Frequently asked questions

What is molecular hydrogen?

  • Molecular hydrogen is the smallest element and lightest molecule.
  • Molecular hydrogen can easily diffuse into the subcellular compartments and scavenge cytotoxic oxygen radicals, thus protecting the DNA, RNA and proteins from oxidative stress.
  • Molecular hydrogen also triggers the activation or upregulation of additional antioxidant enzymes (e.g. glutathione, superoxide dismutase, catalase, etc.) and/or cytoprotective proteins of the body.
  • Molecular hydrogen may be a novel-signaling molecule that can alter cell signaling, cell metabolism and gene expression. This gives anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-allergic, anti-cancer, anti-dementia, anti-athrosclerotic and anti-apoptotic (or anti-cell death) effects.
  • Molecular hydrogen as a selective antioxidant only scavenges the most cytotoxic oxygen radicals.
  • Molecular hydrogen leaves no waste product after neutralizing a free radical.
  • Molecular hydrogen is the smallest molecule, and can easily enter the cells.
  • Molecular hydrogen has no known toxic effects, even at high intakes.
  • Molecular hydrogen is easily consumed with no additional calories.
  • Hydrogen gas has been shown to have a therapeutic effect on over 170 human diseases.

What is hydrogen water good for?

Hydrogen water has had an observed therapeutic effect on over 170 human and animal disease models. In a nutshell, if oxidative stress or inflammation plays a factor in something, there’s a strong chance hydrogen may be able to be helpful with it. But don’t take our word for it - look at the preponderance of of peer-reviewed studies.

What are the side effects of hydrogen water?

Hydrogen water seems to have no observed negative side effects, but there are a few unique circumstances in which to be cautious. Hydrogen water does seem to have an effect on the “need” for stimulants in the body, such as caffeine or ADHD medication. If taking ADHD medication (or any medication whatsoever for that matter), we recommend consulting your doctor before beginning any molecular hydrogen regimen. Another unique situation in which hydrogen might have an observed negative effect is with SIBO. That being said, we need more research on the subject, however, as on the other hand, hydrogen definitely has some potential to be a benefit for people with SIBO. The lactulose breath test produces and elevates breath hydrogen concentrations. This is the same hydrogen as therapeutic hydrogen (molecular hydrogen). This doesn't mean hydrogen-rich water may not have a beneficial effect on SIBO patients. Some of the possible mechanisms by which hydrogen-water might indirectly help or benefits SIBO/SIBO patients is by increasing an individual's gastric ghrelin secretion which in turn has a beneficial effect on the increased production of gastric acid and improves intestinal dysmotility. Both of these (low gastric acid production and intestinal dysmotility) are hallmarks/characteristic and/or precursors to SIBO. Intestinal dysmotility (dysfunction or lack of strength or coordination of muscles in the gastrointestinal tract) appears to be improved by hydrogen itself and also ghrelin improves it as well. Gastric acid suppresses bacterial growth in the small intestine and duodenum. Improving gastric acid production may improve or have a homeostatic effect on the bacteria in the small intestine. Since hydrogen water may increase gastric ghrelin secretion it may indirectly benefit SIBO in this way. We need more research on the subject, however, hydrogen definitely has some potential to be a benefit.®ionCode=US-KS&identityKey=c982340a-0b86-4c68-80c5-6d4cf231264a

Is hydrogen water safe?

Yes. Hydrogen gas has been shown to be very safe at concentrations hundreds of times higher than what is being used for therapy. Here are a few examples: Hydrogen’s safety was first shown in the late 1800s, where hydrogen gas was used to locate gunshot wounds in the intestines. The reports showed that there were never any toxic effects or irritation to even the most sensitive tissues. Another good example of its safety is that hydrogen gas has been used in deep sea diving since 1943 (at very high concentrations) to prevent decompression sickness. Studies have shown no toxic effects from hydrogen when at very high levels and pressures of 98.87% H2 and 1.26% O2 at 19.1 atm. Furthermore, hydrogen gas is natural to the body because after a fiber-rich meal, our gut bacteria can produce liters of hydrogen on a daily basis (which is yet another benefit from eating fruits and vegetables). In short, hydrogen gas is very natural to our bodies, not like a foreign or alien substance that can only be synthesized in a chemistry lab.

How much hydrogen water should you drink a day?

That is the same question scientists are asking and is still under investigation. But, the human studies generally provide about 1-3 mg/L of dissolved H2, and these concentrations show significant health benefits. So, if your water has a concentration of 1 mg/L (equivalent to 1 ppm, parts per million), then two liters will give you 2 mg of H2. Although the effective concentration for some people and some diseases may be lower and/or higher, these doses are simply what have been seen to exert benefits.

Is hydrogen water a gimmick?

While hydrogen water has received celebrity hype along with skeptical articles from the mainstream media, it is far from a gimmick. In fact, over 1,000 peer-reviewed studies have been conducted on the efficacy of molecular hydrogen.

Is hydrogen an antioxidant?

