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{"id":556164055113,"title":"Cirkul Review: Does It Make Water Healthier?","created_at":"2022-02-02T21:00:56-05:00","body_html":"\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e\/\/ \u003c![CDATA[\n{\n \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\",\n \"@type\": \"Article\",\n \"headline\": \"Cirkul Review: Does It Make Water Healthier?\",\n \"keywords\": \"cirkul, cirkul review, cirkul reviews, cirkul water bottle, cirkul bottle, cirkul water, cirkul flavors, cirkul water bottle review, cirkul water bottle amazon\",\n \"description\": \"Our MD and research team review Cirkul’s bottles and beverage mixes based on medical research to determine if they make water healthier or if they're a waste of money. We also highlight some natural fruit-based alternatives.\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/cirkul-review\",\n\"author\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Taylor Graber MD\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/taylor-graber\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/taylor-j-graber-md-81351642\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Content Partner\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"medicine, health, anesthesiology, iv therapy, science, drugs, pharmaceutical, medical research, scientific research, medical journals, entrepreneurship, healthcare, orthopedic surgery, biomedical engineering\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"University of California San Diego\",\n \"Arizona University\",\n \"University of Arizona College of Medicine\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"contributor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Calloway Cook\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/calloway-cook\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/calloway-cook\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"President\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"entrepreneurship, dietary supplements, herbal supplements, eCommerce, medical research\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": \"S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University\"\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"editor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"DJ Mazzoni\",\n \"honorificSuffix\": [\n \"M.S.\",\n \"R.D.\",\n \"C.D.N.\",\n \"C.S.C.S.\"\n ],\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/dj-mazzoni\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/dj-mazzoni-rd-cdn-cscs-00a33038\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Medical Reviewer\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"exercise, drugs, pharmaceutical, health, workout, strength and conditioning, nutrition, dietetics, medicine, medical research, scientific research, scientific method, healthcare, patient care, wellness\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"State University of New York College Oswego\",\n \"D’Youville College\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"image\": {\n\"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n\"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Cirkul_Thumbnail.png?v=1643854775\",\n\"width\": \"2414\",\n\"height\": \"2414\"\n},\n\"citation\": [\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/why-bpa-free-doesnt-mean-anything\", \n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31424294\/\",\n\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/748967\/nutrients\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6097542\/\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5672138\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32284053\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32284053\/\",\n\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/173944\/nutrients\",\n\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/173468\/nutrients\",\n\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/lmnt-review\"\n],\n\"mentions\": [{\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"BPA\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"preservatives\"\n },\n {\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"artificial sweeteners\"\n }\n],\n\"datePublished\": \"2022-02-03\",\n\"copyrightHolder\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n},\n\"publisher\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/\",\n \"description\": \"Illuminate Labs is the most transparent supplement company in the U.S., and is a leading publisher of research-based health information.\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"supplements, science, nutrition, exercise, health, medication, pharmaceutical, wellness, diet, weight loss, medical research\",\n \"publishingPrinciples\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/editorial-guidelines\",\n \"logo\": {\n \"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Illuminate_Labs_Logo.png?v=1641249064\", \n \"width\": 150,\n \"height\": 150\n},\n \"foundingDate\": \"2019-01-30\",\n \"Address\": {\n \"@type\": \"PostalAddress\",\n \"streetAddress\": \"50 Union Street, Unit 9\",\n \"addressLocality\": \"Northampton\",\n \"addressRegion\": \"Massachusetts\",\n \"postalCode\": \"01060\",\n \"addressCountry\": \"US\"\n},\n \"sameAs\": [\n \"https:\/\/www.instagram.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/twitter.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/company\/illuminate-labs-supplements\",\n \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/channel\/UCpgSJAsIPb-fZ25djtTxBEA\"\n ]\n }\n}\n\/\/ ]]\u003e\u003c\/script\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Cirkul_Review_Article_Header_Image_Optimized.png?v=1643854477\" alt=\"\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan class=\"dc\"\u003eC\u003c\/span\u003eirkul makes water-related products intended to make drinking water easier. They sell portable water bottles and various functional water flavoring packets.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn this article we’ll review all of Cirkul’s products based on medical research to determine if any of them are worth the money, or if you should just stick to regular tap water.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eCirkul Bottle Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCirkul sells both plastic and stainless steel bottles. They advertise that their plastic bottles are “BPA-free”, but as we outlined in our article about what \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/why-bpa-free-doesnt-mean-anything\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ebpa free means\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, this designation isn’t actually safer.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCompanies may simply include other plasticizing chemicals like bisphenol S (BPS) in their BPA-free packaging, and these BPA replacement chemicals are shown \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31424294\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ein medical research\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e to be just as estrogenic as BPA.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe recommend the Cirkul stainless steel bottles only, and recommend avoiding plastic bottles.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe price of $35 for a stainless steel bottle is relatively high. Amazon has some stainless steel bottles for around half that price, so it may be worth shopping around if price is a concern.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eCirkul LifeSip Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Cirkul_LifeSip_Ingredients_Optimized.png?v=1643854631\" alt=\"Cirkul LifeSip ingredients list\" style=\"display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne of the categories of powdered flavoring packets sold by Cirkul is called “LifeSip” and is advertised as their option for “health-centric sippers.”\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe would disagree that these products are healthy.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCirkul advertises how LifeSip packets contain “essential B vitamins” but they contain these vitamins in comically insignificant amounts. As an example, the packets contain 0.1 micrograms (mcg) of \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eVitamin B12\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOne single egg contains over 0.5 mcg of Vitamin B12 \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/748967\/nutrients\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eaccording to the USDA\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, so a small serving of 3 eggs would provide around 1500% of the Vitamin B12 as in Cirkul LifeSip.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThese packets also contain \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003ecitric acid\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, which is naturally-occuring in citrus fruits like lemons, but when used as a food additive is manufactured from mold. A \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6097542\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e of case reports related to inflammation from citric acid ingestion details how 99% of the world’s production of manufactured citric acid is generated from a mutant strain of black mold.