We all know that it is important to consume water on a daily basis, but what about the many other waters on the market such as coconut water and vitamin water? Ever wondered how they compare nutritionally? It can be overwhelming trying to figure out which water to buy so below we have compared a few popular products to help you out next time you’re down the water aisle.
In summary, nothing beats plain water. A few important things to remember are:
– The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend limiting intake of food and drinks containing added salt and sugars, therefore consumption of these drinks should be limited.
– Many of these drinks are quite high in kilojoules even though they are ‘water’ so always read the label. For example a 600ml bottle of Gatorade Orange Ice Sports drink contains over 6000kJ, that’s the equivalent to a slice of bread.
– Remember to take note of the serving size of these drinks if they contain kilojoules. The energy content per 250ml serve may be moderate but most drinks will contain a few serves per bottle, so if consuming the whole thing, the energy content can stack up quite quickly.
– People with intolerances such as IBS and fructose malabsorption need to avoid these drinks as they are all high in FODMAPs which may result in stomach upsets.
Remember that water contributes approximately 50-80% of our total body weight. It is an essential nutrient that we cannot produce enough of ourselves to survive. Insufficient water can lead to dehydration and will obstruct digestion, transportation, absorption of nutrients, elimination of waste products and thermoregulation. Solid foods can only contribute about 20% of our daily water intake so it is really important to drink plenty of water throughout the day to meet daily requirements. Plain tap water is best as it contains no added salt, sugar, or additives, plus it contains fluoride for good oral health. Talk to your Accredited Practising Dietitian to calculate your individual fluid requirements.