What is Kangen Water?
Alkaline water seems to be all the rage in healthy hydration these days. Kangen water has gained popularity as the latest, greatest – and most expensive way, to beef up the health benefits of common drinking water.
Kangen water comes from a specific brand of water-ionizing machines. The Kangen Water Machine filters ordinary tap water to one of five different pH ranges – from very acidic to very alkaline. It is marketed to be more beneficial for drinking, cleaning, food preparation, or beauty care, among others. Enagic, the distributor of Kangen water-filtration machines, claims that everyone can benefit drinking ionized water at these specified pH levels. They further claim that tap water, bottled water, and even reverse osmosis water, are highly contaminated and a hazard to health.
Enagic – Kangen Water at a Glance
Company: Enagic – Tokyo, Japan
Founded: June 1974, as Sony Specialty Trading Operation
Price to Join: Website claims it is free, but appears to require a sponsor and purchase of products ranging from $1,980-$5,980
Do I Recommend? No! The product health claims have no scientific support.
Enagic – Kangen Water Products
There are eight different water filtration models to choose from. All but one can produce five different types of alkaline Kangen water. Here is the quick rundown from high to low with the prices provided:
- Leveluk R – $1,980 Entry model With three electrolysis plates, color LCD panel, three alkaline water settings (pH 8.5, 9.0 and 9.5), Neutral Water (pH 7.0), and Acidic Water (pH 6.0) for astringent and cleansing effects
- Leveluk Junior II– $2,380 The JRII has three electrode plates which reduces the energy consumption. Despite only three plates, the unit is considered capable to produce the strong acid and strong Kangen waters. Due to the lower power consumption and fewer plates, this machine is only recommended for singles or couples. Families are advised to consider one of the more robust models above due to the amount of output required.
- The Anespa DX – $2,890 Claims to recreate the feeling of being in a Hot Spring Resort everyday with the relaxing effects of ANESPA DX’s mineral-ion water. Ensures removal of virtually 100% of residual chlorine. The cartridge purification system effectively removes chlorine and bacteria. Leaves you invigorated. Contains a blend of natural hot spring ingredients and minerals, giving you the advantage of the mineral ion water. Claims is is highly-effective against skin-deterioration and freckles. Protects your delicate skin from the harmfull effects of tap water. Active charcoal filter Futama-ceramic inner filter.
- Leveluk SD501- $3,980 Enagic’s Flagship Model. It is the company’s workhorse around which the other 501 models are built – a continuous ionized electrolysis water generator system. It features a large LCD panel, voice prompts, 7-Platinum-plated Titanium plates in the electrolysis chamber. Capable of producing 5 types of water: Kangen Water, neutral clean water, Acidic (beauty) water, Strong Kangen water, Strong Acidic water. AC 120V, 60Hz (grounded) Complete with 1 High-grade filter (HG or HG-N), 1 cleaning cartidge, Electrolysis Enhancer, diverters and product literature.
- Leveluk SD501 Platinum 5-language – $4,280 This LeveLuk can be programmed in 5 languages: English, German, French, Italian and Spanish. Other features are shared with the 501 family – built-in electrolysis chamber, a large LCD panel, voice prompts, 7-platinum-plated titanium plates in the electrolysis chamber. AC 120V, 60Hz (grounded), High-grade filter (HG-N), 1 cleaning cartidge, Electrolysis Enhancer, diverters and product literature.
- Leveluk SD501U- $4,980 Basically, it is the SD501 – without sacrificing valuable counter space. The unit is operated with a compact LCD wall-mounted control panel. Still capable of producing 5 types of water. AC 100V, 50/60Hz (grounded) Complete with 1 High-grade filter (HG or HG-N), 1 cleaning cartidge, Electrolysis Enhancer, diverters and product literature.
- The K8 – 8-Plate Anti-Oxidizer $4,980, The Kangen 8 is their most powerful antioxidant machine. It features 8 platinum-dipped titanium plates. This additional electrode plates increase the electrolysis surface area, which is supposed to improve water ionization, and heightens the antioxidant production potential. Features include Plug & Play, No More Switches, Worldwide Multi-Voltage Power Supply with Interchangeable Plug Capability, 10 Second Automatic Cleaning, On-Screen E-Cleaning Instructions, Automatic Filter Sensor – No More New Filter Reset, Energy Saving – Low Input, High Output, Auto-Off, Auto-On, Large Full Color LCD Touch Screen Panel, 8 Language Display & Audio in Japanese, English, French, German, Chinese, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese
- Leveluk Super 501- $5,980 The Leveluk Super 501 is positioned as the top of the line model for heavy home use. The literature claims there is no other water ionizer on the market that can compare! The machine has 7 and 5 electrode plates, a twin hose system, cleaning system, a built-in tank for the electrolysis enhancer, and a water pressure regulating function. The machine is rated for large family use.
