Natural water flavor enhancers

Most of us know we should be drinking more water. But when thirst kicks in, maybe we’re craving the flavor of a sports drink instead, or the afternoon caffeine boost of a soda.

That’s where liquid water enhancers come in, a relatively new player in the market that some experts see as a $1 billion business by 2020.

We’ve all seen them, whether in the beverage aisle or maybe the checkout of your local grocery. Made by brands such as Mio, Kool-Aid, Crystal Light, and available in flavors from berry pomegranate to tropical coconut and everything in between, they can turn your ordinary bottle of water into something closer to your favorite sports drink, if not a Tiki bar.

Some, such as Mio Energy, also add caffeine to help give you the lift you’re looking for; some, such as Mio Fit, boast supplemental vitamins and other health benefits.

So are they beneficial in the long run? To answer that question, said Rachel Wagner, dietitian with St. Elizabeth Physicians Weight Management Center, you should consider another: When you add flavor-enhanced water to your diet, what are you replacing?

“A lot depends on your motives,” Wagner said. “If you’re someone who never drinks water, then if you’re drinking water with Mio or Crystal Light, certainly it’s better than drinking a pop. But if you’re only drinking flavored water, then that might not be the best either.”

Wagner said dietitians recommend people take in a minimum of 64 ounces of water a day, potentially more depending on rehydrating needs. If you’re drinking a glass or two, say 16 ounces, of flavored water as part of your 64 ounces, then there’s no problem. But you should recognize the need to take in plain water as well.

While water enhancers are low or zero-calorie “a half-teaspoon serving of Mio, for example, has zero calories, zero grams of sugar and zero fat “that doesn’t mean there aren’t things to be aware of.

Water enhancers can pack a multitude of ingredients of uncertain value, including the artificial sweeteners aspartame and sucralose, “which have been shown to not have the greatest effect in the long term,” Wagner said. Other components in some brands, including Mio, include the preservative propylene glycol, an additive also found in airplane de-icing fluid, e-cigarette vaping fluid and car batteries.

Of course, if you want to give your water a little wrinkle, there are other options beyond the prefab concentrated flavorings… “Instead of throwing in the chemicals, you can add a slice of lemon or lime,” Wagner suggested. “You can also find waters infused with strawberry, mint or cucumber, again without throwing in the chemicals.”

Wagner also cautioned to watch your intake of caffeinated waters. Caffeine’s diuretic properties will cause you to excrete water, which can in effect defeat the purpose of drinking more water.

“Some people do want that punch of caffeine, but you don’t want that to be your only source of hydration,” she said. “Then you’re missing the point of hydrating.”

For more information on adding liquid water enhancers to your diet talk to your primary care physician or schedule an appointment at the St. Elizabeth Physicians Weight Management Center by calling 859-212-4625 (GOAL). You can also watch our free medical weight management seminar online.

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Some people love the clean, pure taste of plain water. They drink it all day, every day, rarely leaving the house without a quart in tote.

Others sip it now and then, but typically opt for anything but. For them, chugging enough liquid to stay healthy is a chore.

Dropping slices of lemon, cucumber and other fresh produce in the water pitcher is a great option. But many people opt instead for those mini-bottles of water drops, concentrated flavor enhancers that instantly transform plain water into a soft drink. These drops are flavored to taste like tea, cocktails, fruit drinks and more.

Some are made with natural ingredients and even offer trace amounts of vitamins, potassium or salt to help with hydration. But the bulk of these water enhancers contain many of the same questionable additives that go into mass market soft drinks. They are meant to enhance flavor of water — nothing else.

Since serving size is entirely up to personal taste, and none of these flavorings offer significant sodium, fat or calories, the only nutrition information listed is for vitamins and other nutrients, if they happen to be present. All of these drops, which come in 1.6 to 2-ounce bottles, contain artificial colors and flavors, unless noted. Below is a drip and sip tour of the options.

Arizona Lemon Iced Tea

A few drops turn water into sweet bottled tea with a twist of lemon. It has a decidedly fresh, natural flavor, thanks in part to shots of pear concentrate and honey, and fewer additives than most. $3.99 at CVS. (3 ½ stars)

Gold Emblem Strawberry Lemonade

The mix of lemon and strawberry makes for a refreshing, tangy-sweet gulp that also delivers a touch of sodium. $2.99 at CVS. (3 ½ stars)

Dasani Drops Strawberry Kiwi

There’s no hint of kiwi in this, but the strawberry kick provides a pleasantly fruity, fresh flavor with a good balance of sweetness for those who like a sweeter drink. $3.99 at Lucky. (3 ½ stars)

Propel Berry

These blue drops add just a hint of flavor, and a good dose of nutrients that instantly turn water into a sport drink, adding 25 percent niacin and B6, plus sodium and a touch of potassium. $2.50 on sale at Lucky. (3 stars)

Skinny Girl Sweetened Blueberry Acai Water Enhancer

Less is more with this concentrate. It’s minimally sweet with understated flavors, but it works. Its pleasant flavor is due to a blend of sugar, stevia and maltodextrin and its bright color comes from vegetable extract. $3.99 at CVS. (3 stars)

Arnold Palmer Half & Half

The combination of lemon and tea is a hit, but this concentrate begs for fresher, more vibrant lemon flavor. $3.99 at CVS. (2 ½ stars)

Sunny Select Replenish Berry Pomegranate

Even though these drops taste more sweet than fruity — think grape Kool-Aid — they provide a bonus dose of B6, B3 and B12 vitamins. $3.39 at Lucky. (2 ½ stars)

Aquafina Flavor Splash Berry On

Those who don’t mind nondescript berry punch flavor might be happy with this enhancer from Coca-Cola. $3.29 at Lucky. (2 stars)

Crystal Light Berry Sangria

When your taste buds can’t find the fruit, it’s a problem. This uber-sweet concentrate lacks balance, no matter how much you dilute it. $3.99 at CVS. (1 ½ stars)

Mio Strawberry Watermelon

Entirely forgettable. This doesn’t deliver either strawberry or watermelon flavor, and the sugar level is over-the-top. $3.99 at Lucky. (1 star)

Nestea Liquid Water Enhancer Iced Tea with Lemon

This fake-tasting concoction doesn’t have even a hint of freshness. $3.99 at CVS. (½ star)

SweetLeaf Sweet Drops Berry

The overwhelming flavor of Stevia buries any hint of berry in this ultraexpensive, all-natural vial of concentrate. $14.99 at Sprouts. (No stars. I want a refund)

Reviews are based on product samples purchased by this newspaper or provided by manufacturers. Contact Jolene Thym at [email protected] Read more Picky Eater at www.thepickyeateronline.com.

Contents

Is MiO Bad For You?

Grade

F

Short answer

MiO is Bad for you. It is loaded with artificial sweeteners, artificial colors, and toxic chemicals. This product should be avoided completely.

F

×

Letter Grade for Mio

F

Category ‘F’ is for things that fail to bring anything beneficial to the table, and are very harmful to your health. We recommend completely avoiding anything in this category. Long-term side effects of ‘F’ items are usually very serious.

View Full Grading System

Category ‘A’

A+

Very healthy and numerous health benefits. Side effects are rare. Things rated an ‘A+’ are typically necessary for survival (for example, water).

A

Very healthy and numerous health benefits. A few harmful qualities may be associated, but only under certain circumstances such as an allergic reaction.

A-

Very healthy and numerous health benefits. Harmful qualities may be associated, but aren’t usually serious.

It is important to note that even the best things in life can become bad in immoderate amounts. So, although something may be rated an ‘A+’, overconsumption/overdoing can bring unwanted effects.

Category ‘B’

B+

Very beneficial to your health. Things rated a ‘B+’ may have a few harmful qualities to pay attention to.

B

Overall beneficial to your health. Things rated a ‘B’ may have some harmful qualities to pay attention to.

B-

More beneficial to your health than not. However, harmful qualities are most likely associated and shouldn’t be overlooked.

