Bottled water is the second most purchased type of drink in the United States, just behind carbonated sodas, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Vitamin water falls into the bottled water category. As more Americans embark on a healthy lifestyle, there is an increased interest in health drinks such as vitamin water. The health benefits of vitamin water don't compare to plain water. In some cases, vitamin water can wreak havoc on your diet and are potentially dangerous for children.
Vitamin Water Ingredients
Vitamin water is composed of fortified vitamins as well as other ingredients for taste. These include syrups, sweeteners and flavors that mimic the taste of some fruits. Some types of vitamin water also contain caffeine, so it is important that you read all product labels carefully. KidsHealth.org warns against using vitamin water with herbal ingredients, especially in children. The FDA requires bottled water manufacturers to list all product ingredients.
Purported Effects of Vitamin Water
The effects of vitamin water vary, depending on the type of water you choose. The vitamins in these bottled waters are designed to replenish your body with certain nutrients that you lack. This may be especially important after exercising or if you are on a low-calorie diet. If you are used to drinking sodas or juices as your main beverages, then switching to vitamin water gives you a lower calorie option. Plus, you can still enjoy a taste of sweetness. You might experience some initial weight loss if you switch to lower calorie beverages. According to the Vitamin Water website, there are 120 calories in a 20 ounce serving of vitamin water.
Misconceptions About Vitamin Water
Vitamin water is sometimes marketed as a drink to complement a weight loss regime. Unfortunately the opposite effect can occur, particularly if you choose vitamin water that has added sugar, carbohydrates and calories. Even no-calorie vitamin water may not be healthy, due to the artificial sweeteners added for taste. Some brands of vitamin water are made with sucralose and aspartame, which can cause gastrointestinal side effects such as nausea and diarrhea when consumed too often according to a report from Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Alternatives to Vitamin Water
Plain water is the healthiest drink available. Aside from flushing out your system, water assists in nutrient transportation within the body. The health benefits of plain water outweigh those of vitamin water, when you drink in conjunction with eating a balanced diet. The taste of plain water is one of the most common reasons why people have an aversion to it. Add a splash of your favorite juice or lemon to the water to help give it more flavor. If you are worried that you do not get enough vitamins from your diet, ask your doctor about taking a daily multivitamin.
- Food and Drug Administration: FDA Regulates the Safety of Bottled Water Beverages Including Flavored Water and Nutrient-Added Water Beverages
- KidsHealth.org: Power Drinks: Should Your Child Drink Them?
- Dietfacts.com: Glaceau Nutrition Facts
- Nutrients: Vitamin Enhanced Waters nd Polyphenol Rich Beverages Analyzed for Antioxidant Capacity and Antioxidants/Calorie
- Vitamin Water: 2013 Nutrition Facts
- Yale-New Haven Hospital: Sugar Alcohol
- University of Kentucky College of Health Sciences: Vitamin Water -- Healthy or Not?