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Water has many abnormal properties that are not characteristic of other liquids. Many laboratories around the world are actively engaged in researching such properties. Although water can safely be called the liquid which has been studied the most, much of its behaviour remains unclear (1). Can the properties of water and its solutions change under the influence of external physical forces? If so, how long can these changes last? Does such water have anomalous biological effects? What mechanisms could underlie such effects? Studies into these issues are few, and their findings are quite unusual.

Soybean plants

Soybean plants grown using different water: (1) pure filtered (RO); (2) boiled (Boil); (3) tap (Tap); (4) irradiated by low-frequency electromagnetic radiation (Mret); (5) microwave irradiated (Wave). Plants that had been watered with irradiated water (4,5) had much longer roots. Source: Yamabhai et al., 2014.

Some researchers believe that mechanical actions (such as shaking) significantly affect water and aqueous solutions. It is no wonder that this procedure has been used for over 200 years in the preparation of homeopathic medicines (2). The effect of shaking on the properties of various drugs and their biological effect has been shown in multiple experiments. For instance, scientists from the University of Bologna in Italy believe that mechanical actions alter the efficacy of drugs in ultra-high dilution (UHD). It was shown that a large number of shakes (over 32) in the production of a UHD of arsenic oxide significantly increase the germination efficiency of wheat seeds treated with it. Scientists also investigated the complexity of the polycrystalline structures that remained after drying water drops from treated seeds. According to their findings, the complexity of such structures varied depending on the type of processing. What is more, the degree of complexity of the observed polycrystalline structures was highest if the seeds had been treated with preparations produced with a large number of shakes (3). Based on the data, the Italian researchers concluded that shaking during the production of UHD preparations affects their properties. However, researchers from India came to the opposite conclusion (4). In experiments on toads, the homeopathic medicine Nux vomica (an alcohol extract of chilibuha seeds) was equally effective, regardless of whether it was shaken or not during preparation. Nevertheless, using various methods of analysis (electron and infrared spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance), it was shown that preparations produced with and without shaking are different (4).

Interestingly, some simple organisms can sense whether water has been mechanically manipulated or not. Dinophytic algae react to an environment (sea water with the addition of salts) which has been shaken by enhancing their own bioluminescence – they glow like fireflies. This effect was recorded just 10 minutes after being shaken (5).

Scientists from Germany and Switzerland have proposed a simple and inexpensive method by which it is possible to distinguish between solutions with different structures (6). Five samples of herbal pharmacological preparations of various concentrations were studied, the solutions of which were either subjected to shaking during preparation 10 times, 100 times, or not at all. The method involved drying a drop of the drug and subsequently analysing the resulting picture in detail using computer algorithms developed by the scientists. The dried drops differed depending on whether they had been subjected to mechanical action or not. In some cases, the scientists even saw a difference with shaking intensity (10 or 100 times). The researchers suggest that such physical action can cause a change in the structure of the solutions due to the formation of molecular aggregates – nanoparticles and nanobubbles (6).

There is no consensus on the mechanism of the effect that shaking has on the properties of solutions. However, it is assumed that such action promotes the formation of certain nanostructures in a solution (7-11), as well as the exchange of matter between the vessel and its contents (for example, silica is released from the glass) (7, 12-13).

Among other physical actions that affect the properties of water and aqueous solutions, we can distinguish electromagnetic radiation (EMR). Russian scientists from Lomonosov Moscow State University showed that water is a complex system capable of self-organisation and sensitive to even small external influences. They found that water has weak luminescence, the intensity of which can be affected by weak electromagnetic fields (14). The scientists believe that a change in the structure of complexes formed by water molecules can serve as a kind of sensor for subtle effects, including low-intensity electromagnetic fields (15).

According to some studies, water irradiated with electromagnetic radiation also has some biological effects. Namely, water irradiated with magnetic or electromagnetic radiation, depending on the degree of exposure, can stimulate or inhibit the reproduction of yeast (16). Scientists from Thailand compared the effects of both untreated water and water irradiated with microwave or low-frequency electromagnetic radiation on human blood cells and soybeans (17). The results showed that blood cells cultured in a medium prepared using water treated with low-frequency EMR displayed significantly lower oxidative activity, which can, in turn, be beneficial in reducing reactive oxygen species which can harm cells in the body. As for soybeans, there was also an effect – the roots of plants were much longer after watering with either type of EM-irradiated water. According to the researchers, these results suggest that water irradiated with electromagnetic radiation can have different biological effects on plant cells and animal cells (17). However, the mechanism of this phenomenon, just as in the case of mechanical action, is not clear. There is some evidence that magnetic fields and electromagnetic radiation affect water molecules, changing its viscosity, surface tension, refractive light indices, electrical conductivity, and light absorption (1, 17). It has been suggested that EMR can have a long-term effect on the properties of water, which can affect biological systems such as the activity of ion channels in cells (18).

