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The Health Benefits of Natural Alkaline Water

Drinking alkaline water can be a great way to support a healthy lifestyle. However, did you know that there are two very different kinds of alkaline water with very significant differences between them from a health perspective?

In this blog post, we’ll introduce alkaline water, explain the benefits of alkaline water, and identify the important differences between the two kinds of alkaline water: natural alkaline water and artificial alkaline water. We’ll also share with you the well-kept secret of how you can make natural alkaline water easily, safely and inexpensively using a copper water bottle. Let’s dive in!

What is Alkaline Water?

The word “alkaline” in the term “alkaline water” essentially refers to the pH level of water. The term “pH” is a scientific term which essentially refers to the acidity or non-acidity of a liquid. All liquids have a pH, which is expressed on a scale of 0 to 14. Liquids with a lower pH (that is, closer to a pH of 0) are more acidic than liquids with a higher pH (that is, closer to a pH of 14).

For example, liquids with a pH lower than 7 (like coffee and vinegar) are acidic liquids, while liquids with a pH higher than 7 (like liquid soap and baking soda) are non-acidic liquids, which are also known as “alkaline” or “basic” liquids. Pure water has a pH of 7, which is considered neither acidic nor alkaline. Accordingly, alkaline water is water that has a pH greater 7 and is non-acidic. As discussed in more detail below, healthy alkaline water typically has a pH of 8 or 8.5.

Alkaline water is commonly believed to be beneficial to health. In particular, health advocates believes that alkaline water helps neutralize acidity in the body and thereby helps increase energy levels, slows the aging process, boosts the immune system, supports weight loss, detoxifies the body, cleanses the colon, rejuvenates the skin, supports the health of muscles and joints, and prevents numerous diseases, including cancer.

In fact, recent studies have found that alkaline water may benefit those with high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. Moreover, other recent studies have found that drinking alkaline water neutralized acid in the bloodstream, leading to improved circulation and increased oxygen distribution throughout the body. Another recent study has also determined that drinking alkaline water can help fight or even eliminate acid reflux disease.

Differences Between Natural Alkaline Water and Artificial Alkaline Water

In general, there are two types of alkaline water. The first type of alkaline water is commonly known as “artificial alkaline water” or “artificially alkalinized water”. This is typically water that has been produced by passing tap water through an alkaline water machine, which is also known as an electrical ionizer.

Alkaline water machines operate by a process known as ionization or electrolysis, which is essentially a process that electrocutes water by repeatedly sending electric currents through it. Throughout the process, the water molecules are forcibly split by the electrical current and pushed over metal plates generally made of platinum and titanium. This process creates an exchange of platinum and titanium ions which essentially “forces” the water into a greater state of alkalinity. Adjusting the electrical flow determines how many ions are forced into the water. Some alkaline water machines also come with artificial powders that can be added to the water to make it even more alkaline.

Alkaline water machines generally increase the pH of water from 7 (being the “neutral” pH level of normal water) to an extreme pH of 12 or even 13, which is just short of the highest possible pH level (being a pH of 14).

While alkaline water machines are widely available for purchase in many stores as well as online, they are often marketed in a very aggressive manner along with claims that are false or misleading. As a result, you should exercise significant caution when considering an investment in an alkaline water machine. In fact, as described in detail below, many health advocates have cautioned that drinking artificial alkaline water for an extended period can have serious health side effects.

One reason advanced by health advocates is that the metals contained in alkaline water machines (platinum and titanium) are toxic and detrimental to your health. Accordingly, while water will become more alkaline as it passes through an alkaline water machine, it will also become increasingly toxic. In addition, alkaline water machines can increase the pH of water to an extreme level, which can negatively affect the body. In particular, excessive alkalinity can decrease natural stomach acidity, which can make your body more vulnerable to bacteria and viruses. In addition, drinking water that is too alkaline can cause gastrointestinal issues, negatively affect bone health, and cause skin irritation, as well as other health problems.