While it was originally thought that hydrogen was, in and of itself, an antioxidant, that seems to be inaccurate. In fact, what the original 2007 study that set off all of the excitement about hydrogen actually said, Hydrogen ACTS as a selective antioxidant. While more studies need to be done, it seems that molecular hydrogen’s potential lies in its cell-signaling and cell-modulating properties.

Isn’t there already hydrogen in water?

Correct! High-quality H20 of course. But those 2 hydrogen atoms are bonded to an oxygen atom, and the molecules do not separate on their own. Hydrogen gas, or molecular hydrogen, is simply a “free” molecule of 2 hydrogen atoms bonded to each other (no oxygen here). This gas, essentially infused into the water, is what has the amazing therapeutic potential. In a sense, the water is simply acting as a “delivery mechanism” to get hydrogen gas into the body.

Is molecular hydrogen the same as hydrogen peroxide?

While popular in some circles for claimed therapeutic benefits for specific ailments, food grade hydrogen peroxide [H2O2] is in no way similar to dissolved molecular hydrogen [H2] other than they both contain the word ‘hydrogen’. Hydrogen peroxide is a strong oxidizer and is used as a bleaching agent and disinfectant. [H2] is a reducing agent/antioxidant.

Why is H2 infused water better than Alkaline Water?

It is hydrogen gas and not the pH or minerals, or other properties of the alkaline water that is responsible for the therapeutic benefits. Not all electrolyzed reduced water (ERW) machines are created equal, and perhaps differences in H2 concentrations (not ORP or pH) is responsible for differences in the observed therapeutic effects. Importantly there was not a statistically significant difference between the pH 8.5 and 9.5 with the same higher H2 concentrations. This further shows that it is the dissolved molecular hydrogen that is responsible for the therapeutic effects of ERW and not the alkaline pH or any other enigmatic properties. Although the evidence is overwhelming that molecular hydrogen is the key to ERW’s benefits, most water ionizer companies make no mention of molecular hydrogen as a selling point. Not only do they not know what their water’s molecular hydrogen concentration is, but also they do not even know that it is the molecular hydrogen that is responsible for the benefits.

My alkaline water has a high negative ORP… which means it has the same benefits as hydrogen water, right?

Unfortunately, that’s a myth. You can make the ORP negative by decreasing the H+concentration (raising the pH) and/or increasing the dissolved molecular hydrogen concentration. Conversely, you can make the ORP positive by increasing the H+ concentration (lowering the pH) and/or decreasing the dissolved molecular hydrogen concentration. A negative ORP is more of an indicator of the presence of H2 gas than a measure of concentration. Indeed, it’s not a measurement of H2 concentration at all. The fact that molecular hydrogen is the therapeutic ingredient in ionized water eluded scientist for decades. It is no wonder that misconceptions of ORP have been promulgated over the years. Some have suggested that the reading is due to free electrons, actual physical charges on water molecules, charged or ionic minerals, and virtually everything else except for molecular hydrogen. Micro-clustering of water actually won The Silver Fleece Award for “Anti-Aging Quackery” for being the product “with the most ridiculous, outrageous, scientifically unsupported or exaggerated assertions about aging or age-related diseases.” Unfortunately no valid scientific evidence exists either for its occurrence or for its benefits. Perhaps the fact that it wasn’t until recently that molecular hydrogen was found to be the primary benefit of ionized water, marketers held on to the idea of micro-clustering to help explain the therapeutic benefits of the water. There is no valid scientific evidence for the existence of these microclusters, but the myth continues to be propagated because there are seven main pseudo (false) evidences for it, which are used by companies and marketers to promote their products. Another important observation is that none of the scientists that are publishing articles on ionized water make claims regarding microclustering. While in Japan, Tyler LeBaron discussed water microclusters with a number of top researchers. They all emphatically denied its existence and called it pseudoscience.

  • Taken literally, a “microcluster” is almost the same size as the cell itself, so how could that ever actually get into the cell? Micro is pretty big when we are talking about things about a thousand times smaller.
  • The colligative properties of the water would make it unfit for cooking, cleaning, or drinking because it would behave radically different.
  • Stable microclusters would prevent normal enzyme catalysis. Our bodies are used to ‘normal’ water, and making even a small change like having a neutron in the hydrogen atoms (2H2O or D2O) actually would inhibit enzyme function. Even if it’s just the tiniest bit different, it ends up being toxic.
  • If it can get inside that easily, then it can get outside that easily as well. This would damage the cell membrane and thus cell signaling via the lipid raft and other extracellular receptors.
  • If it could somehow penetrate the cell like it’s claimed, then we would have to drink close to 180 liters of water a day, which means we would have to urinate that much also. This is because we would not be able to properly store water, as it would “leak” right through the cells.
  • If it could really increase cellular hydration, then it would be extremely carcinogenic, as hyper-cellular hydration is a potent stimulator of cancer initiation and progression.
  • If it could get inside the cells that easily, then many enzymes would not work properly as many are dependent upon water molecules (general acid catalysis).
It would likely cause sterility because it would prevent mitosis. A water cluster would have alterations in the hydrogen bond, thus possibly having similar effects as deuterium oxide (2H2O or D2O).
  • There are no valid and reputable scientific studies that support it (only ones that refute it).
  • No experiences observed with ionized water necessitate the need for a microclustering explanation. Indeed, it can all be explained by known properties: e.g. minerals, H2 gas, alkaline pH, etc.
  • Obviously because the “micro-clustering” hasn’t been proven, the idea of better hydration due to micro-clustering also has not been proven.
  • Even if you could somehow create stable microclusters, it is more likely that they would have a negative impact on health than a positive one.

