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Many methods exist for the treatment of water to make it useful for applications in a variety of industries as a cleaning agent. The process of electrolysis of water is increasingly being promoted as a promising water treatment solution. Electrolyzed water is typically formed by adding a small amount of sodium chloride (NaCl) to pure distilled water, and conducting a current through it across an anode and a cathode. The cathode area produces basic water, while the anode area produces acidic water.
Due to significant limitations, the widespread use and production of electrolyzed water have been impractical and somewhat unfeasible. However, technological breakthroughs continue to be made that bring it closer to being a used for a wider range of medical, dental, and even drinking water applications. Electrolyzed water has been certified for medical use in Japan since the mid-1980s. The first type of electrolyzed water which was used was the acidic type, which was accepted quickly by the Japanese food industry. It was useful for killing bacteria and parasites in raw fish without compromising its quality.
Alkaline water was developed next, and it was used in hospitals to alkalize the body and as an energy enhancer. It also helped the body hydrate significantly faster when mixed with drinking water. The only problem that was encountered with the use of electrolyzed water was that it had a short shelf life- only about two weeks. This made it so that only people with electrolysis machines could benefit from it easily.
The use of electrolyzed water is uncommon in the U.S., where chlorine and compounds which contain chlorine, are much more common forms of disinfection for the food industry. However, concerns have been raised about some possible safety issues that may arise from chlorine, and electrolyzed water is starting to receive more attention from people in the U.S. food industry. For example, there are studies which show that it is highly effective against bacteria and molds on fresh produce, while having no harmful effect on the smell, taste, or texture of the food.
Certain scientists also claim that water treated by electrolysis has a unique ability to hold and transport nutrients that are essential to the human body, as well as to lower blood pressure. There are even claims that it can treat the symptoms of diabetes, allergies, obesity, and heart disease. More research will have to be done to verify these types of claims, but the possible benefits of electrolyzed water are certainly intriguing to the medical community.