The main difference between category ‘A’ and category ‘B’ is the harmful qualities typically present in ‘B’ items. Serious side effects are usually uncommon, but are still possible and should be taken note of.

Category ‘C’

C+

Both beneficial and harmful qualities associated. Things rated a ‘C+’ are typically a bit more on the beneficial side. Still, moderation is important.

C

A fairly even ratio of beneficial and harmful qualities. Moderation is important. Very general topics that can lean towards both sides of the spectrum will be placed here as well. Rice, for example, can be good or bad depending on the type.

C-

More harmful than beneficial. Side effects are common, especially when consumed/done excessively. Moderation is very important.

Category ‘C’ usually denotes to both good and bad qualities. When it comes to this category, it is important to keep this word in mind: moderation.

Category ‘D’

D+

Harmful to your health. Although benefits may be associated, the bad most likely outweighs the good. Moderation is very important.

D

Harmful to your health. A few benefits may be associated, but the bad outweighs the good. Moderation is extremely important.

D-

Harmful to your health. Very few, if any, benefits are present. Things in this category should be avoided as much as possible.

Category ‘D’ is typically for things that are more harmful than beneficial. While consuming/doing something unhealthy once in a blue moon shouldn’t hurt, we definitely recommend eliminating ‘D’ items as a regular part of your routine/diet.

Category ‘F’

F

Category ‘F’ is for things that fail to bring anything beneficial to the table, and are very harmful to your health. We recommend completely avoiding anything in this category. Long-term side effects of ‘F’ items are usually very serious.

Category ‘N’

N

‘N’ stands for neutral. Things placed into this category are generally (a) neither good nor bad for you, or (b) lack the necessary evidence to reach any conclusions.

Close

Long answer

MiO is a relatively recent development in the beverage world. It is a “liquid water enhancer”, meaning that one small squirt (1/2 teaspoon) of the concentrated liquid can flavor an entire bottle of water. It is packaged in a small, 1.52-ounce plastic squeeze bottle and comes in quite a few flavors. MiO is actually owned by Kraft Foods.

There are four lines of MiO: Original, Energy, Fit, and Vitamins. Each line has a unique quality. MiO Original has a long list of flavors and does not report to have any extra benefits, other than added taste. MiO Energy offers a boost of caffeine to give consumers a pick-me-up; this line even has coffee-flavored options. MiO Fit is designed to replace your sports drink with its extra electrolytes and B vitamins. Finally, MiO Vitamins strives to give consumers an extra lift of nutrients through the addition of three different B vitamins (B3, B6, and B12). MiO Vitamins also offers a “naturally sweetened” option, using stevia extract.

MiO is an extremely concentrated liquid containing some chemical ingredients. You can find various artificial colors, associated with hyperactivity, distractibility, carcinogens, numerous allergies, and much more—depending on the specific colors added.

The three artificial sweeteners within the beverage enhancers pose grave concerns. MiO uses Sucralose (Splenda), as its primary sweetener. It is produced by chlorinating white sugar, but this process gives sucralose added problems like heavy metals. The FDA approves it as 98% safe, with the remaining 2% containing all those heavy metals. The majority of sucralose is not absorbed by the body, which is why it is considered a non-caloric sweetener, but whatever is absorbed by the body concentrates in the kidneys, liver, and GI (gastrointestinal) tract. Long-term use of this sweetener could, therefore, cause problems like immune dysfunction, birth defects, and cancer. As with many artificial sweeteners, it has not been studied long enough to conclusively determine all of the long-term effects.

Acesulfame potassium (Ace-K) has a lot of controversy swirling around it. The research remains inconclusive on the effects on humans. One big concern with this particular sweetener is that because it possesses a bitter “chemical-like” taste, it is rarely alone. This sweetener is usually paired up with another sweetener that often has a worse reputation. (Guilty by association?) There has been some inconclusive evidence involving mice, pointing to neurological damage being a possible side effect.

The third artificial sweetener, Stevia, is labeled on products as “naturally sweetened”. Stevia is a sweet powder formed on the leaves of an herb. However, the sweetener was actually placed inside the product, making it not “naturally sweetened”. Sugar is also derived from the leaves of many plants, however, you cannot dump a bunch of it in a drink and use a label that says “naturally sweetened”. The labeling of the product is deceptive. There is very little research surrounding Stevia and some rather questionable situations surrounding its approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

In addition, studies have linked the preservative, potassium sorbate, with compromising immunity in humans. Moreover, numerous test tube studies have shown a great toxicity towards human DNA, causing mutations to blood cells. Propylene glycol, a form of mineral oil, can cause a mild allergic reaction in the skin in those with eczema.

MiO has already demonstrated deception on their product labeling, by labeling it as naturally sweetened, when a sweetened additive is actually added to the beverage. It has three artificial sweeteners and numerous artificial colors. Overall, it sounds like a product that is worth skipping. The best nourishment that you can get is a large glass or purified spring water. Spice it up a little by putting some fruit in it!

Possible short-term side effects

  • skin rash
  • asthma attack
  • distractibility/hyperactivity

Possible long-term side effects

  • birth defects
  • immune dysfunction
  • impaired neurological function
  • cell mutation
  • cancer

Ingredients to be aware of

  • sucralose
  • acesulfame potassium
  • artificial colors
  • potassium sorbate
  • propylene glycol

Healthier alternative (what is this?)

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Suggest improvement or correction to this article
Written by DeeAnne Oldham | 04-18-2016

04-18-2016
Written by DeeAnne Oldham
Suggest improvement or correction

What is Mio Energy Water Enhancer?

Mio Energy Water Enhancer is a liquid concentrate that is supposed to be mixed into water or sparkling water, in order to enhance the taste. It contains 60mg of caffeine per squeeze, but other than that, there are no significant differences compared to the original water enhancer.

Mio Energy Water Enhancer comes in 2 different product lines – the regular energy enhancer, and the coffee flavors.

Mio comes in three types – the Water Enhancer, Mio Energy, and Mio Vitamins, which are all supposed to enhance normal water.

As of 2019, Mio also launched a line of powdered beverages to complement their existing products.

Mio bottles are all the same size across the board, 1.62 fl.oz of liquid.

Where is Mio Energy Water Enhancer made?

Mio Liquid Water Enhancer is made by Kraft Foods, a company perhaps more well known for their products such as Jell-O, Kool Aid, Kraft (mostly dairy products like Kraft Singles), Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Velveeta.

The company is based in Chicago, Illinois.

Mio comes in three types- energy, original and vitamin.

Mio Energy Water Enhancer Ingredients

  • 0 calories
  • 0g total fat
  • 0mg sodium
  • 0g total carbohydrates
  • 0g sugars
  • 0g protein

It is not a significant source of calories from fat, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium and iron.

It also contains trace amounts of:

  • Water
  • Malic acid
  • Citric acid
  • Less than 2% of natural flavor
  • Sucralose
  • Acesulfame potassium
  • Potassium citrate
  • Gum arabic
  • Sucrose acetate isobutyrate
  • Red 40
  • Potassium sorbate

On first glance, it doesn’t even make sense that this is a real product. Besides some artificial sweetener and some added acid (not even in big enough amounts to be accounted for in the nutritional facts), what really is in Mio Liquid Water Enhancer besides food coloring?

Again, we have the sweetener culprits, sucralose and acesulfame potassium, which are both not particularly great or beneficial to your health.

In my opinion, you would get a much better taste with some fruit concentrate added to your water, which would help you avoid the artificial sweeteners in Mio.

Mio Energy Water Enhancer flavors

Fruit flavors:

  • Wicked Blue Citrus
  • Black Cherry
  • Tropical Fusion
  • Green Thunder
  • Strawberry Pineapple Smash
  • Acai Berry Storm

Coffee flavors:

  • Iced Vanilla Java
  • Iced Mocha Java

I’m quite curious as to whether or not the coffee flavors are like adding a single shot to your drink. Is it meant to be added to water or to actual coffee?

It markets itself as an ‘iced coffee concentrate’, but I’m doubtful whether it actually tastes as good as a regular coffee.

