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Wash Your Brain With Ionized Water: Mmm Refreshing

Posted Aug 18 2009 10:02pm



Dear RochesterChiro,

What is your opinion of the Enagic and Kangen water ionizers? 

I am told that the alkaline water is microclustered to enhance and speed hydration and that it is a very potent antioxidant. It is said that this technology helps the body heal itself and there are reports that arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraines, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and cancer can be helped dramatically by merely drinking alkaline water made by this $4000 Japanese medical device.

Truth or not?


Ed B.


Dear Ed, 

Thanks for tossing me this piece of low hanging fruit!  You must know my favorite hobby is keeping my readers safe from (or at least informed about) wacky alternative medical devices.  You’ll be glad to know I have done some research about these water zappers.  Here’s the scoop:  Regular tap water goes in, magical miracle healing elixir water comes out!  Awesome!  These expensive black boxes are purported to:

* Slow the aging process

* Promote weight loss

* Boost the immune system

* Increase absorption of vital minerals and vitamins

* Reverse most chronic diseases

* It slices, it dices, it conceals your bra straps, and gives you rock hard abs.


No, wait a second.  That last line is silly.  Or is it all the claims that are silly?  Let’s take a look at what some of these device sellers have to say:

“It is well known in the medical community that an overly acidic body is the root of many common diseases, such as obesity, osteoporosis, diabetes, high blood pressure, and more.”

Really?  This is well-known?  Um, sure it is.  It’s well-known not to be true.   The concept of an acidic body doesn’t even enter into reputable medical literature.

“The water produced by [our] water machine has a pH level of 8.0 to 9.5, which will restore your body to a healthy alkaline state. It counteracts the acidic foods you eat and the harsh elements in your environment, in order to bring the natural balance your body needs.”

Oh, thank goodness it will restore my body to the healthy alkaline state.  Only, how is that alkaline water going to do when it is flooded by the acid in my stomach?  Unless the water is absorbed prior to the stomach (hint: it isn’t – most water uptake occurs in the intestine) once the stomach contents enter the intestine, they are neutralized and made alkaline by pancreatic secretions.  This means that the water you drink becomes alkaline anyway. FOR FREE! What?  And I just wasted four thousand bucks making my water all alkaliny? 

Here’s my fav:

“It enables every nook and cranny of your body to become super-hydrated”

Hold the hell on.  Will someone please tell me why the f*#< I would possibly want to make any of the nooks or crannies in my body “super-hydrated”?  Don’t cells explode when become absorb too much water?  Exploding super-hydration sounds downright uncomfortable to me.

With a little looking, I came across another company that makes acidic water (the opposite of alkaline water) in order to cure ailments like “Hong Kong Foot.”  Twenty-five hundred clams which might be better spent on less pricey acidic liquids at that exotic medical supplier Stop & Shop where you can invest in the acid wonders of orange and cranberry juice.  Lots of acidic water in those.  While you’re at it, better pick up something to spike those juices so you can better tolerate reading the opinions of  “experts” like Dr. Robert Young (author of The pH Miracle ).

Oh, thank goodness we can turn to folks like him for good solid information on the subject.  Young’s theory is that there is only one sickness and one disease which is caused by an over acidification of the blood and tissues due to an inverted way of living, eating and thinking. One Disease, One Cure.  Oh, wait, you can stop right there – I’ve heard this one before. 

Unfortunately, the “scientific articles” section on Young’s crapsite lists a long collection of self-serving posts with such catchy titles as “How Acidic are YOU?” and “An Alkaline Lifestyle and Diet May Reduce the Risk of Prostate Cancer” along with a bunch of anti-vaccination stuff and cell phone radiation dangers.  All about as scientific as a magnetic snake oil-filled ear candle covered in homeopathic dust.

Claims about the health benefits of drinking so-called ionized water are not supported by any credible scientific evidence.  Body pH is basically a meaningless concept since different parts of the body can and should have widely differing pH values.  The benefits of alkaline and acidic water won’t be found in any standard biochem textbook.  In fact, pure water is too non-conductive to undergo significant electrolysis by “ water ionizer ” devices.   Nor can pure water can be alkaline or acidic without containing ions of some kind — most commonly, sodium, calcium or magnesium.   The fact that these things are mostly sold through MLM is like a giant flashing neon sign that says “Stay The Hell Away.”  In case you can’t tell, I am generally not a fan of anything that smells of multi-level marketing but in this case I’d be super-careful of being in anyone’s downline — crap flows downhill.

I’m sorry…have I left you afraid that your body cannot neutralize the effects of acidic food?  Sometimes it can’t.  Like, for instance if you’re dead.  Until that time, you can get rid of all of your excess acid by exhaling carbon dioxide.  Breathe in, breathe out.  That’ll be 4000 bucks please.   


Want an opinion on an alternative medicine product?  Dr. Brett Kinsler is a chiropractor in Rochester, NY who writes and is happy to give you a piece of his mind – hurry, while supplies last.

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