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Kangen water is one of many brand names for so-called alkaline waters promoted as a healthier form of water with significant anti-oxidant properties. It's generally presented as the result of an electrolysis process which separates ordinary water (H20) into two separate entities. One half of the separated water becomes an acidic HO molecule, while the other becomes an alkaline OH molecule. The producers of Kangen water bottle the alkaline OH water for drinking purposes, while the acidic HO molecule is used for topical applications.
The name kangen is Japanese for "return to the origin," which helps to explain the philosophy behind its promotion as a health food. According to one theory, the human body needs both acids and alkalis to properly process foods, make repairs and generally remain in good working order. Ingesting too many acidic foods and beverages, most notably carbonated soft drinks, can lower the body's natural pH levels to dangerously acidic levels. Kangen water, or other alkaline or ionized waters, could help restore a the body's proper pH level and perhaps even become more alkaline, which would be a positive development, in theory.
Kangen water and other ionized or alkaline water products are also said to have smaller molecules, which means they are more readily absorbed by the body. Ordinary tap water or unprocessed bottled waters have larger water molecules which tend to pass through the body without reaching individual cells. Without proper re-hydration, these cells can suffer from a form of cellular dehydration and either die too soon or fail to function efficiently. Kangen water is believed to have the ability to rehydrate these cells before they essentially dry out.
While the science behind ionized or alkaline water is fairly solid, the main concern with Kangen water appears to be one of marketing. Kangen water is primarily sold through a multi-level marketing strategy, also known as an MLM. This means the marketer who actually sells the Kangen water company's deionizing machine to a customer must pass along part of the total profit to his or her manager, district supervisor, regional manager and so on. Under the Kangen water MLM system, there can be as much as an 8 way division of profits per sale, which means the price of the actual deionizing machine which creates Kangen water can be exceptionally high when compared to similar devices.
There are other deionizing systems which are said to produce the same or even better results than the Kangen water electrolysis system. Even orange juice produces the same level of negative ions as Kangen water. The idea of consuming more alkaline water for overall health benefits appears to have some merit, but it may not be strictly necessary to invest over $1,000 US Dollars (USD) in a water deionization machine when less expensive alternatives are available.