Hydration is essential to keep your skin and body happy, healthy, and glowing.
Regardless of whether you choose to hydrate yourself by consuming water-rich fruits, humectants, or drinking simple water, moisture helps maintain the barrier of the skin, keeps our organs functioning smoothly, and ensures we do not suffer from premature aging.
Water is important for both our skin and health, which is why you must definitely learn a little more about alkaline water. Not only does this water have a reputation of being extra hydrating than normal water, but it also has several other benefits.
However, after endless research, we have found that there is evidence to suggest that although alkaline water may be a great option for many, it might not work for some people.
Here, we will present to you some pros and cons of alkaline water so that you can decide if it’s right for you.
What is Alkaline Water?
Alkaline stands for pH, which is the number that informs us how alkaline or acidic the food, water, or ingredients you use are.
The human skin has average pH levels between 5.4 – 5.9, but it can range from 4 to 7 (1). This range is known to be fairly acidic, which is why the protective barrier of the skin is known as the acidic mantle.
The water you drink on a daily basis has a pH of 7 (2), which is considered to be neutral. On the other hand, alkaline water has a pH of 8 to 9.5 (3,4).
As you can see, the pH of alkaline water is not too far from the pH of water which means that it can be beneficial for our health. Alkaline water helps neutralize the acid accumulations in the body while regulating the pH level in the body and fighting chronic diseases (5).
Even though alkaline water is safe, some evidence points to some of the adverse effects of consuming it, which we’ll highlight below.
Pros of Alkaline Water
Alkaline water is loaded with some minerals that are beneficial to the human body (6). These minerals protect telomeres and boost antioxidant levels in the body.
Telomeres are found in our chromosomes and are known to protect our bodies from free radical damage (7). As we grow older, the telomeres become smaller, leaving us more vulnerable to aging and damage.
Boosted Hydration Levels
Everyone knows how important hydration is. When it comes to alkaline water, it is the number one benefit that motivates individuals to consume it every day. According to a study that came about in 2017, 36 soccer players were studied, and it was found that alkaline water plays an important role in keeping hydration levels up (8).
Moreover, it was found that if alkaline water was consumed after a high-intensity workout, there were fewer chances of the body feeling dehydrated.
This is because the minerals found in alkaline water work as electrolytes that keep the hydration levels in the body high. It must also be noted that each soccer player consumed 4 liters of alkaline water per day, which loosely translates to 17 cups of water.
This is more than the recommended amount of water that an average person is asked to consume.
A considerable benefit of alkaline water is how detoxifying it can be. When you drink water, your body enjoys the effects of a detox as it flushes out toxins (9). Alkaline water contains electrolytes, which can help keep dehydration at bay and also allow the body to overhydrate itself (10).
The minerals in alkaline water ensure that the pH levels in the body are kept steady so that nutrients can reach the cells and the waste can get flushed out.
Of course, how beneficial this is to your body depends on the amount of alkaline water you drink and how many minerals the alkaline water that you choose contains.
Helps with Acid Reflux
According to a 2012 study, alkaline water can prevent pepsin from being produced (11). Human pepsin stands for an enzyme that leads to acid reflux and causes reflux disease in the body if you are not careful.
Although this study took place in a lab and not on real human beings, it is found that drinking alkaline water can reduce symptoms of reflux among those who suffer from it.
Generally, drinking water can also help with this, but since alkaline water contains double the benefits of normal water itself, it makes sense that it can be extremely beneficial for the body as long as you are consistent.
Cons of Alkaline Water
If you consume too much alkaline water within a short span of time, it can cause an imbalance in the pH levels of the body. It is important for the bases and acids in the body to remain balanced so that your body can function properly.
Too much alkaline water can disrupt this process which can cause nausea because of metabolic alkalosis. Nausea can eventually lead to vomiting if you do not treat it, which can lower the number of electrolytes in the body, making you feel weak and lethargic.
One of the cons of alkaline water is that even though it changes the pH levels in the body by increasing hydration, it does not affect the pH levels in the stomach permanently.
The pH levels in the stomach are usually set at anywhere between 1.5 and 2.0 (12). These pH levels ensure that the digestion process in the body occurs without any complications, and regardless of how much alkaline water you drink, you cannot change these pH levels.
Depending on what you eat and drink, the pH in the stomach increases slightly. However, the process of digestion then occurs and the stomach acid goes back to its original, natural level. When you consume alkaline water, the extra stomach acids that are produced might be dealt with, but the pH levels of the stomach are not permanently raised.
Another common criticism of alkaline water is how expensive it is, depending on what part of the world you live in. This is especially true for ionizer tanks that can cost anywhere between 900 to 2.400 dollars.
However, you must bear in mind that alkaline water does not have to be expensive.
You can also choose to get an alkaline water filter over-the-counter, which will only cost a small amount of what an ionizer machine would come for. Moreover, the filter can provide all the benefits of alkaline water without you having to worry about the quality of what you are drinking.
When you purchase alkaline water, you must make sure that the water source is not contaminated. In some cases, using an ionizer does not always help ensure that the water’s pH levels are balanced, which means that the water might not always be clean.
It is important that you find a water source that you trust so that you do not face any health issues.
Blood pH Levels
The blood in your body has an alkaline level of approximately 7.35 – 7.45 (13). Like your stomach, the body has a number of mechanisms that ensure that the pH levels of your blood remain steady.
According to some studies, drinking alkaline water does not change these pH levels. It is important that the pH of your blood remains steady if you want your body to continue functioning properly.
But, some research points to metabolic alkalosis. This is a condition when the blood in your body becomes too alkaline.
Because of this, there is an imbalance of pH levels which can place unnecessary stress on your organs, causing your kidneys and lungs to work faster than normal (14). This might lead to cases of vomiting, as well as tremors, twitching, and disorientation if it gets too bad.
Based on the research we found, we can say that alkaline water may be a good idea if you suffer from certain health issues like acid reflux or are prone to dehydration.
Moreover, if you exercise a lot and put a lot of strain on your body, alkaline water may help replace the lost electrolytes in your body. You can also use alkaline water if you are looking for supplementary antioxidant protection.
But, if you suffer from gastrointestinal issues, you might find that consuming alkaline water only makes you feel worse. Alkaline water is not recommended for those suffering from stomach issues, especially individuals who have problems with digestion.
According to the pros and cons of alkaline water, you might find that you agree more with the pros than the cons or vice versa. This mainly depends on person to person and how your body reacts to it.
Maybe you are not fond of the taste of normal water and have trouble hydrating yourself because you do not like the case. In the end, it’s important that you are hydrated and there are sufficient minerals in your body.
A healthy body means good skin and less stress!
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