What is Sparkling Water?
Sparkling water is a bottle of nothingness that tastes better than water if you are someone who does not really enjoy drinking plain water all the time. A bottle of sparkling water reads zero in terms of nutrition information and one may wonder with awe how can something zero in calorie, no sugar, can taste so good! Although it will cost more than tap water or mineral water but in terms of taste perhaps sparkling water can potentially beat them. Sparkling water is commonly referred to as soda water, seltzer, tonic water, or carbonated water. No matter what you call it, you get the same bubbly refreshment with every sip. Some of them contain other components than CO2 like in Club soda, you will find sodium, and in tonic water you will find quinine and a significant amount of sugar. So when you are buying anything other than plain sparkling water, always be wary of the calories that come with it.
It is very important regardless of our age we need to stay hydrated all the time. In general, everyone should drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water every day. If someone is an athlete or doing heavy work under the sun should focus on staying hydrating more than others. Women who are pregnant or nursing tend to get dehydrated sooner than others. For people with special criteria should target drinking at least 10-12 glasses of water every single day to avoid health problems. If you living in a hot country, then you would have to drink more water than people living in the cold countries as you will be sweating a lot more and lose all the minerals from your body. Doctors, nutritionists cannot stress enough on the positivity of staying hydrated as opposed to the side effects you face for dehydration. To keep yourself hydrated, you can mix and match different forms of fluid to cover your fluid intake for the day, but everyone agrees water is the best solution to dehydration. But realistically if you think about it, not many of us enjoy drinking water too often.
Especially kids prefer fizzy drinks, sugary drinks any time if they were given a choice between plain water and flavored water. Even adults do not always enjoy drinking water all the time and they also prefer fizzy drinks minus the calories. If you are a little health conscious, you will worry about the calories and willing to sacrifice fizzy drinks for it, but when sparkling water comes with zero calories but has the potential to replace your sugary drinks, why would not you accept it? Sparkling water is a good substitute for your sugary drinks but keeps in mind it will not have a strong taste like the fizzy drinks have but on the plus side, it also has no severe side effects like fizzy drinks usually contain.
Sparkling water comes with many flavors too and depending on the brand, it may taste differently. Some sparkling water contains a little bit of sugar too so when you are buying sparkling water, always check the labels and nutrition information. If you reason behind choosing sparkling water was to omit sugar from your diet in the first place then avoid the ones that contain sugar.
Interestingly you can make your own sparkling water at home if you have sparkling water machines like SodaStream and Aarke. Of course these two are not the only sparkling water machines out there, but viewing the customer reviews, their sales ratio, and their machine, it is safe to say these two machines are one of the bests in the market of sparkling water machines. The plus point of having a sparkling water machine at home is you can make it customized to your taste and it will cost much less. There is no hassle of going to the supermarket when you run out of sparkling water and the best part is you can be as creative as you want. You can control the ratio of chemicals and flavors in it. We will talk more about how to make your own sparkling water at home later.
The Origin of Sparkling Water
It is a wonderful invention, to begin with the zero-calorie factors and despite not having any calories it can taste similar to your fizzy drinks but more on the softer side. The rise of manufactured sparkling water may come into being only in 21st century but the curiosity around natural spring water existed even in ancient times. People were always fascinated with the natural spring water because it had naturally infused minerals into it which of course tasted somewhat different than water and it had numerous health benefits too. These unique and natural mineral properties were famous because they believed it had healing properties hidden in them. Scientists always tried to emulate the minerals hidden in the natural spring water and wanted to create a readily available version for the mass.
Joseph Priestley, an Englishman in 1767 tried many attempts to emulate the natural process of emulating spring water and infused water with carbon dioxide. A Swedish Chemistry professor named Torbern Bergman tried the same process in 1771 and was successful in it too. The taste of the carbonated water was delicious and people loved it but there was no one who could produce it on a large scale. Later in 1783, J. J. Schweppe loved the idea of carbonated water and created his Schweppes Company and it was located in Geneva. After running the business of carbonated water for about a decade, he decided to expand his audience and moved to England. It was a successful move for the company and carbonated water begin to become very famous amongst the English and the entire Europe. By that time, many other companies started to work around the carbonated water idea and created different types of beverages. Out of which “Thwaites’ Soda Water” in Dublin become most popular. It was commonly referred to as “Soda Water”.
The manufacturers tried their best to be distinctive about their product and tried different packaging to stand out from their competition. This allowed the soda industry to try different added flavors into the simple soda water. Soon the competition became more about who can add more and different flavors to attract a new audience. Some of the drinks did not even have the minerals instilled in them and the target was more on the fuzziness of the drink then minerals.
The audience kept changing and the popularity had an up and down ratio. They all got the name soda drinks and even in the 21st century the name is popular and referred to many drinks. They got the name soda drinks in the first place because of having a high amount of sodium in them. Later when people became slightly conscious about high sodium and sugar intake and begin to avoid those soda drinks. The rise of soda drinks was because of the vast popularity and when the popularity tamed down, different companies again begin to promote sparkling water again with no sugar and any sodium in it. Soda water was popular not only for consuming it by itself but it was used to make different fancy cocktails and drinks that had high demand in social gatherings and parties. Who would have thought the invention of the70s would find its existence even in the 21st century?
How to make your own sparkling water at home?
