In Italy, human subjects with high levels of total cholesterol and harmful LDL cholesterol were given either spring mineral water or tap water over a 9-week period. Those given the mineral water saw reductions in total cholesterol by 7.5 percent and LDL cholesterol by 12.5 percent. This led the researchers to conclude that salt-rich mineral water, which can include the carbonated version, may be effective in reducing cholesterol levels.
Thermal water is naturally-occurring warm water that is often carbonated and can contain various vitamins and minerals, depending upon the water source. A study published in “Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine” in 2007 investigated thermal water comprised of bicarbonate, sulphate and calcium and its effects on patients with dyspepsia, or chronic indigestion, over a period of 12 days.
The majority of patients showed a reduction of the global symptoms score; decrease in the intensity of symptoms to a level that didn’t interfere with everyday activities; and an improvement of ulcer-like dyspepsia symptoms. This follows on an earlier study in Pisa, Italy, which had discovered that mineral water could enhance gastric motor and secretory functions in patients with dyspepsia.
Cola beverages have been implicated in bone loss due to their high phosphoric acid content, which leaches calcium out of the bones. But plain carbonated mineral water contains high levels of bicarbonate and is an alkali beverage, the opposite of acid. A 2005 study in Spain, published in the “British Journal of Nutrition,” showed that women who drank a liter of carbonated mineral once a day lost less calcium than when they drank tap water. The scientists concluded that when mineral-rich carbonation evens out acidity in the body, it helps keep the calcium locked inside bones.
According to Chris Carmichael, fitness columnist for Outside Magazine, carbonated water is more filling than plain tap water. When trying to lose weight, drink a glass of carbonated water before meals so you feel fuller and more likely to reduce the size of your meals. Fizzy drinks can cause bloating, so you are likely to look like you gained weight, simply because your body is retaining air and gas. As long as you’re drinking carbonated water rather than sodas, you will be consuming no calories.