Bottled Water, Mineral Water, Vitamin Water-What Good Are They?
There was a time when water never had to be ordered while dining at a restaurant. Later, there started a trend, the waiters began to ask-“What water would you like sir?” The question still leaves a few from the earlier generations perplexed. The choice offered for choosing water, no doubt seems ludicrous, but it is today’s fashion statement and trend.
Starting from the Himalayas to Alps and to the springs in the Scottish Highlands, there exists a water bottle that offers something unique. But, to what extent they do any good?
Bottled Water: Bottled water is drinking water-ionised, distilled or carbonated. Simple. It is available in either plastic or glass bottles and can start from a bottle as small as 100 Milli liters.
It is estimated that by the year 2011-
the amount of available bottled water would be 174.286.6 million liters
the total value of available bottled water would be a mammoth 86,421.2 million dollars.
While the former figure would be registering an increase of around 41.8 percent since 2006, the latter registers a 51 percent increase. Quite some numbers!
Americans are the largest consumers of bottled water and it has been found that 21 gallons of bottled water is consumed every year by them.
Thanks to the quadrupled number of users over the past 15 years, bottled water sales are hitting an all time high. So, what is the reason for this?
Bottled water is safe, free from most chemicals and bacteria (word of caution, some bacteria can still enter glass bottles). They are easy to carry and most of all give water a taste (which otherwise, as we all know is tasteless).
Mineral Water: One of the options that bottled water offers is mineral water. Probably, the most used bottled water kind across the world.
Mineral water contains minerals (needless to say)viz., Potassium, Magnesium and Iron that are useful for health. When a water bottle is called mineral water, it means that the water has been derived from naturally occurring springs and no added minerals have gone into it.
Mineral water comes in both still and sparkling kinds and the reason people prefer them is for the health benefits they offer. Most people believe that mineral water can help cure digestive problems as well as arthritis.
Vitamin Water: Of late, we have seen the advent of vitamin water across the market.
Water is colourless, tasteless and odourless-Agreed! So, we now have this brand new offering of Vitamins in water which come in all kinds of colors (purple, lavender, pink, red, yellow et.). Each one is enriched with different types of Vitamin.
Glaceau, the company that markets this bottled vitamin water also suggests that this water adds to the nutritional value.
Are They Really Any Good?: Now that we know what each variety of the bottled water has to offer, comes the time to raise the million the dollar question-What good are they?
- Firstly, there is no enough scientific evidence to prove that the minerals or vitamins contained in bottled water can do any good to health.
- Next, the plastic and glass used for bottling the water is definitely non-biodegradable. Hurting the environment, as if what we have already done isn’t enough?
- Bottled water when being packed, can get affected by the process of plastic production which ultimately would end up affecting water. Plastic can release chemicals into water such as Arsenic, Benzene and lead which can even cause cancers.
- Many companies in the name of delivering natural mineral water are ending up adding minerals in the packing stage to add an extra flavor to the drink. Even though this is possibly harmless, at least does the body no good!
- Vitamin water which is marketed as nutritious adds no value to your junk food.
- Intake of vitamins in excess (especially Vitamins A&E) would not be properly absorbed by the body.
Places like Mexico where there is no possible chance of getting proper tap water, there one has to use bottled water, no alternative.
In countries like India, Multi National Companies are feeding on the ground water of the country to produce bottled water there by draining the water resources for the locals.
Bottled water is definitely going to bleed the already bleeding environment with the amount of plastic being put to use.