Water is essential to human life and hydration keeps our bodies functioning like it is supposed to. The body is made up of over 70% water so finding ways to source clean water is vital.
Eight glasses of water per day is the recommended daily intake for the average person. If you exercise to the point of sweating, more water is required to maintain optimal hydration.
Bottled water entered the scene as a way to hydrate on the go. Taking enough water for a whole day with you on a road trip seemed inconvenient and popping into a store for a bottle of water was a much simpler option.
Now, there are hundreds of bottled water brands on the market. They all seem to offer the same thing - water. Packaging, added minerals, and unique sources make up the major differences between standard bottles and “fancy” options.
Which one is best for you? After all, most of us drink water because of its inherent health benefits rather than for the enjoyment of tasteless drinks. Truth be told, there are not many differences from a health perspective.
There are a couple of considerations to take when considering what bottle of water is best to purchase.
The pH Content Might Matter
The pH scale measures the acidity level of things. Something with a pH below 7 is considered acidic while anything above 7 is called alkaline.
Generally, it is difficult to taste the acidity in plain, bottled water. However, it may have some health impacts that you might not have thought of.
Beverages with an acidity of 5.5 or lower on the pH scale are acidic enough to break down the enamel that surrounds and protects your teeth. Acidity in bottled water is impacted by the source and purification process manufacturers use.
The two least acidic bottles of water that are available in most stores are Fiji and Deer Park Natural Spring Water.
Another element found in many bottled water brands is added fluoride. Fluoride has shown to help prevent cavities when provided in small amounts. Too much fluoride can have a negative impact on the strength of teeth.
Once again, Fiji and Deer Park Natural Spring Water come out as two of the best brands for appropriate amounts of fluoride. Evian is also a notably non-acidic, low fluoride level water but can be cost prohibitive for some consumers.
The Bottle Itself
There was a time where plastic bottles were made from materials that leached toxins into the beverage inside. Those days are primarily over but some bottles are certainly less likely to break down than others.
It is important to identify bottles made from the safer PET plastic that is considered generally food-safe. If you are looking for the best packaging for your health and the environment (also important to your health) consider JUST Water.
JUST Water is new to the bottled water game but is gaining notoriety amongst celebrities for its more environmentally friendly packaging. The bottle is actually a carton akin to the ones soups come in.
The carton is 100% recyclable and almost entirely plastic-free. The plastic used is plant-based, meaning fossil fuels are not required in the production of the plastic.
It can be hard to separate bottled waters from a health perspective. The “healthiest” have a higher pH and limited added fluoride. Consider purchasing a product in “healthier” for everyone packaging.
Many point to waters fortified with minerals or that feature added electrolytes when asked which is the healthiest option on the shelf. In reality, those minerals and electrolytes are outweighed by the damage acidic water can do to your teeth.