Waters classified as alkaline are those with a pH greater than 7, which is considered ideal for the proper functioning of the body. pH stands for “potential hydrogen”, a scale that measures the degree of acidity of a given solution. One of the most common preparations for this type of water is adding lemon to mineral water.
Nutritionist Giovanna Oliveira, from Clínica Dr. Maria Fernanda Barca explains that the human body is made up of 70% to 80% of liquid, varying according to age and physical constitution. And the blood pH is around 7.35 to 7.45 PH, that is, slightly alkaline.
But, with a diet rich in soft drinks, refined foods, sugars, fried foods, meats and industrialized products, which are increasingly used by the general population, this pH value changes, making our pH more acidified.
In addition, the common water that most people drink is also more acidic water. “More acidic waters typically contain an additional load of impurities. Some are contaminated with heavy metals. This happens because many inappropriate resources are used to maintain acceptable bacteriological levels in the water, such as the addition of chlorine and fluorine, which will make it even more acidified”, he says. However, she explains that, as the body naturally tends towards alkalinity, it means that consumption of a more alkaline water and diet is beneficial.
7 health benefits of alkaline water
The nutritionist also says that alkaline water has been studied in recent years. There is still no basis to say that it has slimming functions, as many people say. But there are several benefits that are attributed to its daily intake. She lists a few:
1. Aids digestion: its consumption can have therapeutic benefits for patients with esophageal reflux because this type of water deactivates pepsin, which is a digestive enzyme.
2. It works on bone health: a study published in 2012 in Canada concluded that increasing the consumption of alkaline foods can improve bone health, reducing muscle mass loss and the risk for chronic diseases such as hypertension.
3. Gives more energy: Alkalinization also increases intracellular magnesium which is needed for various enzymatic reactions for energy production and vitamin D activation.
4. Improves memory: not only water, but the alkaline diet generates hormonal changes that can improve memory and cognition.
5. Reduces fluid retention: Sodium is largely responsible for fluid retention in the body, so drinking water during the day prevents the body from retaining this electrolyte and other substances.
6. Makes the skin firmer: dermatocosmetics act on the superficial layers of the skin, while water is able to reach deeper layers; therefore, it is the best way to leave the skin glowing and still improve the appearance of wrinkles and firmer skin.
7. Prevents cancer: according to Otto Warburg, winner of the Nobel Prize in 1931, cancer develops in an acidic environment; therefore it cannot develop in alkaline medium.
But, according to the professional, despite all the research carried out to date, there is still no consensus for the role of alkaline water and its long-term benefits.
How to prepare alkaline water
The best water for consumption is mineral water, which is not artificially added with sodium bicarbonate or other minerals. “As sodium bicarbonate is very alkaline, it is necessary to be careful not to cause harm to health”, he explains. The main tip is to add a little lemon.
The nutritionist explains that, despite being an acidic food, when lemon comes in contact with the body it becomes alkaline. “In this case, you can add half a lemon squeezed into a glass of water”, she teaches.
Consumption should be done throughout the day, the amount may vary depending on diet and age. There are still other recipes that take sodium bicarbonate, magnesium chloride and Himalayan salt, but consumption should be guided and recommended by a professional.
Is alkaline water filter necessary?
To avoid water contamination, she says it is necessary to use special filters that help to reduce the load of impurities. “There are filters on the market that alkalize and minimize contamination. Using quality filters to lower the chlorine in your water protects you from potential health problems. Installing an ionizing filter in the kitchen helps to reduce such risks, it removes chlorine from the water as well as purifying it,” she explains.
Ionized, magnetized and magnetized alkaline water: what are the differences?
Much is also said about the different types of alkaline water and the particularities of each one. The nutritionist explains it better:
- Ionized water: all alkaline water can be considered ionized, since ionization is the process that transforms water into alkaline;
- Magnetized water: magnetization occurs when water interacts with magnetic fields, but, according to the nutritionist, there is no proof whether this really works or how exactly the process is;
- Magnetic water: many say that this water fights free radicals, but, still according to the professional, there is no official proven information about it.
Contraindications and warnings about consumption
The professional says that naturally alkalized water – with lemon – or through specific filters has no contraindications. The water plus bicarbonate must be accompanied by a professional.
Therefore, the most important thing is, before starting, consult a nutritionist. “Each person has specific needs and care related to their health. And improper use without monitoring can increase blood pressure and can even harm the proper functioning of the stomach”, he warns.
The information contained on this page is for informational purposes only. They do not replace the advice and follow-up of doctors, nutritionists, psychologists, physical education professionals and other specialists.
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