Let’s face it; drinking plain water day after is boring! Yes, a regular consumption of water is extremely important, but, whoever said you couldn’t have sparkling water? Replacing a few of those stilled water bottles with carbonated water can not only increase your health, but, can also be more appeasing to your mouth.
The look on my patients’ faces’ after I tell them they can have sparkling water is priceless! I know what you’re thinking, and no, not all carbonated drinks are bad. Carbonated water is water that has been infused with pressurized carbon dioxide, and aside from seltzer and tonic waters, most carbonated waters contain small amounts of sodium and minerals that the body is dependent on.
Some people still believe that carbonation is damaging to our health and often times is blamed for the recent spike in cases of bone decay and high acidic pH levels, however, that’s simply not true! Research has shown that carbonation is not the root of all evil, and has linked bone decay and high acidity levels in soda drinkers to high dosages of phosphorous, not carbonation. Unlike, cola’s, most sparking waters contain no phosphorus, sugar, or artificial sweeteners. In fact, some controlled studies have suggested that carbonated waters may improve not only your bone health, but, your overall vitality.
Carbon dioxide and water react chemically to produce carbonic acid; a weak acid that has been shown to stimulate the same nerve receptors in your mouth as mustard. And, are responsible for the body’s swallowing process. This may sound surprising, but, studies have shown that drinking carbonated water may increase your ability to swallow, because, carbonation has the strongest ability to inhibit the nerve receptors in your mouth. There was a sixty-three percent improvement rate after drinking iced carbonated water in a controlled study of seventy-two people who had the persistent need to clear their throats.
Other studies have shown that drinking sparkling water may also improve your digestive health. In a two week study of elderly people, the average bowl movement frequency nearly doubled as well as, significantly improved chronic digestive issues in the participants who were drinking carbonated waters, compared to the participants who were drinking tap water.
While this is a controversial subject, carbonated water may also promote weight-loss. When we ingest carbonated water, our stomach fills up with a combination of water and tiny bubbles that are released from the water to expel the carbon dioxide gas that has been added. This means in our stomach, we experience a buildup of gas that is pushed out of the body through the esophagus or through the lower digestive tract, thus, will make the stomach feel fuller and help stop you from over eating. The gas will exit the body through a small belch or passing of gas; and because the gas is eliminated from the body, it is nearly impossible for the carbon dioxide to enter into the blood stream.
Some theories also suggest that carbonated water may have some beneficial effects on HDL cholesterol, the body’s inflammation response and the blood sugar, however, this has neither been proven to be true or false and there is not enough research or studies available to support this theory.
Furthermore, carbonated waters are not bad for your health. So spice up your daily routine and add some bubbly water to your diet!
The heat brings out the drinks; my favorite summer mixed cocktail is the Virgin Strawberry Gin Smash Cocktail:
½ teaspoon raw organic cane sugar
1 lime wedge
3 fresh strawberries, 2 hulled and sliced and 1 reserved for garnish
1.5 ounces of gin ( Shot glass) ( Minus the Gin for that perfect non-alcoholic drink )
4- 5 oz Perrier sparkling water
Fresh mint sprig, to garnish
In a tall glass, combine the sugar and a squeeze of juice from the lime wedge. Muddle with the back of a spoon to dissolve the sugar.
Add the sliced strawberries and lightly muddle.
Fill half the glass with ice and add the gin, top it off with the sparkling water and garnish with the last strawberry and a sprig of mint.