Known as the indicator of alkalinity or acidity, a pH value offers impressive insight on the quality of water we drink. If you can remember your science classes, back when you were in school, kids did experiments with a piece of a special paper on which they put lemon (which is acidic), and the paper turned red, and soapy water (alkaline) and the paper turned blue.
Nowadays, we don’t do experiments like that, but we have the devices that can detect the pH value for us. A value of 7 means that the pH is a neutral one, with high values indicating alkalinity and lower values showing acidity. For example, apple juice has a pH value of 3, which means it is acidic. Milk is close to being neutral with a value of 6.2, while soapy water is highly alkaline with a pH value of 10.
The ideal pH
In the case of water, the pH value it has will show you whether it is considered hard or soft. Water believed to be pure should have a neutral value of 7. The one that usually appears naturally on Earth’s surface has a value between 6.5 and 8.5, while groundwater can have a range between 6 and 8.5.
Pure one has no taste, smell, or anything else thanks to being right in the middle between acidity and alkalinity. As a result, the water that you drink should fall between the 6.5 and 8.5 range, as the Environmental Protection Agency suggests. Even when consuming water that has a slightly lower or higher pH for an extended period of time is not healthy.
You can taste the pH of the water just a bit, as high-pH water has a slippery feel and has a taste of baking soda to it. Furthermore, it will leave deposits on your sink and may make your teeth feel abrasive when washing with it. Low-pH water will have a metallic taste and will corrode plumbings faster.
It is advisable, however, to get a pH meter if you want to know for sure whether the water you are consuming is good for you or not. You can check out Opticsandlab.com for high accuracy devices that will help you with that.
Other problems with water pH
Although drinking water that doesn’t have a pH that can be framed within the 6.5 and 8.5 range is an issue for everybody, there are people that also don’t react well to highly acidic or basic water when it touches their skin. What this means is that some people can have aesthetic problems due to water being too “hard”.
Water that has a pH too high will not help soaps form the bubbles they would normally do, and this causes a worsened washing experience. However, there are some experts that argue against these claims and say that the human body is powerful enough to maintain a pH equilibrium inside. They don’t talk about the skin, however. More and more people say that the pH of your tap water used for washing may actually hurt your face.
When it comes to our body’s exterior, things are a little different. Our skin’s pH should be around 5, which means slightly acidic. Tap water usually has values higher than 7, and that means it can also contain more Calcium, which is known to worsen skin conditions like acne or eczema. So sometimes, a filter may prove itself helpful in fighting hard water and regaining the beauty of your facial skin. You can check this site for the best water filter guides.
Can alkaline water help us?
There is a debate going on discussing whether water with a high pH value can be beneficial to one’s health. According to Forbes bottled alkaline one contains electrolytes that should help the body absorb the fluids you are taking in better.
It should be beneficial during the winter season when you have a fever because that is when you would need to absorb more fluids. Even if you are not ill, Forbes says you should still drink plenty of water and liquids to keep yourself hydrated and in good health, as this ensures a good functioning of the digestive system and can help your body temperature adjust to cold or hot weather.
However, according to The New York Times there is no actual proof that alkaline water has a good influence on one’s health, except for maybe those that suffer from acid reflux. Professional dieticians say that this idea that water with high pH can have certain benefits is nothing but a marketing campaign driven by those that want to sell this kind of water, and besides, many people said it tastes awful and has an unpleasant smell most of the time.
As a human’s blood is regulated at a pH value of about 7.4, yet the stomach is very acidic, having a value between 1.5 and 3.5, any kind of water that gets there will be quickly neutralized by the highly-acidic content of the stomach.
So what does this mean? It sounds like no matter what we drink, be it normal water, or one that has a high pH or a low one, the stomach will take care of it either way. While this appears to be true to some extent, there are some other issues that appear. One that has a really low pH value is more probable to contain pollutants, while water with a high pH value will cause more burns, both on the skin and on the inside when drinking it because it contains more minerals than it should.
Water is essential for the good function of all our systems and our mind, but the intake varies from one individual to another according to their needs and level of activity, with the average being around 2-3 liters a day. One thing is sure, and we need it as this is a vital part of our existence.