Artificial alkaline water is very similar to “empty food” that is high in calories but lacks the essential minerals that your body needs to flourish. In fact, a study published by the World Health Organization cautions against drinking water with low mineral content. When artificial alkaline water is consumed, its high pH level essentially “tricks” the body into thinking that it is receiving water that contains a significant amount of dissolved minerals. This “trick” can cause the body to release mineral reserves into the blood and kidneys, thereby ultimately making the body deficient in minerals as a result. In addition, the powders provided along with alkaline water machines are not pure and may also have negative health consequences. Beyond these health concerns, alkaline water machines can also be expensive to purchase and operate.

The issues associated with artificial alkaline water can be avoided by drinking what is commonly known as “natural alkaline water”, “naturally alkalinized water”, or “living water”. Natural alkaline water is essentially naturally-sourced water that has become alkaline as a result of its natural environment. For example, water can become naturally alkaline as it passes through a mountain spring. As the water flows and rubs against rocks in the earth, it will naturally pick up and absorb various minerals that will increase the water’s pH and make it more alkaline. Unlike artificially alkalinized water, naturally alkalinized water has a more naturally alkaline pH of 8 or 8.5, which is much healthier for your body.

Unfortunately, unless you live near a mountain spring, you may feel that you have little choice but to resort to buying natural alkaline water from a grocery store or health food store. Unfortunately, such water is almost always packaged in plastic bottles, which can leech chemicals into the water and thereby harm your health. In addition, plastic bottles are very harmful to the environment. Beyond these concerns, bottled water is generally expensive and the costs can quickly add up.

In addition, it is important to exercise significant caution when purchasing alkaline water in bottled form. Many grocery stores and specialty stores sell bottled alkaline water that is marketed as natural alkaline water when it is in fact artificially alkalinized water. In general, this water has been created through the process of reverse osmosis and has then been mixed with a powder in order to alkalinize it. As noted above, these powders are often not pure and can be harmful to health.

Fortunately, as described in more detail below, you can avoid the issues associated with artificial alkaline water and bottled alkaline water by making your own natural alkaline water easily, safely and inexpensively using a copper water bottle.

How to Make Natural Alkaline Water Using Your Copper Water Bottle

When you store water in a copper water bottle, the water naturally and safely absorbs very small amounts of copper. This naturally ionizes the water and causes the water to become natural alkaline water.

As a result, a copper water bottle is essentially a natural alkaline water bottle. In fact, the process for making natural alkaline water in a copper bottle is much like the process by which water becomes natural alkaline water in nature. In nature, water can become alkaline by passing through a mountain spring and absorbing minerals. Water stored in a copper water bottle essentially does the same thing as it rubs against the walls of the copper bottle.

In fact, in a recent study scientists studying the effect of storing water in a copper vessel determined that the water became alkaline. In particular, the scientists discovered that the water's pH rose steadily the longer it was stored in the copper vessel. In addition, the scentists studied the effect of the copper vessel on microbially-contaminated drinking-water, including serious bacteria such as e.coli and salmonella. Incredibly, the scientists determined that water infected with these bacteria was completely decontaminated after being stored in a copper vessel for a number of hours at room temperature.

Apart from naturally making water alkaline, storing water in a copper water bottle can also have other health benefits. Copper is an essential mineral, and copper water (also known as “tamra jal” in ayurvedic medicine, and also commonly known as “copper infused water” or “copper charged water”) can have excellent health benefits. For example, copper is anti-bacterial, acts as an effective anti-oxidant, improves immunity, supports good health, prevents aging, eliminates toxins and free radicals, and stimulates the brain. Because copper is naturally anti-bacterial, copper water bottles are naturally self-sterilizing and do not require as much cleaning as other water bottles. Interesting, copper water vessels have been recognized for their health benefits throughout history.

