Which is better for your health? Alkaline water from a water ionizer (known as Electrolyzed Reduced Water to scientists) or H2
infused water (water with hydrogen dissolved in it)? That seems like a simple question, but it’s not simple. One problem is that alkaline water made by a water ionizer contains about the same amount of dissolved hydrogen as H2 infused water. Another issue is that H2 infused water contains the same kind of minerals that alkaline water does. A recent study tried to tackle this thorny question.
Why is Reactive Oxygen Species scavenging important?
Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are molecules that attack and destroy other molecules by adding oxygen to them. This process, called oxidation is what causes iron to rust, and cut apples to turn brown. In your body, ROS molecules attack and oxidize tissues and DNA, destroying them. Scavenging is a process that neutralizes ROS, taking away those harmful molecules ability to oxidize and destroy tissue and DNA. Oxidation caused by ROS is considered to be a major factor in premature aging and the development of diseases. So ROS scavenging is important for maintaining good health.
Alkaline water compared to hydrogen water for ROS scavenging
In the study, alkaline water showed four times higher ROS scavenging activity compared to hydrogen water. Researchers even de-gassed both types of water to see if they still had an effect: Alkaline water had nearly the same effect as it did before degassing. The hydrogen water had about the same effect (very little) after degassing. From the results of their research, the scientists in the study concluded: “Electrochemically reduced water exerts superior reactive oxygen species scavenging activity in HT1080 cells than the equivalent level of hydrogen-dissolved water.”
HT1080 cells are a type of cancer cell called fibrosarcoma. They form malignant tumors, mostly in males aged 30 – 40. The researchers chose to use fibrosarcoma cells because these cells readily generate reactive oxygen species (ROS). The goal of the study was to compare alkaline water to hydrogen water to see if either demonstrated an anti-ROS effect in the presence of cancer cells.
Do the results of this study mean that alkaline water could cure cancer?
This study only shows evidence that alkaline water can break down the ROS generated by fibrosarcoma cells in the laboratory. The study results are encouraging, but a lot more research needs to be done before any scientific judgement can be rendered on alkaline water as a potential therapy.
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Hamasaki T, Harada G, Nakamichi N, Kabayama S, Teruya K, Fugetsu B, et al. (2017) Electrochemically reduced water exerts superior reactive oxygen species scavenging activity in HT1080 cells than the equivalent level of hydrogen-dissolved water. PLoS ONE 12(2): e0171192. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0171192
Assim A. Alfadda and Reem M. Sallam, “Reactive Oxygen Species in Health and Disease,” Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology, vol. 2012, Article ID 936486, 14 pages, 2012. doi:10.1155/2012/936486 https://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2012/936486/