Flavored waters are commercially manufactured beverages consisting of water, with some brands utilizing soda water as base. These have a range of flavoring agents and sweeteners added in them, and may also be fortified with nutrients or contain electrolytes and energy-boosting caffeine. Marketed as wholesome drinks, commercial flavored waters are not in any way healthier than soda and energy drinks and should be avoided at all costs.
Read further and discover more about the negative effects of flavored waters and why the Superhuman Food Pyramid recommends you avoid this source of hydration to help in your quest to Become Superhuman.
Flavored Waters’ Risks:
It’s not uncommon to see the term “natural flavors” in the labels of these products. What’s worrying is that natural flavors can mean anything from monosodium glutamate (MSG), to hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HPV) typically processed from soy beans, to brominated vegetable oil (BVO). So long as these have been extracted from plant or animal sources that have been classified by the US FDA as generally recognized as safe, then these “natural flavorants” can be used in manufactured food products.
MSG can cause allergic reactions and is a known neurotoxin. HPV ingestion, on the other hand, can cause severe allergic reactions to those intolerant to soya, not to mention getting exposed to the dangers of genetically modified organisms. BVO, meanwhile, is patented as a flame retardant. It’s not really a flavoring agent but more as an emulsifier to prevent separation of water and citrus oils that are used for citrusy beverages. Long-term BVO intake can lead to bromism which can manifest in dermatological, gastrointestinal, neurological and psychiatric symptoms.
Sweeteners are present in flavored waters as well. High fructose corn syrup, evaporated cane juice, and processed sugar are just among the sweeteners manufacturers utilize. Meanwhile, brands marketed as healthier low calorie versions are not in any way safer as toxic sucralose, aspartame or acesulfame are used in place of sugar.
And then there’s the danger of food colorings as well. Much like MSG, a variety of food colorings have been identified as neurotoxic and potentially carcinogenic. In fact, many European countries have banned a number of food colorings. To this day in the US though, many processed food products including citrus and cherry flavored waters still list food colorings as ingredients.
Preservatives are of course added as well since flavored waters are intended to have extended shelf life. Citric acid, potassium citrate and sodium citrate are commonly used and are especially dangerous to those with severe dehydration, adrenal gland disorders, and severe kidney and heart conditions. Calcium disodium ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid or calcium disodium EDTA also frequently features as a preservative in these beverages. The compound functions by preventing flavoring oils from getting rancid. EDTA is listed by the US Environmental Agency as a persistent organic pollutant. Though used in medicine as a chelating agent, this compound is toxic to humans in large doses. Symptoms range from mild allergic reactions, to grave effects like dangerously low blood and calcium levels, kidney failure, arrhythmia, seizures, or even death.
Flavored waters may come fortified with vitamins as well. Vitamin B6 is one of the range of vitamins typically included. Though vitamin B6 toxicity has never been reported from food sources, it’s still something to watch out for as some flavored water brands put in anywhere from 10% to 50% of the daily recommended value per serving.
In the next post, I’ll tell you the negative effects of soda and why you should avoid it to help in your quest to Become Superhuman.
In the meantime, if you care to jump ahead, here is a complete listing of drinks to avoid as well as consume regularly and moderately on the Superhuman Food Pyramid:
- Non-Caffeinated Teas
- Coconut Milk
- Raw, Grass-Fed Cow or Goat’s Milk
- Sports Drinks
- Smoothies (With Natural Ingredients)
- Arabica Coffee Regular and Decaf
- Caffeinated Tea (includes Green Tea)
- Anti-Oxidant Drinks or Powders
- Rice Milk
- Almond Milk
- Red Wine
- Energy Drinks
- Flavored Waters
- Soy Milk
- Regular Cow’s Milk
- Instant Coffee
- Blended Coffee
- Mixed Drinks
- Hard Alcohol
If you have questions, comments or feedback about the negative effects of flavored waters, the Superhuman Food Pyramid, this website, or other aspects of Becoming Superhuman, then leave your thoughts below, as well as any tips you have on the negative effects of flavored waters.