Minerals are essential to keeping our cells alive. Some say the minerals in water are helpful; others argue that being inorganic, they're of little use to humans. What does science say?
As the main building block of cells and blood, water is essentially a transporter. It supplies essential nutrients to cells and helps drain and eliminate toxins from the body.
Coming from an underground source sheltered from all human pollution, it contains a minimum of 500mg / l of dissolved minerals. To preserve its purity and its original qualities, it is bottled near the source.
Mineral water is distinguished by a higher mineral content than spring water which, for its part, flows less deeply into the subsoil and stores fewer minerals.
The therapeutic virtues of certain mineralized waters have been known since ancient times.
"Sulphated", with a sulphate content greater than 300 mg / l, are waters said to accelerate intestinal transit. They would therefore be recommended during temporary episodes of constipation.
"Magnesians", whose magnesium content is greater than 50 mg / l, are said to have an anti-stress and anti-fatigue effect.
"Calcic", whose calcium content is greater than 150 mg / l (eg San Pellegrino), help cover the daily calcium needs of people who want to avoid dairy products.
"Bicarbonates", whose bicarbonate content is greater than 600 mg / l (eg: Vichy), ensure an alkalinization of the urine, helping to prevent uric urinary lithiasis. They're also useful in relieving heartburn.
"Sodic" waters, with a sodium content greater than 150 mg / l, act on the heart rate and on the muscles and could be recommended for athletic endurance activities.
Rich in electrolytes, these waters are interesting for speeding up rehydration following gastroenteritis or intense training in hot conditions.
As such, Quebec Abénakis mineral water is by far one of the most mineralized waters. However, it is not always available in grocery stores.
La Saint-Justin (Mauricie), or the French Vichy Célestins and Badoit, also have a high content of mineral salts.
"Sodium" water is likely to undermine a low-sodium diet. Thus, if you suffer from high blood pressure or a weak heart, choose mineral water whose label displays "sodium-free" or a sodium content of less than 20 mg / l.
Likewise, different waters will be advised in case of urolithiasis. In case of uric acid stones, opt for water containing sodium bicarbonate with alkalizing properties. In case of calcium calculations, turn to weakly mineralized water or, simply, tap water.
As mentioned, the water we drink mainly serves as a carrier and drainer. Thus, like a crowded train that can no longer accept an additional passenger, highly mineralized water will be unproductive in dissolving toxins and will struggle to accomplish its essential missions, namely the elimination of toxins and the intake of nutrient to our cells. In fact, the purer the water, the better it cleans.
Therefore, several health professionals and specialists recommend above all pure, low mineralized daily drinking water.
Using modern analytical methods, humans have been found to have 25-45% bioavailability of calcium from water. As for the bioavailability of magnesium, it is comparable to that of food. Other minerals, for their part, would be less assimilable. Thus, we could deduce that the minerals in regular drinking water, partly assimilated, provide a significant complementary addition in terms of mineral intake.
Why are the minerals in water less absorbable?
The membrane of our cells is made up of lipids. However, the ions of water minerals are not soluble in oil, but in water. Thus, they are not directly bioavailable for our cells. To cross the lipid cell membrane, these ions must bind to certain amino acids to be chelated (formation of a soluble complex).
This type of system uses pressure to pass tap water through a very thin membrane, which retains most minerals, chemicals, and heavy metals. This gives pure water, containing about 5mg / l of minerals.
However, having few minerals, it will tend to "capture" the body's minerals by diffusion, a process by which molecules move from the most concentrated medium to the least concentrated medium, until the concentrations reach equilibrium. This may, in the long run, lead to significant mineral deficiencies.
The solution here will be the installation, at the outlet of the filtration system, of a remineralization cartridge to return to the water all the benefits of minerals necessary for the body, in balanced proportions.
In the current state of our knowledge, the various published studies are all contradictory, and all drinking waters have their pros and cons.
However, as the hydrological engineer Louis-Claude Vincent said, "water is more important for what it takes than for what it brings"! Thus, it would seem logical to recommend pure and weakly mineralized water (less than 500 mg / l), able to cleanse the body of toxins and various overloads.
Certainly, people in good health can consume mineral water without any problem, provided they take it occasionally and do not abuse it.
In conclusion, a water that EVERYONE agrees on: that of fruits and vegetables!
An ultra-natural way to hydrate and ingest "living" water, naturally rich in easily assimilated vitamins and minerals.
Leading doctors like Dr. Pollack believe that the water in fruits and vegetables has specific beneficial health properties.
We'll drink to that!
Pollack, Gerald H., PhD. (2013). The fourth phase of water, beyond solid, liquid, and vapor. Seattle: Ebner & Sons Publishers.
Bohmer, H., Müller, H. & Resh K.L. (2000). Calcium supplementation with calcium-rich mineral waters: a systematic review and meta-analysis of its bioavailability. Osteoporos Int. 2000;11(11):938-43.
Quattrini, S. & al. (2016). Natural mineral waters: chemical characteristics and health effects. Clin Cases Miner Bone Metab; 13 (3): 173–180.
Sabatier, M. & al. (2011). Influence of the consumption pattern of magnesium from magnesium-rich mineral water on magnesium bioavailability. Br J Nutr; 106 (3): 331-334.
Schneider, I., Greupner, T. & Hahn, A. (2017). Magnesium bioavailability from mineral waters with different mineralization levels in comparison to bread and a supplement. Food & Nutrition Research; 61(1):1384686.