If you’ve ever experienced any symptoms of acid reflux, you know how unpleasant and uncomfortable they can be. As a result, you’ve definitely looked into various ways to treat and prevent your condition, including which foods and drinks you should consume and which to avoid.
For example, alkaline water has been all the rage for treating acid reflux and GERD in recent years. But is alkaline water actually good for acid reflux? Will it help alleviate your symptoms?
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Is Alkaline Water Good For Acid Reflux?
Alkaline water has a higher pH level and alkaline-forming properties, which means that it might be good at soothing and preventing the symptoms of acid reflux. But if you’re looking to drink alkaline water for its other advertised health benefits, it might not be a good idea.
Alkaline water is simply water that has an altered chemical composition, which makes it non-acidic. But it doesn’t contain many other health benefits, despite what the manufacturers might claim.
Is alkaline water healthy?
Alkaline water is a type of water that undergoes a chemical process that increases its pH level up to either 8 or 9. It also contains alkaline minerals, which not only increase the many nutrients you consume but also make it antioxidizing and more alkaline-forming.
Because of that, drinking alkaline water may help dilute your stomach acid and prevent acidity while reducing the symptoms of acid reflux and GERD symptoms.
The most proven benefits of alkaline water have to do with acid reflux and GERD. But some studies show other potential advantages that drinking alkaline water might bring.
For example, one research found an improvement in whole-body viscosity when drinking alkaline water. This means that high-pH water might enhance how efficiently your blood flows throughout your whole body, keeping you healthy and preventing various cardiovascular conditions.
Another benefit that drinking alkaline water might bring you is that it might help you with high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol levels. While this might seem impressive, it’s most likely due to this type of water's ions and antioxidative properties rather than its pH level and alkaline-forming abilities.
More studies need to be performed with a larger number of participants to accurately determine the benefits of alkaline water.
While these benefits might sound appealing, you should remember that most of these studies examined a small number of people, so they’re not as accurate as they should be. What’s more, the pH number on the bottle may not even be accurate.
As a result, you might end up drinking regular water or water that has a lower pH level than that advertised. Because of that, doctors are careful when recommending alkaline water to their patients.
How does alkaline water help with acid reflux symptoms?
Alkaline water has a higher pH level than regular drinking and mineral water. This also means that it has more alkaline-forming properties, which can help in reducing and even preventing the symptoms of acid reflux and GERD.
This type of high-pH water instantly lowers the levels of pepsin, which is a stomach enzyme that digests protein and other nutrients in your digestive system. This means that drinking alkaline water might give you immediate relief from acid reflux symptoms.
By diluting stomach acids, alkaline water may help prevent heartburn and inflammation of your digestive system, especially the esophagus. Inflammation and irritation of this part of your digestive tract are often linked to worse acid reflux symptoms and more digestive issues.
On top of that, if the inflammation and irritation aren’t treated, it may lead to more serious conditions, including cancer.
It’s also important to remember that drinking alkaline water won’t completely eliminate your acid reflux or GERD symptoms. Instead, it will provide you with some temporary relief, but the symptoms will return later on.
As a result, it’s important to consult your doctor if you have persistent symptoms that don’t go away after a couple of days. You might need prescription medication to treat the underlying problem.
Is drinking alkaline water every day bad for you?
Most people are perfectly fine with drinking regular water, either tap or mineral. Generally, all types of water help dilute stomach acids and prevent them from backing up your esophagus. As a result, regular drinking of alkaline water is mostly unnecessary.
Instead, it might be better to keep a bottle of alkaline water ready if you start experiencing sudden and severe symptoms of acid reflux, as it can help you in this case.
What’s more, drinking too much alkaline water might impact how effective your gastric acid is. If your stomach acid isn’t strong enough to properly digest all the foods you consume, you might suffer from indigestion and, even worse, acid reflux and GERD symptoms.
Because of that, it’s important not to drink too much alkaline water and only use it sparingly when you truly need it. It might also be better to follow a more alkaline diet as a whole.
You can then make alkaline water yourself, which contains more vitamins and nutrients, instead of buying chemically processed alkaline water. That way, you’re more likely to reduce the severity of your acid reflux symptoms.
Can alkaline water worsen your acid reflux?
Since drinking too much alkaline water can weaken your stomach acid and cause indigestion, it might worsen your acid reflux and GERD. If you drink high-pH-level water in moderation, this is unlikely to be an issue, though.
So, it’s important not to overdo it and not completely replace regular drinking water with alkaline water. Normal drinking water, especially mineral water, contains essential nutrients that can help you stay healthy and keep your digestive tract intact, so it’s still important to drink it regularly.
Alkaline water has a higher pH level than regular drinking water, making it a potential remedy for acid reflux and GERD symptoms. It not only helps dilute your stomach acid but also contributes to hydration and packs some essential minerals.
So, while it’s best not to drink it every day, alkaline water can be very helpful for people struggling with acid reflux and GERD.