H2O Soft Seltzer & water-based beverages hydration

H2O Sonoma Soft Seltzer is a non-alcoholic water-based beverage, that is infused with the juice of varietal wine grapes, dealcoholized wine, and flavor extracts. 

The Beverage Guidance System has established dietary recommendations for daily intake of commonly consumed beverages including water, tea, coffee, milk, non-calorically sweetened beverages, and calorically sweetened beverages. As obesity in America continues to be a growing problem, this guidance becomes of increasing importance due to many beverages’ potential links to Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM), Cardiovascular disease (CVD), and numerous other harmful health effects. However, the growing popularity of “better for you” beverages is causing a shift in the market, with consumers requesting healthier beverage options. Beverages simultaneously present advantages while posing concerns that need to be evaluated and considered. Current trends of the beverage market such as the novel Soft Seltzer category as an alternative to Hard Seltzer and various mashups emerge.

Soft Seltzer;H2O;Hydration;Functional beverage

1. Background


Due to notable negative health effects of soda and similar soft drinks, consumer demand has been high and sustained for alternative tastes and products addressing multiple consumer needs including improved dietary intake. One such product is sparkling water, which has experienced a popularity boom in the past 10 years. In fact, in 2009, 400 million liters of sparking water was sold in the United States. By 2019, that number almost doubled, reaching just under 800 million liters sold, while projections predict a continued increase in demand for sparkling water and/or sparkling water-based beverages [1].

2. Hydration Capabilities of Sparking Water

Hydration Capabilities of Sparking Water

It appears that sparkling water may have more to offer than simply the “it tastes good” and “it  has no negative health effects” often mentioned by consumers. While not thoroughly studied, it is  believed to hydrate as well, if not better than, water, considering the better electrolyte levels and may  be notably effective in decreasing intestinal distress [2]. To investigate this concept, Rosario et al.  evaluated the effects of carbonated water on patients with dyspepsia and secondary constipation.  More specifically, 21 patients were randomly assigned to two groups- tap water or carbonated water  and consumed the respective water exclusively for 15 consecutive days. It was found that dyspepsia  was significantly reduced in the carbonated water group when compared to the control (tap-water),  and constipation was reduced as well. Satiety scores were also recorded and were found significantly  reduced in the carbonated water group. The authors thus concluded that carbonated water may be  effective at reducing dyspepsia and constipation and may decrease hunger as well [2].  Similarly, 19 healthy women participated in a study investigating carbonated water on appetite  sensation. Women were assigned water (tap-water), carbonated water, or no beverage to consume  after an overnight fast. Gastric motility and fullness levels were then recorded after consumption. It  was found that carbonated water resulted in increased fullness scores and an improved satiating  effect [3]. Weight loss was not recorded, but carbonated water may be useful at appetite suppression  and thus possibly support weight loss efforts [3].  Eight male volunteers participated in an intermittent cycle exercise experimental study to  explore hydration effects of carbonated water. Within 30 min of exercise completion, they consumed  one of the following four drinks: (A) a glucose solution, (B) a sodium chloride drink, (C) a potassium  chloride drink, (D) a solution of glucose, sodium chloride, and potassium chloride. Both potassium  chloride and sodium chloride are commonly found in sparkling water. Individuals then underwent  electrolyte analysis to determine rehydration effects of the beverages. It was found that ingestion of  beverage A resulted in higher urine output and a greater net negative fluid balance the following day  in comparison to all other beverages, hinting at the idea that glucose is not effective at rehydration,  and may be functionally diuretic. Beverages B and D resulted in the lowest net negative sodium  balance the following day, and negative potassium balance was greater after consumption of  beverage A and B. Therefore, it is evident that those beverages that contained electrolytes (i.e., B, C,  D) appeared to hydrate better than beverages that did not [4]. While this is a small sample size, it  does suggest that carbonated water can potentially offer better hydration compared to tap water.

3. Potential Negative effects of Carbonated Water Consumption 

Potential Negative effects of Carbonated Water Consumption 

While it seems that carbonated water hydrates as well as water and may be beneficial for various  reasons, some sensitive groups may wish to limit their intake. Individuals experiencing overactive  bladder are recommended to decrease carbonated beverage intake. A total of 6,424 women over 40  years old participated in a survey analyzing urinary symptoms and their connection to carbonated  beverage intake (including water), as well as tea, coffee, wine, beer and fruit juice. It was observed  that women who drank as little as one carbonated beverage per week had an elevated risk of stress  incontinence (SI), and those who consumed a carbonated beverage daily had an almost 2X higher  risk of SI than those who consumed daily. Consumption of carbonated beverages also increased risk  of overactive bladder onset, although risk was not as high as that for SI [5]. Therefore, while  carbonated beverages may be beneficial for hydration and by extension overall health, they may  negatively affect certain individuals who should monitor consumption to minimize potential  symptoms. Another consideration with carbonated water as an alternative to tap water is in relation  to fluoridation, especially for young children. Given that tap water is typically fluoridated in the US  it may be beneficial for better support of dentition in early ages when children are still being trained  in terms of oral hygiene and optimal habits [6] while carbonated water is not fluoridated.  The combination of novelty and health in new beverage proposals may be in line with the needs  and desires of the modern food scene and consumer demand [7].

