For at least two thousand years, water has been considered as the major facilitator of the development and sustenance of life on earth. Long regarded as the universal solvent, its molecular properties are unique and profound, yet water itself is rarely regarded as anything more than a benign, albeit necessary, adjunct to biological systems and human health.
For years water treatment specialists and a wide array of chemists and biologists have argued over what type of water was "cleanest" or "purest" for human and animal consumption as well as best for plant life.
These arguments usually were based on how much of various types of contaminant was being removed. What percentage of the dissolved solids were being removed? How about heavy metals? Were bacteria and other microbes being removed---and to what extent?
In other words, the issue in the past was one of water "PURITY" where the arguments, comparisons and controversies were all based on quantitative measurements which could be resolved by a dissolved solids meter, a bacteria test kit or some type of volatile gas measurement system.
However, recent developments and observations in both the scientific and industrial communities have attracted researchers and biotech firms to some very novel "altered" or "structured" properties.of water.
There is much confusion and lack of understanding of this area of water technology. Although this section may not provide a complete and thorough description of each of these altered or structured water technologies, it should provide you with enough information to begin understanding the basics of these rapidly evolving business areas.
In many cases, wild and exaggerated medical claims are being made based on little more than anecdotal, testimonial evidence. In each of the areas we discuss in the following sections, we have made notes of such inadequacy or outright misinformation/misdirection about either the product or the development process.
This area we refer to as "structured" or "altered" water ironically remains an "unstructured" science with a wide variety of scientists and technology groups various and diverse areas of research. To attempt a single definition to cover all of these activities would be impossible.
Therefore, we shall adopt a GENERAL definition of "altered" or "structured" water, hopefully covering at least the major areas of interest:
"...any mechanical, electrical, optical or other process or combinations thereof which alters the physical or chemical characteristics of water, thereby creating a new form or species of water which when utilized by plants, animals or humans demonstrates measurable and repeatable benefits to chemical, enzymatic and general cellular functions".
Various scientists use other terminology such as "clustered", "micro-clustered", "nano-clustered", "nano-clustered resonant water", "catalytically altered" and others to describe the specific type or species or water which they are developing or producing.
In the following discussions, we will use the general terminology "altered" to refer to both chemical and physical alterations being made to water. Also, in the following discussions, we will limit our view to those applications of "altered" water which apply to beverages. Discussions of altered water as it applies to plants, animals and aquatic needs will be treated at a later date and referenced from this page of the Web Site.
>SEPARATING SCIENCE FROM PSEUDO-SCIENCE AND THE PARANORMAL
>(otherwise knownb as the subtle error of "subtle energy")
The first thing which is required when studying altered water technologies is to distinguish between verifiable science and the pseudo-science or "subtle energy" approach to altering or structuring water.
Today, reputable scientists who produce altered water products strive to produce products which can demonstrate measurable qualitative and quantitative effects on the (human) user. The "altering" processes rely on physical and chemical forces or entities which science can "put their hands around".
These forces are measurable by conventional scientific instruments and accepted testing protocols. These forces may take the form of electromagnetic fields, physical apparatus which change the composition of water or other means. However, in each and every case, the applied electromagnetic fields or other physical phenomena can be repeatedly applied and results observed or measured, at different times and places, and by different individuals, with great degrees of accuracy and consistency.
On the other hand, those water "altering" techniques which employ "subtle energy" concepts are designed to produce effects whose characteristics are difficult if not impossible to measure(and verify) using standard scientific instrumentation techniques and accepted testing protocols. A variety of other terminology is also interpreted as "subtle energy", including scalar waves, chi, orgone, prana, tachyon and etheric energy.
Some subtle energy adherents also include such "sacred geometry" phenomena as vortexial water flow as producing special subtle energy effects in water.
It is important to dwell on this distinction for a moment.
