Alkaline water: Is this newly trendy water better than the rest?

Alkaline water seems to be the new "it" water. But what exactly is it? "Alkalized" water has a pH higher than tap water, which is usually a pH of 7 Using an agent like calcium or magnesium, the pH is brought up to 8 or 8.5 Some studies suggest drinking alkaline water can slow bone loss, or ease acid reflux But some say the studies are inconclusive In fact, higher levels of alkalinity could prove disastrous for those with kidney disease If you're unsure if drinking alkaline water is for you, drink tap wate

From independent sellers touting month supplies of alkaline water for purchase, to those looking for another way to maintain optimum health, alkaline water has become a buzzword of sorts.

But what exactly is this new "it" water?

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Alkaline water basics 

To be precise, alkaline water or water that has been "alkalized" refers to water with a higher pH than tap water. The pH scale, which measures how acidic or basic something is, runs from zero to 14, with seven being the neutral point. Anything below seven is considered acidic, while anything above seven in basic. Most tap water has a pH of 7.

Alkaline water typically has a pH greater than that of tap water. Water is alkalized through an agent - calcium or magnesium for instance - bringing its pH up to 8 or 8.5, according to Self Magazine. Bottled water brands like Essentia and Evamor are considered alkaline waters.

Health benefits of drinking alkaline water 

The benefits of drinking alkaline water vary depending on who you ask. According to the Mayo Clinic, some studies suggest regularly drinking alkaline water can help slow bone loss. Other studies suggest alkaline water can help ease acid reflux woes due to its higher pH levels. The most straighforward benefit of alkaline water, however, is its super hydrating quality, which brands like Essentia and Evamor promote on their websites.

Possible dangers of alkaline water

Although some doctors and experts sing the praises of alkaline waters, others are wary. Registered dietitian Alyse Levine argues in Shape Magazine that the studies of alkaline water are largely inconclusive or incomplete. Levine notes that clinical studies simply don't exist to support many of the claims made.

Moreover, depending on your current health, drinking alkaline water could prove to have negative effects on your body. For people with kidney disease, higher levels of alkalinity could prove disastrous, according to the Nephron Information Center.

Still unsure whether drinking alkaline water is for you? Continue to do your research. Find a bit more research here.