Health care practitioners and those suffering from chronic conditions are now considering water as a way to balance the pH and restore bio-terrain in the body. There seems to be as much confusion surrounding pH and the benefits of high alkaline or "alkalinized" water than there is regarding water and its bio-available mineral content. Below is M.J Pangman's thorough response to the radio interviewer Adam Dorfman's question on the subject of alkaline water in an excerpt from Critical Shadows (live radio program transcript from May 24. 2014):
Alkaline water – It seems like many people have purchased alkaline water treatment devices to neutralize waters acidity. Is this practice prudent?
With so much discussion of the need to alkalize, one of the biggest questions people have is whether or not to drink alkaline ionized water. A great deal has been written on the subject by many well-intentioned individuals. However much of the information being circulated regarding the health benefits of alkaline ionized water is either inaccurate or incomplete. First of all, alkaline foods and alkaline water do not neutralize acids in the body. There is no basis for this claim. If they did, then eating overly-cooked meat (alkaline) would be the best way to reduce acidity. Cooked meat s are alkaline; yet they contribute to over-acidity in the tissues of the body. On the other hand, a lemon (one of the most acidic fruits) alkalizes the tissues of the body. Simply because a substance is alkaline or acidic does not mean that it will neutralize its opposite in the human body.
pH is all about hydrogen which is the core of life on Earth. The human body extracts energy from hydrogen supplied from organic acids at each stage of the digestive process. Fresh fruits and vegetables are all acidic – with pH 6.9 and under. Digestion releases hydrogen. However, if a person consumes alkaline foods and/or alkaline water, the elimination organs of the body are taxed and free-radicals are produced. All the confusion around acidity has led some to believe that acidity is the cause of the problem. In reality, it is part of the solution. Research from Russia shows that when the body needs extra help controlling free radicals, it creates an acidic environment to release hydrogen. What the body is calling for when tissues become too acidic is antioxidants. Hydrogen is one of the most potent antioxidants known.
In Nature, water is frequently found to be slightly acidic. It contains organic acids that are necessary to balance alkaline minerals. The lower the pH, the more minerals water can hold. If the pH rises too high, minerals drop out in the form of scale. Without balance, alkaline minerals wreak havoc in all living organisms. That’s why the proponents of alkaline water tell you not to give alkaline water to plants or to put it in a fish tank. It will kill them.
From our perspective, drinking alkaline water is not prudent. It may have some short-term therapeutic benefits, but in the long run it is imbalanced and will contribute to imbalances in the body.