Apologists for the "subtle energy" concept are quick to point out that while subtle energies are difficult to understand and measure(and that "orthodox scientists simply don't "get it" yet"), a similar situation existed 250 years ago for classic electromagnetism. 250 years ago, the effects of electromagnetism could be seen, but not measured. Science advanced, and so did instrumentation. So today, we can not only observe electromagnetic effects but measure them as well.
The analogy is made by subtle energy adherents that at present we simply do not have instrumentation with adequate sensitivity to make deterministic measurements of these subtle energies.
Unfortunately, the explanation the subtle energy apologists offer is not quite that simple. With very few exceptions, classical physicists have not been able to demonstrate and prove and thus do not believe such "non-electromagnetic" phenomena exist, since the proponents tend to lean on relatively unknown, unmeasurable and unproven biophysical phenomena in humans and other objects.
Unfortunately, for the subtle energy apologists, their cause may have been stuck a serious blow by revelations in the San Francisco Chronicle(7/23/99) that a Livermore Laboratories scientist researching the relationship(s) between electromagnetic(EM) fields and cellular responsiveness apparently has been fabricating information which has been used to scientifically link these two areas.
Falsification of this type of data makes it more difficult for peer organizations (medical and otherwise) to begin accepting this biomagnetic relationship as sound science.
What makes this case even more important is the fact that if other scientists and Government watchdog agencies which provided this scientist with research funds could not duplicate the scientist's results, when very strong electromagnetic fields were involved in the above example(high voltage power lines)---what chance is there that far weaker EM fields(distant magnetic fields from space and other objects) being studied by the subtle energy proponents are measurable or have any cellular effects?
With few exceptions, most scientists and water "alterers" involved in subtle energy research and applications are deeply involved in the occult, metaphysical, New Age, extra-terrestrial and other psychic and paranormal phenomena involving crystals, pyramids and a myriad of other devices and fetishes which they consider to have the "power" to provide special energy sources or mechanisms for receiving, retransmitting or focusing these special energies.
The distinction between true science and pseudo-science or the metaphysical is being blurred by those involved in subtle energy to the point where I believe many dedicated and intellectually honest scientists, technology investors, and lastly the public are being misled. Those with metaphysical interests tend to rely more on intuition and "channeled information" from disincarnate spirits than on solid science.
For example, most subtle energy adherents believe that various types of crystals have self-generating "energies" which when placed near the body or other objects will influence the biochemistry or neurological functions of that body. They readily admit that subtle energy is a metaphysical phenomena. Most western(Christian) religious viewpoints on this subject clearly place these types of phenomena on the short list of things to be avoided.
Crystals are known(in conventional electrical engineering circles) to possess specific characteristics with respect to resonance and frequency generation, when stimulated externally by physical or electrical sources. To claim that crystals have any significant, self-generating energy capabilities is not only unproven but strains the academic and intellectual credibility of any scientist who tends to promote such phenomena.
Therefore, in the following discussion, we will set aside those altered water concepts which utilize so-called "subtle energy" techniques and this section will focus on those chemical and physical alterations which have quantifiable scientific parameters and which can and have proven to provide measurable effects on the human body when consumed as a beverage or produce other desirable effects on plants, animals or humans.
>CATEGORIES OF ALTERED/STRUCTURED WATER
Physically altered/structured water in a strict definition includes the following categories of technologies:
- Electrolyzed water
- Micro clustered Water
- Cellular Resonance Water
- Grander Water
Additional technology areas which do not follow the strict definition of "physical" alteration but are included in our discussion for completeness include:
- Catalyst Activated(Willard's) Water
- Oxygenated Water in its various forms.
Some of the technologies listed above have been known for some time. However, the instrumentation necessary to observe or measure changes to the new species of water, both quantitatively and qualitatively, have not been available until recently.
Again, what each of these categories of altered/structured water have in common is an attempt to influence plant, animal or human cellular activities in some fashion, using various combinations of physical(and chemical) alterations to the basic water molecule.