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis ingredient isn’t likely to cause harm in most patients, but out of an abundance of safety we recommend avoiding it because it has no nutritive benefit and clearly some level of risk.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCirkul LifeSip also contains two separate preservatives: \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003esodium benzoate\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e and \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003epotassium sorbate\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e. Medical research \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5672138\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ehas shown\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e that preservatives may cause negative metabolic effects, and even though these two preservatives are relatively safe, we recommend avoiding products with preservatives entirely.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cb\u003eSucralose\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e is an artificial sweetener in LifeSip, and regular consumption of this ingredient in healthy adults has been shown \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32284053\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ein a clinical trial\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e to cause insulin dysregulation.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eLifeSip also contains \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003enatural flavors\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, which is an ingredient category we recommend avoiding as we’ve discussed extensively in previous reviews. Unless the manufacturer lists the chemicals used for the flavoring agents, there is no way for consumers (or researchers like us) to determine if these natural flavors are safe and non-toxic.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOverall we find these packets to be essentially processed garbage and we do not recommend them.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eYes, they’re likely healthier than having a soda, but they’re full of questionable filler ingredients and we would recommend avoiding them entirely.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eCirkul FitSip Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCirkul FitSip has a very similar formulation to LifeSip, so we’ll avoid repeating our analysis of duplicated ingredients such as the preservatives.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe main advertised difference is that FitSip “contains electrolytes to help keep you in the game”.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAs we mentioned in our review of the popular \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32284053\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eLiquid IV hydration\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e powder packets, there isn’t really a documented clinical benefit for regular people to drink added electrolytes in their water. In any case, the amount of electrolytes is quite low in FitSip.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe packets contain 35 milligrams (mg) of \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003epotassium\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, which is \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/173944\/nutrients\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eless than 10%\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e of that in one single banana. They also contain 50 mg of \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003esodium\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e or \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/fdc.nal.usda.gov\/fdc-app.html#\/food-details\/173468\/nutrients\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e2% of the amount\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e in one teaspoon of table salt.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe don’t recommend this product and don’t feel as though it serves any functional purpose. For consumers who absolutely can’t stand the taste of regular water, we suppose it may be superior to alternative options like sugary sports nutrition drinks, but we definitely don’t feel like there’s any research suggesting this product provides specific health or performance benefits.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eCirkul GoSip Review\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe branding around GoSip involves its \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003ecaffeine\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e content: 30 mg per packet.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is unlikely to give any adult a “caffeinated kick” as Cirkul suggests, given that it’s less than a third of the caffeine content of one cup of coffee.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe can’t find any medical research suggesting this low of a dose of caffeine provides any nootropic or performance benefits in adults, and Cirkul doesn’t publish or link to any relevant studies, so we will consider this an ineffective dosage.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis product contains other stimulant compounds such as \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003eguarana extract\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e and \u003c\/span\u003e\u003cb\u003epanax ginseng extract\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e, but doesn’t publish the dose of these ingredients so there is no way to determine whether they’re effectively dosed or not.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt’s an ethical red flag when a company is adding stimulant ingredients to a formulation without listing the dose of those ingredients. This is unsafe for consumers. Based on the low caffeine dose we find it unlikely that these stimulant ingredients are included in dangerous doses, but it’s important that this information is provided to consumers nonetheless.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe don’t recommend this product for the same reasons as their other products.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eCirkul PureSip\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThese packets appear to have the best formulation from a health perspective when compared to their other offerings.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePureSip has no artificial sweeteners, but still contains citric acid, natural flavors and preservatives.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFor consumers set on purchasing Cirkul water flavoring packets, we’d recommend PureSip over the other three options, due to the lack of artificial sweeteners. However we don’t recommend this product in general.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eHealthier Alternatives\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFor consumers looking for an electrolyte packet product, we’d recommend \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/lmnt-review\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eLMNT\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e over any of Cirkul’s offerings. We have no affiliation with the LMNT brand nor do we receive any compensation for recommending them. We recently reviewed them and found their formulation to be safe and free of questionable additives.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eConsumers who are open to naturally-flavored drinks may want to consider products like coconut water or cactus water which have a naturally sweet but mild taste and are whole foods with significant levels of nutrients. \u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eLook for products without any ingredients other than the fruit; so for a coconut water product the only ingredient should be coconut water.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eConclusion\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt’s great that companies are trying to be innovative in helping consumers drink more water, but we find Cirkul’s consumable product offerings to be poorly formulated and relatively unhealthy.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTheir stainless steel bottle is fine, but seems overpriced.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe don’t recommend any of Cirkul’s powdered beverage mix packs because they all contain questionable additive ingredients. Drinking plain tap or filtered water would likely be superior from a health perspective, and save you money.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFor consumers who are working on improving their hydration but dislike the taste of plain water, we recommend trying naturally-flavored products like coconut water or cactus water. These are not only free of questionable additives but provide significant nutritional benefit.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","blog_id":49281925193,"author":"Calloway Cook","user_id":26601750601,"published_at":"2022-02-03T12:54:51-05:00","updated_at":"2022-02-03T12:54:51-05:00","summary_html":"We review hydration brand Cirkul’s bottles and beverage mixes based on medical research to determine if they make water healthier or if they're a waste of money. We also highlight some natural fruit-based alternatives.","template_suffix":"","handle":"cirkul-review","tags":"_related:hydration"}

