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Sparkling water: Healthy alternative or millennial fad?

Carbonated water

It describes water with carbon dioxide dissolved into it. 

CO₂ can be introduced through natural processes, or by artificially injecting the gas into water while it is under pressure. Its addition gives these beverages their satisfying hiss-pop and effervescence.

Can also be found under the name "sparkling water".

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Sparkling water: Healthy alternative or millennial fad?

Sparkling water: Healthy alternative or millennial fad?

https://bigthink.com/surprising-science/sparkling-water-healthy-alternative

bigthink.com

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Key Ideas

170 million gallons

...is the amount of sparkling water Americans drink each year.

Sparkling waters are the latest in health chic, providing all the fizzy refreshment of a soft drink with none of those wicked calories. As with any health food trend, questions of its validly abound.

Classifying sparkling waters

  • Seltzer water: water with carbonation. May include natural flavors. No sugar or sodium.
  • Club soda adds sodium bicarbonate or potassium sulfate to carbonated water to elicit a minerally taste. No sugar.
  • Tonic water includes sugar, citric acid, preservatives, and quinine for flavoring. 
  • Mineral water: comes from an underground source with a minimum of 250 parts per million of total dissolved solids. These dissolved elements must come from the source and cannot be added later. Carbonation may be induced to make sparkling mineral water.

Carbonated water vs. regular water

Plain carbonated water is just as hydrating as regular water.

Mineral waters with calcium and bicarbonate have been shown to improve hydration during exercise.

Sparkling water health effects

Some claim sparkling water has injurious effects, such as reducing bone mineral density, but research shows such claims are overstated or outright myths.

There is one criticism of sparkling water that holds true: It has the potential to damage your teeth.

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Alkaline water
Alkaline water

Alkaline water - water that has been treated to have a higher pH level than the 6.5-7.5 pH range - is experiencing a surge in popularity.

There are a variety of alkaline water brands on t...

Marketing claims

Marketing claims behind alkaline water are based on the acid-ash hypothesis. The idea is that eating certain foods, like meat, dairy, and eggs, results in acid ash in your body, which increases your acid levels and causes health problems.

While there are some poorly designed studies that suggest alkaline water confers health benefits, there is no rigorous scientific evidence to support this belief.

The science behind blood pH

You can't change the pH of your body by drinking alkaline water. Your body regulates its blood pH in a very narrow margin. If your pH varied too much, you wouldn't survive. 

However, your diet does affect the pH of your urine. Most people's urine is about 6, which is acidic and not a problem. Alkaline may make your urine less acidic, but it doesn't make a difference to your health.

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The Paleo Diet
The Paleo Diet

The basic concept of the paleo diet is to eat whole foods and avoid processed foods.

Studies suggest that this diet can lead to significant weight loss and major improveme...

A general guideline

There is no one "right" way to eat for everyone.

Some eat a low-carb diet high in animal foods, while others follow a high-carb diet with lots of plants.

Avoid these foods and ingredients:

  • Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.
  • All Grains.
  • Legumes like beans and lentils.
  • Most Dairy, especially low-fat dairy.
  • Some vegetable oils like soybean, sunflower, cottonseed, corn, grapeseed, safflower and other oils.
  • Trans fats: "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated" oils found in margarine and various processed foods.
  • Artificial sweeteners: Aspartame, sucralose, cyclamates, saccharin, acesulfame potassium. 
  • Highly processed foods: Everything labeled "diet" or "low-fat" or that has many additives.

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Nutrients in cow's milk
Cow’s milk is a good source of:
  • Protein 
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin B12 
  • Iodine
  • Magnesium, which is essential for bone development and muscle function.
Calcium intake
  • If children between one and three consume half a pint of milk, they will consume enough calcium for healthy bone development. 
  • Calcium is crucial during our adolescence for the development of bone strength. If you don't get enough calcium in your teenage years, you run a higher risk of bone weakness.
  • For adults, research is conflicting on whether cow's milk helps to keep bones healthy.
Hormones in cow's milk

The estrogen levels of cows increase 20-fold when they are pregnant. Although one study linked estrogen levels to breast, ovarian and uterine cancers, ingesting hormones through cow's milk is no cause for concern.

Researchers found estrogen levels only affect the reproductive systems in mice when supplemented with 100 times the levels found in cow's milk.

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