Free radicals, Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), and Reactive Nitrogen Species (RNS) are oxidants that your
body produces from normal metabolic processes, and from external sources such as X-rays. As long as oxidants remain in balance with antioxidants, your health is fine. But if oxidant levels in your body become excessive, then premature aging and degenerative diseases can develop. The key to maintaining good health is to supply your body with antioxidant foods and ionized alkaline water, plus avoid external sources that increase levels of harmful radicals in the body.
Radicals can be good or bad
Harmful radicals are oxidants, they harm your cells and DNA by stealing electrons from them. That process of stealing electrons is called oxidation. You can see oxidation in action when you see iron rust or cut apples turn brown. Oxidation destroys your cells and DNA just like it destroys iron by turning it into rust. Oxidation literally destroys your health from the inside out.
Helpful radicals are called reductants because they reduce oxidation. They are able to reduce oxidation because they have excess electrons which they can donate to oxidants, thereby sparing your cells and DNA from destructive oxidation. The antioxidant hydroxyl ion (OH-) is an example of a helpful radical. The hydroxyl ion gives ionized alkaline water it’s antioxidant benefits.
When free radicals attack
Free radicals are unstable and highly reactive, when they attack your cells and DNA it sets off a chain reaction that destroys additional cells and DNA. When cells and DNA are destroyed by oxidation, they release additional free radicals that go on to attack other cells and DNA, thereby creating a chain reaction of destruction inside your body. The main targets of free radicals in your body are: lipids, nucleic acids, and proteins, but they attack all cell types in the body.
The main free radicals in your body that attack cells and DNA are: hydroxyl radical, superoxide anion radical, hydrogen peroxide, oxygen singlet, hypochlorite, nitric oxide radical, and peroxynitrite radical. Note the first radical in the list, the hydroxyl radical (OH) is the opposite of the antioxidant hydroxyl ion (OH-) which is called hydroxide. They both belong to the hydroxy group: Ions that consist of one oxygen atom, and one hydrogen atom.
How free radicals are produced in your body
Free radicals, plus both Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and Reactive Nitrogen Species (RNS) – types of radicals – are produced in the body by normal metabolic processes. They can be generated as a response to injuries, inflammation, and even exercise. Some external sources of free radicals include:
- Cigarette smoke
- Environmental pollutants
- Certain drugs, pesticides
- Industrial solvents
You should definitely avoid or minimize your exposure to the things on that list. Note that ozone is on that list, there are water machines that make ozonated water, it is definitely bad for your health! Ozonated water fills your body with harmful radicals like the oxygen singlet (a single atom of oxygen).
Oxidative Stress: The condition that leads to premature aging and disease
When the balance between free radical generation and your antioxidant defenses is unfavorable, then your entire body is under oxidative stress: You are literally rotting away from the inside out. Short term oxidative stress can be caused by:
- Injured tissues
- Hyperoxia (excessive exposure to oxygen)
- Exposure to toxins
- Excessive exercise
Long-term oxidative stress can be caused by cancer, side effects of radiation, and chemotherapy.
Diseases caused by excessive levels of radicals
Oxidative stress is a factor in many adverse health conditions. It is a factor in all inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, Lupus, and Adult respiratory disease syndrome. It’s also a factor in ischemic (loss of blood flow) diseases such as heart disease (the #1 killer, responsible for about half of all deaths), stroke and degenerative neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Free Radicals, Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and Reactive Nitrogen Species (RNS) all play a role in the development of cancer. ROS and RNS induce DNA damage in cells, that damage then leads to mutations that research suggests then leads to cancer.
Antioxidants are believed to decrease the oxidative stress that can lead to cancer by neutralizing ROS and limiting cancerous cell proliferation. Primarily, the antioxidants B-carotene and Vitamin C may work to prevent the damage and mutations to DNA strands that lead to cancer. Research is ongoing in this very important area of medicine.
