Real Talk: Is Seltzer Bad for You?
Bursting bubbles, if you will
To be completely honest, we love the sparkling stuff. It helped us kick our diet soda habit. It makes any cocktail taste better. And it’s just so darn refreshing. But lately, we keep hearing about how it makes your bones brittle and your teeth weaker. Let’s get to the bottom of it all--with some fact versus fiction.
No, it doesn’t wear down your teeth.
That’s a myth. The carbonic acid, which gives your drink its satisfying fizz, is indeed a bit acidic. But if you’re drinking the stuff plain (meaning no fancy flavors) and in moderation, your chompers will be fine. Still, if you’re really worried, use toothpaste with fluoride in it to help strengthen teeth (and prevent cavities).
But it does make you gassy.
If you think about it, carbonation is just extra air and extra air usually makes you bloated…and yes, it will eventually make its way out of your body somehow.
It doesn’t give you other stomach problems.
Like IBS or constipation. While it’s true that people who already suffer from stomach or digestion issues should be careful about consuming carbonated beverages (among other things), it doesn’t cause said issues. As for backing you up? Nope. Seltzer is still water, which keeps things moving.
And it won’t affect your bones.
Contrary to what you’ve heard, carbonation does not leach calcium from your bones. The confusion comes from some earlier studies that linked cola consumption to low bone density, but a) that’s cola, not plain seltzer water, and b) the correlation between the two was based on the fact that the participants in the study were consuming less calcium overall. Your femurs will be just fine.
Bottom line: It’s still hydrating.
Though seltzer shouldn’t be a complete substitute for plain water, it is a great alternative to most other beverages--like soda and even juice--since it lacks calories and added sugar. Just make sure you guzzle down plenty of the non-bubbly variety, too.