Sparkling Water: A Healthy Alternative to Diet Soda

Written by Abigail Jolly
March 17, 2024 | Reading time 15 minutes

As consumers have become more knowledgeable about maintaining their health and balancing our their nutrition, many are turning to sparkling water as an alternative to diet soda. Simply put, we love our bubbles, and so do Americans.

The need to satisfy the thirst for fizzy drinks while still avoiding the long-term health risks associated with sugary and artificial sweeteners has led to a demand for more easily available sparkling water.

Diet Soda vs Sparkling Water: Which is Healthier?

diet soda vs sparkling water

Sparkling water is a healthier alternative to diet soda. It can be difficult to completely stop drinking fizzy drinks altogether, and sparkling water is a great way to transition from diet soda.

Make the sparkling switch today and receive 20% off your first CO2 refill!

If you're looking to quench your thirst without adding calories or sugar, sparkling water is a great alternative. Not only that, but it's also totally safe - no need to fret about any negative health effects!

And if you want more than just plain bubbly goodness? There are many natural flavorings like citrus, berry and herbs available for an extra boost of fun with every sip. Now that's something worth cheers-ing to!

Related Read: What are the Health Benefits of Drinking Sparkling Water?

Is There Sucralose in Sparkling Water?

Sparkling water is generally a calorie-free, sugar-free beverage, making it a popular choice for those seeking healthier alternatives to sugary drinks. However, the question of whether there is sucralose in sparkling water is a bit more nuanced.

Some manufacturers may choose to add sweeteners like sucralose to their flavored sparkling water varieties to enhance the taste without adding calories. So while pure, unflavored sparkling water made with an at-home soda maker will not contain sucralose, certain flavored varieties might.

Always check the sparkling water label or the manufacturer's website to be sure. If you're looking for a truly natural, unsweetened option, consider carbonating your own water with a Soda Maker and adding a slice of fresh fruit for a hint of flavor.

Does Sparkling Water Have Aspartame?

The answer is a resounding no. Sparkling water does not typically contain aspartame unless it's a flavored or diet version. Aspartame is a low-calorie sweetener often found in diet sodas and artificially sweetened beverages. Plain sparkling water is simply water that has been carbonated, and it contains no added sugars or artificial sweeteners like aspartame.

However, it's always a good practice to check labels when purchasing any kind of pre-packaged beverage, as manufacturers may add a variety of ingredients to enhance taste or prolong shelf life. So while your standard, unflavored sparkling water won't contain aspartame, flavored or diet varieties might. Always keep an eye out for those nutritional labels!

Related Read: How to Read & Understand Sparkling Water Labels

Benefits of Sparkling Water

diet soda vs sparkling water

Now that we've explored the fizz-tastic world of sparkling water as a healthier alternative to diet soda, let's dive a little deeper. In this section, we're going to uncover the hidden treasure that is sparkling water's benefits, and trust us, there's more than bubbles that meet the eye!

Lack of Artificial Sweeteners And Preservatives

Sparkling water is an excellent alternative to traditional sugary drinks because it contains no artificial sweeteners or preservatives. Many popular soft drinks contain artificial sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose and saccharin, which have been linked to a variety of health issues such as headaches, depression and digestive problems. Additionally, these synthetic ingredients are not natural and can interfere with the body's ability to absorb nutrients from food.

Artificial preservatives, such as sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate, are often added to drinks to extend their shelf life. These preservatives have been associated with toxicity in the body, including damage to cells and DNA. They can also cause inflammation in the body which can lead to a variety of health problems. Furthermore, they may disrupt hormones or interfere with neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for keeping us feeling balanced and focused.

Additionally, research has linked artificial sweeteners to weight gain due to their effects on our gut microbiome – the bacterial colony that helps us digest food. These artificial ingredients can throw off our microflora balance leading to cravings for more sugary foods and drinks as well as increased fat storage in adipose tissue (fat cells). They may also lead to an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by interfering with insulin production and causing a spike in blood sugar levels after consumption.

