Lining up in front of you at the grocery store is an array of bottled water and you want the best there is, but you’re confused over what’s the difference between them and which to choose.
While it’s great to have plenty of choices, it can be downright overwhelming to pick between so many different kinds of water, water that may look the same in the bottle, but isn’t.
Say you have a baby at home and the task has suddenly gotten all the more difficult considering that newborns gobble up one bottle formula every three hours or so, thus naturally, you want the best drinking water you can find for your family.
Which is it then that you ought to buy? Is it drinking water, purified water or spring water?
Or perhaps distilled?
- Drinking water: could be the same with tap water.
Drinking water sold in supermarkets is water intended for human consumption and is safe to drink, but can contain ingredients such as fluoride, which is also found in tap water and is within health and safety standards.
The trouble with this is that people could be buying simply tap water that was bottled without any explanation on the label to inform the customer of what is essentially tap water in bottles. This is basically only a filtered version of water from the city’s mains.
- Spring water: comes from an underground source or a spring.
Widely available, spring water is what you often find in bottled water and it comes from springs forming underneath soil and rocks. It can be extremely clean or can be colored when coming in contact with minerals and other organic materials found in subsurface rocks.
Spring water usually contains bicarbonate, sodium, calcium, and magnesium, all of which are minerals with various health benefits. Spring water sold in supermarkets goes through a filtering process that removes particles and cleans the water while maintaining all the natural minerals and the refreshing taste.
- Purified water: can come from any source and has been purified.
Purified water is mechanically filtered water that retains only the purest water molecules. This type of water can come from any source, but it needs to go though several methods of purification before it can be labeled as pure.
Methods of water purification include distillation, reverse osmosis, filtration, sedimentation, capacitive de-ionization and ultraviolet oxidation among others. Other brands purify water using biological processes such as slow sand filters.
- Distilled water: is drinking water purified through distillation.
Like purified water, distilled water also goes through a filtering process that is, however, a more rigorous procedure which removes not only the contaminants, but the minerals as well.
Distilled water is safe to drink, but should be consumed only in moderation given the lack of minerals and because it tends to be acidic. It is the best water for use with small appliances like steam irons because it won’t cause the buildup of minerals that tap water does.
Conclusion: the best bottled water to drink on a daily basis remains spring water, because it contains natural minerals, while purified water along with distilled water is suitable for a short period.