Drinking Water PH Level: What Is Healthy?

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What is the pH Level of Water and Why Does It Matter ?

Your first encounter with the term ?water pH level? probably occurred in one of your early science labs. The teacher passed out a variety of liquids (perhaps even a few fruits) and pieces of paper called litmus strips. From there, you were directed to dip the strips into the liquids and record your results.

Lemons turned the strip red. Dish detergent turned it blue. If your teacher was the cool kind, they might have even asked you to place a strip on your tongue to see what happened.

One new trend that is a constant topic among doctors, coaches, and everyday people revolves around water pH level. There is a current debate about the best pH level for our drinking water ? many people believe we benefit from higher levels, others prefer to drink a lower pH, and some say it ought to be somewhere in the middle.

Pure water has a pH level of 7. Knowing the pH level of the water we use and consume helps us determine whether that water is hard or soft. We consider a water pH level lower than 7 to be acidic while a higher water pH level is defined as basic or alkaline. Water that leans toward acidity is more likely to corrode pipes, damage fixtures and irritate skin.

We measure water pH level on a scale of 0 to 14. To better understand water pH level, we can compare the pH of common household liquids: apple juice 3, orange juice 3.5, coffee 5.5, milk 6.2, baking soda 8.5, soapy water 10, bleach 12.

Every type of water has its own pH. Tap water pH level varies, but is usually 7.5. Distilled reverse osmosis water ranges from 5 to 7. Common bottled waters can have a pH of 6.5 to 7.5. Bottled waters labeled as alkaline typically have a pH level from 8 to 9. Ocean water pH level is 8 and acid rain can measure in at 5 to 5.5.

Water in surface systems typically has a pH between 6.5 to 8.5. Groundwater systems usually have a pH of 6 to 8.5. Even though the human body maintains pH equilibrium on its own, consumption of excessively acidic or alkaline water can be harmful.

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards, drinking water should be at a pH level of 6.5 to 8.5. The EPA monitors public drinking water quality across the U.S. However, they do not regulate water pH level as they consider this an aesthetic quality.

Water that falls outside of ?safe? levels determined by the EPA is not necessarily unsafe ? especially if it is alkaline, but it might taste or smell unpleasant. However, a water pH level of less than 6.5 is likely contaminated by pollutants and should be treated immediately.

Alkaline water has become an increasingly popular choice for consumption. Believers say it can help fight cancer, cleanse the colon, and support your immune system ? though there is not enough research available to treat these theories as fact.

On the other hand, a 2001 study from Shanghai determined drinking alkaline water may be beneficial for people with diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. A more recent study conducted in 2016 found greater results.

What is a Healthy Water pH Level?

The study of 100 people discovered a 6.3 percent reduction in blood viscosity in alkaline water drinkers as opposed to 3.36 percent in the subjects who drank standard purified water. Viscosity is the measurement of how efficiently blood flows through our vessels.

This means those who drink a higher water pH level have more efficient blood flow, allowing for increased oxygen delivery throughout the body. This could be a reason to choose alkaline water before, during, or after a strenuous workout.

How Do I Know If My Water Has the Right pH Level?

Despite these finds, the only way to know for sure if alkaline water has the healing, antiaging, slimming and detoxifying powers that people claim, is through more research and studies on larger groups.

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