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What Is Alkaline Water? And what makes it different?

Water (as we all know) is a combination of hydrogen and oxygen.
That's why we call it H2O.

Alkaline water is H2O with alkaline minerals in it.

When measured with a pH meter or pH strips, the pH level reflects how acidic or alkaline water may be. This ranges from 0 to 14.

A pH of 7 is considered neutral.

That “seven” number is considered neutral or balanced between acidic and alkaline. If water is below 7 on the pH scale, it's "acidic." If it's higher than 7, it's "alkaline." EPA guidelines state that the pH of tap water should be between 6.5 and 8.5.

Still tap water in the U.S. often  tends to fall below that — in the 4.3 to 5.3 range — depending on where you live. In other places, it may be very alkaline water. Most people know this as 'hard water.

Bottled water falls under different standards depending on whether it claims to be alkaline. Bottled alkaline water has a pH level above 7. In some cases, manufacturers use a special device to change the chemical makeup of the water. Other times, they add nutrients to the water to change its pH.

For comparison, orange juice has a pH of 3.3 and black coffee is about a 5.
Pure water has a neutral pH of 7. But tap water in the U.S. tends to fall below that — in the 4.3 to 5.3 range — depending on where you live.

Here's one study's results showing that mice experience longer lives when drinking alkaline water.

"The biological effect of alkaline water consumption is an object of controversy. The present paper presents a 3-year survival study on a population of 150 mice, and the data were analyzed with an accelerated failure time (AFT) model. Starting from the second year of life, nonparametric survival plots suggest that mice watered with alkaline water showed better survival than control mice. Interestingly, statistical analysis revealed that alkaline water provides higher longevity in terms of "deceleration aging factor" as it increases the survival functions when compared with the control group; namely, animals belonging to the population treated with alkaline water resulted in a longer lifespan. Histological examination of mice kidneys, intestine, heart, liver, and brain revealed that no significant differences emerged among the three groups indicating that no specific pathology resulted correlated with the consumption of alkaline water. These results provide an informative and quantitative summary of survival data as a function of watering with alkaline water of long-lived mouse models."
(For the full study, go  here. 

According to another study published in the Annals of Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology, alkaline water with a pH level of 8.8 may help soothe acid reflux because the higher pH level kills pepsin, an enzyme involved in breaking down food proteins and a main cause of acid reflux.

Another study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition has claimed that a significant difference in the whole blood viscosity after consuming high pH water as compared to regular water after a strenuous workout.

A study published in the Shanghai Journal of Preventive Medicine, claims drinking alkaline water may be beneficial for people who suffer from high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes.

Alkaline water has ultra-hydrating properties as compared to normal water. This makes it a more beneficial drink for people who work out on a daily basis and require more amount of water in their body.

Finnish health researchers report that drinking hard water can actually help people avoid an early death from cardiovascular disease.

"There are regional differences in the chemistry of the ground water that correlate with the incidence of heart disease," Pekka Puska, director general of the Finnish National Health Institute, told AFP."The study shows that the softer the water is, the more heart disease there is," he added.

While researchers have been aware of this phenomenon for some time, most studies done so far have been very general, Puska said.

The new research is the first detailed survey, covering 19,000 incidents of heart attacks across Finland, and then linking them to geochemical data of the drinking water in the communities where the incidents had occurred.

The Alkaway alkaline water filter, the UltraStream, uses natural minerals and ionization to create hydrogen-rich alkaline ultra-pure filtered water.

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