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Molecular Hydrogen H2

by Dr Jan Beute(more info)

listed in antioxidants, originally published in issue 235 - January 2017

Health care ought to be cheap and every person should have an easy access of information to sustain their wellbeing. Traditional Western medicine dropped us and the sooner we realize it, the better. I strolled the hospital corridors for 40 years and I am still searching for the ‘keys’. I think I found them and the answer is Molecular Hydrogen.

I was born Dutch and spent my youth and early career in South Africa. At the turn of the century, I immigrated to the United Kingdom. I mostly worked in the Accident and Emergency hospital. 

Hydrogen Screen-Shot

Let's say you invented a device that would automatically clean up trash in the neighbourhood. It is small, versatile, (able to manoeuvre in and out of all kinds of places) safe and able to distinguish the actual trash and not remove the good stuff. It clears the area from all radiation leakage. Hydrogen does it and the only by-products is water.

Our bodies too are tired and burdened with thrash or harmful free radicals. No holiday in sight and we can’t blame our bodies, mistaking the good as bad. Think about it - why are our bodies confused fighting their own cells, targeting them? It causes myriads of auto-immune diseases. The reason is our bodies are overburdened. We don’t have an exhaust system to divert the harmful ‘free radicals’ away from our bodies. To live we need to breath and do exercise, creating a vicious circle to age us. Give your body a well-deserved rest by flooding it with Molecular Hydrogen. It is like a sponge to absorb the worst of all the free radical - the hydroxyl radical, (OH-) to turn them into structured water, the bad into the good.

H2 prevents the toxic build-up in our bodies, a formidable anti-ageing medicine. The other conventional anti-oxidants as Vitamin C and Glutathione, are too clumsy and they cannot penetrate the cells, brain and mitochondria, as the H2 do. The H2 molecule is the smallest and the slippiest of them all to gain easy access to our power houses, the mitochondria. That is where the free radicals are created. H2 can easily penetrate glass and even the brick wall in our lounge. H2 is not a pharmaceutical drug and our bodies embrace them, the most common atom in our body. Our bodies are at ease with the molecule and they have the master key to enter each of our cells - and they do. We do produce up to 10 litres of H2 from our colon. In Japan the sales of H2 products are rocketing and the industry is still in its infancy, but ‘silent’ in the United Kingdom. The fact that you are reading this article makes you an early adopter of H2 in the UK. Prior to 2016, the only people in the UK who knew about H2 were scientists. Legitimate claims are made backed by scientific studies which is not true of most supplements available on the market. There are more than 600 backed scientific studies to verify its efficacy. I have been a doctor for nearly 40 years, and nothing tickles me more than the simplicity of H2.

In a nutshell.

  • H2 neutralizes/reduces the most harmful free radical (OH radical), converting it to water. By reducing the hydroxyl radical, H2 effectively reduces oxidative stress. It is the master antioxidant. H2 doesn’t neutralize the other useful and necessary free radicals which may not be the case for other antioxidants;
  • H2 effectively reduces inflammation which is associated with many diseases as well as aching body parts;
  • H2 is the smallest molecule to be effective in areas that other much larger antioxidants and supplements will never reach. It will slice through bones as if they didn’t exist;
  • H2 helps your body naturally produce other antioxidants such as glutathione;
  • H2 helps athletes in numerous ways including reducing lactate (lactic acid) production. H2 literally fuels the ATP engine that powers every cell in the body. More fuel means more work can be done, less food needs to be eaten, lessening the oxidative load on the body;
  • Molecular hydrogen leaves no waste product after neutralizing a free radical (as the by-product is water) unlike other antioxidants that must either be neutralized themselves after donating their electrons to free radicals or must be removed entirely from the body;
  • Molecular hydrogen also appears to act as a signalling molecule, thereby providing many other benefits;
  • Molecular hydrogen is easily consumed with no additional calories;
  • Molecular hydrogen has no known adverse toxic effects and there has been no evidence found that you can take too much H2;
  • It is a mood lifter. People feel euphoric and there is definitely a mental component.