Making alkaline water using a copper water bottle is as easy as pouring water into your copper water bottle and giving the water time to naturally alkaline. Water stored in a copper vessel will become increasingly alkaline the longer it remains in the copper vessel, and the speed and degree of the alkalinization process will depend on various environmental factors, including the temperature of the water and its original pH level. In general, the natural alkalinization process will occur a bit faster if the water is at room temperature or slightly warmer.

You can use any type of water in your copper water bottle, including tap water, water that has been passed through a filter, or even bottled water. You will probably notice the greatest difference with tap water, which is generally the least alkaline and in the need of the most care. Although tap water is generally fine in most first-world cities, you may wish to consider filtering you water before pouring it into your copper water bottle.

Make sure you use a copper water bottle that is made of 100% pure high-grade food-safe copper and does not have any other metals, alloys or lining. Make sure to do your research and ensure that you are avoiding certain manufactures (particularly those who sell on Amazon and Ebay and manufacture their copper bottles in China and India) who falsely claim to sell pure copper water bottles that are actually plain metal bottles plated with copper. Also make sure to avoid sellers who sell copper bottles that are coated on the interior with a toxic lacquer. Our copper bottles are 100% pure high-grade food-safe copper and contain absolutely no toxic materials of any kind.

In addition, you should try to use a hammered copper water bottle, as the hammered texture increases the surface area of copper on the inside of the copper water bottle which makes contact with the water stored in it. The greater the physical contact between the water and the copper, the greater the health benefits for you and the faster the speed of the natural alkalinization process.

In general, we suggest storing water in your copper water bottle for 6-8 hours for the most beneficial effect. For best results and a healthy start to your morning, try storing water in your copper water bottle overnight and drinking from it first thing in the morning. For some great tips on the healthiest way to drink water, check out our recent blog post about the healthy way to drink water

 

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Drinking Water: Hydrating the Ayurvedic Way

Most of us drink water without giving much thought to how we do it. After all, isn’t drinking water as simple as pressing a water bottle to our lips? In fact, the way in which we drink water can actually be life-changing.

Do you ever find yourself feeling bloated after eating? Do you ever find yourself feeling sleepy or drowsy after lunch or dinner? Do you ever find that your efforts to stay hydrated result in many frantic trips to the bathroom, including at night? Do you ever suffer from clogged pores, acne, or dull-looking hair? Amazingly, these and other issues can be mitigated by adopting a special method for drinking water which has been prescribed by ayurvedic medicine and followed by practitioners for centuries.

In this blog post, we’ll explain how making a few small changes in the way in which you drink water (which we call “hydration hacks”) can have a profound impact on your health and well-being.

How to Drink Water

The most important aspect of the ayurvedic method of drinking water is to ensure that you are drinking water in a manner that permits your body to effectively absorb it and use it efficiently. In order to do so, ayurveda suggests that you adopt what we call the “continual hydration approach” rather than what we call the “high volume hydration approach”. In particular, you should be aiming to take a few small sips of water frequently throughout the day instead of drinking large volumes of water a few times throughout the day.

In particular, it is ideal to take a couple sips of water at least every 30 minutes (subject to the other ayurvedic guidelines described below). In fact, drinking small amounts of water frequently throughout the day maximizes hydration and accelerates the body’s detoxification process. Accordingly, adopting the continual hydration approach can increase your energy levels, improve the health of your skin, nails, and hair, combat premature aging, improve digestion, strengthen your immune system, and generally result in a greater overall sense of well-being.

Many people set a particular goal for themselves in terms of the amount of water they need to drink each day and make sure they stick to that goal, even if it requires that they drink a large volume of water in a short period of time in order to “catch up” or “stay on target”. Such an approach may, for example, lead us to drink 2 or 3 glasses of water in one sitting in order to meet our goal of drinking 8 glasses of water per day (more on that later in this blog post).

