What can alkaline water do for you?

If you’ve meandered down the bottled water aisle during the last few years, you’ve likely noticed the surge in alkaline water.

Even Smartwater has hopped on the bandwagon. But other than hydration, what can you expect from sipping on this pH-enhanced beverage?

What it is: Water with a pH above 7. (On the 0 to 14 pH scale, 7 is neutral.)

Claim: “Alkaline water can help neutralize acid in the bloodstream,” says PhURE.

Evidence: No studies have tested whether alkaline water can change the pH of the blood. But it’s unlikely. “Our bodies are really, really good at regulating and maintaining our blood’s pH within a very narrow range,” says Samuel Cheuvront, a physiologist at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine.

And drinking alkaline water is unlikely to move the needle, even temporarily. “The average person has roughly 30 to 50 liters of water in their body,” explains Colleen Muñoz, assistant professor of health sciences at the University of Hartford. “Drinking a liter of alkaline water is basically a drop in the bucket.”

Nor is alkaline water better for hydration or good for treating acid reflux.

Bottom Line: Your body is perfectly capable of regulating your blood’s pH without an assist from alkaline water.


The information in this post first appeared in the September 2018 issue of Nutrition Action Healthletter.

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