicals enter our body, but they’re thought to be a contributing factor to diseases such as cancer and other life threatening illnesses. Other foods and drinks that hold anti-oxidant properties include:
Myth busted – alkaline water can cause heartburn
Although our bodies have a natural balancing system for its pH levels, there are points in our lives when our body can become acidic. Acid reflux is caused when the opening between the stomach and the oesophagus doesn’t close properly, causing stomach acid to travel up and make us sick, or cause the classic symptoms of heartburn.
Studies into the benefits of alkaline water has found that drinking water that has a pH level of 8 or 9 can permanently deactivate pepsin, the enzyme which can cause excessive acidity in our stomach. Although we need pepsin to break down food in our stomach, an excessive amount of pepsins can lead to acid reflux and other related health concerns. Drinking alkaline water can actually reduce the number of pepsins in our stomach, enabling the symptoms of heartburn and acid reflux to subside.
When you’re an athlete, or actively into your fitness, you want to hydrate yourself a lot more than if you’re resting, or going about your day. Alkaline water allows you to retain fluid in your cardiovascular system. The benefits of having hydration in the cardiovascular system are that it decreases the need to urinate, enabling you to exercise for longer periods without having to go to the bathroom, and promotes a healthy level of oxygen distribution throughout the body. This increases air flow, and allows our body to circulate blood in our body at a healthy and normal rate.
Alkaline water also decreases blood osmolality, which reduces your chances of a stroke or other related illness to high plasma in the blood. It’s unsure on the reasons or science behind how alkaline water does this, but it’s thought to have something to do with the breakdown of toxins in our blood and gut.
Along with physical activity and a balanced diet with a high number of vegetables, alkaline water can greatly improve your fitness. Not only does alkaline water aid in hydration during exercise, but it can positively impact or muscles in a way that produces more hydrogen ions in the blood and throughout muscle matter.
As well as this, alkaline water can reduce the effects of fatigue by encouraging more blood flow throughout the body and flushing out toxins that can cause fatigue. Other ways you can avoid fatigue is by getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night, and ensuring you eat a balanced diet that isn’t overloaded with carbohydrates and complex fats.
Although tap water is usually disinfected to protect our gut from potentially harmful bacteria, the disinfectants themselves can become harmful in our bodies, and even create toxins that can break down our healthy cells. Not only this, but these disinfectants help in polluting our environment – which is another reason to avoid drinking straight from the tap.
The toxins created by disinfectants can actually be broken down by alkaline water, drawing the toxins away from our cells and enabling them to be flushed from our system.
Along with alkaline water, you will find that keeping your body at the right pH helps when you find the perfect balance in your life and diet. The key ingredient to a neutral pH is through diet and exercise. Alkaline water can be a supplement to this, and will aid in producing hydration, in flushing harmful toxins and in cleansing our bodies ( especially if we’re on a detox). Vegetables that also aid in this include:
- Wheat Grass Juice
Like many things, too much of something can be a bad thing. The same goes for overloading yourself with alkaline rich liquids and foods. Too much alkaline in the body can lead to health problems that include a lack of pepsin. Although an overabundance of pepsin can lead to heartburn, too little of the substance in your gut can seriously affect your body’s ability to break down food and proteins. Like everything, we must find a balance in our diets, exercise and activities to ensure we’re living our best lives in a healthy way.
Although you can buy alkaline water from leading specialists, you can technically make your own alkaline water at home. The process is lengthy, and may not be the best option if you live a busy lifestyle. However, below is a step by step guide to producing your own alkaline water:
Step 1. Understand the current pH of your water.
The majority of tap water will sit at a pH of 7. However, how do you find out exactly where your water sits on the scale? There are pH kits and pH water testers on the market today that can help you decide this. Usually, in a pH kit you will receive strips that you can dip into your water.
Depending on the colour change on the strip, you will be able to see the pH of your water. From here, you will then be able to change the pH.
Step 2. Change the pH level of your water
In your pH kit, you will usually find acidic and alkaline additives that you can add to your water in order to change its pH level. Simply add more alkaline to your water and ensure that it reaches either a level 8 or 9 on the scale before drinking it.
If you would rather alter the pH of your water using natural methods, then you can do so. Adding lemon juice and baking soda can drastically alter the level of your water, enabling it to be more alkaline on the scale. If your water ends up with a more acidic pH, it will taste sour and isn’t advised.
Step 3. Enjoy!
Once your water has reached the optimal pH level, you can drink it and enjoy the benefits that alkaline water has to offer.
If you would rather bulk buy your alkaline water, you can do so from our website.