Sparkling water is the healthy person’s little treat, and the unhealthy person’s attempt at being healthy. It’s a universal, delightfully bubbly drink.
But actually, it might not be much of a healthy option after all.
The fizz we taste comes from adding carbon dioxide under pressure, resulting in water that contains weak carbonic acid.
Adam Thorne, a dentist in London's Harley Street , told the Daily Mail that side-effects of drinking sparkling water can be pretty alarming.
Most people have no idea that fizzy water is extremely acidic, it's pH3 on the acidity scale. The bubbles erode your tooth enamel – and over time this causes painful, yellow cracked teeth.
However, Edmond R. Hewlett a spokesperson for the American Dental Association, and a professor of restorative dentistry UCLA School of Dentistry disagrees.
He told the Food Network that we don’t need to worry about unflavoured sparkling water, just its flavoured counterparts.
We know that frequent consumption of acidic beverages can cause erosion of tooth enamel. The flavouring additives in many sparkling waters cause them to be acidic and must thus be viewed as potentially erosive.
It is the flavouring and not the carbonation that lowers the pH (increases the acidity) to a level that can potentially erode tooth enamel with frequent consumption.
Laboratory studies have shown that (unflavored) waters, be they still or sparkling, have very low erosive potential and do not pose a risk to tooth enamel.
Hewlett advises “mindfulness and moderation” when drinking flavoured waters.
As for plain sparkling - the jury is still out, but Hewlet concedes not a lot of research has been done into its side-effects yet.