If you already have become a fan of sparkling water by now then you would also realize the added cost of buying $1 a bottle sparkling water as opposed to making it at home with much less cost and the benefit of adding any flavor of your choice in it! Buying it from the supermarket is convenient for those who occasionally enjoy it but if you are someone who is trying to substitute sugary drinks with sparkling water then you will need plenty of it daily. In that case, it is only wise to make your own sparkling water at home preferably with a sparkling water machine.
There are different ways to make sparkling water at home, go through these methods, and see which one seems more convenient for you to use.
DIY Sparkling water:
One of the most popular ways people make carbonated water at home is by installing a CO2 regulator, a CO2 tank, a tube, and a locking ball to your tap. This method is super convenient for people who are used to drinking sparkling water all the time and they consume it in a large quantity too. Buying $1 per bottle VS $.02 per bottle is really a deal you do not want to miss out on. The initial installation itself would require $100 but this is a wise investment when you know you will have great use out of it. People can install the regulator, tank, tube, and the locking ball by themselves but if you feel you need help, you can get professional help here too.
The Old Fashion Method:
Since the invention of sparkling water came from natural spring in the first place, there is no harm in trying out the old fashion method to make your sparkling water at home. You have use a seltzer antique bottle and the gas canister attached in the bottle carbonates water. These bottles usually come with a soda siphon on top. You can compare the process of the whipped cream dispenser. These antique seltzer bottles are available in many online shops. But if you look at the price point, it will be slightly costly than DIY tap sparkling water as it costs $.50 per bottle. It is still better and cheaper than the store-bought ones as you can still add flavors of your choice in them and they still cost less than the store-bought ones.
A Sparkling Water Machine:
This is one of the most convenient options for people who do not feel comfortable with the old fashioned method and the DIY converting the tap water into soda water. You need to buy a good sparkling water machine and within one button press, your sparkling water would be ready in 30 seconds. The costing is reasonable too, $0.18 per bottle, and one-time machine purchase fees. The one time machine costing would vary depending on which brand you buy, however; they are more or less around $80.
How to flavor your Sparkling water?
There are many ways you can flavor your sparkling water without any fancy gadgets. After you have made your sparkling water, add the flavor you want, and add the flavors you can choose the following methods.
Ice cube method
You can make different concentrate of fruit juice and store it in the ice cube trays. Then after making your sparkling water, simply drop one ice cubes into one bottle.
Combining freshly squeezed juice
You can combine the sparkling water with the freshly squeezed juice. The ratio can vary depending on how strongly flavored sparkling water you want it to be. There is no hard and fast rule on the ratio of the fruit juice and the sparkling water.
You can also flavor your sparkling water using herbs like rosemary, mint, peppermint, and holy basil. Of course if you like other herbs like parsley, dill, sage etc in your water then add those as well.
Many people enjoy vanilla flavor and it will be quite interesting to drink vanilla flavored sparkling water. If you have not tried it already, add few drops of vanilla extract into your sparkling water and stir well.
Adding fresh fruit chunks
You can make your sparkling water turn into fruit infused water too. Chop of the fruits into medium chunks and drop into the water bottle. Let it sit for at least 6-8 hours or longer. Your fruit-infused sparkling water would be ready.
Try making different cocktails
You can use your sparkling water to make different types of cocktails which will bring some interesting flavors.
The difference between Mineral water and Sparkling water
People do are not familiar with mineral water or sparkling water often get confused if they are the same thing or something sets them apart? They are different as mineral water is not carbonated and it is infused with different types of minerals. Sparkling water, on the other hand, is carbonated and it does not always undergo artificially process mineralization.
One million units of mineral water need to have 250 parts of dissolved minerals in it. These minerals are added to replicate the original spring water from where it came from. The source of the water decides what type of minerals should be added to it later. This process is done in a strict manner and nothing additional can be included in the mineral water other than its source spring water minerals. Before the process of mineralization starts, all the existing minerals from the water get extracted.
Sparkling water on the other hand undergoes only one process of adding CO2 into it to create bubbles in it and of course it dominates the final taste of the water.
Sparkling water has a distinctive taste whereas mineral water does not have a sharp taste that you can recognize immediately. You can find Sparkling mineral water in the super-market easily which means it contains artificially infused minerals, and CO2 gives it a fizzy texture and taste.
People who do not enjoy drinking tap water, they usually opt for mineral water, however; that adds a different budget per month.
Is it bad for you?
There is a debate with the topic of Sparkling water whether it is really bad for you or it has no side effect. Truth be told, there is no evidence that sparkling water is bad for your health. But research has shown if you consume sparkling water for a long time then it can decay the teeth enamel with time. Due to the existence of the CO2 in sparkling water when you consume it for a long time, it will start to show on your teeth. But when you drink it in moderation, then there is no need to worry. There are many ways to restore teeth enamel naturally, so it is not really a big problem.
Most people do not drink sparkling water as a substitute for regular water; oftentimes they want to replace their sugary drinks with sparkling water. If the goal is to replace sugary drinks then sparkling water is rather a healthier choice than those sugary drinks.
Kids love sugary drinks and it is not always easy to make them avoid those fizzy rather harmful drinks. When you give them sparkling water, they can satisfy their palette without damaging their taste buds or teeth so much. The same goes for adults too and many of us have the constant thrust for sugary fizzy drinks. Sparkling water can serve as a great substitute for those sugary fizzy drinks. So to conclude if your goal is to substitute sugary drinks with sparkling water then it will help you reduce the sugar intake.