Mio Energy Water Enhancer caffeine content

Each ‘squeeze’ of Mio Energy Water is supposed to contain 60mg of caffeine. Given that there are around 18 squeezes per bottle, that comes out to about 1080mg of caffeine, a really concentrated amount!

With 60mg of caffeine per serve, Mio has much less caffeine than some of the strongest energy drinks on the market.

The best part about Mio is that you can control your intake and how strong you want the drink to be – if you’re not particularly sensitive to caffeine, you could add perhaps 2-3 squeezes for a single drink, but they do not recommend you drinking the whole thing in one go, for obvious health reasons.

Nutritional facts on the back of a Mio carton. It’s a tiny bottle!

Is Mio Energy Water Enhancer bad for you?

Seeing as there isn’t really much in it, I wouldn’t say that Mio Energy Water Enhancer is necessarily completely bad for you.

It isn’t an obvious source of carbs, sugar or calories, but there are a couple of red flags:

Sucralose

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener that is supposed to replace natural sugars in food and drinks. Although sucralose has been deemed safe by government authorities, there have been concerns about the side effects that occur after consuming this sweetener.

Sucralose is a simple sugar made from sugar in a chemical process where 3 hydrogen-oxygen groups are replaced with chlorine atoms.

Sucralose has been found to reduce good gut bacteria (the ones that help improve your digestion – this study found that up to 12 weeks after the experiment, the gut bacteria had still not returned). It can also help you lose weight to some extent, if you replace sugar in your diet with sucralose – but not enough evidence about the effects of long-term use of sucralose have been examined.

As with many modern chemicals, there often isn’t enough precedence for scientists and researchers to clearly state that these are side effects that are associated with the chemicals – only data collected over time will tell what effects the chemicals really have on the human body.

Red 40

Although this is a widely used coloring, Red 40 has been shown to have certain compounds, such as benzidine and 4-aminobiphenyl, that research has linked to cancer.

In addition to that, research has also shown that food dyes can impair learning in young children, create allergies, increase hyperactivity, as well as irritability and aggressiveness.

More research definitely has to be done to determine the exact effects of food dye in children, but so far, the results don’t look very promising.

What is a water flavor enhancer?

A water flavor enhancer is supposed to do just that – enhance the flavor of your water, for those that can’t stand drinking regular water. They usually contain sugar, flavorings, and some colorings as well.

However, does adding Mio to water still count as ‘drinking water’?

The short and simple answer is no.

Nothing can really be a true substitute for water, and even though Mio claims that it has ‘0 sugar’, it still contains artificial sweeteners, which affect your body in a whole host of different ways and have been shown to affect your gut bacteria (as in the study linked to above).

Sure, in the long run, it does count as consuming liquid that your body needs, but the flavors, sweeteners and colorings are not supposed to be put in your body over an extended period of time.

Are water flavor enhancers healthy?

Not particularly. The ‘water’ aspect is certainly good, as it provides you with hydration, but in terms of nutritional value, besides the tiny amounts of vitamins, there isn’t really much there.

These enhancers might have ‘zero calories’, but what about the sweeteners? It’s probably a lot healthier to flavor your drinks with actual fruit, which you can do very easily just by getting a water bottle with a built in infuser- you can add in fruit of your choice, and your water will be delicious.

If you really want something that’s healthier than most energy drinks and energizing at the same time, try REIZE, an energy drink in powder form that contains 1000mg of taurine, something that is a lot more energizing and helpful than just stuffing yourself full of caffeine and trying to trick yourself into thinking that flavored water is healthy.

REIZE also contains a sensible amount of caffeine, 50mg per sachet. That’s a refreshing change after trying a lot of energy drinks with 200mg (or more) caffeine per can.

Mio energy water enhancer may come in 8 different flavors, but is it really beneficial to your health? I don’t think so.

How much does Mio Energy Water Enhancer cost?

A single container of Mio Energy Water Enhancer costs about $3.79, and a 6 pack of Mio Energy Water costs $32.48.

$3.79 seems like quite a lot to pay for such a small bottle, but if you consider that you can make 18 drinks with one little carton, it comes up to about $0.21 per drink, which isn’t too bad!

I would say that the caffeine content is a little low considering the fact that it doesn’t contain any other energy-boosting ingredients. 60mg is half a cup of coffee, so you would likely need to put two to three squirts in a single drink in order to feel the full effects – as mentioned, caffeine is the only thing it has going for it here, there aren’t any other energy supplements to add to the energy boost.

From my experience, pure caffeine isn’t all that effective an energy boost without the B vitamins, taurine and all the other good stuff you find in many of the best energy drinks.

Where to buy Mio Energy Water Enhancer

You can buy Mio Energy Water Enhancer on Amazon, and also on Ebay. Although, it seems like Amazon often has the better deals.

If you want to buy it in a physical store, try somewhere like Walgreens, Target, Walmart, or your local gas station.

Mio Energy vs REIZE

Mio and REIZE are more similar than you would think – although one is in liquid form and the other is in powdered form, both are supposed to be mixed into water or sparkling water in order to be consumed, and both are supposed to give you some form of energy.

Caffeine

Mio contains 60mg of caffeine per drink, while REIZE has 50mg of caffeine per serving.

What REIZE lacks for in caffeine it makes up for elsewhere, with added vitamins, taurine and ginseng to give the drink an extra boost and nutritional value.

Mio doesn’t have much nutritional value in comparison, and there doesn’t seem to be much point in adding it to your water in comparison.

Sugar

Mio does not contain any sugar, and neither does REIZE.

Mio uses sucralose, the artificial sweetener, while REIZE uses acesulfame potassium and aspartame, the same combination as another well-known drink, Coke Zero.

Price

REIZE is about $1 for a single drink, but Mio is $3.12 for a bottle, that is supposed to contain 18 servings.

Although REIZE seems more expensive than Mio, I think that REIZE is definitely worth more, as the efficiency levels are the same, but the taste and overall nutritional value is a lot better.

REIZE also gets its energy from taurine, a natural body chemical compound, so it’s not as harmful to your body as just consuming a ton of caffeine and sugar, like you’ll find in many energy drinks.

Mio Energy Water Enhancer review

This is the vitamin version of Mio- adorable, isn’t it? I wish it tasted as good as it looked!

* all opinions expressed in this review are mine *

Visuals

The bottle was surprisingly small – I didn’t realize that such a small container could actually have 18 drinks’ worth of liquid in it! I also thought that the design was really cute – it was like a teardrop, which really tied into the whole idea of it being a water enhancer.

Nice.

The color of the drink was a really alarming shade of red, that I would actually call neon. Not a fan of putting that into my body to be honest, but this was all for science. After drinking some of it, there was a distinct red tinge on my teeth but I might have been imagining things.

Taste

Very, very plastic. That’s the only word I can use to describe it. It smelt like a children’s vitamin gummy, and the color was just as bright.

I didn’t feel like it added anything to the water except an unpleasant sweetness, and it had a really strange sugary after-taste as well. Honestly, I prefer the taste of water to this strange, barely flavored concoction.

I think the sweeteners actually made it worse, rather than better, in this case.

Effect

Not really as effective as I had imagined – about an hour after taking it, I was still yawning and trying to stay awake. I decided to take a nap anyway, and drink a real glass of water after my disappointing experience.

I’m not sure that it actually did much, to be honest, and I wouldn’t really be in a rush to try it again.

Final Roundup

Overall, I don’t think that the taste is great, unless you’re a fan of artificial tasting things. The effect also is not as energizing as you would expect, and for the price, you could get a single, efficient and great tasting energy drink that actually does the job.

Or a few energy drinks if you know where to find some more affordable options.

(Wink wink)

Mio doesn’t particularly give you any health benefits and does not really taste that good, but if you’re bored of your regular water, it’s a way to spice things up.

Alternatives to Mio Energy Water Enhancer

There are lots of great energy drinks on the market. If you’re looking for some ready-to-drink energy drinks that give a bit more energy than Mio, take a look at:

• Monster

• Red Bull

• Rockstar

• Celsius

• XS

• Monster Import (different to original Monster)

• Rip It

• Bing energy drink

• Bang (not to be confused with Bing!)