Given these potential risks associated with consuming artificially-sweetened beverages and processed foods containing preservatives, it is easy to see why many people are turning towards sparkling water as a healthier alternative. It is naturally carbonated without any added ingredients meaning you get all of the fizz without any of the potentially dangerous chemicals or additives found in so many other types of beverages on the market today.

Unlike diet sodas, which often contain high levels of artificial sweeteners such as aspartame or sucralose, sparkling water contains none of these potentially harmful substances. This makes it an ideal option for people looking to reduce their consumption of sugary drinks without sacrificing taste or quality.

Further Read: What Are the Best Alternatives to Soda?

Increased Satiety

Satiety is the feeling of fullness after eating, and it can be an important factor in successful long-term weight management. Studies have found that drinking carbonated water can help increase satiety levels, making it easier to stay fuller for longer and thereby reducing the overall amount of food consumed. This is thought to be due to the higher level of carbonation present in sparkling water which acts as a gastric stimulant, helping to increase energy expenditure and reduce hunger levels.

In addition, research suggests that sparkling water may aid digestion by stimulating gastric juices and enzymes which helps break down food more effectively. This can further enhance feelings of fullness, reducing cravings and helping you feel satisfied after meals with less food overall. 

Aids Digestion And Relieves Indigestion

Sparkling water is a great way to aid in digestion and relieve indigestion. It has been found that the carbonation present in sparkling water acts as a gastric stimulant, helping to increase energy expenditure and reduce hunger levels. This can be beneficial for those looking to stay fuller for longer, reducing overall food consumption while still feeling satisfied after meals. In addition, studies have suggested that the presence of carbonation in sparkling water may help stimulate gastric juices and enzymes, aiding the body in breaking down food more effectively.

Furthermore, this effervescent beverage can offer relief from digestive discomforts such as gas or bloating. Carbon dioxide gas is released when sparkling water is consumed which helps to relax the muscles around the intestines which can contribute to bloating or cramping. Further studies suggest that drinking sparkling water before or during a meal may help keep these uncomfortable symptoms at bay by allowing food to be broken down more efficiently due to its natural carbonation content.

In addition, some research has shown that drinking small amounts of sparkling water throughout the day can help balance out stomach acidity levels which can cause indigestion if left unchecked. Sparkling water also contains minerals such as calcium and potassium that are essential for proper digestion as well as electrolytes like sodium chloride which will help keep your electrolyte balance in check and stave off dehydration-related indigestion.

Overall, while there are still many unanswered questions surrounding sparkling water's potential health benefits, it appears clear that it can certainly be an effective tool in aiding digestion and relieving indigestion discomfort when consumed on a regular basis. It is important however to remember not to overdo it on sparkly beverages since they contain no calories or added sugars so they won't necessarily fill you up like other types of drinks would.

Further Read: Can Sparkling Water Help With Your Digestion?

Potential Health Benefits Include:

Additionally, some research has shown that drinking sparkling water can reduce the risk of kidney stones. This is due to its high mineral content, including potassium and calcium which are essential for proper digestion. Consuming these minerals in combination with other beneficial electrolytes like sodium chloride helps keep electrolyte balances in check and reduces the likelihood of kidney stone formation.

Studies have also suggested that sparkling water may offer protection against bone loss and osteoporosis by aiding levels of Vitamin D absorption from food sources. Vitamin D is an essential nutrient for healthy bones and teeth as it helps our bodies absorb calcium effectively.

Finally, while not a substitute for exercise or calorie counting, some studies have even pointed to weight loss benefits related to carbonated beverages such as sparkling water. This is due to their ability to act as a natural appetite suppressant by helping you stay fuller for longer periods of time and reducing overall food consumption. 