Free radicals are highly charged oxygen molecules (having either one too many or too few electrons) that are formed mainly by breathing, but also from exposure to food additives and pesticides, UV light, cigarette smoke, exhaust fumes, and chemical pollutants. They cause myriads of illnesses, including cancer, arteriosclerosis, arthritis, and dementia as well as to premature ageing.

So we tend to think if we eat organic foods and take protective substances called ‘antioxidants,’ it will protect us from the many free radicals, to undo all the damages? Well, not quite.

The antioxidant story isn't as simple as some suggest. Free radicals are as good as they are bad. Antioxidants in high doses may do the body harm and in other cases they may help us. It's generally recognized that antioxidants have the ability to serve as sort of a rust protector for the body, putting a stop to a process called oxidation.

The culprit, without a doubt, is the free radical. As free-radical damage mounts, cells can no longer perform properly. Tissues degrade and disease sets in like cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer's disease and cancer. Aging itself has been defined as a gradual accumulation of free radical damage.

Unbeknown to many, certain free radicals are a crucial part of the immune system, floating through the veins and attacking foreign invaders. They help fight against bacteria. We want to avoid excessive free radicals production, but certainly, we don't want to get rid of all of them. A study was commenced when certain individuals were given very high doses of synthetic anti-oxidants. They had to abandon the study due to multiple nasty side effects.

Until recently, the thinking was the more antioxidants, the less oxidative stress. That thinking changed. Free radicals are not always the bad ones, (like nitric oxide in GTN) and the antioxidants are always the good guys. A 2014 review published in Nutrition and Food Science concluded that a high-dose antioxidant supplements can effectively ‘abolish the beneficial effects of exercise.’ Researchers think that high levels of a single antioxidant can snatch up all the free radicals produced by exercise before they have a chance to trigger the synthesis of those beneficial endogenous antioxidants.

Graph Relative Oxidative Activity

A New look at Molecular Hydrogen

  • It is a mood lifter. People feel euphoric and there is definitely a mental component;
  • It is a SELECTIVE free radical scavenger. They absorb the damaging hydroxyl radicals (OH-) and peroxynitrite. (ONOO-) They are the two most feared and abundant free radicals in your body. Vast amounts of your energy is spend to reduce them. The graph above summarizes the major free radicals in your body.[19] It is the master antioxidant.
  • H2 absorbs Radiation. The greatest damages of radiation is caused by the hydroxyl (OH-) radical. Our gastrointestinal tract is one of the most susceptible organs to radiation, and the common misnomer of irritable bowel disease, could easily be ‘radiation induced injury’. For example, studies done on the mice, found that plasma SOD (superoxide dismutase) and GSH (glutathione) concentrations were significantly higher at 12 hours after irradiation in the H2 treated group as compared to the control;
  • Molecular hydrogen also appears to act as a signalling molecule, thereby providing many other benefits. It can alter cell signalling, cell metabolism and gene expression to enhance your anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic and anti-apoptotic (or anti-cell death) effects. It’s like having a computer chip inside your body to regulate the cells performance;
  • H2 literally fuels the ATP engine that powers every cell in the body. More fuel means more work can be done, less food needs to be eaten, and less food further reduces the oxidative load the body has to deal with. Energy with no additional calories!
  • H2 helps athletes in numerous ways, mainly to reduce lactate (lactic acid) production. H2 literally fuels the ATP engine that powers every cell in the body. More fuel means more work can be done, less food needs to be eaten, lessening the oxidative load on the body;
  • H2 helps your body to naturally produce your own antioxidants. It triggers the activation of your own endogenous antioxidant enzymes (e.g. glutathione, SOD - superoxide dismutase, catalase, etc.) and/or cytoprotective proteins of the body;
  • H2 doesn’t neutralize other useful and necessary free radicals which may not be the case for other antioxidants. Molecular hydrogen has no known adverse toxic effects and there has been no evidence found that you can take too much H2. In the 1940s it was used for deep-sea divers to prevent the ‘bends’. The concentration exceeded 95% with no adverse effects, to prevent the ‘bends’. Pharmaceutical drugs distort your metabolism, and cause nasty side effects. Imagine having a drug with no side effects, allowing your body to do what it does best - to heal itself! Give your body a break, to quench the harmful radicals with H2.