Most people are surprised to learn that the high volume hydration approach (also known as “chugging”) can be less productive than they think. As amazing and adaptable as our bodies are, they aren’t designed to absorb large volumes of water in a short period of time, which means that the high volume hydration approach will generally result in the water running right through you! Unfortunately, this will not only cause you to go to the bathroom frequently (including during the night, which can disturb your sleep), but it will also deprive you of the benefits of proper hydration. In addition, the high volume hydration approach can, over time, lead to the depletion of essential minerals from our bodies.

Of course, the high volume hydration approach is perfectly understandable! We’re all busy, and we can’t always manage to keep hydrating throughout the day, particularly when our days become loaded with meetings, trips across town, emergencies, and other occurrences that aren’t conducive to always ensuring that we have a nearby source of water. Accordingly, many of us may feel the urge to drink a large volume of water once we return to a source of water so as to help us meet the goal we have set for ourselves.

If you find that your lifestyle tends to push you towards the high volume hydration approach, then there are a few handy “hydration hacks” you can employ to make it much easier to enjoy the benefits of the continual hydration approach. One easy hydration hack is to find a water bottle that you love, both functionally and aesthetically. We tend to surround ourselves with things that give us joy, so a water bottle that meets that requirement is much more likely to make its way into your bag as your leave home for the day. In addition, you are much more likely to actually drink from a water bottle that you love.

Many of our customers find that they have adopted excellent hydration practices through using one of our copper water bottles. In particular, many of our customers have commented that the aesthetically pleasing nature of their copper bottle makes it much more likely that they will keep it at their desk or in their bag when they leave home, and also makes it much more likely that they will take sips from it throughout the day. The gorgeous gleam of pure copper can be a great reminder to keep sipping!

Another great hydration hack is to set automatic alerts on your smartphone that remind you to take a few sips of water every 30 minutes. To avoid intrusions, you can set the alerts to vibrate. While the reminders may be annoying for the first day or two, they should soon help make your new hydration regime a habit, at which time you will have no further need for the reminders and can safely remove them. Interestingly, after a few days of this approach you may also find that your body becomes accustomed to your new hydration regime and that you naturally and automatically take a few sips of water every 30 minutes without needing to actively think about it.

The Timing of Drinking Water

It’s also important to keep in mind exactly when you are drinking water relative to the timing of your meals. In general, you should try to avoid drinking water while having a meal and instead hydrate at least 30 minutes before eating or 2 hours after eating. This is important because drinking water can have the effect of dousing the digestive fire that builds up in our stomachs before a meal (this digestive fire is also known as “agni” in ayurvedic medicine). Drinking water well before you have a meal ensures that your digestive system works as efficiently as possible, which can help avoid stomach-aches and that bloated feeling that many people experience after having a meal.

The same concept applies to drinking water while eating. In general, you should avoid drinking water during a meal if possible. However, if necessary, and particularly if you are consuming salty foods, it’s fine to sip a small amount of water while having your meal. If you drink too much water while you eat, your digestive system may not operate as well as it otherwise would. In order to avoid feeling thirsty after a meal, aim to have a few sips of water 30 minutes before a meal. In addition to helping you avoid feeling thirsty after your meal, the water will also hydrate your stomach’s lining, which will make it easier to produce enough stomach acid to properly digest your meal.

The Temperature of Drinking Water

It’s also vital to be mindful of the temperature of the water that you are drinking. In general, you should aim to drink room temperature water (or, better yet, lukewarm or even hot water) rather than ice water. The logic for this is the same as that set out above, except that ice water is even more prone to douse the digestive fire that builds up in our stomachs. In particular, ice water can freeze the enzymes and fluids in your gut, which can prevent your body from properly digesting food, and which can in turn increase the amount of toxins in your body.

In addition, drinking ice water can cause a contraction of blood vessels, which further increases the likelihood that toxins will remain inside your body rather than being excreted through your lymphatic system, which is essentially the network of tissues and organs in your body that is responsible for getting rid of toxins. The constriction of blood vessels can also prevent blood from circulating throughout your body, thereby reducing the delivery of nutrients through your body.

