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Water alkalinity and pH explained

By Lono Ho’ala, Director of Engineering Services LivingWaters™ Engineered Water Systems

pH is a function of hydrogen ions vs. hydroxide ions in the water. The higher the hydroxide ion content relative to the hydrogen ion content, the higher the pH. A water neutralizer contains calcium and magnesium carbonates. When exposed to water, they dissolve, and create calcium and magnesium hydroxides. These raise the pH of the water.

What you want is water that has a pH of around 7.0 to 7.5, and a higher total alkalinity content than is typical for tap water. Many people equate higher pH with higher total alkalinity, but that is not really true. That is why I have such a hard time with the purveyors of ionizers and most of the people who have written books about the subject. If they don’t even know the difference between pH and total alkalinity, how can they purport to give people advice about the health effects of drinking water?

Here is what I mean. Let’s say that the water out of the tap has a pH of 8.0, but a total alkalinity of 15. What this means is that the water has very little mineral (primarily calcium and magnesium) content. This makes it similar to drinking RO or distilled water. On the other hand, lets say we have a water that has a pH of 7.0 but a total alkalinity of 200. That means it has a much better mineral content and is far healthier to drink.

When total alkalinity is low, pH can change rapidly; even upon exposure to air. When total alkalinity is high, pH is difficult to change…you have to add a lot of minerals like calcium and magnesium to get the pH to move even slightly.

It is the mineral content that makes water healthy to drink. The pH is just showing the ratio of hydrogen to hydroxide ions present in the water. Our LivingWaters systems work to balance the pH around a 7.0 while raising total alkalinity. This is why the systems produce such healthy water.

See Living Waters water purifiers.