CHOICE examines“enhanced” water beverages

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 14th January 2013

Australia’s leading consumer group CHOICE has recently published a review of “enhanced” water products on the Australian market, pointing out that many Australian consumers would be better served drinking ordinary water from the tap.

Over the years Australian supermarkets have seen an abundance of water products with added PH, extra oxygen or magnetic properties. CHOICE has compared the following water products on the Australian market place and their promoted  benefits.

A link to the full CHOICE review can be found at the bottom of this article.

‘Alkaline water and Ionised water’:

Alkaline water has a PH level of about 9, compared to conventional tap water which is generally around a 7. In the market, the higher PH level is being promoted with detoxing claims to slow ageing and prevent disease.

According to CHOICE, “drinking normal amounts of alkaline water won’t do you any harm, and many people consume high alkaline bicarbonate products for medical reasons (such as antacids to help alleviate stomach acid reflux and urinary alkalinisers for relief of urinary tract infection symptoms). But, equally, if you don’t have one of these conditions, there’s no evidence it will do you good.”

‘Hexagonal water’

Promoted for extra hydration ability, Hexagonal water restructures the hydrogen and oxygen atoms to create a hexagonal shape. This can also be done for other shapes of water, including a previous pentagonal water brand in the United Kingdom.

CHOICE says “these, and other forms of water “clusters”, are inherently unstable, have no observable properties, and offer no health benefits.”

‘Vitamin water’

“Vitamin Water” and the like consist of a flavoured water that has vitamins and minerals added to it to levels permitted under the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.

CHOICE says that one brand of Australian vitamin water, Glacéau VitaminWater, “contains enough sugar to provide an average woman with about one-quarter of her recommended daily intake. Measure for measure these beverages have less sugar than a typical soft drink or juice, but don’t kid yourself they’re anything other than a sweet treat.”

‘Coconut water’

Coconut water products have become popular beverages promoting “healthy” energy as opposed to sports drinks. It also claims to assist in weight loss and digestion.

CHOICE finds that “while it does contain some useful nutrients, such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorous, they’re in amounts smaller than those found in fruits and vegetables, and there’s no evidence it lives up to other claims.”

According to CHOICE, “It doesn’t offer any advantages over sports drinks or regular water in aiding in hydration.”

Further reviews on ‘Oxygenated water’ and ‘Sports water’ are discussed in the CHOICE review which can be found here.

Vitamin water, one of the products reviewed by CHOICE.