Disadvantages of Flavored Sparkling Water

diet soda vs sparkling water

Despite its many potential benefits, flavored sparkling water has a few disadvantages that should be considered before making it a regular part of your diet. For example, some studies have found that consuming large amounts of flavored carbonated beverages on a regular basis can lead to erosive tooth decay.

This is due to the presence of phosphoric acid in these drinks which increases the risk of enamel erosion over time. This study only includes carbonated beverages with acidic ingredients such as lime and lemon flavors. Consuming plain, homemade sparkling water will have no long-term effect on your tooth's enamel.

While sparkling water can be an attractive option for those who are looking for a healthier alternative to diet soda or regular water, it is important to make sure you are consuming sparkling water with fewer acidic ingredients and stick to plain sparkling water more than anything.

As with any other beverage choice, moderation is key and individuals should always consult with their physicians prior to starting any new dietary regime. With the right approach, however, sparkling water can offer some exciting health benefits that make it an excellent addition to any lifestyle.

Related Read: Is Drinking Sparkling Water Bad for Your Teeth?

Homemade Flavored Sparkling Waters

The 10 delicious flavored sparkling water options are as follows:

  1. Strawberry – This is a classic and always popular flavor with its tart yet sweet taste that is perfect for quenching summertime thirsts. It can help to naturally sweeten your drink while still keeping it healthy by controlling the sugar you add. One of our absolute favorite recipes is the Strawberry Soda. Make it today!
  2. Lemon – A favorite among many sparkling water fans, lemon adds a refreshingly tart flavor to any drink that you may be looking for on those hot days or when you need an extra pick-me-up. Learn how to make lemon syrup and easily whip up a delicious Lemon Soda today!
  3. Orange – A delicious citrusy flavor that is perfect for making your drinks even more refreshing and flavorful, orange infused sparkling water is also great for adding some sweetness without additives or preservatives. Make homemade Orange Soda today, you will not regret it!
  4. Peach – For those who like their drinks to have a bit of sweetness, peach flavored sparkling water does the trick perfectly with its subtle fruity notes and natural sweetness making it ideal for all occasions.
  5. Grapefruit – Grapefruit has become increasingly popular in recent years thanks to its tangy yet sweet taste that is perfect for adding some zing to your beverages without being overly sugary or acidic. If you're interested in grapefruit, you have to try our classic Grapefruit-Chamomile soda!
  6. Cherry – Cherries are often overlooked when it comes to flavoring beverages but their fruity flavor can make for an excellent addition to any drink if you’re looking for something with just a hint of sweetness and tartness mixed together in one sip! Our Cherry Soda is your one stop shop to all things sweet and tart. 
  7. Blueberry – Blueberries have been long known as superfoods due to their high levels of antioxidants but they can also add a nice burst of flavor when combined with sparkling water too! The slightly sweet, slightly tart notes make this combo all the more enjoyable while still being health conscious too. Make homemade Blueberry Soda today with your at home soda maker.
  8. Apple – Apple is another tried and true favorite that works wonderfully in combination with carbonated drinks especially since it already has naturally occurring sugars which give it just the right amount of sweetness needed! Our Apple Soda recipe is perfect for that fall cozy weather.
  9. Raspberry – For those who prefer sour flavors over sweet ones, raspberry is perfect as its intense flavor will not be missed once combined with bubbly drinks! Raspberries are also known for their high levels of antioxidants so this can be a great way to get the benefits from these nutritious berries without having to eat them directly! Check out our Raspberry Peach syrup, it's incredible. 
  10. Cranberry – Featuring an intense tartness that tends to linger after each sip, cranberry flavored sparkling water makes an excellent choice if you want something light yet flavorful all at the same time! Plus cranberries are packed full of health benefits so this could be an added bonus on top of everything else! Check out our delicious Cranberry soda recipe.

When it comes to choosing the best flavored sparkling water for you, there’s no single answer as it all depends on your personal preference. If you like more sweet flavors then fruit ones such as strawberry and peach could be a great choice whereas if you prefer tart flavors then something like raspberry or cranberry would make an excellent addition to any drink. Ultimately, the flavor that works best for you will depend on what type of taste you’re looking for!