Conversely, drinking lukewarm or hot water supports the lymphatic system, which means that, over time, more toxins will be expelled from the body. In particular, drinking lukewarm or hot water flushes the lymphatic system, helps soften hardened tissues, dilates, cleanses and hydrates deep tissues, and heals and repairs the digestive system.

Drinking lukewarm or hot water can be particularly important for women during menstruation or for couples that are trying to become pregnant. This is because ice water can reduce circulation in a manner that weakens the reproductive organs. Of course, this isn’t to say that you can never enjoy drinking ice water, particularly on a hot day or after a hard workout! Ice water can be fine provided that you enjoy it in moderation and at least 2 hours before any meal.

It’s interesting to reflect on how the above differs dramatically from the usual custom at most restaurants, particularly in North America. Upon arrival at a restaurant, the server generally greets us with large glasses of ice water – precisely the sort of thing we should be avoiding right before we enjoy a nice meal! To avoid that, try politely asking your server at the outset to provide room temperature water – most servers will understand and will be pleased to do it! And, remember to keep any drinking during your meal to a minimum in order to preserve your digestive fire.

How Much Water Should I Drink?

Ayurvedic principles can also help you determine if you are drinking enough water to ensure that you are always feeling your absolute best. Most of us have heard the suggestion that we all need to all drink eight glasses of water a day to avoid being chronically dehydrated. While this may be a helpful guideline or rule of thumb, it does not apply universally.

In order to maintain good health and hydration we need to take in enough water to replace the amount of water we lose daily through perspiration, excretion, and other bodily functions. The ideal daily water intake varies widely from person to person and will depend on a variety of factors, including a person’s size, diet, age, daily activities and the environment in which they conduct their activities. Obviously, a petite person sitting stationary at a desk in an air-conditioned office will need less water on a daily basis than a very tall person working at a construction site in the blistering heat.

Fortunately, our bodies are very good at determining when they are becoming dehydrated and signalling that fact to us by creating the sensation of thirst. Dryness in the lips, skin, eyes, or hair can also be a good indication that the body is becoming dehydrated. Similarly, inflammation in the skin as well as clogged pores, acne, rashes, and red eyes can be a good indication that you need to increase you water intake. Constipation or infrequent bowel movements, or little to no sweat, can also be a good indication that your body is becoming dehydrated. Finally, the colour of your urine is also a good way to determine the quality of your hydration. Urine that is fairly clear and straw-coloured is a good indication that you are staying well-hydrated, while urine that is dark yellow is a good indication that you need to drink more water.

Start Your Morning By Drinking Water

Ayurveda also recommends that you start your morning by drinking water (which is a practice known as “ushapan” in ayurvedic medicine). During the night, our bodies engage in a detoxification process, which explains why we often need to use the bathroom first thing in the morning. You can assist your body in flushing out accumulated toxins and stimulate a proper bowel movement by drinking water immediately after waking up. Helpfully, hydrating first thing in the morning can also reduce drowsiness and make it easier for us to launch into our mornings with energy and vigour.

To make sure you remember to hydrate first thing in the morning, keep a water glass or other water vessel on your night table. Many of our customers fill their copper water bottles before bed at night, leave them on their night tables overnight, and then drink from them first thing in the morning. Using a copper water bottle also has the benefit of transforming water into natural alkaline water, which can have a variety of health benefits.

Watch for Improvement in Your Body

By making some minor changes to your hydration habits, you can dramatically improve your health and well-being.

After following these principles for a few weeks, you should start seeing results. In particular, you should start noticing that your skin and lips are less dry. You should also notice that the health of your skin and hair has improved. Your skin should also start to clear, your pores should start becoming less clogged, and you should be much less prone to acne or other skin issues.

