Water: the essence of life—it keeps us energized, happy, and healthy. With so many infused waters out there, are these new and "improved" versions making it healthier than before? Let's examine the top trending waters.
Looking to increase your daily intake of good vibes? Crystal-infused waters are popping up at yoga studios and juice bars across the country. Crystal enthusiasts say the water can improve digestion and boost healing, joy, and prosperity. Who doesn't want to sip on all of the above?
Despite the excitement, I haven't seen any evidence that you can absorb positive vibrations from crystals. There might be a placebo effect at work here—if you're told a beverage is healthy, you'll report feeling better after drinking it. There's no scientific evidence that crystal-infused water is helpful. Claims that it can "replenish nutrients" after your workout is bogus. It's water, plain and simple.
Activated charcoal is used in emergency rooms to treat drug overdoses and poisoning. The charcoal is made from wood or coconut shells and is "activated" by exposing it to gases that increase its sponge-like abilities. The pores on the charcoal bind to toxins in your stomach before they can get to the small intestine to be absorbed into the blood (aka, detoxing). So why doesn't it work when you put it into water or fresh juice?
Think about it: The charcoal doesn't discriminate what it binds to, so this can include nutrients and medications. The result? You're not getting as much of the beneficial phytochemicals, vitamins and minerals from your food, and any medications you're on could be less effective. There have been claims that charcoal can help cure a hangover, but studies have shown this is a myth. For a real hangover-healing beverage, try my Hangover Helper smoothie recipe.
Maple syrup is one of my favorite sweeteners. Not only is it super delicious, but it's packed with minerals and antioxidants that may protect brain cells from damage linked to Alzheimer's disease. But does taking small amount of it in maple-infused water have the same health benefits? Probably not—it's too diluted for you to be getting much beyond a little extra sugar.
On Almond Flour Blueberry Pancakes or in healthy baking recipes? Maple syrup is a yes. But in your water? Save your money and take an extra Spin class instead!
From the creator of Bulletproof Coffee comes "Fat Water"—water infused with medium-chain triglycerides from coconut oil along with vitamin E and B vitamins, with xylitol and stevia to sweeten it up. Why would you ever want fatty water? It's supposed to provide you with slow-burning energy throughout the day.
The reality: A serving of this water only has 2 grams of fat or 18 calories. So it'll give you energy the way licking a postage stamp will give you energy (basically, it won't).
In taste tests people reported it's a little "oily," which is no surprise. My advice: Get your oil on your salads. Roast your vegetables in oil. If you want sustained energy, have a handful of nuts for a snack instead of fat water!
The bottom line: The bonuses of drinking plenty of water are never-ending. Drinking a couple extra glasses of water a day can help you eat less at your meals and lose weight. Drinking at least seven glasses a day can also help you eat less salt and sugar. If you're bored with plain ol' water, try infusing it with fruit, herbs, cucumbers, and more. Check out my infused water recipes for more ideas.