In the last QfS article, we revealed the lack of authenticity of essential oils. This time, again with the help of a YouTube channel Questions for Science, I will reveal the mystery behind the alkaline water.
The most popular alkaline water in Japan is probably made by one of the biggest beverages company Kirin. To give you an idea of how large of a corporation they are: Kirin is the official sponsor of the Tokyo Disney resort, and they are the reseller of Smirnoff vodka and Volvic mineral water in Japan.
OK. Back to their Alkaline water. On the official webpage of Kirin, it is written that by alkalizing the water, the taste of the water becomes more mellow. However, although they mention the difference in taste, seems like there is no information on what kind of effect the Alkaline water may have on health. The possibility may be that they don’t even intend to advertise the Alkaline water as having ANY effect on health whatsoever.
But then, I do not understand the point of emphasizing the alkalinization of water at all aside from the fact that ‘the water can taste better.’ The pH of the Kirin’s Alkaline Water is stated to be from 8.8 to 9.4. (Also it is considered as soft water)
Regarding the taste, well I had some of it, and… it’s not bad. But there was nothing particularly different about alkaline water taste-wise from any other soft waters.
In the video, we can see some other YouTuber showing how to make alkaline water using a lemon. It shows how that YouTuber is completely ignorant because lemon and its juice are not alkaline, but acidic. Yes, the ashes of a burnt lemon are alkaline. Ashes of other burnt things are alkaline too. You can go ahead and add ashes to your water to make it alkaline, but I don’t think that would be a good idea nor do I think it will benefit your health in any way. Do it on your own responsibility.
Now, in the video, we are being explained what pH is. Technically, pH is a scale used to show how many hydrogenic ions are there in an aqueous solution. In short, it shows how acidic or basic (alkaline) the solution is. The range of pH is from 0 to 14. Acidic solutions range from 0 to 7, basic solutions range from 7 to 14.
pH in Different Solutions
Stomach juices pH=2 (acid)
Coffee pH=5 (acid)
Saliva pH=7 (neutral ~ alkalescent)
Sea Water pH=8 (alkaline)
Alkaline water pH=8~9 (alkaline)
The Delusion of Alkaline Water
The reason why Alkaline water is believed to be beneficial for our body is in the wrong belief that it neutralizes the acidity of our body. According to QfS, this is entirely wrong.
When we ingest something orally, it will get mixed up with the stomach juice and will be neutralized there. The human body naturally tries to maintain pH at 7.4, which is already ever so slightly alkaline. If we try to increase our pH higher than 7.4, we will develop Alkalosis, a toxicosis that may cause vomiting, dizziness and other unpleasantness. (pH lower than 7.4 cause acidosis)
So how does our body maintain our pH level at 7.4? Does it urge us to drink more alkaline water? No! Wrong answer!
According to QfS, our body regulates the amount of CO2 we have in our blood to adjust the pH level. That means if we have too much CO2 in our blood, our body shifts to acidity. In that case, the body will emit the H+ (Hydrogen ion) through urine or urges us to breathe out more to emit CO2 through exhaling.
Are you still with me?
Based on this, for example, when we are working out and inhaling much O2 (oxygen), simultaneously, our body is trying hard to emit the CO2 as well. Our body is calibrating the pH scale.
Acidity Causes Cancer?
This is a misunderstanding mentioned that is denied in the video. According to research published in Science magazine in 1956, acidity is not the cause of cancer; rather it showed that cancer cells can grow even in the acidic environments. See the difference? (*1)
Beware of Alkalosis
When pH falls below 7.4, our body develops ketosis. When pH goes higher than 7.4, our body develops alkalosis. Neither is fun, and I sincerely hope you won’t have either symptom because Alkalosis if developed, will result in you having dizziness and nausea. Even a slight increase or decrease in pH will damage the balance. Our bodies are doing their best to keep your pH at 7.4 without you doing anything.
Alkaline Water Can Be Used for…
So far we’ve criticized the efficacy of alkaline water. However, there is one case where alkaline water might be beneficial; when you have gastric hyperacidity. If so, alkaline water may help neutralize the pH level in your stomach.
There is no scientific proof that alkaline water will cure your illness or significantly improve your health or life.
Questions for Science
A popular YouTube channel with over 110,000 subscribers and more than 12 million views. His videos are aimed to deliver accurate, honest good oil and answers to any scientific question that the viewer may have.
Info used with permission from “Alkaline Water ｜Questions for Pseudoscience”
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