Can physical action alter the structure of water and aqueous solutions? To date, there is a large body of experimental work which shows that water subjected to physical action can have a pronounced effect on biological systems. However, the mechanisms for implementing this phenomenon are still not fully understood. Perhaps new advances in quantum physics will help solve this riddle.


1.    Lobyshev VI. (2005). Water is a Sensor to Weak Forces Including Electromagnetic Fields of Low Intensity. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, 24(3): 449-461.

2.    D’Huyvetter, K., Cohrssen, A. (2002). Homeopathy. Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice, 29(2), 407–418.

3.    Betti, L., Trebbi, G., Kokornaczyk, M. O., Nani, D., Peruzzi, M., Dinelli, G., Bellavite, P., Brizzi, M. (2017). Number of succussion strokes affects effectiveness of ultra-high-diluted arsenic on in vitro wheat germination and polycrystalline structures obtained by droplet evaporation method. Homeopathy: the journal of the Faculty of Homeopathy. 106(1), 47-54.

4.    Sukul, N. C., De, A., Dutta, R., Sukul, A., Sinhababu, S. P. (2001). Nux vomica 30 prepared with and without succession shows antialcoholic effect on toads and distinctive molecular association. The British homoeopathic journal. 90(2), 79–85.

5.    Tschulakow, A. V., Yan, Y., Klimek, W. (2005). A new approach to the memory of water. Homeopathy: the journal of the Faculty of Homeopathy. 94(4), 241–247.

6.    Kokornaczyk, M.O., Würtenberger, S., Baumgartner, S. (2020). Impact of succussion on pharmaceutical preparations analyzed by means of patterns from evaporated droplets. Sci Rep. 10, 570.

7.    Dei, A. (2020). Experimental Evidence Supports New Perspectives in Homeopathy. Homeopathy. Online ahead of print.

8.    Elia, V., Ausanio, G., Gentile, F., Germano, R., Napoli, E., Niccoli, M. (2014). Experimental evidence of stable water nanostructures in extremely dilute solutions, at standard pressure and temperature. Homeopathy, 103(1), 44–50.

9.    Lo, S. Y., Geng, X., Gann, D. (2009). Evidence for the existence of stable-water-clusters at room temperature and normal pressure. Physics Letters A, 373(42), 3872–3876.

10.    Konovalov AI, Ryzhkina IS. (2014). Highly diluted aqueous solutions: formation of nano-sized molecular assemblies (nanoassociates). Geochem Int. 52: 1207-1226.

11.    Demangeat JL. (2015). Gas nanobubbles and aqueous nanostructures: the crucial role of dynamization. Homeopathy. 104: 101–115.

12.    Basu A, Temgire MK, Suresh AK, Bellare JR. (2019). Dilution-induced physico-chemical changes of metal oxide nanoparticles due to homeopathic preparation steps of trituration and succussion. Homeopathy. Online ahead of print.

13.    Witt CM, Lüdtke R, Weisshuhn TE, Quint P, Willich SN. (2006). The role of trace elements in homeopathic preparations and the influence of container material, storage duration, and potentisation. Forschende Komplementarmedizin. 13(1): 15-21.

14.    Lobyshev, V.I., Shikhlinskaya, R.E., Ryzhikov, B.D. (1999). Experimental evidence for intrinsic luminescence of water. J. Mol. Liquids, 82: 73-81.

15.    Lobyshev VI. (2005). Water is a Sensor to Weak Forces Including Electromagnetic Fields of Low Intensity. Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine. 24(3): 449-461.

16.    Goldsworthy A, Whitney H, Morris E. (1999). Biological effects of physically conditioned water. Water Research. 33: 1618e1626.

17.    Yamabhai, M., Chumseng, S., Yoohat, K., Srila, W. (2014). Diverse biological effects of electromagnetic-treated water. Homeopathy: the journal of the Faculty of Homeopathy. 103(3), 186–192.

18.    Fesenko EE, Geletyuk VI, Kazachenko VN, Chemeris NK. (1995). Preliminary microwave irradiation of water solutions changes their channel-modifying activity. FEBS Lett. 366: 49e52.