Dasani is a popular brand of bottled water from the United States. The company makes plain, flavored, and sparkling varieties. But is Dasani water bad for you?
- 1 Is Dasani Water Bad for You?
- 2 What is Magnesium Sulfate and Why is it a Problem?
- 3 What is Potassium Chloride and Why is it Problematic?
- 4 Why is Added Sodium an Issue?
- 5 What Should You Do?
- 6 Why is Natural Spring-Sourced Water a Much Better Choice?
- 7 Why is it Important to Stay Properly Hydrated?
Is Dasani Water Bad for You?
While Dasani’s flavored and sparkling waters are better than many other brands because they refrain from adding sweeteners and artificial flavors, for a variety of reasons it is better to avoid Dasani’s plain bottled water.
Why? Not only does Dasani not use any sort of spring water but rather just regular tap water, it also adds potentially problematic minerals. They claim that the addition to magnesium sulfate, potassium chloride, and salt (sodium) purifies and enhances the water. Unfortunately, overconsumption of these three substances can cause health problems. It is clear that Dasani water can indeed be bad for you, especially when consumed in excess and/or on a regular basis.
Dasani Water is made by the Coca-Cola corporation. As that corporation is perhaps not exactly renowned for its dedication to health, maybe it’s not all that surprising that so many people have their doubts about this bottled water. On the Dasani site, the company admits to using local water supplies in the United States for its sourcing.
They say that they use a process called reverse osmosis to purify the water, and then put in the added minerals to create the signature taste. Dasani claims that the level of sodium in Dasani is “negligible” on the company site. They also say that the FDA considers Dasani to be a “’very low sodium food’”.
Many people also criticize the production, purchase, and consumption of bottled water for environmental reasons. They point out that the popularity of bottled water is putting the world’s water supplies at risk, and causing greater inequality in water access. The plastic bottles involved are an additional cause for concern.
Critics point out that water is a free good that everyone needs to survive, and that companies should not be claiming to “own” it and be able to make a large profit on selling it. The plastic bottles that are used in water bottling are also commonly seen as wasteful and pointless.
What is Magnesium Sulfate and Why is it a Problem?
Magnesium sulfate is also known as Epsom salt. It is true that there are medical uses for magnesium sulfate. However, you should avoid it if you are pregnant, planning on pregnancy in the immediate future, or breastfeeding. Magnesium sulfate is a chemical that should be avoided by pregnant women because it has been shown to cause birth defects, especially ones involving the bones.
Side effects of excessive magnesium sulfate consumption can include sleepiness; muscle weakness; low blood pressure; irregular heartbeat; dizziness; and confusion.
What is Potassium Chloride and Why is it Problematic?
Potassium chloride is an odorless, white powder. It is often used in fertilizer. Much more alarmingly, it is also present in the chemical used for lethal injection. Potassium chloride can have some medical uses but only under proper medical supervision.
Possible side effects of potassium chloride include heartburn, diarrhea, abdominal pain, aftertaste, and nausea. Excessive intake of potassium chloride can lead to cardiovascular problems, nausea, diarrhea, and muscle weakness. People with kidney issues (or who have had kidney concerns in the past) should seek to avoid potassium chloride.
Potassium chloride is sometimes used in water softening systems (systems that help remove magnesium and calcium in household water systems), and this is causing some concern. It is possible that using potassium chloride in this way could lead to a condition called hyperkalemia.
Hyperkalemia is a condition that occurs when there is excessive potassium in the blood. This can be of particular risk to people who have kidney disease, as well as older people with reduced kidney function. People with diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease are also at greater risk.
Why is Added Sodium an Issue?
People the most at risk of developing health issues as a result of excessive intake of sodium include:
- People older than 50
- People with high blood pressure
- People with diabetes
- African Americans
Ingesting too much sodium is linked to problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke, and can also increase risk of osteoporosis and cancer (especially stomach cancer).
Generally speaking, older people (over 50) are at higher risk of suffering the health effects of substances like sodium (as well as magnesium sulfate and potassium chloride). However, the exact effect does depend on the individual and his or her specific constellation of health problems and concerns.
What Should You Do?
Plain water that you get from the tap is often the best possible choice. Consider getting a Brita or other brand filter that you can use to further purify the water, if you wish. If you want to drink bottled water, look for a bottled water that has no added ingredients, preferably taken from a spring water source.
Why is Natural Spring-Sourced Water a Much Better Choice?
If you want to drink bottled water, try to find one that is sourced from a spring. Spring water comes from an artesian, mountain, or other natural spring. As long as spring water is harvested in the right way, it should be extraordinarily clean and sparkling. Spring water comes from a beautifully clean underground source of water. This is the reason why spring water does not contain the troubling contaminants that can be found in other drinking water sources.
Spring water usually has a beneficial level of minerals that help improve health. This is why spring water is usually slightly alkaline or neutral in its pH. Water that is alkaline will help to reduce the body’s acidity. It is also believed to fight damage caused by free radicals. Spring water can also assist in keeping the teeth and bones strong.
Why is it Important to Stay Properly Hydrated?
Most people need between 30 and 50 ounces of fluid every day. Staying properly hydrated benefits every part of your body (including, for example, your muscles, heart, and brain) and aspect of your health. Getting enough water also helps to prevent constipation and remove bacteria from the urinary tract, and brings necessary nutrients to your body’s cells.
Because they don’t tend to feel thirst as strongly as younger people, older people are at greater risk of becoming dehydrated. This is an especially worrying risk in hot weather, and for people taking a medication that has any diuretic (fluid loss) effects. You should be aware that some of the symptoms of dehydration can include dizziness, weakness, low blood pressure, and confusion.
What Have We Learned?
Dasani Water is arguably not among the best choices in bottled waters. It does not come from a spring source, and it contains added minerals that worry many. Tap water or tap water that you have filtered with an at-home filter device is a better choice. If you really like to buy bottled water, then choose a spring-source variety and do your research on the company and its practices.
Great Alternatives to Dasani water:
“Why Your Bottled Water Contains Four Different Ingredients”, http://time.com/3029191/bottled-water-ingredients-nutrition-health
“Alarming Discovery”, http://theheartysoul.com/dasani-water-ingredients
“Potassium Chloride”, http://www.livestrong.com/article/129970-potassium-chloride-dangers
“Is Potassium Chloride a Poison?” http://www.livestrong.com/article/505329-is-potassium-chloride-a-poison
“Health Risks and Diseases Related to Salt and Sodium”, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt-and-sodium/sodium-health-risks-and-disease
“Negative Effects of Potassium Chloride in Water Softening Systems”, https://www.hunker.com/12000216/negative-effects-of-potassium-chloride-in-water-softening-systems
“Drinking Spring Water”, http://www.waterbenefitshealth.com/drinking-spring-water.html
“The importance of staying hydrated”, http://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-importance-of-staying-hydrated
Dasani Water, http://www.dasani.com/faq.html
“Bottled Water is Wasteful”, https://thewaterproject.org/bottled-water/bottled_water_wasteful