The difference between carbonated water and sparkling waterIt is a common misconception that carbonated water and sparkling water are the same things. I mean, the look and taste the same! In fact, they are quite different from each other.
Carbonated water (also known as club soda or soda water) gets its carbonation artificially from the process of adding carbon dioxide gases to produce carbonic acid. In addition to bubbles in the drink, you will also find salts such as sodium bicarbonate, sodium citrate, potassium salts, plain table salt or a mixture of these elements. These salts are added to give it a better and lighter taste. Carbonated water also helps in neutralizing acidity.
Sparkling water, also known as seltzer, soda, or tonic water, is infused with carbon dioxide to create tons of bubbles and fizz naturally that is- as much carbonation as the water contained when it was sourced from the natural springs. While manufacturing the water, the minerals which are already present are preserved. The sparkling water you buy at the store generally has no added components.
Benefits of drinking sparkling waterStatistics show that carbonated water sales exceeded $6 billion in 2016, a sharp increase from the $2.6 billion sold in 2011.
Sparkling water is water that manufacturers infuse with carbon dioxide gas. Drinking sparkling water provides the same feeling as drinking a soda without the added calories, sugar and health problems (yay us!).
A common misconception is that consumption of carbonated or sparkling water breaks down tooth enamel, but this is not true. It’s the sugar in drinks such as Cokes and Pepsis that causes your tooth enamel to break down and not the carbon. Reports have proven that soft drinks are 100 times more damaging to your tooth enamel than carbonated water. Good thing we have sparkling water now huh!
Several studies conducted over the years have found that sparkling water stimulated the nerves required for eating more so than any other beverage. Another study found that sparkling water is also beneficial because it can improve digestion by increasing your ability to swallow and digest food. For instance, one study of participants who felt the need to clear their throats found the most significant relief when drinking carbonated water.
Sparkling water could have a resonating impact on bowel movements, especially in those who are constipated or have gut related problems.
Perhaps the most sought out health benefit of drinking carbonated water is the fact that it could help you lose weight. Now, don’t go expecting major changes but it's a guarantee you will see a difference in your appetite. That’s because the beverage can make you feel more refreshed than you would if were drinking standard water. Additionally, research shows carbonate water forces food to remain in your stomach for a longer period, thereby helping you feel fuller resulting in you losing your appetite for your next meal.
The fuller you feel, the less you’ll feel the need to eat. Thus, carbonated waters serve as “empty calories” that will reduce your desire to eat. By eating less, you’ll lose weight more quickly. We have all been in diets and we have all cheated on the 3rd day. Sparkling water could have been a real lifesaver huh?
No Phosphorus content
One of the primary ingredients in soda is phosphorus which is one of the components directly responsible for decreased bone health. For a while, however, researchers wondered if it was the carbonation in the drinks that led to a decreased bone density which has now been proven false.
In fact, there is some reason to believe that carbonated water could improve bone health. Didn’t see that one coming did ya? One study found that drinking sparkling water led to better water retention than drinking water with minerals. Another study involving animals concluded that carbonated water increased bone strength more so than tap water.
All these studies are life savers, I tell you!
Potentially Improve Heart Health
One of the other potential benefits of drinking carbonated water is that it could improve heart health. There is not proof to support this, although the initial research appears promising. For instance, one study measured the impact that carbonated water had on cholesterol levels. The research concluded that carbonated drinking water led to an increase in “good” HDL cholesterol. It also found that the water decreased:
- “Bad” LDL cholesterol
- Blood sugar levels
- Inflammatory markers
Stay More Hydrated Throughout The Day
This may seem fairly obvious to the readers, water and hydration- well duh! but it’s worth mentioning. Drinking sparkling water can help you stay more hydrated throughout the day as it tastes more appealing and is easier to drink than regular tap or spring water. So, by drinking carbonated water, there’s a stronger chance that you remain hydrated throughout the day which is definitely what we need during these crazy times.
Considering that the human body is 60 percent water, it’s critical that you stay hydrated throughout the day.
A well hydrated body can allow you to perform your best both physically and mentally. Being well-hydrated could reduce oxidative stress that occurs when working out extensively. Even the slightest bit of dehydration could impact your concentration and mood. Remember those lazy days where you felt like curling up in your bed and taking a long nice nap? Dehydration also makes you more prone to headaches.
How are mineral water and sparkling water different?
Mineral water and sparkling water are both healthy alternatives to sugary sodas. The former can provide us with minerals that the body can't create on its own, hence the name. While the latter turns hydration into a sparkly affair. If you want to choose a healthier lifestyle or live until 60, you can quit drinking sugary sodas and choose sparkling water instead.
Downsides of drinking Sparkling water
Be aware of the fact that sipping on too much sparkling water isn’t probably great for your teeth. A better option would be to drink your sparkling water along with a meal when you would likely order a soda or to chase it with plain water. And if you already have issues with weak enamel, it’s smart to ask your dentist whether you should steer clear of this sparkling fun entirely.Over usage of carbonated water or sparkling water has some other repercussions as well. Obesity, heart problems etc. to name a few. But rest assured, it is far better than sugary drinks you normally consume. Therefore, if you are an occasional soda drinker, you can easily switch to sparkling water and make the healthy choice but make sure you don’t swap normal water with sparkling water.
Healthy balance, right?