• Guru

• Xyience

Powdered energy drinks are also an option, and they tend to be more convenient and also more affordable than a lot of the market leading energy drinks, but with the same great flavor and efficacy:

  • Gfuel
  • Zipfizz
  • Advocare Spark
  • REIZE (10 out of 10)

You could also take a look at Vivarin caffeine pills if you are looking for something that’s quick and easy to take. The energy boost may not be up to scratch with some of the above mentioned energy drinks though.

There are lots of great energy drinks out there that could be a good substitute for Mio. In particular, REIZE is a powdered energy drink that is easy to carry around and to make – just add water.

At 50mg of caffeine, REIZE contains around the same amount of caffeine as a single serving of Mio, but in addition to that, it also contains some other great energy-boosting ingredients.

REIZE is just as convenient and versatile, since you can add it to all types of drinks – soda, hot water, cold water, flavored juice, it’s up to you.

REIZE ships right to your door for around $1 per drink, more affordable than most energy drinks on the market.

Give REIZE a try today and you might just find that you prefer it to Mio.

Last Updated on November 16, 2019

Flavored water enhancers — Bad for you?

Dear Reader,

Oh MiO my… what’s the deal with water enhancers?! Seeing unfamiliar ingredients on a label can be alarming, and things can get heated among food safety researchers when it comes to items with added flavors and sweeteners, like MiO. First and foremost, ingredients in water enhancers are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in food products, so there’s no funny business there. On top of that, there’s a lot of information floating around out there about water enhancers, leading to lots of confusion for consumers who are just looking to spice up the way they stay hydrated!

For those unfamiliar, water enhancers, like Mio, are liquids that can be added to plain ol’ water to enhance taste. Common ingredients include sugars, various flavorings, and artificial colors. So, is it safe? While these ingredients are FDA-approved and found in many foods and beverages, there are a few ingredients that may potentially impact your health:

  • Propylene glycol serves as a solvent in items with added colors and flavors. It’s also used in some paints and plastics, which raises some eyebrows about its safety. Enough studies have demonstrated its safety that the FDA and other organizations have deemed it A-OK for use, as long as it doesn’t exceed five percent of your daily intake (which would be a very, very large amount!). Such extreme doses have led to kidney damage in other species, but a squirt of a water enhancer has just a tiny fraction of that amount.
  • Sucralose is an artificial sweetener 600 times sweeter than table sugar. The FDA reviewed over 100 studies and has concluded that it’s safe to eat. However, some watchdog groups say “not so fast!” because of reports of negative effects in rodents (leukemia and effects on the thymus gland). Although lots of evidence says sucralose is safe for humans, these animal studies may lead some to prefer to shy away from it.
  • Acesulfame potassium (a.k.a., “Ace-K”), an artificial sweetener that’s 200 times sweeter than sugar, was also approved as safe by the FDA after a review of nearly 100 studies. But, some food safety advocates have pointed out that a lot of those studies were done back in the ‘70s and had some serious design flaws.
  • Artificial colors are used in a huge variety of foods and beverages, and each one ranks differently in terms of safety. A few key points: Blue-1 and Yellow-5 can cause allergic reactions in some people and it’s suspected that some dyes may cause hyperactivity in some children; more research on the safety of the dyes is needed, as they are so commonly used.

A few servings of a water enhancer (used as instructed on the label) are unlikely to expose you to enough of these ingredients to cause harm. As they say, everything in moderation. Water enhancers also have many potential benefits — like keeping you hydrated and helping you avoid sugary drinks like sodas. Making a decision about a water enhancer may come down to weighing the pros and cons of what matters most to you. Would you prefer items without added flavors and colors? Do you go for plain white sugar over artificial sugars? How important is it to you that ingredients are organic? You could also explore the many other ways to diversify your hydration choices: seltzer or infused water are just a couple of the many water-enhancing alternatives available. Happy hydrating!

Alice!

Do flavors you add to water count as “water”?

We all know water is superior hydration (with an exception for some extreme sports) but for some reason, you just don’t like it or you can’t make yourself drink enough of it, you need flavor!

There are all kinds of water enhancing products out there that involve pouring powder packs or squeezing cute little containers into your water. Most sing their praises as “No calories! No sugar! No caffeine!” But are they good for you and can they take the place of regular water?

The short answer is, “no”. There is no substitute for water and they shouldn’t replace plain water.

If something tells you it has nothing in it and yet it’s sweet, it has something in it. In the case of the new MiO water enhancer, that something is sucralose which is nearly 600 times sweeter than sugar and is also the same ingredient used in Splenda which swirls with health controversy to this day.

But does this count as your water consumption?

Technically yes, but it shouldn’t. These flavored drinks should be seen as a sometimes thing, not an all the time thing. Your body and fitness needs the clear stuff and plenty of it. Sucralose, and most of the other artificial sweeteners, sometimes have the uncomfortable side effect of bloating and stomach issues. If all your hydration came from flavored water, you may find yourself not feeling well.

The FDA deems it safe and perhaps in the quantities you drink it in, it is. But the fact remains that if you buy something packaged to add to your water, you are adding chemicals to your body. Though we are probably inhaling and rubbing against chemicals all day long (car fumes, perfumes, cleaners, etc), this one gets ingested into your guts.

“But isn’t it better to go sugar-free if I’m trying to lose weight and get fit?”

In general, yes, it’s better to avoid sugar as much as possible, but it also depends on what and how much you’re consuming. There is no one answer for every body.

Here are a few positives and negatives to adding sugar-free flavors to your water:

Benefits

• If you’re addicted to sugary drinks and you’re working to wean yourself off them, and if cold-turkey isn’t your style, the sugar-free versions can help you transition into healthier beverage drinking which can save thousands of calories and benefit your health.

• Too much sugar doesn’t just add weight, it’s bad for almost every piece of your body from your skin, to your brain. It’s one of the leading causes for the rise in type 2 diabetes.

• If you just want some flavor now and again, the amounts of sucralose probably aren’t harmful (though I’m not a scientist so I’m using the word probably).

Not so beneficial

• It’s chemicals.

• It gives people a false sense of healthy. Things that are sugar free or fat free aren’t necessarily healthy or better for you than their real version. You need to read the entire label and see what ingredients are being swapped. You can’t have sweet with “no sugar added” labels.

• It’s a bad idea to rely on these flavored waters for all your hydration. Your body needs clear water, and enough of it, for good health and fitness gains. There is controversy swirling about the safety of of artificial sweeteners and their long term use.

Flavor your water tips!
– Instead of buying packets and squirts, add some real fruit juice to your water. Squeeze some orange, lemon, lime, or even a mint leaf into your water. Natural and good for you!

– Chew a piece of gum (spearmint is my favorite) while you’re drinking water. Viola – Flavor!

In the end, the answer is to drink straight H2O. Don’t talk yourself into the fake flavors being “good for you”, they aren’t but if you love some sweet water once in awhile, then it’s certainly a much better choice than the sugar filled drinks out there. Do your research and decide if they are worth the risk but there simply is no substitute for the clear stuff.

When done right, hiking and camping trips are a lot of fun: you spend your day enjoying in nature and taking in plenty of that warm sunshine. Since you do a lot of walking and moving, your body perspires and loses a fair amount of its fluids. This is why it’s crucial to stay hydrated and healthy while being on the move up in the mountains.

One way to make sure you’re drinking enough water and replenishing whatever gets lost from your body is to pack some of the best water enhancers out there!

If you are wondering how a water enhancer can be that an important item in your backpack, read this. A common problem around nature lovers is that so many people tend to get carried away and forget to drink enough water while being on the move – they pack their water bottles and only take them out once on top instead of hydrating gulp by gulp. There are others who just don’t like the plain flavor water has and feel more motivated to drink more if there is some light flavoring to it.