Is Sparkling Water Better Than Diet Soda?

diet soda vs sparkling water

Yes, in most respects, sparkling water is considered a healthier alternative to diet soda. While both beverages may offer the fizzy sensation that many enjoy, the comparison largely ends there. Diet sodas contain artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame and sucralose, which have been linked to various health issues including weight gain and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.

In contrast, sparkling water (especially the unflavored variety) typically has no artificial sweeteners or other additives. It provides the same hydration benefits as still water, along with a pleasing bubbles-induced bite. However, it’s essential to note that flavored sparkling waters might contain added sugars, so reading the nutritional information is crucial. So, replace that can of diet soda with a refreshing sparkling water and say cheers to a healthier choice!

Mineral-Enhanced Sparkling Waters

Some brands of sparkling water go one step further and offer mineral-enhanced versions that contain added electrolytes such as potassium, magnesium, and calcium. These minerals are important for our health and can help to replenish lost nutrients in the body while also providing a great source of hydration. This type of sparkling water is an excellent choice if you’re looking to get some extra benefits from your drinks without compromising on taste!

Related Read: Mineral Water vs Sparkling Water: What's the Difference?

Carbonated Waters With Vitamin Additives

In addition to mineral-enhanced options, there are also some brands that offer sparkling waters with added vitamins. This type of drink is great for those looking to get a bit of a health boost from their drinks and can be especially beneficial if you’re looking for healthy alternatives to traditional soda or sugary juice drinks. Some popular flavors that contain added vitamin blends include orange and lemon but the choices are endless!

10 Unusual Scrumptious Ways To Enjoy Sparkling Water

Sparkling water is a healthy and refreshing alternative to sugary sodas, but it doesn't have to be boring. There are plenty of ways to make sparkling water more interesting and delicious. From adding fresh fruit for natural sweetness, to infusing herbs for a unique flavor profile, there's no shortage of creative recipes you can use to jazz up your sparkling water. Here are 10 unusual scrumptious ways to enjoy sparkling water that will tantalize your taste buds!

  1. Spicy Margarita – Add a fancy twist to your favorite margarita recipe by replacing the plain water with sparkling water for an extra bit of bubbly fun!
  2. DIY Lemonade – Skip out on store-bought lemonades which tend to be overly sweet and instead make your own healthy version at home using freshly squeezed lemons and sparkling water instead!
  3. Refreshing Tea – Instead of adding ice to your tea, why not try mixing it up with some carbonated drinks for a more exciting experience? This can also help to reduce any bitterness that may come from the tea itself without having to add too much sugar or other artificial sweeteners.
  4. Popsicles – Get creative with your sparkling water by freezing it into popsicles for a refreshing and tasty treat on hot summer days. You can even add fresh fruits or herbs to give them an extra bit of flavor if desired!
  5. Sparkling Iced Coffee – Keep your caffeine buzz going strong but still make sure you’re getting all the health benefits of sparkling water with this delicious combination! It also has some added antioxidants from the coffee that can make it even better for you in the long run too.
  6. Fruit Infused Waters – Make use of excess fruits that are laying around your kitchen by infusing them with carbonated drinks for a unique and flavorful drink that you won’t be able to

Related Read: 5 Surprising Uses for Sparkling Water

Switch Now From Diet Soda to a Healthy Alternative: Sparkling Water

Are you tired of drinking diet soda? It's time to switch now to sparkling water! Not only is it healthier, but it also contains no added sugars or artificial sweeteners. You can buy sparkling water in stores or make it at home using a soda maker!

We offer one of the best CO2 refill programs in the US so that you can enjoy your sparkling water without having to worry about running out of CO2. Plus, it's easy to make sparkling water at home! So next time you’re looking for a tasty drink option, consider sparking up some regular water. You won't be disappointed!

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