These filtration systems are claimed to raise the body’s PH levels from 8.5 to 9.5, which, they claim, is a better place to be. Supposedly, an alkaline state is better than an acidic state – but science does not support that claim.
Compensation – A total of 8 points are paid out on each product sale, and the number of points paid to a Distributor is based upon his/her rank. Commission pay-out begins with the Distributor that made the sale and is paid out up line from that point until all 8 points have been awarded.
If a Distributor within 8 levels beneath you advances to a higher rank, your maximum pay could be reduced. At any given rank, you earn the amount due for your rank, less the amount due to other distributors between you and the sale.
Advancement – Rank advancement is based on a combination of direct and group sales, and it is not necessary to advance ranks one at a time. An advance in rank is always initiated by a direct sale, but a Distributor will advance to whichever rank is qualified for, based on total accumulated sales volume. Once a rank is achieved, it is always retained until the next rank is attained. A Distributor never has to start over and Distributors ranked 2A and higher can have an unlimited number of direct sales.
Enagic USA claims to be a direct selling organization. As a distributor, you can work from within the comforts of your home, set your own schedule, decide what your own personal financial goals are, and attempt to reach them. You’re the boss.
Getting Started – To get started, you have to purchase one of their purification systems for around $4,000. You then use it and promote all of the health benefits that this ionizer has for you and your family. When you recruit eight other people to join your team, your profits will increase. However, in order for these profit margins to increase, you must reach their Leadership position. From what I can glean from the information, you have to recruit a lot of people to generate revenue.
Kangen Water – The Health Claims
Eniac maintains that their Kangen water will not only be healthier for your body but will also improve the flavor of home-cooked meals, provide better hydration, give consumers glowing skin and hair, and more:
- Kangen water neutralizes your body’s pH.
- Alkaline water is more hydrating – it hydrates your brain in 30 seconds
- Slows the aging process
- Detoxes your body
- Prevents cancer
- You will sleep better
- Your energy will skyrocket
- Facial skin toner
- Disinfectant – kills 99% bacteria, kills fungus, treats psoriasis
But does Kangen water actually do any of these things? Are tap water and bottled water unsafe and unhealthy? Rather than give my opinion, let’s see how Dr Oz weighs in on the subject:
Does Science Support Health Claims for Alkaline Water?
There isn’t much out there to prove Kangen water’s supposed health benefits. Experts have investigated the health claims made by Enagic and there is no real scientific research to back them up.
“With regard to health, alkaline water won’t have any physiologic effect on your body, Your internal pH is highly regulated, and is also varied in different organs.” Pojednic PhD, RD, an assistant nutrition professor at Simmons College in Boston.
Your stomach pH for example, is highly acidic in order to break down proteins. Intestinal pH is more neutral to help absorb nutrients. Blood is even more highly regulated and maintains a pretty even 7.4 pH.
Healthy people regulate these organs and systems naturally relying on chemical buffers throughout our respiratory and renal (urinary) systems. Modifying water’s alkalinity is not a cure-all for health issues. Drinking alkaline water isn’t, as the company claims, the only safe way to hydrate.
Think about it – The pH in foods we eat varies from alkaline to acidic quite dramatically. The body adjusts to this and buffers these differences metabolically – every day. Why would the liquids you consume be any different?
The Kangen Water Machine
According to the company literature, water produced by Kangen’s water machines is unique. They further claim only Kangen water possesses special alkaline, ionizing, antioxidant and hydrating properties.
It turns out that the company’s water machine does , in fact, produce alkaline water. But that is not due to any unique characteristics of its water filtration process. As a consumer, you need to understand that the water produced by the Enagic – Kangen water machine uses a simple water electrolysis process that has been around since the 1950’s. Any machine that uses this process produces the same “alkaline ionized water” through a decades old electrolyzed water reduction process.
What is pH?
