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Is Water Organic?

Is Water Organic?

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Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.

Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.

Many consumers prefer organic products, and recently there have been a number of organic bottled water products popping up.

In this article we’ll explain whether water is organic, in the context of organic certifications for food products, and clarify why some bottled water is listed as organic while some isn’t.

What Is The Organic Certification?

In the U.S., the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) certifies food products as organic with the familiar green-and-white seal if they meet a set of quality standards.

Specifically, organic foods and food byproducts cannot be grown using genetically modified organisms (GMOs), cannot contain artificial preservatives or flavors and must follow certain guidelines for pesticide use and animal health.

There is some medical research suggesting that eating a diet composed of organic foods is healthier than a diet of conventional foods. The linked study suggests that slightly reduced pesticide exposure along with increased plant metabolite ingestion are two ways that an organic diet may lead to superior health outcomes, but the research is still early-stage and we can’t yet say conclusively.

Is Water Organic?

Many consumers are confused because some bottled water products contain an organic seal while others do not. This confusion is understandable, since water isn’t “grown” like produce, and is a product category that’s free of pesticide and nutrient concerns.

The reason that some water bottles are organic and some aren’t is due to additive ingredients. If a water brand adds other organic ingredients to their formulation, and these added ingredients are certified organic, the brand can use the organic seal on their product label.

One popular brand that follows this strategy is called “Just Water” and uses recognizable cardboard packaging with natural additives such as mint.

Consider a water bottle that’s composed of 99% water and 1% organic mint. This bottle will bear the Certified Organic seal.

It’s important to note that the actual water itself is no different in quality between organic water products and standard water products. Water is two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom, and that is unchanged by organic labels. 

Is Organic Water Healthier?

There is no medical research suggesting that organic water is healthier than standard water. As referenced above, organic water only bears the seal due to added organic ingredients, so the purity of the water will vary based on the brand and filtration used.

There is some preliminary research suggesting that alkaline water may be healthier than tap water, but the research is too early-stage to say conclusively.

When consuming bottled water, there’s also the risk of ingestion of plasticizing chemicals such as BPA, which is an additional consideration.

We generally recommend filtered tap water as the most environmentally-friendly and healthy option. The best water filter, which we determined through research to be the Brita Soho, can reduce toxic contaminants such as heavy metals and and plasticizing chemicals.

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Some bottled water is labeled organic, but that doesn’t indicate that the actual water quality in those products is superior to the water quality in standard tap or bottled water. The organic seal on a water bottle just means that the product contains added ingredients which are certified organic.

We don’t recommend organic water products as they tend to be overpriced and there is no medical research suggesting they’re healthier than regular water.

Our recommendation is to invest in a quality water filter which can be acquired for under $30, and use it to filter tap water at home and remove toxic contaminants.

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