Science Behind Oxygenated Water
We get a lot of questions about oxygenated water because, quite frankly, the internet is filled with confusing information on the topic. Because our company’s core principles are Honesty, Humility and Hustle, we follow science and are completely transparent about the benefits of our products. So, here is a summary of where we stand on the science of oxygenated water.
Oxygenated water does NOT provide athletic performance benefits
There are other companies claiming that oxygen-infused beverages help to increase energy levels and provide higher blood oxygenation so that your muscles or your brain will perform better. This is false, or at least we haven’t seen any compelling data behind it. The most widely quoted journal article on this topic is from 2006, but it was also confirmed in 2017.
The body absorbs ingested oxygen and transports it to the liver
The portal venous system provides the liver most of its blood supply, but the oxygen levels in that blood are usually low because the oxygen has already been utilized by the stomach, intestines and pancreas. The only way to increase the oxygen levels in the portal vein before it reaches the liver is to ingest additional oxygen. In 2001, pointed research showed that portal venous blood can increase in oxygen levels (and increase liver oxygen levels) when oxygen is ingested, which has been demonstrated many times in various medical studies over the last 70 years.
Oxygenated water can help the liver process toxins
The liver requires oxygen to do its job; without it, studies have shown that the liver has a reduced ability to process toxins. Scientists have looked at the impact of oxygen ingestion on the body’s alcohol elimination starting all the back in 1951. Research in 2013 reported increased levels of ethanol elimination after drinking an oxygenated beverage. No studies have been able to demonstrate a similar benefit with inhaled oxygen.
Oxygenated water can help lactate clearance and recovery
With intense exercise, muscles produce lactic acid (aka lactate) and post-exercise, the body needs to clear it out. In the meantime, the athlete can feel sore or fatigued. Because the liver is the body’s filtration system, it’s up to the liver to process this particular toxin from the system. The study previously quoted from 2017 found that ingesting oxygen-enhanced water helped clear the lactate from athletes’ bodies and aided in their post-workout recovery. This helps to explain why our customers report feeling less sore when they add O2 to their recovery routine.
The basis of O2’s benefits is recovery. Drinking oxygenated water can provide supplemental oxygen to your liver via the portal vein; increased oxygen can support your liver as it filters out toxins and clears lactate from your system. If you were looking for a quick fix to increase your cardio performance, you won’t find it in O2. But we can prescribe 100 burpees a day as fast as possible if you’d like.