by Dr. Philip S. Chua.
April 16, 2012
A comedian once noted that many of us want to get to heaven without dying. While this sounds funny, it is also a reality especially when it comes to our health and disease prevention. Majority of us want to acquire the best health effortlessly, without the sacrifices needed to achieve it effectively and safely. We want to be healthy without exercising, dieting, without abstaining from smoking and without disciplined alcohol intake. We want to have good blood pressure and good cholesterol level without skimping on our salt and fat intake and quitting cigarettes. We want to lose weight without cutting down on our calorie intake and doing daily exercise. We want to be free of diabetes, heart attack, stroke, and cancer without intentionally and consciously working hard to prevent them.
For expediency, any pill or juice or gadget that comes along with the claim that it is good for our health becomes a “must-buy” crutch, believing it will confer upon us instant good health and longevity, without lifting a finger, without moving a muscle, or without getting off the couch and putting down the remote control and the potato chips.
Unfortunately, the manufacturers of countless “health” lotions, potions, pills, juices and gadgets are mostly interested in making their bank accounts healthy, and least interested in the health of its consumer-victims. If they are not motivated by extreme greed, they won’t continue to prey on the unsuspecting public and sell their useless products, which may even have severe long term side-effects, including kidney failure, liver failure, and even cancer.
It is one thing to waste money by paying for very expensive “health” pills or juices or machine and finding out years later that they were not effective. It is another to discover years down the line that their use has caused debilitating complications and organ failures, or even death.
On top of the many fraudulent claims that their “anti-cancer mega-dose vitamins and food supplements,” herbal or not, are good for us, comes the alkaline water scam and the so-called water ionizer that produces it.
Not only are these marketed alkaline water and the ionizing machines expensive, but they are, according to scientists, “medically baseless and worthless.”
The claims about most of the good effects these manufacturers claim for their products are actually placebo effects on the psyche of the uninformed or misinformed and gullible users, or their naivette.
The “fountain” of health and youth we are all looking for are available in healthy food items, like fish, vegetables, high-fiber bran, wheat, nuts, fruits (berries, plum, apples, banana, grapes, orange, mango, kiwi, papaya, mangosteen, pomegranates), daily physical exercise, and proper hydration with water purified by the most advanced multiple-stage reverse-osmosis filtration system.
It might come as a surprise to many but boiled water, minus its sediments, is safer than some of this expensive drinking water. Using the commercially available home water filtration pitcher or the below-the-sink filtration system, and then boiling the water will even double the protection. This will certainly not cost $1500-$2500 like the water ionizers.
When it comes to health, there is no better guide than our modern science, where extensive and rigidly-controlled laboratory testing, and double-blind, randomized, human clinical trials are the standard before any medication or device gets official approval and goes out to the market.
Anecdotal reports or testimonials (usually from solicited and paid endorsers) are not scientific proofs. These are misinformation used by these unscrupulous companies to market their product with some semblance of truth and integrity. Candidly, however, these are nothing but pure lies. If not approved by the US-FDA, RP-BFAD or any other similar national health agencies, any product is suspect. So, public, beware! Do not be too eager to part with your hard-earned money.
As far as the water ionizer is concerned, here is “the bottom line” as objectively explained in a detailed scientific paper, which aims to educate and protect the public:
“Here, in a nutshell, are few basic facts that anyone with a solid background in chemistry or physiology, or one with basic intelligence and common sense, would concur with:
(1) “Ionized water” is nothing more than sales fiction; the term is meaningless to honest chemists;
(2) Most water that is fit for drinking is too unconductive to undergo significant electrolysis;
(3) Pure water can never be alkaline or acidic, nor can it be made so by electrolysis; no machine can make it “wetter,” a better hydrating agent, or more rapidly absorbed by the body cells; when we eat or drink something that is alkaline or acidic, the body has an automatic acid-base balance protective system that swiftly neutralizes the body pH for normal homeostasis;
(4) Ground waters containing metal ions such as calcium and magnesium can be rendered slightly alkaline by electrolysis, but after it hits the highly acidic gastric fluid in the stomach, its alkalinity is gone;
(5) The idea that one must consume alkaline water to neutralize the effects of acidic foods is ridiculous; we get rid of excess acid by exhaling carbon dioxide; (6) The claims about health benefits of drinking alkaline water were not supported by credible scientific evidence;
(7) There is nothing wrong with drinking slightly acidic waters such as rainwater. Body pH is a meaningless concept in this context because different parts of the body (and even individual cells) can have widely different pH value;
(8) If you really want to de-acidify your stomach (at possible cost of interfering with protein digestion), why spend hundreds of dollars for an electrolysis device when you can take calcium-magnesium pills, Alka-Seltzers or Milk of Magnesia?;
(9) Electrolysis devices or “ionizers” are generally worthless for treating water for health enhancement, removal of common impurities, disinfection and scale control.”
(10) At the present time, there is nothing superior to multiple-stage, reverse osmosis water filtration, or distillation, which is safer, healthier, much lesser expensive than the so-called “ionized” alkaline water, which could be dangerous with its altered pH. Let us not fool with Mother Nature.
If we are itching to give away money, let us donate to charity instead and help our fellowmen languishing in abject poverty.
To protect our health and pocketbook, we must use our wisdom and due diligence.
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