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Hydrogen Therapy

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Molecular hydrogen (H2) is a tasteless, odorless, flammable gas. The use of hydrogen in therapy is gaining significant attention around the world; one of the earliest publications on hydrogen as a medical gas was in 1975 when researchers reported that hydrogen therapy was effective at reducing melanoma tumors in mice. However, the interest in hydrogen therapy only recently began after 2007, when Japanese researchers demonstrated that inhaling hydrogen gas or ingesting hydrogen-rich water could also exert therapeutic effects. 

This biomedical research on hydrogen is still in its early days but research suggests that hydrogen has therapeutic potential in over 170 different human and animal disease models, and in essentially every organ of the human body. Hydrogen appears to provide these benefits via improving the antioxidant capacity of the body, improving detox pathways, improving energy production, improving metabolic health and possibly altering gene expressions. 

Because of its very small size, hydrogen can be administered via inhalation, ingestion of dissolved hydrogen-rich water, intravenous injection of hydrogen-rich saline, topical administration of hydrogen-rich media (e.g. bath).  

Hydrogen is naturally produced by intestinal flora upon digestion of fibers, perhaps hydrogen accounts for some of the beneficial actions of certain bowel bacteria. Hydrogen is very natural to our bodies, as we are exposed to it on a daily basis as a result of normal bacterial metabolism. Additionally, hydrogen gas has also been used in deep sea diving since the 1940s to prevent decompression sickness. Hundreds of human studies for deep sea diving have shown inhalation of hydrogen gas, at orders of magnitude greater than what is needed for therapeutic use, is well-tolerated by the body with no chronic toxic effects. In some people, however, it is reported that hydrogen may result in loose stools, and in rare cases with diabetics, hypoglycemia, which is controlled by reducing the level of insulin administered.


The hundreds of studies on hydrogen from bacterial production, deep sea diving, and recent medical applications have not revealed any direct noxious side effects of hydrogen administration therapeutic levels.

Hydrogen shares many of ozone therapy beneficial effects with the advantage of being easily administered by inhalation. There are few areas where ozone therapy is superior, eg the antibacterial effect especially of ozone topical preparations.  At Leicester Ozone Clinics we have recently introduced hydrogen inhalation as an option for those who are not keen on intravenous ozone therapy.

If you are interested in learning more about hydrogen therapy please watch this interview from the Japanese Academic, Professor Ohta, who sparked interest in hydrogen therapy following his publication in 2007 in the prestigious journal "Nature" about the therapeutic effects of hydrogen gas.