Why You Might Want To Limit The Amount Of Seltzer Water You Drink

Many people switched from sugary sodas to seltzer water as a healthier way to get their bubbly fix. After all, plain seltzer water is simply regular water that has been artificially carbonated and has no calories, additives, sugar, or caffeine (via Medical News Today)— just plenty of effervescent goodness. And with so many brands out on the market (like LaCroix, Perrier, and Bubly, among an increasingly crowded market that saw $3.7 billion in sales in 2020, according to BevNet), it's pretty easy to satiate that fix.

Yet questions remain as to just how healthy seltzer water is, and more specifically, just how much seltzer water one should be drinking on a regular basis. There were even rumors swirling around that seltzer water doesn't really hydrate well, or that it could affect bone density. The good news: sparkling water (which seltzer water is the most basic form of, according to Martha Stewart) is just as hydrating as still or regular water, confirms Healthline, citing several studies on the topic. The bad news: while drinking seltzer water doesn't harm your bones, as confirmed by the Harvard Medical School, it can be bad for your teeth and could play havoc with your digestive system.

Seltzer water can be bad for your tooth enamel, and cause digestive issues

Seltzer water is made by "pumping carbon dioxide into water," and when carbon dioxide dissolves in water, it turns into carbonic acid, which drops the pH of the water, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). CSPI goes on to explain that most seltzers have a pH of between 3 and 4, and a pH of 4 is enough to wear down enamel. In comparison, regular water has a neutral pH of 7.

While there are ways to counteract the acidic effects of drinking seltzer, such as using a straw, eating something while drinking seltzer water, or drinking regular water afterwards, the best way may be to minimize how much seltzer you drink in the first place, recommends Outside. And how much is that? As dentist Dr. Lee Gause explained to NBC News, "keep it to once a day with meals, at a maximum."

Oh, and those bubbles that make seltzer water so fun to drink? They can also cause gas and bloating, and those who have a sensitive GI tract or who suffer from IBS will want to really cut down on how much seltzer water they drink, warns NBC News. As is the case with most things, moderation is key.