You may also find that your digestion has improved, that you feel less drowsy in the mornings or after meals, and that you generally feel more energetic. And all it takes is a few simple and intuitive changes in the way you consume water.

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Copper and Health Throughout History

Since ancient times, healers have understood the role of copper in supporting and maintaining good health. For example, the ancient Egyptians used copper to sterilize their drinking water, cure headaches, and help with skin conditions. In addition, in approximately 400 B.C., the Greek Hippocrates, who is known as the father of modern medicine (and after whom the “Hippocratic oath” is named), recommended copper as a treatment for various diseases.

Even the ancient Aztec civilization used copper for medical purposes, including gargling with copper-infused water to combat sore throats and infections. Similarly, in ancient India and the far east, copper was used to treat skin conditions, lung diseases, and eye infections. During the era of the Roman Empire, physicians recommended using copper to cleanse the stomach, clear the body of toxins, cure mouth sores and ulcers, and to heal eye infections, cataracts, and even venereal diseases.

Copper has also had a central role in the history of health in more recent eras. For example, during the cholera epidemics in Paris in the 19th century, physicians were astounded to learn of copper’s importance in supporting a strong immune system. In particular, French physicians learned that copper workers appeared immune to cholera while their neighbours fell victim to the disease. During the later part of the 19th century, European physicians also recommended the use of copper to treat arthritis as well as diarrhea, dysentery, and tuberculosis.

Copper continued to enjoy a key role in the history of health in the 20th century. For example, in 1939, German medical researchers discovered that copper miners were unaffected by arthritis so long as they worked in copper mines. This observation led medical researchers to use copper to treat patients suffering from arthritis, fever, sciatica, and neck and back pain. In recent years, some medical researchers have even theorized that the heart attack rate is lowest in France of all European countries because of the significant consumption by the French of red wine, which has a higher copper content than white wine, as it is prepared with the skin of the grape intact (which gives red wine its colour).

Copper's important role in a healthy immune system has also been supported by medical research in respect of individuals suffering from “Menke's disease”, which is an inherited disease involving defective copper absorption. Individuals with this disease generally die of immune system-related infections, showing that the lack of copper absorption made them more vulnerable to infection. Furthermore, animals with copper deficiencies have been shown to have increased vulnerability to dangerous bacteria such as salmonella and listeria. This medical research has led researches to the conclusion that copper can not only cure various diseases, but also help prevent disease in the first place.

In one of the most recent studies about the role of copper in health, scientists studied the effect of storing water in a copper pot on microbially-contaminated drinking-water, including serious bacteria such as e.coli salmonella. Incredibly, scientists discovered that the initially contaminated water was completely free of bacteria 16 hours later. This study supports what healers have known since ancient times: that copper has incredible health properties.

Yours in good health,

Jessica

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Copper and Prana Shakti

Copper has an electromagnetic energy known as "prana shakti", which essentially means "life energy". This quality is the key reason why Ayurvedic medicine recommends storing water in a copper vessel.

When water is stored in a copper vessel, the "prana shakti" in the copper infuses and energizes the water. Copper infused water, which is known as "tamra jal", helps balance the three doshas and maintain a health pH balance in the body.

Meenakshi Gupta, a prominent Ayurvedic practitioner, wrote a very interesting article canvassing the reasons to try drinking water from a copper vessel. In that article, Ms. Gupta notes that the ancient practice is experiencing a modern reemergence:

"During my childhood days I remember my grandmother storing water in a copper vessel overnight and asking us to drink from it first thing in the morning. She claimed the water stored in a copper vessel was extremely healthy for the mind and body. Now when I see these ancient customs reemerging & my own findings with the healing ideologies of Ayurveda, I look back and think that I should have taken my grandmother’ s advice more seriously."

As Ms. Gupta writes, copper has amazing anti-microbial qualities, stimulates the brain, aids in weight loss, slows aging, and can even help fight cancer. It is so lovely to see ancient holistic practices reemerge!

Yours in good health,

Jessica

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