Baking soda is a familiar household product that goes by many names — sodium bicarbonate, bicarbonate of soda and sodium hydrogen carbonate. Baking soda is a great tool for cleaning and removing stains, but also, there are many health benefits associated with the use of baking soda. Sodium bicarbonate is sometimes used as a supplement because it provides dietary bicarbonate. When taken orally, baking soda can raise serum levels of bicarbonate. What is bicarbonate? Bicarbonate is typically made by the kidneys, and it acts as an acid buffer in the body.