Whatever the reason might be, this is where the water enhancers come into play. A fairly new product on the market, enhanced water might prove to be not only flavored water as many describe it, but a drink rich with the necessary vitamins and minerals. It could be an easy and cheap way to prevent dehydration and allow you to finish your hiking trip in great condition.

Hydration – why is it so important?

The human bodies are almost 60% water – no wonder it’s one of the basic elements in nature. Your body needs water to maintain all of its vital functions – keeping the organs working properly, regulating the body temperature and transporting all of the nutrients throughout the body.

Your body would be able to somehow survive without food for days and even weeks, depending on the circumstances, but not without water. Although there are known survivors who managed to live up to ten days without water, the odds may not work like that to everyone’s favor – the majority of people would be completely dehydrated and dead after six or seven days.

That is why it’s essential to stay hydrated during camping and hiking trips when you are at a higher altitude and more physically active. In order not to become dehydrated, you have to drink more often during the day and in smaller intervals, such as a gulp of water each 15-20 minutes.

If you’re not sure whether you’re staying hydrated enough or you simply tend to forget to drink as often, you can always check the color of your urine – it should be lightyellow (or completely colorless) and odorless.

However, don’t wait until you’re feeling thirsty to drink. Being thirsty is your body signaling you that you are already dehydrated!

Introducing the Water Enhancer

The water enhancers are the product that is supposed to ‘enhance’ your water with vitamins, minerals and important salts you lose during periods of prolonged and demanding physical activity, which explains why they would be a good thing to bring on your hiking trip.

They are sold in small and practical bottles that can be easily transported everywhere – some travel sized can even be attached to your keychain. You just add a drop or two in your bottle and that’s it – fast, easy and simple!

Water enhancers are sold in different flavors. If you have more of a sweet tooth, you can easily grab some fruity-flavored enhancers that are calorie-free – you’ll drink plenty of water without even noticing you do so. If you opt for something more refreshing, then there is a fine selection of flavors such as green tea or peppermint which would be ideal for hot summer days.

Some can be without any added sugar and use other sweeteners as well, such as stevia. The sweeteners can help in lowering or completely eliminating the calories of the drink. Others don’t skip the sugar but promise it is used in so low quantities, that it’s not enough to cause any harm to the consumer.

The final decision on which water enhancer to buy is yours. However, there are some things you should keep in mind when looking for the best one.

Making the Right Choice

Generally, the water enhancers are mostly sold as sugar-free and with zero calories, making them the perfect alternative for those wanting to avoid any other soft drink but still add a bit of flavor in their water. Another good point is that there are some enhancers on the market that are aimed towards professional athletes and trainers that have some extra nutrients in order to prevent the body dehydrating too fast.

Nonetheless, it is worth noting that even though the majority of producers don’t use sugar in their production, a lot of artificial sweeteners and matters are added – some people would prefer to not drink those and opt for regular sugar instead. Others would be perfectly happy with using artificial sweeteners and avoid the much-dreaded sugar; the decision is yours to make.

Some enhancers have way too much caffeine inside and others have troublesome sodium levels. Although – not all of them.

So where to start looking?

In order to make sure your enhancer is truly what it says it is, take some time to read the nutritional facts and get to know your enhancer better. Sometimes, names of the products used are scarier than the products themselves; other times, a seemingly innocent extract could prove troublesome. Here is some information you should know before buying your water enhancer.

Propylene glycol

Propylene glycol is a common ingredient that can be found on the labels of the water enhancers. Although it is present in only small quantities and it is mostly added as a stabilizer and thickener, it still provokes doubt among many users.

First of all, for those that are not familiar with this ingredient, it’s a synthetic organic compound. It’s very often found in products aimed for personal care, such as shampoos, conditioners, shaving creams, and deodorants. You probably use it daily but haven’t noticed it. Since it’s known for being non-toxic, water-soluble and easy to metabolize, it is an appropriate ingredient for products such as the water enhancers.

The FDA (The United States Food and Drug Administration) has classified it under “generally recognized as safe” and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry has put it in the “no cancer” category.

However, it is also used as an ingredient in some antifreeze products and in the liquid used for the e-cigarettes – this is why people find it to be problematic. Although a healthy skepticism on various – and especially new – products and ingredients is always welcomed, you shouldn’t be worrying that much about propylene glycol. There has been a study where a moderate consumption of propylene glycol for 23 straight days had no impact on the health of the test subjects.

Until it is proven otherwise, propylene glycol may be considered safe.

Sucralose

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener that has zero calories and can be up to 600 times – yes, you read that right! – sweeter than sugar. Oftentimes, because it is so sweet, manufacturers have to mix it with other ingredients that are not calorie-free in order to lessen the intensive sweetness of the product. That is why some products are not zero-calorie even though sucralose is used as the main sweetener.

You probably use it in a lot of products that are advertised as being low in calories, such as protein bars, other drinks, and very often in sugar-free chewing gums. Considering the fact that it is so sweet, the amount of sucralose used in water enhancers is in such small quantities that generally, it shouldn’t impose any threat to your general health. There were some complaints linking the use of sucralose to chronic migraines; however, studies have proved no such thing.

With the current tests done, results show that consummation of sucralose does not affect blood sugar levels, does not cause cancer, nor damages the immune or any other system of the body.

Stevia

Stevia is an organic, zero-calorie sweetener that comes from the leaves of a plant called stevia. The extracted part of the plant that is used in the food and drinks industry is actually called steviol glycosides – don’t get scared because of the long name!

Stevia is around 300-400 times sweeter than sugar; however, if only pure stevia is used, you can expect a bit of a bitter aftertaste in your mouth. That is why stevia is mixed with some other products in order to remove the bitterness and add some texture to it as well. The good thing about the stevia is that it cannot be stored in the human body, meaning any extra of it doesn’t build up and is quickly eliminated.

A lot of research has been done for this particular sweetener. Some studies in the early 90’s linked the steviol glycosides with cancer; other studies, done in the 00’s, proved no such thing. Right now, stevia has been classified as safe and is oftentimes a recommended choice for those watching their sugar intake.

Sodium levels

Sodium is essential for your body – if you lack it, you might feel tired, lethargic and yet restless and uncomfortable at the same time. Excess sodium is also a bad thing because your body will start retaining more water and your blood pressure will be affected. So the key is to find the perfect balance for your body!

In periods of extreme sweating – such as when you’re trying to climb that mountaintop – sodium can be a welcoming addition to your water. Having a water enhancer rich with sodium might ease the symptoms you experience while sweating heavily and restore your levels back to normal, meaning you won’t feel tired and dehydrated.

However, in the last couple of decades, a lot of people have reported struggling with keeping their sodium levels at a decent level. If you are one of them, be advised to read water enhancer labels more carefully and make sure you check how much sodium they contain.

Even if you decide to use a water enhancer with added sodium, it will probably be for the best to cut off sodium on some other things – unfortunately, sodium is one of the most over-consumed minerals in the nowadays world.

A lot of people only take into consideration the caffeine they get from their coffee during the day. However, if you’re thinking about bringing a water enhancer on your camping trip, you should be aware that some water enhancers can come with incredibly high caffeine levels. In case you’re wondering why caffeine is used, it’s because some of the water enhancers on the market offer an energy boost – which comes from taking caffeine.

Even if you decide to opt for a water enhancer with caffeine, you should lower the dosage of other sources of caffeine for that particular day. For instance, if you drink two cups of coffee on a normal day, drink only one; that way, your body will easily balance out and you won’t suffer from all the unpleasant effects of caffeine overdose.

Make Your Own Water Enhancer

Some decide that a more suitable choice for them would be to just make their own water enhancer. Of course, it wouldn’t be exactly the same – however, if you’re worried more about finding a way to keep yourself more hydrated rather than get an energy boost, this might be enough for you.

Here are a few ways to do that:

Fruit wedges

This is a very common way of adding some flavor to your water and thus motivating yourself to drink more. You can just slice whatever fruit you find suitable, put it in a bottle and add water – that’s it! Seems like lemons and oranges are the most popular choices among people, but some berries might prove like a good fit as well.

