What is Mineral Water?
The market of the mineral bottled water industry is expected to grow by 9.39% annually in 2021 - 2025. The countries that use more water for drinking purposes are China, India and the United States of America and as compared to the global estimations, the USA has generated more revenue in this category. Bottles produced by this industry take hundreds of years to decompose but the importance of mineral water has been increased ever since in order to maintain good health. In this article, we will only be talking about mineral water, its composition, merits or demerits, mineral water company or brands, etc. This article will help you in understanding one of the concepts that play a great role in our daily lives.
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Water is considered one of the most essential elements for the survival of living organisms and our planet is blue because it is mostly covered with water. There is the presence of liquid water on our planet to a large extent but only 2.5% of the water present on the planet is useful for drinking and required purposes and the rest of the water is salt water which is not useful for humankind and other living organisms.
Even the human body weight is 60% represented by the total body water. It is present in the body and performs various functions including carrying the nutrients. It plays a great role in maintaining good health and good health is essential for growth as well as the development of the body and longer life and a good diet or water intake with or through food is an essential part of this. Whenever we talk about good health, the importance of healthy water can not be ignored and these days tap water contains a lot of impurities. Thus, people are shifting towards the consumption of mineral water for a decade and it has become an important part of today's life.
The water that contains minerals or gases in dissolved form and that occurs in nature, is called mineral water and this naturally occurring water is collected and bottled for drinking purposes. It consists of calcium carbonate, potassium, magnesium sulphate as well as sodium sulphate and other gases such as carbon dioxide as well as hydrogen sulfide. Besides the occurrence of natural water, it is also produced artificially by adding required elements and aerating with carbon dioxide. The presence of minerals varies in the natural and artificial created mineral water and sometimes it is also less than the tap water whereas sometimes the presence of some minerals are more than required which can be harmful for human consumption. Himalayan mineral water is an example of natural mineral water and when this water is packed in bottles, it becomes bottled water.
Some of the definitions of mineral water are mentioned below:
" It is natural water from underground, containing dissolved minerals that are believed to be good for your health." - Cambridge Dictionary.
"Mineral water is water that comes out of the ground naturally and is considered healthy to drink." Or "water containing dissolved mineral salts or gases, esp. such water is considered healthful to drink" - Collins Dictionary.
"It is water naturally or artificially infused with mineral salts or gases (such as carbon dioxide). - Merriam-Webster.
Packaged Mineral Water
When water is being collected from various sources and is packed in bottles or other containers after processing and sealing, it is known as packaged mineral water. The sources of mineral water can be spring water or groundwater, wells, fresh streams or rivers, etc. The spring water or surface water has more mineral content than tap water and after some processing, this water is being collected and packed in bottles and other types of containers. Every mineral water company uses these natural sources of water for water collection and for producing packaged bottled water which is considered as more healthy.
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FDA ie. The Food and Drug Administration of the USA says that 250 parts of total dissolved solids per million must be contained in the mineral water. Mostly, the minerals which are present are calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, bicarbonate, zinc and iron. The mineral water goes under some processing at its source point, where adding or removing carbon dioxide is done along with the removal of toxic substances such as arsenic etc.
The mineral water can be classified into various types on the basis of the presence of the above-mentioned minerals and these types are written as under:
Sulphate Mineral Water: It is characterized by the presence of sulphate anions. Any cations with sulphate highlight the properties of the water such as magnesium sulphate or sodium sulphate type of mineral water help in constipation issues or help in improving the digestion system. Besides these, it is a useful mineral in foetal growth & development as well as various metabolic & cellular functions.
Chloride Mineral Water: In this mineral water, chloride is the most important mineral present which has very scarce health effects. This mineral is often present along with the combination of sodium and these two are the main elements of salt mineral water.
Bicarbonate Mineral Water: This kind of mineral water has low mineral content and is also kind of cold as well as alkaline water and it also has diuretic properties. Positive effects of this water can be seen on the digestive system or neutralise the acid secretion.
Calcic Mineral Water: In this, calcium is present as the major element which is important for muscles, nerves and blood system. Calcium-rich water is essential for the bones strength.
Magnesium Mineral Water: This mineral water contains magnesium as their major mineral content which can be found along with other minerals as well such as magnesium sulphate. It helps in bowel functions and improving constipation issues as well as premenstrual syndrome, etc.
Fluoride Mineral Water: Here, the major mineral content is fluoride and good for children which helps in reducing decaying incidents as well as good for bones. Its intake should be kept low as high intakes of this kind of mineral can lead to carcinogenic effects and other toxic effects as well.
