The mineral content of source water is a vital determinant of the quality of our drinking water, particularly in water ionization. This discussion delves into the fundamental importance of minerals in source water, the specific minerals required, methods for identifying mineral deficiencies, reasons behind mineral depletion, and the significance of restoring these essential minerals to our drinking water.
The Significance of Minerals in Source Water:
Minerals play a pivotal role in shaping the composition of our source water. They not only contribute to the taste and overall health benefits of the water we consume but also underpin the ionization process, a key feature of many water purification systems. Achieving the ideal pH levels and ORP (Oxidation-Reduction Potential) in ionized water hinges on maintaining the correct mineral balance.
Critical minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and other alkalizing minerals are essential for source water. These minerals are vital in creating the slightly alkaline pH (typically around 9.5) ideal for ionized water. Moreover, their presence is crucial in generating a negative ORP, a measure of the water's antioxidant potential. The ionization process can be compromised without these minerals.
Detecting Mineral Deficiencies:
Determining which minerals may be lacking in your source water is a critical step in ensuring effective ionization. We can accomplish this through water testing or assessing water hardness, which provides insights into mineral content. Water classified as "soft" often lacks the necessary minerals for optimal ionization, potentially leading to less desirable water quality.
Factors Behind Mineral Depletion:
Several factors can contribute to the depletion of minerals in source water. Natural deficiencies are found in soft water sources, while water subjected to reverse osmosis processes may lose essential minerals. Rainwater stored in plastic tanks and some public water supplies can also lack minerals due to treatment processes that eliminate contaminants, including beneficial minerals.
The Importance of Restoring Mineral Content:
Replenishing the mineral content of source water is imperative for producing ionized water with desirable qualities. The reintroduction of minerals creates an ideal environment for ionization, resulting in an alkaline pH and a negative ORP, both associated with water's antioxidant properties. This revitalization process not only enhances the taste of the water but also promotes overall well-being.
Understanding Water Ionization and Its Impact:
Beyond the mineral aspect, various factors influence water ionization. Different water ionizers vary in power consumption, strength, size and number of their electrolytic plates, resulting in degrees of ionization strength. Moreover, the mineral content of source water significantly affects ionization when minerals are deficient.
pH and ORP in Ionized Water:
Ionized water's core qualities, pH and ORP, are sensitive to mineral content. Achieving an alkaline pH of up to 9.5 is typically attainable even with average source water, while pH levels beyond 10 become more challenging. Robust ionizers can make a difference in such cases. ORP, a measure of water's antioxidant potential, depends on the mineral content, with weaker mineral sources producing lower ORP values.
Addressing Mineral-Lacking Water Sources:
Water devoid of minerals, such as that produced by reverse osmosis or rainwater stored in plastic tanks, hinders ionization. In these situations, re-mineralization is necessary, and products like Ionza's re-mineralizers containing alkalizing minerals like dolomite, calcium, and magnesium can aid in this process.
Evaluating Water Supplies Across Regions:
To better understand how various water supplies across a country impact ionization, one can refer to regional assessments. Water composition can change, particularly in public water supplies; this is due to the introduction of different substances for treatment.
Hard vs. Soft Water:
Water sources range from mineral-rich (hard water) to mineral-deficient (soft water). Hard water may seem favourable for ionization, but it can pose challenges like mineral buildup on ionization plates. The optimal water source for ionization typically falls between these extremes.
Rating Ionization Capacity:
A rating system on a scale from 1 to 10 indicates ionization capacity for different water sources. A rating of 10 signifies excellent ionization, while 1 indicates poor ionization. Here's an overview of water sources across New Zealand:
- Paihia: 5-8
- Kaikohe: 5-7
- Whangarei: 5-7
- Auckland City: 5-8
- Auckland - North Shore: 4-6
- Auckland - Waitakere: 3-5
- Tauranga: 5-8
- Gisborne: 5-8
- Hamilton: 5-8
- Rotorua: 5-8
- Wellington: 3-6
- Petone: 2-4
- Blenheim: 4-6
- Nelson: 4-7 (with some lime scale issues)
- Christchurch: 2-4
- Timaru: 2-5
Other Water Sources:
- Rainwater stored in plastic tanks: 0-1
- Rainwater stored in concrete tanks: 2-5
- Reverse osmosis water: 0
- Aquifers commonly provide soft water: 0-4
This rating system helps assess ionization potential, considering mineral content and overall suitability for water ionization. By recognizing the critical role of minerals in source water and the necessity of restoring them, we can enhance the benefits of ionized water and promote better health and well-being.