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Nutrition & Fitness Newsletter

The Scoop on Sparkling Water


Last month we talked about how important it is to stay hydrated.  This month let's discuss the popular no calorie or low calorie beverage, sparkling water also known as carbonated water as another source of hydration.  What is sparkling water and how is it made?   The "sparkling" part of the water comes from carbonation; putting carbon dioxide into water.  Typically it has no sugar as compared to most sodas.  It's refreshing on a hot day and more interesting than plain water but is it good for you?

Things to know about carbonated water:
  • Carbonation = Acidic Water - The process of carbonation increases the acidity of the water which has some dentists concerned it may be erosive to the teeth.  The good news it that it isn't as erosive as some sodas and sports drinks.  Be careful of any carbonated waters that have added sugar or citrus which will be more damaging to the teeth.  Plain water will always be best for the teeth.  If you're concerned, try following up with carbonated water with a swig of plain water to rinse off your teeth.

  • How is it flavored? - Check the ingredients list on the bottle to see if it has added sugars or artificial sweeteners.  Best to avoid the added sugars since calories in beverages can add up quickly and lead to weight gain.  Artificial sweeteners can show up under many complicated sounding names, here are a few of the more common ones - sucralose, Splenda, aspartame, saccharin and acesulfame-k.  To learn more about various sweeteners  Click Here.  Artificial sweeteners are manufactured to be hundreds of times sweeter than sugar which may increase your cravings for sweet things.  New research on some artificial sweeteners suggest they may alter your gut flora (bacterial balance of your gastrointestinal tract) and impair glucose tolerance leading to metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes.  Another study shows a relationship between sugar and artificially sweetened beverages leading to increased risk of stroke and dementia.  Be mindful of what's flavoring your water by reading the ingredient list on the label.

  • What are "natural" flavors/essence? - There's such an amazing range of flavors for sparkling water from the common to exotic sounding fruit combinations, but where are these flavors coming from?  Some of the fruit flavored waters list "natural" flavors or "essence".  Usually these are made in a lab, most likely it originated from plant.  If you'd like to avoid a chemist made flavor, squeeze your own lemon, lime or add fruit to naturally add flavor.

  • What is Healthier? - As always plain filtered water is best.  However, plain water can get boring, go ahead and mix it up with unsweetened, non-artificially sweetened sparkling water.  Most importantly, stay hydrated for your health.  If you struggle with meeting your fluid needs choose a variety of healthy beverages but drink plain water too.

Here are few reasons to visit with a nutritionist/personal trainer/health coach: relieve tension and stress in the body, properly train or progress in an activity, improve your microbiome, assess nutrient intake, disease prevention through diets based on science, and proper exercise, maximize exercise performance, improve sleep quality, enhance mental clarity, optimize digestion and nutrient absorption, establish long-term healthy habits, meal planning for a whole foods diet and eat in a way to sustain the planet.  Please consider Sheri for nutrition counseling, health coaching and/or fitness training appointments to help you develop a healthier lifestyle for you and the planet.


Plant Protein vs. Animal Protein for Strength Building

A study published in Sports Medicine investigated if men participating in strength training and changes in muscle mass on a diet of plant-based protein vs. animal-based protein.  Both groups showed similar increases in muscle mass whether on vegan (no food derived from animals) or omnivore (includes eggs and dairy) diet.  Ref: Sports Med 2021 Jun;51(6):1317-1330.

Sheri is a Certified Nutritionist with a master's degree in nutrition, with over 19 years of clinical counseling experience, an ACE-certified Personal Trainer with advanced certifications in medical exercise, senior fitness and health coaching.  All nutrition consultations include exercise guidance, dietary analysis and meal plans to meet your individual lifestyle, calorie and nutritional needs.

Free introductory 15-minute appointments are also available.

To schedule an appointment with Sheri Mar, email:  or call:  206.789.6440

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