Ferrous Mineral Water: Sulphate ferrous mineral water, as well as bicarbonate ferrous mineral water, are the categories under it. The former is arsenic-rich as well as concentrated whereas the latter is poor in arsenic content.
Sodium Mineral Water: This kind of mineral water is a sodium-rich in nature which can be used with other anions. The consumption of this water is associated with hypertension when it is bound to chloride. That's why it is not suitable for those suffering from cardiovascular disease.
It is always suggested to use mineral water to have good health. Let's study what are the various benefits of using mineral water. These are mentioned below:
Mineral water is the source of magnesium. These types of nutrients regulate blood pressure, blood glucose levels and nerve function.
The amount of magnesium in water is from 1 milligram per litre (mg/l) to more than 120 milligrams per litre.
People who have high blood pressure may drink mineral water as it is rich in magnesium. It helps lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Drinking 1 litres of water a day decreased the blood pressure.
Mineral water may contain large amounts of calcium, magnesium and potassium which helps in blood circulation.
It is necessary for building and maintaining strong bones. It also regulates and rhythm of the heartbeat.
Mineral water also helps in promoting bone strength as it is the source of calcium.
By drinking mineral water, we take magnesium as in our diet which helps to prevent constipation and improve the health of the digestive system.
While having various benefits, it also has some limitations or side effects which are mentioned below:
Microplastics are a potential concern. Microplastics in bottled mineral water is not safe. Plastic containers contain bisphenol A or BPA. These chemicals harm normal hormone function.
Carbonated water has a lower pH than regular water which is acidic in nature and can affect the teeth.
The water is contained in the plastic bottles and the large production of plastic bottles produce large impacts on the environment because these bottles take hundreds of years to begin the decomposition process and a new kind of plastic pollution can be seen because of this.
The mineral water contains various minerals and these can be varied and sometimes the presence of any mineral more than required can be harmful for human consumption.
Branded mineral water is usually taken by people for consumption as they believe that water has more mineral content and certainly better than tap water. Bottled mineral water is a billion-dollar industry these days and every year billions of bottles are produced. In various regions of the world, you will find different mineral water company which assure you to provide the best mineral water. Some of the known brands in this category are Nestle waters, Hint, Bisleri, Mountain valley spring company, PepsiCo, Coca Cola, Acqua Panna, Fiji Group, water perrier, etc.
Do you know the Himalayan mineral water is a great source of minerals and it is naturally occurring mineral water and it is safe for drinking and other purposes as it is fresh water coming from the mountains? This water is raw which comes to us after filtering through various layers of the rocks and mountains and this Himalayan mineral water is a great source of bottled water as well for various companies.
To sum up in the end we can say that mineral water undoubtedly plays a vital role in today's world in maintaining good health by meeting quality water demands. Though it is available in nature but on the other hand can be produced artificially and artificial things are prone to harmness. Besides this, it is good for better health but not for the environment as the number of production of plastic bottles is increasing day by day which is degrading the environment by creating plastic and other types of pollution. Thus, proper laws and management are required in this field not only to regulate the mineral content in the water but also to adopt environmentally friendly policies.
FAQs on Mineral Water
1. What is Natural Mineral Water?
Answer. The water that occurs in nature from various sources such as surface or groundwater, wells, spring water, streams, etc. and which contains a lot of dissolved minerals and other gases, is known as natural mineral water. This mineral water is considered healthy for drinking purposes as compared to tap water which is prone to pollution and various impurities. Mineral water can be divided into various categories also on the basis of the mineral content present in it.
2. What is Packaged Mineral Water?
Answer. The mineral water usually occurs in nature but also can be produced artificially by various methods and processes and when this water from various sources is packed in containers for the sale purpose and human consumption, it is called packaged mineral water. Various brands own a billion-dollar industry of mineral water and sell bottles of mineral water for money and people these days also rely on these bottles for drinking purposes more.
3. What are the Disadvantages of Mineral Water?
Answer. Mineral water has a lot of benefits but it also has various disadvantages. If any mineral content is increased in the packaged mineral water it can cause various health issues. Carbonated water can cause various teeth problems as well. The major disadvantages are the production of plastic bottles and mineral water is contaminated by microplastic that is very dangerous for the human body. Not only this, but it also harms our environment as well.
4. Which is Better Tap Water or Mineral Water?
Answer. Tap water is usually supplied by the municipality of the region whereas mineral water is separately bought by the people. Tap water consists of so many impurities and is also not filtered and directly supplied to the households which can contain any levels of the mineral content whereas the required amount or levels of mineral content is found in mineral water which is helpful for the body and that too without any impurities. Thus, mineral water is considered better than tap water.