Bicarbonate: what it is, what it is for and what are its benefits

The bicarbonate is an inexpensive substance and present in the house for many people.

It contains many properties that make it useful in countless ways in our daily lives. Its uses can be from gastronomy to cleaning the house.

The most widely used bicarbonate is sodium, but there are also other types such as calcium, ammonia and potassium.

Do you know what bicarbonate is for and what its benefits are? Find out below a little more about this substance so common among most of us.

What is bicarbonate?

The bicarbonate is an alkaline substance (high pH) suitable for neutralizing acid substances. It is most commonly marketed in powder.

Although this is a chemical explanation, it makes perfect sense when we think that it is widely used as an antacid, relieving heartburn or poor digestion.

The product neutralizes the chemical balance in the digestive system, due to its alkaline properties.

In chemistry, it is classified as a salt, as it is highly soluble in water.

Calcium bicarbonate

The calcium bicarbonate , also called calcium hydrogencarbonate is not a solid compound.

It exists only in an aqueous solution that contains dissolved calcium, bicarbonate, carbonate and carbon dioxide ions.

As an active substance in the compound, we find calcium carbonate, which is indicated as a treatment for symptoms related to stomach acidity.

The calcium carbonate is also indicated in some specific cases such as:

  • Supplementation of calcium for pregnant women during breastfeeding and in children and adolescents who are in a phase of rapid growth;
  • Calcium replacement in diets, to combat cases of malnutrition or malnutrition;
  • Prevention and treatment of osteoporosis;
  • Supplementation in the treatment with vitamin D in rickets (weakening of the bones in children) and osteomalacia (softening of the bones in adults and the elderly).

Sodium bicarbonate

The bicarbonate of sodium is an active substance which, according to the Ministry of Health, has effect directly in the human body, whether in the cure, mitigation or prevention of disease.

It is indicated for the treatment of metabolic acidosis (excess acidity in the blood due to the low concentration of carbonates) and its manifestations, such as kidney disorders and circulatory failure.

Because it is an alkaline substance that neutralizes acidity, according to ANVISA, bicarbonate can be effective for the dissolution of uric acid kidney stones.

What is it for and how to use it

Sodium bicarbonate is very versatile and can be used in different ways in everyday life. Here are some of its uses:

Hair

Who has oily hair will love this tip!

Baking soda is excellent for removing oil from the scalp and also for deep cleaning.

To remove oiliness:

  • Mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda in a glass with water (240mL);
  • After washing the hair with shampoo, pour the prepared solution on the scalp and rub it gently;
  • Rinse hair and condition at the end of the wash.

You will feel the scalp extremely clean and the oiliness usually takes longer to appear.

Another option is to mix a tablespoon (15mL) of bicarbonate with the shampoo and rub the scalp.

In this way, it acts as an anti-residue shampoo and can be used once a month, so as not to dry out the hair.

Bicarbonate can also be used as a dry shampoo. To do this, just sprinkle a small amount on the root of dry hair and rub.

In addition to disguising oiliness, it also eliminates possible odors.

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In the skin

Baking soda can be used as an exfoliant for the face and body. The walkthrough is very simple:

  • Add 3 tablespoons (12g) of baking soda in a container;
  • Mix with 1 tablespoon (15mL) of water;
  • Stir well until it forms a kind of paste;
  • Wash the area to be exfoliated with the soap of your choice;
  • With clean and moist skin, apply the paste made with bicarbonate and make light circular movements to exfoliate the skin;
  • Then rinse well;
  • Finally, moisturize your face with your preferred moisturizer to soothe skin that may be slightly irritated by exfoliation.

The quantities can vary more or less, according to how much of the mixture will be needed for the area to be applied.

This procedure can be repeated 1 to 2 times a week. It eliminates dead cells and renews the skin.

With lemon

The sodium bicarbonate acts as a buffer and minimizes the effects of acid in the body. Lemon , on the other hand , is good for health because it alkalizes the blood, stimulates the metabolism and strengthens the immune system.

Therefore, together, bicarbonate and lemon diluted in a glass of water and ingested daily, can be good allies for:

  • Relieve stomach problems such as heartburn and poor digestion, as they work as a powerful antacid;
  • Acting as a liver scrubber, helping to eliminate impurities, in addition to offering essential minerals, such as vitamin C and potassium;
  • Help control cholesterol, as the pair helps to regulate the levels of bad cholesterol (LDL);
  • Prevent kidney stones thanks to the alkalizing effect, as they help to fight excess acid in the body;
  • Fight infections, thanks to their antioxidant properties and the effect they have on the immune system. Lemon with bicarbonate helps prevent infectious diseases, especially in the urinary tract.

What are the benefits of baking soda?

Because it is a very versatile substance, sodium bicarbonate has several benefits, such as:

  • Acts as an antifungal and acid neutralizer. It alkalizes the body and increases the pH, thus allowing oxygenation, which inhibits the growth of fungi and yeasts;
  • It is effective in beauty treatments on the skin, teeth and hair;
  • Eliminate fungus and nail stains. It is recommended to soak your hands or feet in a mixture of warm water and baking soda for 5 minutes. Its properties help to deeply clean the cuticle and cure nails affected by fungi (nail ringworm);
  • Reduce oral acidity in people who suffer from reflux or stomatitis. The mouthwash with sodium bicarbonate reduces the acidity that remains in the mouth with the return of gastric juice and protects the teeth and the oral flora.

Bicarbonate lose weight?

There are no studies that prove that the consumption of bicarbonate can help you lose weight. However, it can help to complement healthy eating habits and physical activities.

Due to its alkalinity, it balances the pH levels of the blood and helps to combat body acidity, improving the functioning of the body.

In very acidic organisms, there is a greater tendency to accumulate fat.

Bicarbonate also helps with digestion, as it controls the excessive production of acidic juices and improves intestinal transit.

Therefore, even if it is not proven that it acts in weight loss, if combined with good habits, it can contribute to weight reduction indirectly.

Where to buy and prices

Baking soda can be found in pharmacies, markets and health food stores.

It is sold in powder and can be purchased in bulk or in ready-made packaging.

Here are some options:

  • Sodium Bicarbonate (80g or 100g) – Farmax : prices vary between R $ 3.50 and R $ 5.99 *;
  • Sodium Bicarbonate (50g or 100g) – ADV : prices vary between R $ 4.50 and R $ 7.84 *;
  • Needs Baking Soda (100g) : prices are around R $ 2.55 *;
  • Sodium Bicarbonate (100g) – Catarinense Pharma : prices are around R $ 12.10 *;

* Prices consulted at Consulta Remédios in September 2019. Prices may change.


Sodium bicarbonate is good for health and has several uses in everyday life. However, it is important to remember that it is a salt, so it should not be consumed in large quantities by people with high blood pressure or who have kidney problems.

In other uses such as cleaning, hygiene and beauty, it can be used at will.

Did you already know all the benefits of baking? Tell us if you have any other recipes with him.

Keep following the Healthy Minute to learn more about health and beauty.

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