PH stands for potential free hydrogen. Therefore, pH in water is a measure of how acidic or basic the water is. Water that has more free hydrogen ions is acidic, whereas water that has more free hydroxyl ions is basic. The range goes from 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral. Drinking water tends toward a pH of 7 – which is exactly in the middle of the scale. A pH of less than 7 indicates acidity. A pH of greater than 7 indicates a base.
High and low pHs can be detrimental for the use of water. High pH causes a bitter taste, water pipes and water-using appliances become encrusted with deposits, and it depresses the effectiveness of the disinfection of chlorine, thereby causing the need for additional chlorine when pH is high. Low-pH water will corrode or dissolve metals and other substances.
What is the pH of Drinking Water?
Enagic-Kangen water distributors maintain that if your water is too “acidic” or too “basic” — meaning it’s been contaminated with caustic cleaners or acids — your pH can be thrown off, which could make you very sick, damage certain tissues, or even kill you. Drinking their water will fix this and keep you healthy.
Scientifically speaking, pH measures the concentration of hydrogen ion in a solution. Drinking water is usually about pH 7.0 – on a scale where 7 is considered neutral. For example, orange juice has a pH of 3.3, which means it’s acidic. Black coffee has a pH of about 5, baking soda is around 9, and bleach has a pH of 12. There aren’t many foods or drinks humans consume that are much over or under the neutral pH of 7.0.
The pH of drinking water is not usually an issue – unless it’s high enough, and/or caustic enough to hurt you. Most commercial uncontaminated bottled water won’t make you healthier or sick due to its pH. Depending on the source and processing, most bottled water stays close to neutral, or pH 7.0. A few bottled water brands can run almost toward a pH of 8. However, slightly more alkaline water doesn’t mean you’ll get additional health benefits. There isn’t any solid scientific evidence that says eating more alkaline foods or drinking alkaline water helps keep a person more disease-free than someone who doesn’t.
What is the pH of Seawater?
Seawater contains salt. When humans drink seawater, their cells are thus taking in water and salt. While humans can safely ingest small amounts of salt, the salt content in seawater is much higher than what can be processed by the human body. Additionally, when we consume salt as part of our daily diets, we also drink liquids, which help to dilute the salt and keep it at a healthy level. Living cells do depend on sodium chloride (salt) to maintain the body’s chemical balances and reactions; however, too much sodium can be deadly.
Human kidneys can only make urine that is less salty than salt water. Therefore, to get rid of all the excess salt taken in by drinking seawater, you have to urinate more water than you drank. Eventually, you die of dehydration even as you become thirstier.
You’re also most likely to feel nausea, weakness and even delirium. As you become more dehydrated, the coping mechanism fails. If you still don’t drink any water to reverse the effects of excess sodium, the brain and other organs receive less blood, leading to coma, organ failure and eventually death.
What is the Normal pH of Urine?
According to the American Association for Clinical Chemistry, the average value for urine pH is slightly salty – 7.4, but it can range from 6.0 to 8.0. Urine at or around 6.0 is acidic, and urine at or around 8.0 is alkaline, or basic.
Remember what I said above about drinking sea water? Human kidneys can only make urine that is less salty than sea water. Therefore, to get rid of all the excess salt taken in by drinking seawater, you have to urinate more water than you drank. Eventually, you die of dehydration even as you become thirstier.
Why would you drink Kangen water of pH 8.5 – 9.5 when your kidneys can only produce urine that tops out at pH 8.0? If your drinking water has the same – or higher pH as your urine, how can your body flush the excess salts and alkaline from your digestive system and blood stream?
Possible Side Effects of Drinking Alkaline Water
According to Healthline.com: An excess of alkalinity in the body may cause gastrointestinal issues and skin irritations. Too much alkalinity may also agitate the body’s normal pH, leading to metabolic alkalosis, a condition that may produce the following symptoms:
- hand tremors
- muscle twitching
- tingling in the extremities or face
Guess what? Those symptoms are exactly the same symptoms that are present during dehydration – the same dehydration that occurs when drinking sea water. How can people possibly think this is good for you?
Is Kangen Water a Pyramid Scheme?
Here is what the FTC says about MLMs and pyramid schemes:
“Not all multilevel marketing plans are legitimate. If the money you make is based on your sales to the public, it may be a legitimate multilevel marketing plan. If the money you make is based on the number of people you recruit and your sales to them, it’s not. It’s a pyramid scheme. Pyramid schemes are illegal, and the vast majority of participants lose money… Avoid any plan where the reward for recruiting new distributors is more than it is for selling products to the public. That’s a time-tested and traditional tip-off to a pyramid scheme.”