Another pro tip could be that you can use an ice tray to make ice cubes with some pieces of fruit inside. Then, just before you head out to your hiking trail, put the ice cubes in your water bottle. You can be sure that you’ll stay hydrated during the day and your water will stay cooler and tastier longer during the day!

Homemade iced tea

One more popular choice among hikers is to bring some unsweetened homemade iced tea. You can brew each flavor you like – some even opt for green tea – cool it off and that’s it! You can either drink only the tea or mix it with water, so you get only a hint of the flavor.

However, you should know that some teas have a large amount of caffeine in them – make sure to check how much yours has in order to avoid caffeine overdose.

Herbs

You can add different herbs to make your water tastier, such as cilantro, basil, mint, – the list is endless! Find something you like, let it stay in water overnight and your water will be ready in the morning.

You can even add the herbs to the homemade iced tea or to the water infused with some fruit. Anyway, it’s good to point out that some herbs may be diuretics – every addition should be done in moderation.

Moderation is Key

No matter which water enhancer you choose to buy or whether you decide to just enhance water yourself, carrying one with you can be useful especially out in the wild. Maybe you can carry one just in case and don’t even feel the need to use it. For example, if you’re struggling with some low sugar levels in your blood, you can pack a water enhancer that will give you the much-needed boost to your glucose levels after that tiring hike.

Or in case you’re hiking with kids and you just want to make sure they drink enough water – a drop of some flavored enhancer might be a better idea rather than have them refuse water all day long.

Some experienced hikers have tried making an electrolyte drink at home, mixing sugar and salt in water or tea, which shouldn’t be that bad – but not great either – when it comes to flavor. Whether this has any actual benefits in drinking it long-term is yet to be discussed but it could prove useful in emergent situations when nothing else is available.

However, the crucial point is to not overdo anything. If you decide to go for a store-bought water enhancer, make sure you take your time and carefully read the nutrition label. Usually, the label is for one dosage only, meaning that you’ll have to double or triple it, depending on how many dosages you’re planning to drink.

Some people think it would be a good idea to drink the water enhancer straight from the bottle without mixing it with water. It is essential to point out that this is a very dangerous practice and should not be encouraged in any circumstances!

To finish it off, it is true that nothing can replace water and all the benefits it has to offer. But a water enhancer could still be a better choice than a soft drink. As long as you follow the instructions and drink it occasionally, there shouldn’t be any problems or side effects.

Water Drops Flavor Up Summer Hydration

SweetLeaf’s all-new water enhancers add better-for-you delicious flavor to water

GILBERT, AZ (June 2, 2015) –A sweet splash has just hit shelves in time for summer: SweetLeaf® Water DropsTM. Refreshing fruit flavored water enhancers with zero calories, zero carbs and—unlike other flavor drops—NO artificial ingredients, Water Drops make necessary summer hydration easy, tasty, and better-for-you.

Made from SweetLeaf® Stevia Sweetener, the stevia brand consistently winning international awards for taste and innovation, Water DropsTM are full of refreshingly sweet taste while remaining free from aspartame, sucralose and high fructose corn syrup found in many other water enhancers on the market. Available in Raspberry Lemonade, Strawberry Kiwi, award-winning Peach Mango and Lemon Lime, they add sweet fruit taste to summer water bottles for a smarter alternative to sodas and sugary juices. They’re also excellent for on-the-go hydration. The small, unbreakable packaging makes them a great fit for purses, pockets, or beach bags. Sweet summer hydration has never been easier!

Medicaldaily.com reports that according to a CBS study, “most people in the U.S. are functioning in a chronic state of dehydration,” with 75% falling short of the recommended daily intake.1 Yet with rising diabetes and obesity rates, more consumers are looking to eliminate sugary drinks and find improved options for daily hydration, especially during the heat of an active summer. Still, many families don’t want to settle for just plain water. With a squirt of Water Drops, plain or sparkling water is transformed into a sweet, guilt-free, flavorful indulgence.

“Thoughtful consumers wanting to avoid sugar and artificial sweeteners are actively looking at nutrition labels for a better-for-you water enhancer,” said Carol May, President of Wisdom Natural Brands®, parent company of SweetLeaf. “That’s where SweetLeaf® Water Drops™ present a better option for the whole family.”

Water Drops are now available in conventional and natural grocery stores around the country and online at www.ShopSweetLeaf.com. Made with the world’s best-tasting stevia™, SweetLeaf Water Drops are already award-winning and a customer favorite.

SweetLeaf Water Drops have no aspartame and sucralose, zero methanol, zero sugar alcohols such as erythritol, as well as no sugars like dextrose or maltodextrin.

About Wisdom Natural Brands®

Gilbert, Arizona-based Wisdom Natural Brands® is the parent company of two highly respected and award-winning consumer brands: SweetLeaf® Stevia Sweetener and Wisdom of the Ancients® herbal teas. SweetLeaf® is the natural stevia sweetener with zero calories, zero carbohydrates, non-glycemic response and NO artificial ingredients. The only stevia brand to be named a Top Wellness Company and to consistently win numerous global awards for taste and innovation, SweetLeaf is sold in boxes containing 35 or 70 packets, as well as in SweetLeaf Stevia® Shaker jars for easy home use and SweetLeaf SteviaTabs™ Dissolvable Tablets for on-the-go use. SweetLeaf Stevia® Sweetener is available in both natural and QAI certified organic. Offering consumers additional high-quality choices, SweetLeaf Organics are sold in 35 and 70 count packet boxes and shaker jars. SugarLeaf®, also by Wisdom, bonds SweetLeaf Stevia® and cane sugar for a low-calorie sugar alternative that is perfect for baking and cooking. SugarLeaf has 2/3 fewer calories than sugar. SweetLeaf® Liquid Stevia Sweet Drops™ add flavor without calories or carbohydrates to favorite foods and beverages. Sweet Drops™ also have NO artificial ingredients. SweetLeaf® Water Drops™ add delicious natural flavor to plain or sparkling water. For more information about SweetLeaf products, recipes, the new SweetLeaf cookbook, Cooking with SweetLeaf Stevia®, and more, visit ShopSweetLeaf.com.

Wisdom of the Ancients® herbal teas, from energizing Yerba Maté Royale® to calming Rooibos and Sympacho®, are available in tea bags and come in a variety of refreshing flavors. Select varieties are also available with a touch of calorie-free stevia sweetener.

Wisdom of the Ancients additionally produces Cream of Coco™, a natural, sustainable bar soap derived from Mbocaya, an edible nut grown on the Paraguayan coco tree. Cream of Coco is great for all skin types and is ideal as a face and body wash. It’s even gentle enough for hand washing delicate fabrics.

SweetLeaf and Wisdom of the Ancients products can be purchased online at ShopSweetLeaf.com or at grocery and health food stores throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Do they make flavored water without artificial sweeteners?

Yes. There are several flavored water brands without artificial sweeteners on the market. To find them you’ll have to become a bit of an ingredient investigator.
Look beyond front-of-package claims like “natural” and “calorie-free” to check out the ingredient list. Check for simple ingredients. You may see terms like carbonated or sparkling water, natural flavor or mint. I’ve even seen “essence of cocoa” listed as an ingredient for a flavored water.
Shop for cans or bottles of plain or sparkling water with lime, orange, lemon or grapefruit juice added for flavor. These are typically unsweetened and may require an adjustment for your taste buds as you learn to appreciate the essence of the fruit flavor without sweeteners. You’ll likely find flavored waters in the water aisle versus the snack/soft drink aisle at the supermarket.
I’d be remiss not to mention that it’s super easy to make your own flavored water.

  • Fill a pitcher or reusable water bottle with ice cold water. Add fresh slices of your favorite citrus fruits like lemon, lime or grapefruit. Alternatively or in addition, you can add fresh mint or basil to the water. Cucumber slices, fresh ginger and cut strawberries and pineapple also make for a refreshing addition to cool water. Mix and match at will and enjoy!