For example, "Free Radicals" are a byword in the sports and health industries today. The first four processes listed above claim to "solve the free radical problem". (review free radical basics)
Solving this free radical "problem" via beverages or oral tablets(pills) can be a very lucrative venture if the process can be shown to be more effective than conventional anti-oxidant processes while remaining non toxic in the dosages possible with these new techniques.
Additionally, the process of nutrient "absorption" is constantly bandied about in nutritional circles, with a wide variety of processes being proposed to increase the efficiency of nutrient(or pharmaceutical) absorption by cells. Many of the above altered/structured water categories claim enhanced absorption of such materials when that specific water is used.
All of the above techniques utilize some variation of electromagnetic stimulation to reduce surface tension and thus improve absorption. The process is simple to replicate and surface tension(and hence absorption efficiency and Zeta Potential which is covered later in this section) is easy to measure using conventional and readily available instrumentation.
Finally, most of the above categories of structured/altered water recognize a basic premise in successful alteration and utilization processes: the need to deal with extremely small dimensions to more effectively penetrate cell membranes and/or carry nutrients into the cells. Hence, one regularly sees the nomenclature "Nano", "micro" and so forth.
These nomenclature refer to the dimensionality of various materials(colloidals, silicates, water clusters) that are necessary to achieve the desired effects at the cellular level.
Although various researchers carefully conceal the exact, specific processes and procedures which they use to achieve particular altered/structured water characteristics, there are only a handful of known techniques by which various physical characteristics of water can be changed or manipulated.
The extent and in what combination these known technologies are employed determines in large part the differences one observes between various altered/structured water methodologies.
The figure below summarizes the principal areas of discussion which can be accessed from this page.
>ENTERING THE "NANO-WORLD" OF ALTERED WATER >(smaller is better)
Biochemists, physicists, neurobiological specialists and other scientists who have worked with altering water have determined that in order for "altered" water to be effective in the human body(or animals or plants), the water altering process must be done with extremely small physical entities---entities on the order of nanometer sizes.
A nanometer is 9 orders of magnitude smaller than one meter(roughly three feet). These extremely small dimensions are necessary because any materials which can pass through cell membranes into the interior of the cell(where all the action is, so to speak) must have nanometer dimensions.
Water altering technologies which do not use such "nanometer processes" will by nature be less effective than those which do, primarily because any alterations or physical entities embodied in those alterations simply will not permeate the cellular membrane and therefore remain essentially ineffective in any cellular activity.
Conventional drugs used by the orthodox medical community normally have molecular dimensions far larger than nanometers, thus preventing their effective passage into the body's cells. As a result, excessive amounts of drugs are required to allow even small amounts to permeate cells, thus resulting in "side effects" or "overdoses" due to the large amount of unused or excess drugs floating around in the body fluids.
As we see in the following discussions, nano-meter based altered water systems are designed to circumvent that type of problem by using materials and physical effects which are dimensionally similar to the porosity of cell membranes.
>A warning before getting started with the sales or use of Altered/Structured Water.
>(please read before proceeding) >*************************************
>Chemical(Catalyst) Activated Water - "Willard Water"
Chemically, or Catalyst Activated Water was one of the first processes in modern times to achieve various altered characteristics. "Willard Water" is typical of those Catalyst or Chemically Activated Waters.
>Physically and Electromagnetically Activated Water
Other scientists have used more sophisticated physical and electromagnetic phenomena to create far more powerful altered waters. A wide variety of techniques are employed and are discussed in this section.
>Oxygen Enriched Water
The final process of water alteration which we have selected to discuss in this initial material involves oxygen-enriched water. Oxygenated beverages have become more popular in the last half dozen years and involve various physical, electromagnetic and chemical processes to bond or hold oxygen and/or other nutrients in a water-based beverage. This section gives an overview of the various methodologies being employed.
>Structured Water Analysis Methodologies
The final section of this discussion deals with the various testing and analysis methodologies which are currently in use to help evaluate the effects of altered water on the human body. These methodologies can also be used to assist in the determination as to how altered/structured water may provide specific benefits at the cellular level in the body.