With Enagic-Kangen Water, you have to give up the commission for your first sale or you have to purchase equipment yourself to qualify for commissions.
New representatives are sharing their commissions with representatives above them. A total of 8 points are paid out on each product sale, and the number of points paid to a Distributor is based upon his/her rank. Commission pay-out always begins with the Distributor that made the sale and is paid out up line from that point until all 8 points have been awarded.
The vast majority of a sales commission for a new representative is paid to their up line and not to the person who actually made the sale.
Reviews and Opinions Found Online About Enagic – Kangen Water:
- The products that Enagic USA Ltd. offer are very expensive. There are comparable water filtration/ionization companies that provide similar equipment at half the price – or less.
- Though they say that they are a direct selling organization, they are no different than any other MLM company. You need to recruit a lot of people in order to generate any real income.
- How do you market it? Walk around the neighborhood and offer people a glass of water that is supposed to provide all of these wonderful health benefits? Good luck!
- The startup cost, in my opinion, is ridiculous. $4,000+ to buy your first machine, with no discount. Most people that I know don’t have this kind of money to invest in a start-up project.
- There are claims that using these systems can alleviate everything from diabetes, obesity, menopausal complications, to breast cancer and freckles. These kinds of claims aren’t legal unless they’ve been proven by clinical trials. Enagic gets around this legal issue by letting their distributors make the outrageous claims – not the company itself.
- You don’t get any kind of discount on your first purchase as a distributor. Also, there is a five-year limited warranty on these machines. You are not likely to get repeat customers very often.
- On top of that, there is a 15-day return policy. Fifteen days is not enough time for an individual to decide if the health benefits claimed to be provided by these systems are actually true.
- There are outstanding reports filed against Enagic with the Better Business Bureau.
- You have to be a very confident and successful salesperson to make any money with this organization. Do you really think you have what it takes to sell a product that starts at $1,280 to a friend, family member, co-worker, or complete stranger?
- What you really have to ask yourself when you are thinking about starting your own home-based business is this: Is this something I feel comfortable about doing? Is there a big enough market out there for me to succeed?What is it I am trying to achieve, in the sense of goals?
- If you go to the Enagic USA website, you will find a ton of information, but none of it is particularly useful. If you check out other reviews on this company, you will find that most of them are negative and this comes from employees and customers alike.
- Granted, they have been around for a long time, so they must be doing something right, but I genuinely feel that there are better ways to make some extra money, than trying to sell water purification systems at such an inflated price to both you and your potential customers. If you are thinking about becoming involved with an MLM operation, there are many more lucrative choices to choose from.
I feel that there are many other business opportunities available from which to choose from in today’s world. However, I strongly encourage you to continue to do your own research before you jump right into things.
Enagic and Kangen Water – Bottom Line
In my opinion, the Enagic Kangen Water representatives use deceptive health and wealth claims to get people to purchase the equipment and join the business opportunity. Qualification for commissions is ultimately made by a personal purchase of equipment, and the incentive for multi-level income is to have new representatives purchase the equipment and recruit others to do the same. The vast majority of a sales commission for a new representative is paid to their up line and not to them. Spending thousands of dollars on a machine that changes the pH of your water is a poor investment and a poor business opportunity. I would personally avoid the Enagic Kangen Water business opportunity.
MLM products tend to be priced higher than comparable products in the retail space. Kangan water machines are priced 2 to 3 times higher than competitive models – check for yourself on Amazon. To succeed at this business, you will have to be okay with selling something that’s priced a lot higher than it’s competitors. To reach the 6A level, you will need to sell over 100 units. At almost $4,000-$6,000 per unit, that is squarely in the neighborhood of $500,000 (half-a-million dollars!) in sales. This is for a product where there is little to no repeat business per each customer. The machines have a 5 year warranty, so they won’t need to be replaced very often.
Let me leave you with two burning questions:
- Sea water has a pH of 8.1. Kangen water machines produce water as high as pH 9.5! Why, on earth would someone deliberately drink water that has a higher pH than sea water? Science and naval history have shown that drinking sea water will kill you – rather quickly – Are You Kidding Me!
- Why would someone pay $4000-$5000 dollars for a machine that should cost less than half that much (check Amazon) – to make and drink water with a higher pH than sea water???
If you are looking into starting your own home-based business, I would not recommend getting involved with Enagic USA. Their products are extremely overpriced with no scientific proof that they will do what they say.