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Soda Water, Mineral Water - What's the Difference?

Updated on April 10, 2011

H2O. The substance that sustains all life on earth. These days, there is a lot more to water than there was 100 years ago.

Today we have carbonated water, seltzer water, sparkling mineral water, still mineral water and many other bottled waters. So what's the difference between them all? Many are self explanatory, flavored still water is just that, flavored still water. Others are not so easily explained.

Let's start with the simple ones

Distilled Water

Deemed to be the purest water on the planet, distilled water is made through the distillation process of steaming and then condensation to result in water that has no impurities. Because it is so pure and has no minerals whatsoever it is often used as a base for man made mineral waters. It is also safe for use with baby formulas.

Seltzer Water

Seltzer water is just carbonated water, water that has undergone carbonation, and has been, essentially, turned into fizzy water.

Soda Water

Soda Water has added sodium salts and has been found to relieve bloating and upset stomachs. Sodium salts were added as flavoring, in an attempt to make it taste more like natural mineral waters. Sodium bicarbonates are also added, to reduce the acidity.

Sparkling Mineral Water

Sparkling mineral water contains minerals that occur naturally in springs all over the world. Mineral waters bottled at the source contain minerals ranging from magnesium to potassium and many more. If your diet is lacking in minerals then mineral water can be beneficial to your health. Many mineral waters are man made, to contain minerals for health benefits. The minerals included in these waters are as varied as the sources they are bottled from. You can also purchase still mineral waters.

Bottled Still Water

Bottled still water is just filtered water. Containing less chemicals than what is in every day tap water, but also many bottled waters do not contain flouride which is added to tap water to prevent tooth decay. Water is filtered by way of chemical process or by passing it through physical 'seives' such as charcoal if you like, to remove impurities.

Tonic Water

Tonic water is carbonated water that has quinine added to it and a little sugar to sweeten the bitter taste. It is used more as a mixer for alcoholic drinks than anything else. The amount of quinine in tonic water is not enough to cause any harm, and it is often used as a home remedy for cramps. Quinine was banned because of health risks but the amount in tonic water is tiny compared to medical doses.


Tap Water

Tap water is regulated by local health authorities and is usually chlorinated to kill any parasites that may be living in the water.

So which one is best?

Soda and carbonated waters are a healthy alternative to carbonated soft drinks. They can be handy when used to water down juices for children as they give the illusion of soft drink but contain less sugar, meaning no dreaded sugar rush.

All of these waters do the same job when it comes to their hydration properties and it's really down to personal preference as there is no one brand or type that is better than any other, they all have different added benefits but at the end of the day they all do the same job.

© 2010 courtneyk all rights reserved


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