LaCroix is certainly having a moment in the spotlight, but as it turns out, there may be a downside to that #LaCroixLife: bloating. Yep — all health benefits of hydration aside, sipping on sparkling water all day long might not be doing your bod any favors. If you’ve been eating a healthy diet, doing tons of ab exercises, and consistently killing it at HIIT workouts, but STILL aren’t seeing the results you want, there’s a chance that bloating may be masking the positive changes you expected by now. Here’s the scoop.
Why Does Sparkling water Bloat You?
First and foremost, sparkling water is fizzy because it *literally* contains bubbles of gas. That’s what makes it effervescent. But while it may seem logical that adding all that gas to your digestive system would bloat you, most of us don’t realize just how big of an impact that can have on our physique.
When you’re bloated from additional gas in your tummy, all that air has to come out somehow. The results are NOT pretty. If you don’t realize you’re more gassy than usual, it’s likely that you’ve simply become accustomed to this side effect of sipping on your fave drink. But unfortunately, carrying around extra air can hide that six-pack and make you look and feel super bloated.
Bubbles of air aren’t the only possible problem lurking in carbonated water. If you drink flavored fizzy water, take a look at the ingredient list on your can of bubbles. If sugar alcohols like maltitol, xylitol, or sorbitol (or any other ingredient ending in -ol) are present in your bevvie, those are going to be SUPER hard to digest. Your gastrointestinal tract has a difficult time breaking down sugar alcohols, which is why they make you prone to bloating, digestive irregularity, and gassiness.
Other Ways To Stay Hydrated
Let’s face it: For some of us, sparkling water has become an absolute necessity. It’s not like it’s ALL bad. Sure, it contains some extra bubbles that might bloat you, but it has the benefit of providing seriously tasty hydration that makes it easier to meet your daily H2O requirements.
If you aren’t willing to cut out sparkling water completely, consider cutting back to a few cups a day, while upping your intake of plain old water. Feel free to add fresh fruits to both sparkling AND still water, which will take the place of sugar alcohols and add some flavor and pizzazz to your drink.
Finally, increase your consumption of hydrating foods like cucumber, watermelon, strawberries, lettuce, and celery. These water-packed foods are perfect for helping you get your snack on while keeping you hydrated at the same time. And, bonus, they contain fiber as well as water, so they’ll help move things along… if you know what we mean.
Other Sneaky Sources of Carbonation
Of course, drinking fizzy water isn’t the only way that bloat-causing bubbles sneak into your diet. It’s worth noting that if you’re really trying to look lean, you should avoid other sources of carbonation too, such as sodas, carbonated energy drink, and even — sigh — Champagne. Anything effervescent carries the same potential for bloating. But of course, like all facets of health, the key is to consume everything in moderation. Including Champagne.
How often do you drink sparkling water? Tweet us @BritandCo and let us know!
(Photos via Getty and @lacroixwater)