Our interest in H2 (Molecular Hydrogen) was sparked in 2007, when Japanese researchers discovered the selective oxidation of hydrogen, to benefit the therapeutic effect on various diseases and injuries. Since then, there are hundreds of peer-reviewed papers reporting the positive effects of H2 to combat most human diseases. Presently it benefits up to 170 disease entities. While the people in the West debate whether H2 water is for real or quackery, the people in Japan embraced this technology. H2 energizes our water (70% of our body) to make our body function properly. Our health and wellness is not supported by our PSA level, cholesterol, blood pressure, the ORAC score or the pH value of our water - No the most important number is the number 1 on the table of periodic elements, ‘H2. To be more specific diatomic molecular H2. That highly active and tiny H2 makes the difference. It is Nano-technology in a nutshell.

Therefore, it’s not surprising that benefits of H2 therapy have been demonstrated in animal models and/or human studies in a wide range of conditions, to treat challenging traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, strokes, heart attacks, vascular disease, diabetes, liver and kidney disorders, autoimmune conditions, and lung problems. Presently it benefits up to 170 disease entities. Many antioxidant supplements will not prevent cancer, myocardial infarction and atherosclerosis, as they are too big. The larger sized antioxidants has limited therapeutic success and they are not selectively taken up by the mitochondria. Since H2 reduces the OH- radical, and it does not affect either Oxygen or hydrogen peroxide.

Comparison H2 with other Antioxidants

Comparing the Hydrogen atom to the other common, rather large Antioxidants

There are Several Methods to Ingest or Consume H2

Hydrogen Gas Inhalation as a disease remedy, received great interest.[1]H2 gas is colourless, odourless, tasteless and a highly combustible diatomic gas. H2 gas is flammable only at temperature higher than 527°C. H2 has no cytotoxicity even at high concentration.[2] Furthermore, safety standards have been established for high concentrations of H2 gas for inhalation since high pressure H2 gas is used in deep diving gas mixes to prevent decompression sickness and arterial gas thrombi.[2]

They compared the different methods of treatment and how it effects the blood and organs.

Firstly they hydrogen was given orally at 5% concentrations. It is only attainable in the laboratory and our best water devices can only produce 1.6% concentration.  Secondly it was given intraperitoneally, then intravenously and lastly was inhaled at 4% concentration.

The hydrogen concentrations in the liver, kidneys, spleen, pancreas and intestines were significantly higher after oral and intraperitoneal and the inhalation of hydrogen gas induced significantly higher hydrogen concentrations in the muscle and slightly higher hydrogen concentrations in the brain compared to the other methods.[20]The inhaled H2 gas, competes with the super saturated H2 solution of 5 ppm, and also intra venous H2.[21] The highest possible ppm we can achieve via our filters is 1.6 PPM, but most are in the region of 0.6 ppm - even the very expensive Kangen machine. H2Blue Hydrogen Test Kit measures the real concentration of H2 in the water, embarrassing many companies.[22]H2 gas poses no risk of explosion in air and in pure oxygen when the concentrations of H2 is less than 4.6 %; however, safety could be a concern and the desired concentration of H2 must be monitored and maintained with an approved and commercially available tool.

I'm shocked how far the Orient is ahead of us by using Brown’s gas at walking in clinic, like Taiwan. It’s as easy as getting a cup of coffee. Brown’s gas with enough air is not explosive and your lungs are 'designed' to get gasses into your blood stream, the most efficient delivery system to the body. If the gas is explosive, then it’s a bad idea - but this mixture is non explosive. 1 Litre distilled water produces 1860 litres of Oxygen and H2 gas.

