bottled waterMany people drink bottled water every single day—and if you’re a fitness buff or just like to read our wellness articles, you probably do too. But do you know what’s actually in your water bottle? Bottled water is popular for those needing a quick drink and saving some for later. The true ingredients to bottled water vary from bottle to bottle, but it’s important to know what you’re really drinking—the good and the bad.

What is Bottled Water

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) describes bottled water as: “… Water that is intended for human consumption and that is sealed in bottles or other containers with no added ingredients except that it may optionally contain safe and suitable antimicrobial agents. Fluoride may be optionally added within the limitations established.”

The FDA recommends that Americans reduce current levels of sodium intake by 2,300 mg per day. That means that you would have to drink a lot of water daily to fit the recommendation. The typical amount of sodium in water averages at around 17 mg per liter.

The FDA has classified 4 different types of bottled water that can be purchased at stores and consumed.

Artesian Well Water

Artesian water is collected from a well that taps a layer of porous rock, sand, and earth that contains water. When tapped, the pressure in the aquifer, commonly called “artesian pressure,” pushes the water above the level of the aquifer, sometimes to the surface.

Mineral Water

Mineral water comes from an underground source and contains at least 250 parts per million total dissolved solids. Minerals and trace elements must come from the source of the underground water. They cannot be added later.

Spring Water

Spring water is from an underground formation from which water flows naturally to the surface. This water must be collected only at the spring or through a borehole that taps the underground formation feeding the spring. If some external force is used to collect the water through a borehole, the water must have the same composition and quality as the water that naturally flows to the surface.

Well Water

This is water from a hole bored or drilled into the ground that taps into an aquifer.

The Contents of Bottled Water

Popular bottled water brand Dasani, for example, lists magnesium sulfate, potassium chloride, and salt alongside purified water on its Nutrition Facts label. SmartWater contains calcium chloride, magnesium chloride and potassium bicarbonate. Penta Water does not contain arsenic, chromium 6, fluoride, lead, MTBE, pharmaceuticals, pesticides and many other trace impurities.

If you decide to drink tap water or bottled water, the choice is now yours to make. Drinking bottled water seems to be the healthier choice. Of course, this depending on which bottled water you drink. Click here for more wellness articles.