Cirkul Review: Does It Make Water Healthier?

Cirkul Review: Does It Make Water Healthier?


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

Cirkul makes water-related products intended to make drinking water easier. They sell portable water bottles and various functional water flavoring packets.

In this article we’ll review all of Cirkul’s products based on medical research to determine if any of them are worth the money, or if you should just stick to regular tap water.

Cirkul Bottle Review

Cirkul sells both plastic and stainless steel bottles. They advertise that their plastic bottles are “BPA-free”, but as we outlined in our article about what bpa free means, this designation isn’t actually safer.

Companies may simply include other plasticizing chemicals like bisphenol S (BPS) in their BPA-free packaging, and these BPA replacement chemicals are shown in medical research to be just as estrogenic as BPA.

We recommend the Cirkul stainless steel bottles only, and recommend avoiding plastic bottles.

The price of $35 for a stainless steel bottle is relatively high. Amazon has some stainless steel bottles for around half that price, so it may be worth shopping around if price is a concern.

Cirkul LifeSip Review

Cirkul LifeSip ingredients list

One of the categories of powdered flavoring packets sold by Cirkul is called “LifeSip” and is advertised as their option for “health-centric sippers.”

We would disagree that these products are healthy.

Cirkul advertises how LifeSip packets contain “essential B vitamins” but they contain these vitamins in comically insignificant amounts. As an example, the packets contain 0.1 micrograms (mcg) of Vitamin B12.

One single egg contains over 0.5 mcg of Vitamin B12 according to the USDA, so a small serving of 3 eggs would provide around 1500% of the Vitamin B12 as in Cirkul LifeSip.

These packets also contain citric acid, which is naturally-occuring in citrus fruits like lemons, but when used as a food additive is manufactured from mold. A medical review of case reports related to inflammation from citric acid ingestion details how 99% of the world’s production of manufactured citric acid is generated from a mutant strain of black mold.