Hydrogen Water H2 is dissolvable in water. H2 will rapidly penetrate glass or plastic walls while aluminium containers are able to retain some H2 gas for a longer period of time. Since inhaled H2 gas acts rapidly, it is unsuitable to be administered continuously. In contrast, H2 water is portable and administered easily.[4]

H2 water can be generated by electrolysis (passing an electrical current through water), which splits H2O into O2 and H2 and dissolves it in the water. Water ionizers derive their benefits from the molecular hydrogen. Beware of alkaline water systems like Kangen. There appears to be a short-term benefit, but in the long run it can lead to a decline in health. This type of water seems to be especially harmful to the heart cells. The problem with alkalized water is that it’s missing the alkaline minerals. Sodium or potassium hydroxide (NaOH or KOH) is used in Kangen water to alkalize the water, and thus it creates a large amount of hydroxyl (OH-) ions.

But there’s a more convenient, cheaper and effective way to make H2 water. Metallic magnesium in water produces a chemical reaction that breaks the bonds in water molecules and yields molecular hydrogen. Ultrastream (Alkaway) has a system that uses no electricity and it has no corrosive electrodes. When the micronized elemental magnesium is dissolved in water, it generates molecular hydrogen.[6]

Another method is to simply drop a tablet in a bottle full of water, or swallow a capsule to release the H2.

More uses for Molecular Hydrogen

  • Chronic physical stress enhances oxidative stress in the brain, and impaired learning and memory.[8] Consumption of H2 water suppressed the increase in oxidative stress, and prevented cognitive impairment. Thus, continuous consumption of H2 water reduced oxidative stress in the brain. It helps stress-induced decline in learning and memory tasks.[4]
  • In Parkinson’s disease, mitochondrial dysfunction and the associated oxidative stress are major causes of dopaminergic cell loss in the substantia nigra.[9] H2 water prevented both the development and progression of nigrostriatal degeneration. H2 water likely retards the development and progression of Parkinson’s disease.[10]
  • Atherosclerosis. Oxidative stress is involved.[11] It proved that the consumption of H2 water has potential to prevent arteriosclerosis more effectively than other antioxidants.[12]
  • Metabolic Syndrome. It’s common due to our body habitus, resulting in oxidative stress.[13] Long-term drinking of H2 water significantly controlled fat breaking it down, despite no change in the consumption of food and water. Moreover, drinking H2 water decreased our levels of plasma glucose, insulin and triglyceride, the effect of which on hyperglycaemia was similar to diet restriction. It fights obesity, diabetes and the feared metabolic syndrome. [14]
  • H2 decreases the oxidative stress during brain injury. [3]
  • Sepsis, a multiple organ dysfunction syndrome, is the leading cause of death in critically ill patients.[15] H2 gas inhalation significantly improved the survival rate and organ damage of septic mice.[16]
  • H2 protects us from the harmful effects of radiation, and it was proved in cultured mice cells.[17] Cosmic radiation is known to induce DNA and lipid damage associated with increased oxidative stress and remains a major concern in space travel. H2 administration to astronauts by either inhalation or drinking H2 water may potentially prevent radiation-induced adverse events.[18]

The Million Dollar Question: Is Alkaline Water Better than Plain Water?

The health benefits of ingesting molecular hydrogen gas (H2) for humans, surprised the scientific world in 2007, when a study appeared in Nature Medicine.[3]Since that famous study, there has been over 600 peer reviewed studies in recent years and they have been published in trustworthy scientific and medical journals. To date, the benefits of ingesting H2 has been found to be beneficial for every human organ, helpful in more than 150 specific human diseases

To date, the alkaline ionized water story has never received any support from either the scientific or the medical fraternity and deride the claims being made by the sellers of alkaline water ionizers. In fact, a properly maintained alkaline water ionizer does produce molecular hydrogen creating the health benefits. It is important to note that the benefits of molecular hydrogen were discovered earlier in the Kangen machines, but only in 2007 can they explain its effectiveness. The wheel keeps turning, and we need to embrace this new science, abandoning the alkaline myth and the micro-clustering of water.

