Although carbonated water has existed for decades, it has become more popular over the past couple of years. Statistics show that carbonated water sales exceeded $6 billion in 2016, a sharp increase from the $2.6 billion sold in 2011.
Carbonated water is water that manufacturers infused with carbon dioxide gas. Drinking sparkling water provides the same sensation as drinking a soda without the added calories and sugar. Most manufacturers flavor carbonated water using natural flavors. You may see carbonated water sold commonly under names such as:
- Sparkling water
- Soda water
- Club soda
- Fizzy water
- Seltzer water
Although sparkling water has grown in popularity, many people wonder whether there are health benefits to drinking the beverage. Fortunately, we’re here to provide you with a full breakdown of the benefits of drinking carbonated water.
Better For You Than Soda
Carbonated water can be better for you than drinking soda for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, sparkling water does not contain calories or sugar. If you enjoy having a bit of “fizz” in your drink, carbonated water allows you to do so without the added calories.
Furthermore, carbonated water is better than sugar because of how it affects your tooth enamel. A common misconception is that carbonation breaks down tooth enamel, but this is not the case. It’s the sugar in drinks that causes your tooth enamel to break down. Studies have found that soft drinks are 100 times more damaging to your tooth enamel than carbonated water.
Sparkling water is also beneficial because it can improve digestion. It does so by improving your ability to swallow. For instance, one study found that carbonated water stimulated the nerves required for eating more so than any other beverage. Another study found that a majority of participants who felt the need to clear their throats found the most significant relief when drinking carbonated water.
Furthermore, carbonated water could have a positive impact on bowel movements, especially in those who are constipated. Researchers also believe that sparkling water could reduce the severity of other symptoms of indigestion, such as stomach pain.
Perhaps the most significant health benefit of drinking carbonated water is the fact that it could help you lose weight. That’s because the beverage can make you feel more full than you would drinking standard water. Additionally, research indicates that carbonate water forces food to remain in your stomach for longer, thereby helping you feel fuller.
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.
One of the primary ingredients in soda is phosphorus. Unfortunately, scientists believe that phosphorus 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 breakdown of bone density. This has now been proven false. Carbonated water does not have any effect on bone health.
In fact, there is some reason to believe that carbonated water could improve bone health. One study found that drinking carbonated 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.
Potentially Improve Heart Health
One of the other potential benefits of drinking carbonated water is that it could improve heart health. Initial research appears to be promising and one study measured the importance that carbonated water had on cholesterol levels. 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, but it’s worth mentioning. Drinking carbonated water can help you stay more hydrated throughout the day. Many people find that carbonated water tastes better and is easier to drink than regular tap or spring water. However, carbonated has the same health benefits as spring water, in that it will keep your body hydrated. So, by drinking carbonated water, there’s a stronger chance that you remain hydrated throughout the day.
Considering that the human body is 60 percent water, it’s critical that you stay hydrated throughout the day. Most experts recommend that you drink at least 64 ounces of water per day, although drinking a bit more is ok as well.Hydration can allow you to perform at your best both physically and mentally. Being well-hydrated could reduce oxidative stress that occurs when working out. Even the slightest bit of dehydration could impact your concentration and mood. Dehydration could also make you more prone to headaches. Drinking carbonated water can help prevent these from occurring.