You need to drink it, But water is boring

Drinking water is so important in order to stay healthy, but many people don’t like the taste of just plain water. I like water, but I’ll be honest: even I get tired of drinking it plain. Sometimes I like a little flavor. And I used to get that flavor fix by drinking diet sodas … until I discovered the dangers of diet sodas. Although there are some who argue that diet sodas may not really be that bad for you, I choose to err on the side of caution. Diet sodas are out.

Since I’ve given up diet sodas (for the most part – I’ll occasionally get one while I’m out somewhere), I’ve started drinking a lot more unsweetened tea. But I’ve also started exploring the world of water enhancers.

most water enhancers contain artificial sweeteners

I started out trying Mio Energy. Well, actually, my first water enhancer experience was with Crystal Light, ages before. But my goal was to avoid artificial sweeteners, so I knew that was out. Sadly, however, I soon discovered that Mio Energy has artificial sweeteners too, as well as taurine which (although it does not come from bull’s urine, as some Facebook memes would have you believe), does have some health concerns attached to it, in addition to a number of health benefits.

In fact, if you’re trying to avoid artificial sweeteners (and I strongly suggest that you do) you’ll want to steer clear of almost every water enhancer on the market (with the possible exception of Stur, which uses stevia leaf extract, but even that’s not without some safety concerns).

except this one

But there’s some good news. There’s one water enhancer I’ve found that does not contain any artificial sweetener at all. I’m not sure how it gets its sweet taste (maybe it’s the potato starch?), but there is no sweetener listed on the ingredients list of my pick for the healthiest water enhancer on the planet – Ideal Boost.

not just another water enhancer

The chart below shows you how Ideal Boost stacks up in other ways against the most popular water enhancers available today – and diet soda. It has a lot of things, including the Slendesta hunger blocker, that none of those other products has. That’s what gives it its super weight loss power. So, when you’re drinking your Ideal Boost, you’re actually doing something that will help you lose more weight.

Here’s my take on the Ideal Boost

If you’ve read my review of the Ideal Shake, you’ll know that I got the shake samples and the Ideal Boost samples as part of the starter pack I bought. Note: I bought the starter pack for $9.99, but I just noticed that it’s listed for $8.99 on the site now, so you can get it for a dollar less than I did!

I told you in that post that I would write a review of the Ideal Boost after I tried it, so here it is.

I started with the Peach Mango flavor (which I don’t even see listed on the site anymore) because I thought I would like it the least. I’m not a big mango fan – at least not unless we’re talking about a mango that’s been picked right off the tree (I had one like that in Venezuela once, and it was AMAZING!). Still, I like experimenting and I always appreciate a challenge, so I went for it.

And I was pleasantly surprised. I actually tasted the peach more than I did the mango, which was just fine with me. The drink, although a little thicker than most water enhancers you get (probably because of the Slendesta), was really yummy. I drank it all down pretty quickly, and that’s the goal for me when it comes to water enhancers – drink more water faster. It seems that now, instead of the Peach Mango, they’re offering a Peach Raspberry flavor, which I think I might enjoy even more. I can’t wait to try it out!

The next day, I tried the Pineapple Passion flavor. Yes, it’s heavy on the pineapple, but I loved it. Yes, the water was still thick, but I was starting to get used to it. I’ll be honest, it can be a little startling at first to expect to be drinking flavored water and find out that the water is thicker than usual, but the consistency really didn’t bother me that much after the initial shock wore off.

I have to tell you now that you might get some funny looks at first when you’re drinking this. I tried my Ideal Boost in the break room at work after I ate my lunch, and one of my coworkers thought I was drinking beer! It does kind of look like beer. So, I had to explain to her what it was, and what it wasn’t. And we had a really good laugh over it!

Did it really curb my hunger?

The Slendesta hunger blocker is supposed to keep you from feeling hungry for two to three hours. Did it work for me? I have to say I think it really did.

I usually eat my lunch around 11:30 in the morning, and by 2:00 or 2:30, I’m ready for a snack – like, REALLY ready for a snack. On the two days I drank this water-enhancing weight loss drink, I didn’t feel the usual hunger pangs. So, yes. It works.

Bottom line: Ideal Boost is an excellent water enhancer. It really is probably the best one that is currently out there on the market. It has a lot of cool stuff in it (as you can see from the above chart), and it’s missing a lot of the things that make other water enhancers harmful to your health.

If you’re looking for a healthy water enhancer, you need look no further than Ideal Boost, another excellent product from Ideal Shape!

Ways to Flavor Water

Water is refreshing and hydrating…but it’s also sometimes pretty boring. And when you’re switching from being a regular soda consumer, it’s even more boring, making it extremely hard to drink the recommended 8 cups of water per day. So, here are some helpful ways to flavor water (without sugar or artificial sweeteners) to enhance that water and make it much more palatable!

  1. Whole fruit. Lovely, lovely fruit! Add a bit of just about whatever you like. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, lemons, and limes are great neutral options. Pineapple, grapefruit, pomegranate, oranges, kiwis, and cherries are a few excellent carby options. Add to a glass or pitcher of water, crush, and allow to infuse the water for 4 or more hours.
  2. Veggies. Cucumbers, tomatoes (yeah, technically a fruit), and fresh ginger root are just a couple of yummy water flavoring veggies. Add slices to water, chill, and allow to infuse for at least 4 hours. Mix and match with fruit or other ingredients for double the flavor (strawberry-cucumber water, please!).
  3. Herbs and spices. Mint leaves, parsley, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, lavender, whole cloves, and cayenne pepper are a few ideas. Chop up leaves, crush the nutmeg or cloves a bit, add lavender or cinnamon sticks whole, or mix any powdered spices into the water. Chill and allow to infuse for 4 or more hours.
  4. Tea. Add a bag or two of tea to hot water and allow it to steep for 20 minutes or so. Chill if you prefer iced tea. Add a few drops of liquid stevia to sweeten it up if you like.
  5. Essential oils. I’m not the biggest fan of unnecessarily using essential oils internally, but if you’re okay with it, it is a great, neutral option as well. Add a few drops of any of Young Living’s Vitality essential oils to your water. Shake or stir often as the oils tend to rise to the surface. Also be sure to use a glass drinking container as many essential oils will dissolve plastic or cause toxins from plastic to leach into the water.
  6. THM Hydrates. Trim Healthy Mama now has their own water enhancers in the form of Hydrates! Each packet flavors up to 32 ounces of water! They have them in Cherry Berry (my fave), Orange Oasis, Lemon Love, Blue Skies Colada, and a Variety Pack so you can try them all.
  7. True Citrus. True Citrus are little packets of citrus flavored yumminess. The low glycemic varieties are True Lemon, True Lime, True Orange, True Lemonade, True Raspberry Lemonade, True Lemon Iced Tea, True Black Cherry Limeade, True Mango Orange, True Peach Lemonade, True Lemon and Watermelon Aqua Fresca, True Limeade, True Lemon Strawberry Lemonade, and True Wildberry Lemonade. Please note that some varieties of these do have a wee bit of sugar (so some are technically not sugar free; if it has 3 grams sugar or less, it’s allowed on the THM plan), but it’s so very little that it does not typically bother blood sugar (back off if it does bother your blood sugar or causes weight loss stalls).
  8. Powdered water enhancers. My favorite powdered water enhancer is made by the Everly brand (and my favorite flavor is pomegranate). You can buy Everly in handy, transportable packets or in a large bulk pouch. Another good brand is Ultima Replenisher.
  9. Liquid water enhancers. Some excellent low glycemic, Trim Healthy Mama friendly liquid water enhancers include Stur (but not the powdered kind, too much sugar) and SweetLeaf Water Drops. Be sure to check the ingredients just in case certain varieties have sugar or artificial sweeteners.
  10. Juice. If you can find some just plain juice (not concentrate, no sugar, no artificial sweeteners), you can a add splash or two to flavor water. R.W. Knudsen has some pretty good no sugar or sweetener added juices (read ingredients to be sure and be conscious that most of them will contain carby fruit). You could also make your own juice with a juicer.
  11. Apple cider vinegar. This adds acidity just like citrus juice or fruit might, so be sure to drink it carefully and with a straw. It adds flavor, boosts immunity, but can also hurt your teeth if overdone! Be sure to use raw apple cider vinegar (the kind with the mother) for maximum health benefits.
  12. Sweetener. Stir in some powdered or liquid stevia or other low glycemic sweetener to simply sweeten the water.
  13. Mineral salt. Salt can enhance the sweetness of your sweetened water, boost the body’s absorption of the water (as long as you don’t turn it into sea water), and transforms the water into an electrolyte drink. Add roughly 1/8 teaspoon (a pinch) per 8 ounces water.
  14. Bubbles. This technically isn’t a way to flavor water, but it does mentally make it feel like soda. Use plain, store bought seltzer water or, if you have a carbonating machine like the Soda Stream, add your own carbonation.
  15. Rose water. Get fancy by adding rose water to taste.
  16. Broth or stock. Make some homemade beef or chicken stock or broth and just drink that up or dilute it a bit with water. Sure, this isn’t a sweet option, but it’s still pretty yummy!