Because alkaline water has a higher pH level than does plain tap water, proponents say that it can:

  • Neutralize acid in your bloodstream;
  • Improve your digestion;
  • Slow down the ageing process,
  • Boost your body’s mineral content, preventing bone loss.

But such claims have not been properly tested in controlled scientific studies.

Trust your body that it can easily maintain a healthy pH balance, unless you have a kidney or respiratory disease. Our bodies are made wonderful and it adaptable. If we have an imbalance, we have ways to correct it. For example, if your blood becomes too acidic, you breathe more and the carbon dioxide will escape. When I worked at the Accident and Emergency department, I accused a stressed and healthy looking woman of hyperventilation. The reason she hyperventilated was that she had a major heart attack and she merely tried to correct her acid-base imbalance. I felt embarrassed when I told her that her cardiac enzymes were raised and she had a myocardial infarct. I hope she forgave me.

Extremes in either being too acidic or too alkaline, can cause problems. Your body wants something closer to neutral, and it has ways of achieve it. I do prefer alkaline food.

Tyler LeBaron is the founder of the Molecular Hydrogen Foundation and is recognized as a respected authority in the study of molecular hydrogen. He tells his audiences that one teaspoon of baking soda mixed in a glass of water will neutralize more acid than 10,000 litres of pH 10 alkaline water. His explanation is that bicarbonates is a buffer and water is not. Our bodies naturally produce bicarbonates to maintain homeostasis in the GI tract and blood. He refutes the idea of micro-clustered water.[23]I believe the easiest and cheapest means to get the much needed H2 into your body, is by using the electric free water filter - Ultrastream.


1. Kajimura M, Fukuda R, Bateman RM, Yamamoto T, Suematsu M. Interactions of multiple gas-transducing systems: hallmarks and uncertainties of CO, NO, and H2S gas biology. Antioxid Redox Signal. 13:157–92. [PMC free article] [PubMed]. 2010.

2. Abraini JH, Gardette-Chauffour MC, Martinez E, Rostain JC, Lemaire C. Psychophysiological reactions in humans during an open sea dive to 500 m with a hydrogen-helium-oxygen mixture. J Appl Physiol. 76:1113–8. [PubMed]. 1994.

Lillo RS, Parker EC, Porter WR. Decompression comparison of helium and hydrogen in rats. J Appl Physiol. 82:892–901. [PubMed]. 1997.

Lillo RS, Parker EC. Mixed-gas model for predicting decompression sickness in rats. J Appl Physiol. 89:2107–16. [PubMed]. 2000.

Fontanari P, Badier M, Guillot C, et al. Changes in maximal performance of inspiratory and skeletal muscles during and after the 7.1-MPa Hydra 10 record human dive. Eur J Appl Physiol. 81:325–8. [PubMed]. 2000.

3. Ohsawa I, Ishikawa M, Takahashi K, et al. Hydrogen acts as a therapeutic antioxidant by selectively reducing cytotoxic oxygen radicals. Nat Med. 13:688–94. [PubMed]. 2007.

4. Nagata K, Nakashima-Kamimura N, Mikami T, Ohsawa I, Ohta S. Consumption of molecular hydrogen prevents the stress-induced impairments in hippocampus-dependent learning tasks during chronic physical restraint in mice. Neuropsychopharmacology. 34:501–8. [PubMed]. 2009.

6.  February 17, 2016.

7. Oharazawa H, Igarashi T, Yokota T, et al. Protection of the retina by rapid diffusion of hydrogen: administration of hydrogen-loaded eye drops in retinal ischemia-reperfusion injury. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 51:487–92. [PubMed]. 2010.

