Sparkling water: Is it soda or water? Of course, water is good for you and you should be drinking plenty of it however, soda, both diet and regular, isn't good for you. So what's the deal with sparkling water then? Can sparkling water be considered healthy? Or will drinking too much have the same effects as drinking soda? 

Good Alternative

Sammy Mintzer

Carbonated water is a refreshing beverage and a good alternative to sugary soft drinks. It contains little to no sugar, sometimes natural flavoring and no high-fructose corn syrup. 

The process of creating carbonated water doesn't add sugar, sodium, calories or caffeine. Hydration is vital to good health and luckily, carbonating water hydrates just as well as still water.

The Carbonation Process

ice, water, splash, cup of water, water cup, water splash, dropping ice
Jocelyn Hsu

During carbonation, carbon dioxide gas under pressure has been dissolved in water. Sometimes there are additives such as salt or baking soda, but seltzer water is almost always composed of water and carbon dioxide.

There's a myth out there that carbonation leads to calcium shortage in the bones but the research is just not there. It is more likely the other harmful ingredients in soda that are causing this depletion.

Benefits of Sparkling Water

water, beer, iced water, ice, glass, water cup
Jocelyn Hsu

Soda doesn't really have any benefits, except that some can help you when you're nauseous. However, sparkling water serves more benefits. 

Along with keeping you hydrated, sparkling water whether flavored or plain can also help ease stomach discomfort known as dyspepsia. Symptoms of dyspepsia include pain in the upper abdomen, bloating, gas and nausea.


beer, soda, alcohol, tea
Shun Matsuhashi

Although carbonated water cannot lead to calcium depletion, it does have one disadvantage: acidity. When carbon dioxide gas is added to water, carbonic acid is produced. Carbonic acid gives the beverage its bubbles but can weaken tooth enamel over time.

There is some good news. Flavored sparkling water pH levels range from 2.74 to 3.34, while Coca Cola has a pH level of around 2.525. Therefore, soda is a bit more acidic than bubbly water because of the lower pH. 

Choose Your Drink Carefully

There are a million types of carbonated water with all different flavors, forms and brands. Mineral water is naturally bubbly while seltzer water has been artificially carbonated. Club soda has a small amount potassium bicarbonate additive whereas tonic water has more sugar and calories.

If you choose to drink flavored sparkling waters, it's healthier to drink those without sugar. In addition, some bottled sparkling water have added sodium, so always read the label carefully when selecting your beverage.

Sparkling water is water, except it's way more extra. Can sparkling water be considered healthy? It can, if you choose your drink properly and are aware of the acidity.