What Is Ozonated Water, and Can You Drink It?
Ozonated water refers to water that has been treated with ozone gas.
Its proponents claim that it offers benefits in both clinical and industrial spaces, from preventing cancer and fighting free radicals in the body to supporting dental health and preserving food safety.
However, recent studies on the topic are lacking, so it’s difficult to evaluate all of the claims about ozonated water.
This article explores the evidence on ozonated water, including how it’s made, its uses, its benefits, and its potential downsides.
What is ozonated water?
Ozone is a colorless and odorless gas comprising three oxygen atoms. In the gas form, ozone is an unstable molecule that can cause damage to the lungs when inhaled (1Trusted Source).
When ozone is dissolved in water, the water becomes ozonated and is believed to have some therapeutic effects, including antioxidant and antimicrobial properties and use in dental therapy, cancer treatment, and food safety techniques.
However, most of the studies on ozonated water are outdated, and newer research is needed.
When ozone is dissolved in water, it becomes ozonated water. Ozonated water is thought to have therapeutic benefits that range from fighting cancer to keeping food fresh.
How it’s made?
Making ozonated water involves filling a cylinder with purified water while an ozone gas mixture bubbles through it continuously. This occurs for at least 5 minutes until maximum saturation has taken place. Then, the ozone gas will have fully dissolved into the water.
In its gas form, ozone may damage the respiratory system. Ozonated water is easier to handle than ozone gas itself. It may have both industrial and therapeutic uses.
In past decades, ozone was used to treat numerous ailments. Many historical applications were mostly anecdotal and not based on scientific literature, but some claims have been scientifically studied.
Ozonated water is made by continuously bubbling ozone gas into purified water. In the gas form, it may have respiratory consequences. However, ozonated water shows potential in the therapeutic space.
Benefits of ozonated water
Over the past 2 decades, numerous studies have investigated the effects of using ozonated water to support health.
Food safety and water purification
Ozone’s antibacterial properties and ability to destroy industrial impurities have made it a potentially valuable alternative to chlorine.
In 1901, one city in Germany and another in France were the first to implement the use of ozone to purify drinking water. Today, at least 3,000 cities use ozone to purify their drinking water.
In 1995, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) listed ozone as “generally recognized as safe” in regards to bottled water and coming into contact with food.
According to both older and recent studies, ozonated water may be used to wash fresh vegetables to reduce bacteria on their surface and enhance preservation. However, its use should occur within a controlled environment.
Ozone gas is considered a pollutant, which produces an inflammatory response that may cause damage to the airways when inhaled.
Even short-term exposure is known to exacerbate respiratory symptoms in adults and children.
Additionally, much older studies suggest that ozone may contribute to low birth weight if exposure takes place during the second or third trimester.
However, more recent studies are needed to support this claim and understand the mechanism through which this might occur.
Most studies evaluated the effects of ozone gas rather than the effects of ozonated water. Currently, there does not appear to be any research linking respiratory symptoms or low birth weights to ozonated water.
Ozone gas may impose risks if not handled by an expert, but those risks aren’t fully understood.
Ozonated water has antibacterial and antioxidant-promoting properties. If handled safely, it may help prevent tooth decay, minimize bladder cancer risk, purify drinking water, and improve the effectiveness of cancer treatment.
The bottom line
The FDA considers ozonated water to be safe when it comes to drinking water and coming into contact with food.
In a controlled environment, such as in industrial water plants or under medical supervision, there’s evidence that ozonated water may be safe to drink and use in some medical therapies.
However, more research is needed to support the safety and benefits of ozonated water for oral consumption.