Great site, I really enjoy reading, learning and being challenged by what your experts write. I am currently researching the benefits or myths behind ionized water (and want to dive deeper to see if there is added benefit or myth to alkaline ionized water or not.)
Has anyone read about this topic? Would it be beneficial to use this type of water in my products? Are the $1000+ filters really necessary? What else should I know?????
And information or direction in this matter would be so greatly appreciated.
The chemistry of water is essential to life. Life on earth has evolved with water for 2 million years and living beings are composed of at least 65% water. Water plays a vital role in our body and in all life.
Water of course is two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom, H2O. These three atoms come together to form a covalent bond with each other. This means their outer electron shells are filled making it a very stable molecule. Even though water itself is not charged, the distribution of electrons (negatively charged particles) is uneven across this bond. The tetrahedral shaped water molecule will have more negative charge on the oxygen side and more positive charge on the hydrogen side. This characteristic is referred to as a polar bond. Molecules with polar bonds generally associate with other molecules with polar bonds. The overall chemical nature of water makes it possible for it to carry out it roles in living systems which include:
Cohesion – the ability of water molecules to be attracted to other water molecules. This property is responsible for surface tension and makes it possible for plant roots to draw up water to the rest of the plant.
Heat Storage – water changes temperature slowly making it possible to stabilize our body temperature and prevent wild swings of temperature.
Solvent – water is a powerful solvent in our body and is especially good at keeping charged ions found in our blood in solution.
Now if you were to change the properties of water in any way, you would have to change the properties of life itself. Water will spontaneously ionize somewhat, meaning that hydrogen can separate from the hydroxyl group. The hydrogen will have a positive charge (H+) and the hydroxyl would have a negative charge (OH–). The hydrogen ion (also called a proton) affects pH by lowering it or making it more acid. The pH of pure water is pH 7 due to the number of H+ in solution. If you increase the amount of ionized water you increase the H+ and thus decrease the pH, making it more acidic not more alkaline. So the theory of ionizing water to make it more alkaline is completely false. If water is more alkaline or more acidic it is because of things added to the water so that it is no longer pure water.
Now lets look at a living body and pH. The human body strives to maintain an internal pH (blood pH) of 7.35, just slightly alkaline. It is vital that this pH be maintained since enzyme activity that directs metabolism is optimum at pH 7.35 so the body has safety mechanisms in place to make sure it maintains that pH.
pH refers to the concentration of hydrogen ions in solution so there are substances in the blood that bind hydrogen ions to help keep them out of solution. These are called buffers and include bicarbonate ions and proteins. Besides buffers in the blood, the respiratory system and the urinary system also help maintain body pH.
What would cause the pH of the body to alter from its normal 7.35?
-Respiratory problems, diarrhea, vomiting, diabetes, excess alcohol consumption, malnutrition and a diet too low in carbohydrates and high in fats and proteins. A diet like that causes fats to be used for energy resulting in ketoacidosis and excess acid in the system. If the body pH goes below 6.8 or above 8.0, a person could live no more than a few hours.
I have heard recently of ‘restructured water’, ‘ionized water’ and ‘alkaline water’. If it were even possible to change the structure of water (which it is not) I believe it would be very dangerous indeed. All of our cells evolved to be able to handle water in its natural state. If that structure were changed, the water molecule would no longer fit through aquaporins, the chemical channels through cell membranes that allow water into the cells. Water would no longer function in the above capacities we talked about above. It would no longer support life making it very dangerous. That said, there is probably no harm done in using restructured water since they are not really restructuring anything (save your money). However, if indeed the water is ionized or alkaline it is because of something added to the water which without knowing what that is may or may not be dangerous.
For cosmetic purposes it is good to use as pure of water as you can; distilled or deionized. This has many of the minerals (ions) removed so that they do not interact with your other ingredients in unknown ways. Its always good to reduce as many variables as possible when formulating.