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Healthy Habits: Drinking Water – 9 types for hydration

Dr. Megan Johnson McCullough

Special to the Village News

We all too often hear that we need to drink more water. Staying well hydrated is beneficial for every cell in our body, good for our brain, and is necessary for our body to function efficiently.

We have the choice of so many beverages that opting for plain water isn't always appealing. There are nine types of water we can drink, so maybe knowing the choices can steer us towards this liquid if there's a particular type we might like.

1. Purified water – This is considered safe water because it is water that has been treated so that anything harmful in it like bacteria, parasites, and fungi are removed. However, in this removal process, some of the beneficial substances are also removed. Fluoride would be an example that is removed which helps with tooth decay. Most people prefer purified water, while others consider it the more expensive option.

2. Tap water – This is the water that is all around us. From our kitchen sink water to the water that flushes the toilet, tap water is everywhere. Most tap water in the U.S. is safe to drink although some people refuse to drink it. It is good for you and cheaper.

3. Mineral water – This type is full of minerals, specifically calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Your body doesn't make these so they're good to have and they help with digestion. Many people love the taste but don't prefer the cost of it.

4. Sparkling water – This water is infused with carbon dioxide gas. Sometimes it is carbonated water or soda water. It gives a fizzy feeling without the sugar and sweeteners. Many brands mineralize the water which is beneficial. This type can be more expensive.

5. Spring/glacier water – It is mostly clean and toxin free. It can be found in stores, but some types are not tested or filtered. It can also be more expensive depending on the brand.

6. Alkaline water – It has alkaline minerals and negative oxidation reduction potential (ORP). It has a higher pH than tap water. There is little proof, but some believe that alkaline water can neutralize the acid in your body. However, it can also reduce stomach acidity which then lowers the ability of the stomach lining to kill bad bacteria.

7. Distilled water – This is water that has been boiled. It is condensed back to liquid. It is mostly used in cars, aquariums, and for steam ironing. It is drinkable too.

8. Well water – This comes from the ground so although it may be available even in your own backyard, it might not be safe to drink. It is likely contaminated for drinking purposes.

9. Flavored water – This is flavored with sugar and/or artificial sweeteners as well as natural and/or artificial flavorings. It gives flavor to your water which tastes good, but it's not good for maintaining a healthy weight or dealing with diabetes.

We need to drink water all day, every day. For some, this is easy but for others water isn't their beverage of choice. The benefits of water for our body and mind are critical. Water refreshes our quench and all the muscles, joints, and cells we have. Make a toast to drink water for our health and happiness, inside and out.

Megan Johnson McCullough, Ed.D., recently earned her doctorate in physical education and health science, is a professional natural bodybuilder and is a National Academy of Sports Medicine master trainer.


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