The Science of Hydrogen and Health

Heart and Circulatory

Consumption of hydrogen water prevents atherosclerosis in apolipoprotein E knockout mice
Atherosclerosis is commonly called "hardening of the arteries."  Scientists have genetically modified mice, causing them to develop atherosclerosis so that it can be studied.  These are called "apoliprotein E knockout mice".  They found that giving these mice free access to hydrogen-rich water while they are 2 to 6 months old significantly reduced atherosclerosis.  They concluded that, "consumption of H2-dissolved water has the potential to prevent atherosclerosis." 
Download this article from Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communication  (Ohsawa et al 2008)

Oral intake of hydrogen-rich water inhibits intimal hyperplasia in arterialized vein grafts in rats
An "arterialized vein graft" is a section of blood vessel (vein) that a surgeon attaches (grafts) to an artery during coronary artery bypass surgery (sometimes called "heart bypass" or CABG.)   "Intimal hyperplasia" is thickening of the lining of the grafted blood vessel that can occur after surgery.  It is a serious concern for patients after bypass surgery since there is no truly effective treatment for it. 

In this study, scientists performed by surgery on rats, then gave them either regular water or hydrogen enriched water to drink for the next 6 weeks.  The grafts in rats drinking regular water developed intimal hyperplasia as expected.  But, intimal hyperplasia was significantly suppressed in the rats that drank hydrogen rich water.  The scientists also reported that no adverse side-effects were seen during the follow-up period as a result of drinking hydrogen rich water. 

Download this article from Cardiovascular Research  (Sun et al 2012)

Hydrogen-supplemented drinking water protects cardiac allografts from inflammation-associated deterioration 
For patients who receive heart transplants (or "cardiac allografts") inflammation related to oxidative stress is one factor that can cause transplant rejection.  For this reason, scientists performed heart transplant surgery on rats, then fed them either regular water or hydrogen rich water.  They found that drinking hydrogen rich water prolonged the lives of rats after heart transplant.  Specifically, drinking hydrogen rich water reduced oxidative injury, inflammation, and intimal hyperplasia (thickening of the lining of grafted blood vessels that can occur after surgery.)
Download this article from Transplant International  (Noda et al 2012)

The Potential Cardioprotective Effects of Hydrogen in Irradiated Mice
Most ionizing radiation-induced damage is caused by hydroxyl radicals, and the selective reduction of hydroxyl by hydrogen in vitro has been demonstrated previously. Irradiation of the heart can cause chronic cardiac disease. This study was designed to test the hypothesis that hydrogen-rich water (pure water saturated with molecular hydrogen), which is easy to use, induces cardioprotection against ionizing irradiation injury in mice. In this paper, we demonstrate that hydrogen can protect myocardium degeneration from radiation-induced injury, decrease myocardium malondialdehyde (MDA), 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) levels, and increase myocardium endogenous antioxidants in vivo. We suggest that hydrogen has a cardioprotective effect against radiation induced injury.
Download this article from Journal of Radiation Research  (Qian et al 2010)

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