This ingredient isn’t likely to cause harm in most patients, but out of an abundance of safety we recommend avoiding it because it has no nutritive benefit and clearly some level of risk.

Cirkul LifeSip also contains two separate preservatives: sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate. Medical research has shown that preservatives may cause negative metabolic effects, and even though these two preservatives are relatively safe, we recommend avoiding products with preservatives entirely.

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener in LifeSip, and regular consumption of this ingredient in healthy adults has been shown in a clinical trial to cause insulin dysregulation.

LifeSip also contains natural flavors, which is an ingredient category we recommend avoiding as we’ve discussed extensively in previous reviews. Unless the manufacturer lists the chemicals used for the flavoring agents, there is no way for consumers (or researchers like us) to determine if these natural flavors are safe and non-toxic.

Overall we find these packets to be essentially processed garbage and we do not recommend them.

Yes, they’re likely healthier than having a soda, but they’re full of questionable filler ingredients and we would recommend avoiding them entirely.

Cirkul FitSip Review

Cirkul FitSip has a very similar formulation to LifeSip, so we’ll avoid repeating our analysis of duplicated ingredients such as the preservatives.

The main advertised difference is that FitSip “contains electrolytes to help keep you in the game”.

As we mentioned in our review of the popular Liquid IV hydration powder packets, there isn’t really a documented clinical benefit for regular people to drink added electrolytes in their water. In any case, the amount of electrolytes is quite low in FitSip.

The packets contain 35 milligrams (mg) of potassium, which is less than 10% of that in one single banana. They also contain 50 mg of sodium or 2% of the amount in one teaspoon of table salt.

We don’t recommend this product and don’t feel as though it serves any functional purpose. For consumers who absolutely can’t stand the taste of regular water, we suppose it may be superior to alternative options like sugary sports nutrition drinks, but we definitely don’t feel like there’s any research suggesting this product provides specific health or performance benefits.

Cirkul GoSip Review

The branding around GoSip involves its caffeine content: 30 mg per packet.

This is unlikely to give any adult a “caffeinated kick” as Cirkul suggests, given that it’s less than a third of the caffeine content of one cup of coffee.

We can’t find any medical research suggesting this low of a dose of caffeine provides any nootropic or performance benefits in adults, and Cirkul doesn’t publish or link to any relevant studies, so we will consider this an ineffective dosage.

This product contains other stimulant compounds such as guarana extract and panax ginseng extract, but doesn’t publish the dose of these ingredients so there is no way to determine whether they’re effectively dosed or not.

It’s an ethical red flag when a company is adding stimulant ingredients to a formulation without listing the dose of those ingredients. This is unsafe for consumers. Based on the low caffeine dose we find it unlikely that these stimulant ingredients are included in dangerous doses, but it’s important that this information is provided to consumers nonetheless.

We don’t recommend this product for the same reasons as their other products.

Cirkul PureSip

These packets appear to have the best formulation from a health perspective when compared to their other offerings.

PureSip has no artificial sweeteners, but still contains citric acid, natural flavors and preservatives.

For consumers set on purchasing Cirkul water flavoring packets, we’d recommend PureSip over the other three options, due to the lack of artificial sweeteners. However we don’t recommend this product in general.

Healthier Alternatives

For consumers looking for an electrolyte packet product, we’d recommend LMNT over any of Cirkul’s offerings. We have no affiliation with the LMNT brand nor do we receive any compensation for recommending them. We recently reviewed them and found their formulation to be safe and free of questionable additives.

Consumers who are open to naturally-flavored drinks may want to consider products like coconut water or cactus water which have a naturally sweet but mild taste and are whole foods with significant levels of nutrients. 

Look for products without any ingredients other than the fruit; so for a coconut water product the only ingredient should be coconut water.

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Conclusion

It’s great that companies are trying to be innovative in helping consumers drink more water, but we find Cirkul’s consumable product offerings to be poorly formulated and relatively unhealthy.

Their stainless steel bottle is fine, but seems overpriced.

We don’t recommend any of Cirkul’s powdered beverage mix packs because they all contain questionable additive ingredients. Drinking plain tap or filtered water would likely be superior from a health perspective, and save you money.

For consumers who are working on improving their hydration but dislike the taste of plain water, we recommend trying naturally-flavored products like coconut water or cactus water. These are not only free of questionable additives but provide significant nutritional benefit.





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