Helpful Stuff

  • Infusion pitcher. An infusion pitcher makes things a tidbit easier.
  • Infusion glass. An infusion glass does well for a single serving.
  • Cherry pitter. Pit cherries fast and easy.
  • Strawberry huller. To remove the greens from strawberries easily (although you can eat them, they’re good for you too).
  • Herb scissors. Herb scissors make chopping up mint and other leaves fast and easy.
  • Orange peeler. To peel oranges faster.
  • Apple corer. For coring apples, duh.
  • Mason jars. My favorite are the spacious 24 ounce size.

Liquid Water Enhancers

Liquid water enhancers are widely used nowadays to add additional taste to water. Whenever you are thirsty and you need a refreshing drink – it can be a perfect choice as it is available in the market ranging from different flavors and ingredients. Further sweeteners, vitamins, and minerals are also present in it to enhance its taste, quality and consumption advantages to the drinker.

In the market, it is available in different packing sizes and flavor to cope with the market needs and trends. Water enhancers are available worldwide and manufactured by industries under perfect hygienic conditions for health and safety. Different flavors include chocolate, coconut, mango, banana etc. Let us introduce to you the ten best liquid water enhancers available online to buy at minimal rates, different flavor, and size.

Best Liquid Water Enhancers

1. Stur – ALL-NATURAL Stevia Water Enhancer

Stur – All Natural Stevia Water Enhancer is available in a perfect combination of five packs. It makes 100 serves if used 8oz per serving. This is Non-GMO liquid drink which further comes with high antioxidants and natural stevia leaf extract. It can be used by overweight people too because it comes with sugar-free and calorie-free – so why to worry about weight gain while drinking it? It is manufactured without the use of preservatives and vitamin C is an additional advantage of it.

Its packing size is normal with dimensions of 1 x 2.6 x 3.2 inches; 2.2 ounces. Stevia water enhancer comes with natural flavoring which includes Fruit Punch, Strawberry Watermelon, Blue & Blackberry, Orange Mango, and Pomegranate Cranberry. It is convenient to use at home or office as it is not needed to refrigerate it after use. So just add it to water, mix and drink and ultimately overcome thirst.

2. Crush, Liquid Water Enhancer (Grape, Strawberry & Orange)

Crush Liquid Water Enhancer comes in 3 natural flavors of grape, strawberry and orange variety pack so you will never get bored drinking one flavor again and again. It comes in a pack of three and size of 1.62oz. So drink crush with water and enhance your thirst experience by this refreshing drink.

3. Stur – Coconut Water enhancer

Stur – Coconut Water Enhancer liquid drink mix comes in a pack of five. It makes hundred serves per bottle if served in size of 8oz per drink. It is real coconut water without sugar and calories. Concentrate is not used in but purified water is added with natural fruit and stevia extracts to add on taste and refreshing essence. It is all natural non-GMO drink with vitamin C comes in weight of 1.6 ounces and product dimensions are 6 x 3 x 3 inches.

4. Crush Orange Liquid Water Enhancer

Crush Orange Liquid Water Enhancer comes in a packing size of 4 and 1.62 ounces per bottle. It comes with classic orange flavor which can make up to 24 serves per bottle. Whenever you need to quench your thirst with an orange drink, so it is never a bad choice.

5. Icee Zero Blue Raspberry Liquid Water Enhancer

Icee Zero Blue Raspberry Liquid Water Enhancer comes in a large packing size of 12 and weights up to 1.62 fluid ounce. It is a high-quality product which comes in a natural flavor of blue raspberry.

6. Nestea, Iced Tea, Liquid Water Enhancer

Nestea Iced Tea Liquid Water enhancer comes packing size of three with natural flavoring of lemon. Its container size is 1.76oz. Serving size of 0.5 table spoons per container have multiple nutrients of up to 26. Its ingredients include water, propylene glycol, Citric Acid, caramel color, flavors natural, potassium citrate, tea black extract, sucralose, acesulfame potassium and potassium sorbate. Its recommended use is 2ml per 8oz which means 240 ml of water. Nestea iced tea water enhancer comes high quality packing and this enhancer is made up of natural flavors and tea leaves.

7. MiO Liquid Water Enhancer

MiO Liquid Water Enhancer comes in size of 1.62 Ounce. It is a sweet tea and packed in a perfect container for easy use. It is free from sugar, caffeine and artificial juice. Each bottle serves up to 24 servings. Its dimensions are 1.1 x 2.3 x 3.2 inches. Enhancer ingredients include water, polypropylene, glycol, malic acid, natural flavor, and sucralose. Furthermore, it contains less than two percent of citric acid.

Acesulfame potassium is used as sweetener in it. Natural color such as red 40, yellow 5, blue 1 are also used. Preservative such as potassium sorbate is also included in it. For best quality it is to be used with in the time period of one month after first use. It does not require to refrigerate the product.

8. Stur – Variety (4pck) Coconut Water enhancer

Stur – Coconut Water Enhancer comes with the variety pack of four. It comes with 2 natural flavors of coconut-pineapple and coconut-original. All flavors used are natural and non-GMO. It is free from aspartame, sucralose, and artificial colors. No preservatives are used in the liquid drink mix.

It makes 72.7 oz servings. It is real coconut water with purified water without concentrate. Stevia extracts are also added in it to enhance flavor and taste. It is a totally fat-free product (Sugar and Calorie free). Just grab a drink and enjoy. Product dimensions are 1 x 2.6 x 3.2 inches.

9. H2wOw Water Enhancer – All Natural Extracts of Real Fruit

H2wOw Water Enhancer comes with all natural flavoring and extracts of real fruits including 2 mandarin grapefruit and 2 ginger lime. It just provides refreshing taste and essence due to its sweetness and taste. It is all natural product free from artificial flavoring and ingredients.

It just has only 3 calories per serving and sweetened by organic stevia and natural electrolytes which not only provide refreshing taste but also it is best to hydrate us. Product dimensions are 2.2 x 1 x 3.2 inches and serving size is up to 24 serves.

10. Crush Grape Liquid Water Enhancer

Crush Grape Liquid Water Enhancer comes in the excellent flavoring of grapes and packing size of 1.62 ounces in 4 packs per product. Total weight of packing is 6.6 ounces which makes up to 1.3 pounds. Ingredients include water, citric acid, sodium citrate, sucralose, and malic acid. To enhance its taste and experience manufactures also added natural and artificial flavors.

Furthermore, it contains 2 percent of less of these ingredients such as tartaric acid, red 40, acesulfame potassium, xanthan gum, blue 1 and potassium sorbate which is used as a preservative.

Conclusion

Using liquid water enhancers is never a bad choice to overcome thirst due to its natural flavors and ingredients furthermore which not only add on energy but also enhance minerals and salts consumption along with water for the drinker. You should use the best water filter pitcher to make sure your water is clean as well. So have a drink of it and get squeezed by water enhancers available in the market.

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