It is unlikely you have heard of ‘deuterium depleted water’ unless you are submerged in the world of biohacking and science (or have heard me discuss it), but its a topic that has been getting a lot of attention over the last few years and seems to be picking up momentum in the world of health. There are hundred of studies on the benefits of deuterium depleted water! But lets first take a look at what it is.
What is deuterium depleted water?
So most of us in school learned that water is made of the molecular formula H2O right? So, this means each molecule of water contains two hydrogen’s attached to one oxygen. Hydrogen is essential for energy production in humans. The most common form of hydrogen in the body is water. Our bodies are 60-70% water so it’s easy to see why hydrogen is important for human life right?!
At the cellular level hydrogen plays a vital role in mitochondria function. Mitochondria are the little energy powerhouses or batteries in the cells of our body. They ultimately facilitate energy production. Within the mitochondria there is a spinning head that rotates very fast, the rotation speed of this spinning head determines how well you create energy. The spinning head also creates a magnetic field which is important for drawing oxygen into the mitochondria (I don’t need to explain why oxygen is important do I?). The faster the spinning head rotates the more energy you make and the healthier you will be. But the slower the spinning head rotates the less energy you will make and this leaves you more susceptible to chronic mismatch diseases and faster aging… and this is where deuterium comes in.
Many people don’t know but hydrogen comes in two different forms or ‘flavors’ – regular hydrogen, which is actually called ‘protium’, and ‘deuterium’ (there is a third but we won’t get into that now). Deuterium has all the same properties as regular hydrogen except its twice as big and twice as heavy (it has a extra neutron). Because of this, deuterium is often referred to as “heavy hydrogen” and it behaves quiet differently in our bodies than regular hydrogen does. Think of deuterium as normal hydrogen’s overweight dysfunctional cousin who likes to come in and mess s**t up.
Firstly, deuterium is not all bad… In nature, deuterium helps things grow. It is found in Earth’s oceans and other water sources. Water containing deuterium is called “heavy water” because of that extra neutron. It is widely used in prototype fusion reactors and has application in military, industrial and scientific fields. In nuclear fusion reactors, it is used as a tracer and it is responsible to slow down neutrons in heavy water moderated fission reactors. D2O as some call it, is also found in high amounts in vaccines, carbohydrates and processed food (its added as a preservative).
Deuterium is great and necessary for growing babies, kids, teenagers, and developing plants and animals but… once you stop growing though, deuterium is no longer your friend. Having too much deuterium in your body can result in mitochondrial dysfunction, and lead to accelerated aging, metabolic problems and disease.
How is deuterium a problem for health?
When our cells and mitochondria come into contact with deuterium, this is where we start to see problems arise. And because of how modern life is now a days with constant exposure to pollution, toxins, processed foods, unclean water, stress and sleep issues… many people have way too much deuterium in their cells. This results in an inability to effectively deplete and displace deuterium from our bodies and the degradation of our mitochondria.
So deuterium enters the body and passes into the mitochondria. From there it shuttles to the top of that spinning head mentioned above, ready to assist in energy production and create a magnetic field.
The spinning head is specifically designed by nature to accept hydrogen in its standard form. That is one proton and one electron. But deuterium contains a neutron and the spinning head is not equipped to deal with this neutron or wide enough for it to pass through the spinning head easily. When we have deuterium in the body it cannot pass through the spinning head and gums up the system. Which in turn slows down the rotation thus reduces energy production and magnetic field strength (less oxygen getting into the cells now).
So we get less oxygen is pulled in from the blood, energy levels drop and your redox potential decreases. A lowering of your redox potential (electron transfer ability) means a huge increase in your risks of chronic diseases.
As you can see, a cascade of mitochondrial and cellular damage starts, as deuterium builds up more and more. The more our mitochondria and cells are malfunctioning, the less energy we have and the more fatigue, inflammation, illness and disease we have.
In summary, too much deuterium;
- causes oxidative stress
- makes you age faster
- makes you tired
- messes with your sleep
- makes you sad and depressed
- fuels cancer cell growth
- weakens your immune system
- increases inflammation
So what do we do about this?
“How do I lower deuterium in my body?” … this question has been driving an obsession within me for the last two weeks, causing me to delve into as much research as I can about deuterium (and molecular hydrogen, but that’s for another blog post). And this is what I have found;
To lower deuterium in the body;
- Drink deuterium depleted water…except it can be very expensive from brands like Qlarivia, Mito Water and Preventa which have D levels of between 19 and 25ppm, and are the lowest available on the planet right now. Ordinary or tap water has about 156ppm or more. But because this water is so expensive at about $27 CAD per liter, this is not viable for most of the general population. So we look then towards more affordable clean waters that have been tested to have lower levels of deuterium like – Evian, San Pelligrino, Acqua Panna, Voss, Gerolsteiner, Icelandic, or if you can get your water from the ‘Rocky mountains’ (like the taps in Banff) you are onto gold! And of course glass bottles are always preferred! These waters have between 145 and 149ppm.
- Eat foods that have been shown to be lower in deuterium like – organic green plants, organic nuts, grass fed animal meats, wild caught fish and sea food, fats from organic plants and animals, organic cacao and cacao butter, and chilies.
- Replace cane sugar with stevia and other natural artificial sweeteners. These come
from the green leaf of the stevia plant and is not only sweet, but it is also
- Sleep! The body naturally depletes deuterium during sleep so making sure you are getting good quality sleep is essential (as if you didn’t know already).
- Get lots of sun and red light exposure because the frequency from these resonates or communicates with normal hydrogen, helping it flow into the cells and mitochondria more easily by reducing viscosity (thickness, stickiness). Deuterium in water increases viscosity of water, so its critical we decrease this viscosity level to improve mitochondrial function.
- Have low carb or fasting days — this allows your body to tap into its own fat stores and create its own metabolic water. * The body makes 1.1 kg of deuterium
depleted, metabolic water for every 1 kg of fat consumed – our early ancestors likely derived most of their water from fat. Many, if not most, animals still do that today – like Camels who get water from the fat in their humps.
- Avoid; Consuming grain-fed animals, older animals, farm raised fish, carbohydrate heavy meals or processed foods, as they all contain high levels of deuterium.
- Don’t; drink excessive amounts of tap water, since most sources of the water you drink today from rivers, reservoirs, and streams is likely to be high in deuterium – this includes the great majority of commercially bottled drinking waters aside from the ones listed above.
To wrap this up – if you are interested in lowering deuterium levels in your body, like I am, then be aware of your water consumption and its sources, the types of food you are eating and how much time you are getting out in nature and in sleep. By being conscious of your choices you should be able to get D levels down and support your health even further than you were already doing.