Kubota M, Shimmura S, Kubota S, et al. Hydrogen and N-acetyl-L-cysteine rescue oxidative stress-induced angiogenesis in a mouse corneal alkali-burn model. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 52:427–33. [PubMed]. 2011.

8. Liu J, Wang X, Shigenaga MK, Yeo HC, Mori A, Ames BN. Immobilization stress causes oxidative damage to lipid, protein, and DNA in the brain of rats. FASEB J. 10:1532–8. [PubMed]. 1996.

Abrous DN, Koehl M, Le Moal M. Adult neurogenesis: from precursors to network and physiology. Physiol Rev. 85:523–69. [PubMed]. 2005.

9. Schapira AH. Mitochondria in the aetiology and pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease. Lancet Neurol. 2008;7:97–109. [PubMed]. 2008.

10. Fu Y, Ito M, Fujita Y, et al. Molecular hydrogen is protective against 6-hydroxydopamine-induced nigrostriatal degeneration in a rat model of Parkinson's disease. Neurosci Lett. 2009;453:81–5. [PubMed]. 2009.

11. Victor VM, Apostolova N, Herance R, Hernandez-Mijares A, Rocha M. Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in atherosclerosis: mitochondria-targeted antioxidants as potential therapy. Curr Med Chem. 16:4654–67. [PubMed]. 2009.

Stocker R, Keaney JF., Jr Role of oxidative modifications in atherosclerosis. Physiol. Rev. 84:1381–478. [PubMed]. 2004.

12. Ohsawa I, Nishimaki K, Yamagata K, Ishikawa M, Ohta S. Consumption of hydrogen water prevents atherosclerosis in apolipoprotein E knockout mice. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 377:1195–8. [PubMed]. 2008.

13. Furukawa S, Fujita T, Shimabukuro M, et al. Increased oxidative stress in obesity and its impact on metabolic syndrome. J Clin Invest. 114:1752–61. [PMC free article] [PubMed]. 2004.

14. Kamimura N, Nishimaki K, Ohsawa I, Ohta S. Molecular Hydrogen Improves Obesity and Diabetes by Inducing Hepatic FGF21 and Stimulating Energy Metabolism in db/db Mice. Obesity (Silver Spring) in press. [PubMed]. 2011.

113. Yao X, Panichpisal K, Kurtzman N, Nugent K. Cisplatin nephrotoxicity: a review. Am J Med Sci. 334:115–24. [PubMed]. 2007.

15. Victor VM, Espulgues JV, Hernandez-Mijares A, Rocha M. Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in sepsis: a potential therapy with mitochondria-targeted antioxidants. Infect Disord Drug Targets. 9:376–89. [PubMed]. 2009.

16. Xie KL, Yu YH, Pei YP, et al. Protective effects of hydrogen gas on murine polymicrobial sepsis via reducing oxidative stress and HMGB1 release. Shock. 34:90–7. [PubMed]. 2010.

17. Qian L, Cao F, Cui J, et al. Radioprotective effect of hydrogen in cultured cells and mice. Free Radic Res. 44:275–82. [PubMed]. 2010.

18. Schoenfeld MP, Ansari RR, Zakrajsek JF, et al. Hydrogen therapy may reduce the risks related to radiation-induced oxidative stress in space flight. Med Hypotheses. 76:117–8. [PubMed]. 2011.

19. Shigeo Ohta. Molecular hydrogen as a preventive and therapeutic medical gas: initiation, development and potential of hydrogen medicine.






  1. Anna Mae Chang said..

    Dear Dr Beute,

    This is a Very Good Article.

    Do you have a Clinic where we can experience this Therapy ?

    Thank You.


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About Dr Jan Beute

Dr Jan Beute MB ChB (Stell.) FRCAM. (Dublin) is a scientist and medical doctor currently researching and promoting Molecular Hydrogen. He may be contacted via

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