Ionized Alkaline water’s effect on radicals
Ionized alkaline water is rich in antioxidant hydroxyl ions which act to reduce harmful radical’s ability to oxidize cells and DNA. Reduction is one half of a chemical reaction that chemists call the redox reaction: One half of the reaction is oxidation, the other half of the reaction is called reduction. The reason for this is because when a radical is oxidizing anything, the thing that is being oxidized is simultaneously reducing the oxidants’ ability to oxidize. So the reaction that ionized alkaline water has with harmful radicals is that it reduces their ability to cause harmful oxidation.
Research on ionized alkaline water as an antioxidant is preliminary, much of it has been done in the lab. There is limited clinical research available, but there are a few things we do know from clinical research. Alkaline water:
- Has an antioxidant enzyme sparing effect
- May help reduce oxidation in the brain
- Reduces intracellular oxidation during exercise
- Has a protective effect on the liver
- Slows aging and extends lifespan in model organisms
Antioxidant enzyme sparing effect: The most powerful and effective antioxidants are the antioxidant enzymes produced by your body. A two-month clinical trial showed that after people new to alkaline water started drinking it, they had higher levels of antioxidant enzymes in their bodies, while at the same time levels of harmful radicals were reduced. This led researchers to conclude that alkaline water may reduce oxidation in the body, and simultaneously spare the body’s own antioxidant enzymes, allowing their levels in the body to increase.
Oxidation in the brain is a major factor in the development of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia. Research conducted on mice shows that alkaline waters antioxidant hydroxyl ion pass through the brain/blood barrier, which is something that other antioxidants can’t do. The blood/brain barrier is a protective barrier between your bloodstream and the brain, it keeps impurities out of the brain. Antioxidants like Vitamin C and Vitamin E which help reduce oxidation in other parts of the body can’t pass that brain/blood barrier, so they can’t protect your brain. Ionized alkaline water is thus far the only known antioxidant that has the potential to pass that barrier and reduce oxidation in the brain.
Oxidation during exercise: When you work out, radicals are produced as a byproduct of your muscles production of energy. Clinical testing has shown that drinking alkaline water before and during exercise reduces intracellular oxidation. This helps athletes train harder and recover faster.
The protective effect on the liver: Research on mice shows that alkaline water may protect the liver from alcohol-induced damage. When the liver breaks down alcohol, it produces hydrogen peroxide, which is a harmful radical. Alkaline water’s hydroxyl ion breaks down hydrogen peroxide into hydrogen and water, effectively neutralizing it. That protective effect was so pronounced that researchers have speculated that alkaline water may be helpful in preventing and treating hangovers. Despite the fact that it would probably be very easy to find volunteers for that sort of experiment, it has not yet been tested.
Slow aging, extend lifespan: Research conducted in model organisms like mice show that alkaline water may slow aging and extend lifespan. Model organisms are creatures such as mice that have very similar metabolic processes to our own, and that makes them ideal for testing something that may be too difficult or expensive to test in humans. These anti-aging studies have been primarily conducted in a type of worm called Caenorhabditis elegans and in mice. All of these studies have shown that drinking ionized alkaline water may extend your lifespan. This preliminary research is exciting, but it needs to be confirmed in human trials.
Fighting harmful radicals: Use common sense
Doctors urge you to eat a healthy diet and get plenty of exercise for good health, and with good reason: It’s the best advice available. Vitamin C and Vitamin E have both been shown to be helpful antioxidants – but not when taken by themselves as supplements. To get the antioxidant benefits from Vitamin C and Vitamin E, you need to consume them in your food. They don’t help as pills.
A healthy diet, exercise, and alkaline water together is a smart, sensible way to ensure that your body has an abundant supply of antioxidants to fight harmful radicals. In fact, alkaline water has been shown to significantly increase the antioxidant power of vitamin C, and it’s easy to combine them. Simply mix alkaline water and any citrus juice, and you’ll have the antioxidant benefits of both.
Could alkaline water help you add life to your years? Call us at 877-959-7977 and ask about our 60-day trial. Try it and find out if alkaline water is right for you
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