Updated: April 16, 2021 by Zac Harding
It seems that ionized water is having a moment in the sun right now, and there are many experts who claim that it is the latest ‘must-have’.
But what exactly is ionized water, and does it really do all of the things that are claimed?
One of the biggest claims associated with ionized water is that it will kill bacteria. Now, this is a huge call to make, especially since regular old water will not do this job. So does ionized water kill bacteria?
We will be exploring this very question in this article, as well as taking a look at what ionized water actually is in order to assess where these claims may have come from, and if there is indeed any truth to it.
What Is Ionized Water?
Before we go any further we need to address what ionized water actually is. Ionized water is made by using a household appliance that claims to have the ability to raise pH levels in the water you drink. It does this by electrolysis.
Electrolysis separates water into two streams, one of which is acidic and the other stream which is alkaline. The way it does this is through an electrochemical process. This process splits the water to separate the elements of hydrogen and oxygen.
The alkaline water is the stream that is of interest to those who hail these water ionizers, as they believe that the consumption of alkaline water has numerous health benefits. This has led ionized water to also become known as alkaline water.
The other water that is left over is acidic water. Whilst alkaline water has been claimed to have benefits for the body, acidic water is claimed to be beneficial for use in cleaning and household disinfection.
What Is Ionized Water Good For?
Ionized water is claimed to be good for a variety of things. In terms of the human body, it is thought by some health enthusiasts that it will counteract an overly acidic diet, and in term allow you to reap many health benefits such as more energy for your body, reduce bloating, and assist weight loss.
Other claims that have been made about ionized water in relation to health are that it can help slow down the aging process, prevent disease, and even protect from nuclear fallout!
We want to make it very clear at this point that all of these ‘benefits’ are merely claims. There is little to no empirical evidence from reputable scientific sources to support these claims, and so they should not be viewed as the absolute truth.
In terms of other benefits, it is often claimed that the ionized water stream is great for household cleaning, and even disinfecting. So much so that it is often used in high-end restaurants, food processing plants, kitchens, and hotels as a way of cleaning that does not leave behind a potentially harmful chemical residue.
But are there any studies that support this? Or, like the health claims, are these cleaning claims unsupported by any real, scientific evidence?
In order to find this out, we have researched extensively to find any evidence that supports this. Read on to the next section to find out more.
Does Ionized Water Kill Bacteria?
Whether ionized water kills bacteria is a huge question on the lips of anyone who may be looking for new, innovative, and environmentally-friendly ways to purify water. In all honesty, it is difficult to give you a definitive answer about this.
The truth is, at the moment there is just not enough studies on the matter, and very little in the way of sound, empirical evidence to support these claims.
Certainly, small experiments have been carried out that seem to demonstrate that ionized water is effective at killing germs and bacteria, but these have typically been done on a small scale.
Nonetheless, as we have stated, there are many facilities around the globe that utilize ionized water as a way of cleaning and killing bacteria. It is certainly attractive when you consider the fact that unlike bleach and chemical disinfectants, there is no harmful effect on the environment, and will not pose a risk if you come into contact with it.
Many commercial companies who sell water ionizers are the leading names who are claiming the bacteria-fighting goodness of ionized water, and this in itself should alert you to the fact that there is still more research to be done.
That is not to say that ionized water will not be effective at killing bacteria, simply that, at the moment, it is difficult to prove either way. Certainly, official governing bodies and medical practices have not begun to recommend ionized water as a way of killing bacteria, and they still prefer traditional cleaning methods.
Does Ionized Water Disinfect?
This question is exactly the same as the one asking if ionized water can kill bacteria. The question of whether ionized water can be used as a disinfectant is yet another thing that we get asked a lot. The answer to this is similar to that of the previous section.
In order to adequately disinfect, bacteria need to be killed. Knowing what you now know from the previous section, we are sure that you can agree that the jury is still out over whether ionized water can disinfect.
What we mean by this is that in order for ionized water to be an effective disinfectant, there needs to be an assurance that it will adequately kill bacteria, and, at the moment, there is no empirical evidence that it does.
To summarize, we want to remind you again that the studies that have been done on the benefits of ionized water are few and far between, especially from reputable sources.
There are, of course, numerous claims that ionized water can benefit your health and revolutionize your cleaning methods.
However, it is important to remember that these are just that – claims! Whilst there may be some small studies out there that show ionized water effectively killing bacteria, for the most part, official guidance from medical professionals and governing bodies tend to favor traditional cleaning methods with bleach and other cleaners as a form of killing bacteria.
If you are still curious about the use of ionized water as an effective tool for killing bacteria, use it at your own risk, and seek advice from healthcare practitioners.