Are there any benefits of molecular hydrogen and skin?

Bathing in mineral water with reductive characteristics (most likely due to dissolved molecular hydrogen) and a prepared water containing molecular hydrogen, these waters decreased the oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) of human skin. This is an important observation because healthy skin has reductive characteristics, and the ORP of the skin increases by oxidative damage (from sun exposure) and also by aging (as measured by lipid-peroxide levels). This relationship between redox potentials of the skin and aging has been investigated in more detail and shows that reductive waters lower the oxidation of the skin. Bathing in hydrogen water not only reduced the ORP of skin, but also improved its elasticity. Hydrogen water was shown to be very beneficial for UV induced skin cell damage. In human subjects, bathing in hydrogen water for three months significantly improved wrinkles in the skin.

How do you measure the concentration of molecular hydrogen in water?

The concentration of hydrogen gas (H2) is often reported in molarity (moles/liter (M) or millimoles/L mM), parts per million (ppm), parts per billion (ppb) or milligrams per liter (mg/L). In dilute concentrations, 1 ppm is about the same as 1 mg/L and they are often used interchangeably. The molar mass of molecular hydrogen is about 2 mg/millimole and so 1 mg is about the same as 0.5 moles so 1 ppm≈1 mg/L ≈0.5 mM. Concentration of 1.6 mg/L (1.6 ppm or 0.8 mM) is considered the concentration at “saturation” because it is what the concentration would be if only hydrogen gas were present with a pressure equal to the pressure at sea level, which is 760 mm-mercury (760 torr, 101.325 kPa, 1.01325 barr, or 14.69595 psi,) also equal to one atmosphere (atm).

Does more hydrogen equal more benefits?

That seems to be the case. There is obviously a minimum required amount needed to offer any health benefits, which may vary from person to person. Importantly, it appears that you cannot get too much hydrogen, as it doesn’t build up in your system.—you just exhale it out. In many cases there is a clear dose-dependent effect, meaning the more hydrogen the better or greater the effect. There are also many anecdotal reports that suggest that consuming more hydrogen may offer even more benefits. But more research needs to be done in this area.

Won’t any dissolved hydrogen gas immediately escape out of the water?

While hydrogen does start coming out of the water as soon as it’s dispensed or comes into contact with air, it doesn’t just vanish immediately. Depending on the surface area, agitation, temperature, and a variety of other factors, hydrogen gas can stay in water for a few hours or longer before it drops below a therapeutic level. This is much like carbonated water or soda that contains carbon dioxide gas (CO2), but because it does leave, it is best to drink the water promptly before it goes “flat”. Moreover, in order to maximize the benefits of hydrogen, it’s best to drink hydrogen-rich water as quickly as possible once it comes into contact with air.

Are there any double-blind placebo-controlled studies on the efficacy of Hydrogen?

Yes there are, and there are more underway. We’ve compiled a list for you below. Click the links below to read some of them:
Effects of molecular hydrogen assessed by an animal model and a randomized clinical study on mild cognitive impairment
Drinks with alkaline negative oxidative reduction potential improve exercise performance in physically active men and women: Double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial of efficacy and safety

Hydrogen-rich water affected blood alkalinity in physically active men
Efficacy and safety of hydrogen inhalation on Bronchiectasis: A randomized, multi-center, double-blind study (HYBRID)

Molecular hydrogen affects body composition, metabolic profiles, and mitochondrial function in middle-aged overweight women
Pilot study: Effects of drinking hydrogen-rich water on muscle fatigue caused by acute exercise in elite athletes
Supplementation of hydrogen-rich water improves lipid and glucose metabolism in patients with type 2 diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance Hydrogen-rich water for improvements of mood, anxiety, and autonomic nerve function in daily life
Pilot study of H2 therapy in Parkinson's disease: A randomized double‐blind placebo‐controlled trial

A randomized double-blind multi-center trial of hydrogen water for Parkinson’s disease: protocol and baseline characteristics
Therapeutic efficacy of infused molecular hydrogen in saline on rheumatoid arthritis: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study
Open-label trial and randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of hydrogen-enriched water for mitochondrial and inflammatory myopathies
Hydrogen activates ATP-binding cassette transporter A1-dependent efflux ex vivo and improves high-density lipoprotein function in patients with hypercholesterolemia: A double-blinded, randomised and placebo-controlled trial

Effects of intravenous infusion of hydrogen-rich fluid combined with intra-cisternal infusion of magnesium sulfate in severe aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial