Health study: what is healthier - drinking water with or without carbon dioxide?

Should we drink mineral water or normal water?

It is important for people to drink enough water every day. This applies especially to the warm summer time. Of course, all the water does not have to be drunk, but it can also come from solid foods such as fruits and vegetables. However, the majority of our water supply is ensured by the consumption of beverages. The question remains whether mineral water or flavored water is just as hydrating as non-carbonated water.

The researchers at St. Andrews University found that mineral water is as hydrating as non-carbonated water. The doctors published the results of their study in the English-language journal "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition".

How well does mineral water hydrate the body?

There is good news for all mineral water lovers (including the flavored type). Mineral water hydrates the human body just as well as normal non-carbonated water. Many people prefer to drink mineral water or flavored water because they find the taste of still water too boring.

Different drinks were examined

Whether a drink is carbonated has little effect on how well the human body is hydrated, says study author Professor Ronald Maughan of the School of Medicine at St. Andrews University in Scotland. In their study, the expert and his team compared the hydrating effects of various drinks such as still water, mineral water, milk, cola, juice and coffee.

Carbon dioxide in drinks has little influence

The carbonation in beverages also has little effect on the body's response to water intake, Maughan explains. An increased volume of carbonic acid in the stomach could speed up how quickly a drink from the stomach made its way into the small intestine, was absorbed and finally excreted from the body. However, this effect is only very slight, the expert adds.

Can people drink more carbonated water?

Since water and carbonated water have the same basic constituent, in theory they are equally hydrating. However, the so-called carbonation in the production of carbonated water can affect how much water is actually consumed by a person. Some people find that the carbonation or taste helps them to drink more, while others feel full and bloated and drink less carbonated water.

What factors affect hydration?

Other factors of carbonated drinks can influence hydration in addition to carbon dioxide. For example, water with sugar, other nutrients, or electrolytes is more hydrating than pure water or plain carbonated water. Adding large amounts of carbohydrates or fats (like natural sugar in orange juice or fat in milk) will slow normal gastric emptying, says Maughan.

Some athletes should not drink carbonated water

In addition, sodium (salt) in drinks acts like a kind of sponge to hold water in the body. Potassium has been studied less well than sodium, but there is some evidence that it can also help promote the accumulation of water in the body, the doctor explains. For sweaty athletes, it may be better to drink lightly sweetened drinks or drinks with electrolytes, but not necessarily carbonated drinks, the experts advise. (as)

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