Finding drinks and foods that are suitable for acid reflux and GERD can be challenging. This is because most juices are acid-forming and worsen your symptoms, making you feel much worse.
As a result, it’s beneficial to do your research and find something that works for you and even soothes your heartburn. For example, many people recommend drinking alkaline water to ease the symptoms of acid reflux.
But is it true? Is alkaline water better than regular water?
Is alkaline water better than regular water?
There’s no definite answer. A lot of research has mixed claims about the actual health benefits of alkaline water. While some experts claim that alkaline water can be more beneficial than regular water, others insist that most people are perfectly fine with drinking tap or bottled water.
Regardless of which water you choose, though, hydration is important, so make sure to drink enough water each day, no matter what type of diet you’re following.
What is alkaline water?
Alkaline water is called “alkaline” due to its pH level. This type of water has a higher pH level than regular water, which is meant to help neutralize stomach acids and prevent many related health issues, including acid reflux or GERD.
Regular drinking water tends to have a pH level of 7, while most alkaline water types have a pH of around 8 or 9. Alkaline water also has alkaline-forming and antioxidant properties, which can help flush harmful chemicals and free radicals out of your body.
There are many commercial claims about alkaline water, such as that it can help slow down the aging process, regulate the pH level of your body, and even prevent chronic diseases like cancer.
But most of these benefits require that people follow a healthy, balanced diet rich in minerals and nutrients. Some experts even claim that drinking too much alkaline water – particularly in connection with a rather unhealthy diet – can worsen acid reflux and GERD symptoms.
Is alkaline water healthy?
Although experts argue about the benefits of alkaline water, it might help people with certain conditions. For example, those struggling with acid reflux or GERD tend to benefit from an occasional glass of alkaline water – as long as it’s consumed in moderation.
It may also lessen the severity and frequency of heartburn as it helps neutralize stomach acid, thus preventing it from refluxing up your esophagus.
Another research also suggests that alkaline water may help people with high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol levels. It’s important to remember, though, that following a healthy diet is the most important part.
So, while alkaline water might help decrease the risk of these conditions, it shouldn’t be used as a “cure” that can instantly solve all of these issues.
Can alkaline water be bad for your health?
Even though alkaline water is mostly healthy, there are some potential downsides. Firstly, excessive consumption of alkaline water may lower the acidity of your stomach, which helps kill harmful bacteria and digest foods. While excess stomach acid production is bad, it can’t be completely stopped since it’s necessary for various metabolic processes.
Because of that, it’s important not to replace regular water with alkaline water altogether to avoid this harmful side effect.
Drinking too much alkaline water may also affect your body’s natural pH level, leading to many symptoms, including vomiting, nausea, hand tremors, muscle twitching, and even confusion.
This is because your body isn’t used to being too alkalized, which may lead to more severe health conditions down the road. So, drinking alkaline water every once in a while isn’t bad, but you should practice moderation.
Is regular water healthier than alkaline water?
According to a lot of research, regular water is perfectly fine for most people. This is because there is no concrete scientific research that supports the claims made by alkaline water producers. Normal drinking water helps you stay hydrated, often contains essential minerals (if it’s enriched or mineral), and is widely available.
This means that, for the most part, there’s no need to reach for other types of water.
Generally, regular drinking water – both tap and bottled – contains virtually no nutrients, calories, or minerals. The same goes for alkaline water, but depending on the brand, these might be enhanced with certain nutrients, such as selenium, magnesium, or calcium.
But, on the bright side, regular water can be infused with fresh fruit that provides you with minerals and vitamins in their natural form while still keeping you hydrated. Because of that, it might be better to stick to this type of water as it also tastes better and is more accessible.
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Is alkaline water better for acid reflux than regular water?
There aren’t many studies that confirm the connection between less-severe acid reflux symptoms and alkaline water. Because of that, scientists still recommend drinking regular water instead of alkaline water as it doesn’t seem to help to a high degree.
In fact, some studies show that drinking natural mineral water might help more with acid reflux than alkaline water due to its high mineral content.
What’s more, it’s also worth noting that bottled or tap water is way more accessible and cheaper than alkaline water. Since the cost is often a factor in whether people consume a healthy, balanced diet, it’s best to drink regular water and spend more on leafy greens and fruit.
Alkaline water is also not traditionally available in regular grocery stores, so it might be a hassle for people to look for it, especially since, in most cases, it doesn’t make too much of a difference for health and acid reflux symptoms.
All in all, alkaline water does help neutralize stomach acids, which means that it may contribute to lowering the severity and frequency of acid reflux and GERD symptoms. It also has a few more potential health benefits that you can get if you consume it in moderation.
But remember that overdoing it may lead to negative side effects. So, for the most part, it’s best to stick to regular water and only drink alkaline water from time to time.
I’ve been interested in food for many years, and nutrition is my passion. From cooking healthy meals to educating myself on the health benefits of food products, there’s nothing that I don’t enjoy writing and learning about.