4. Water-based beverages; the H2O Soft Seltzer

Water-based beverages; the H2O Soft Seltzer

Sparkling water-based beverages  with natural added ingredients are emerging as novel drinks with significant consumer traction as  they are claiming a niche at the intersection of safe, healthy, and enjoyable drinks. Moreover, when  such sparkling water-based drinks are infused with vitamins, natural antioxidants, and/or other  natural bioactive compounds that have established benefits, those constitute good options for health-conscious  consumers interested in novel drinks with functionality. Other options include the addition  of amino acids for support of special groups such as athletes or elderly at risk for sarcopenia [8]. It  has been proposed that appropriate beverages can potentially address existing micronutrient gaps in  the population, enhance phytonutrient intake, and reduce the risk for chronic disease [9]. Thus,  consumers are able to receive the advantages of sparkling water with additional possible health  benefits without the concerns of “diet” products with artificial constituents and preservatives. There  are interesting recent efforts such as the H2O/H2♡novel Soft Seltzer, non-alcoholic seltzer flavored  with dealcoholized wine, from Sonoma, California [10]. This constitutes a promising example of such  a modern approach [10], as an alternative to hard seltzers [11] containing alcohol such as White Claw  introduced in 2016 [12]. Other examples of novel beverages include the mashups category whereby  coffee or non-alcoholic wine are carbonated.


  1. Clean Water Space Sparkling Water Is the New Soda. Available online: http://www.cawaterinfo.net/all_about_water/en/?p=4410 (accessed on 10 July 2020).
  2. Cuomo, R.; Grasso, R.; Sarnelli, G.; Capuano, G.; Nicolai, E.; Nardone, G.; Pomponi, D.; Budillon, G.; Ierardi, E. Effects of carbonated water on functional dyspepsia and constipation. Eur. J. Gastroenterol. Hepatol. 2002, 14, 991–999, doi:10.1097/00042737-200209000-00010.
  3. Wakisaka, S.; Nagai, H.; Mura, E.; Matsumoto, T.; Moritani, T.; Nagai, N. The Effects of Carbonated Water upon Gastric and Cardiac Activities and Fullness in Healthy Young Women. J. Nutr. Sci. Vitaminol. 2012, 58, 333–338, doi:10.3177/jnsv.58.333.
  4. Maughan, R.J.; Owen, J.H.; Shirreffs, S.M.; Leiper, J.B. Post-exercise rehydration in man: Effects of electrolyte addition to ingested fluids. Eur. J. Appl. Physiol. Occup. Physiol. 1994, 69, 209–215, doi:10.1007/BF01094790.
  5. Dallosso, H.M.; McGrother, C.W.; Matthews, R.J.; Donaldson, M.M.K. The association of diet and other lifestyle factors with overactive bladder and stress incontinence: A longitudinal study in women. BJU Int. 2003, 92, 69–77, doi:10.1046/j.1464-410X.2003.04271.x.
  6. Available online: https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/basics/childrens-oral-health/fl_caries.htm (accessed on 4 August 2020).
  7. Sikalidis, A.K. From food for survival to food for personalized optimal health. A historical perspective of how food and nutrition gave rise to nutrigenomics. J. Am. Coll. Nutr. 2019, 38, 84–95, doi:10.1080/07315724.2018.1481797.
  8. Maykish, A.; Sikalidis, A.K. Utilization of Hydroxyl-Methyl Butyrate, Leucine, Lysine, Glutamine and Arginine Supplementation in Nutritional Management of Sarcopenia—Implications and Clinical Considerations for Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus Risk Modulation. J. Pers. Med. 2020, 10, 19, doi:10.3390/jpm10010019.
  9. Ferruzzi, M.G.; Tanprasertsuk, J.; Kris-Etherton, P.; Weaver, C.M.; Johnson, E.J. Perspective: The Role of Beverages as a Source of Nutrients and Phytonutrients. Adv. Nutr. 2020, 11, 507–523, doi:10.1093/advances/nmz115.
  10. H2O/ H2♡ Seltzer 0.0%—The World’s 1st Wine-Infused Soft Seltzer—No Alcohol Soft Seltzer|The World’s 1st Wine-Infused Sparkling Beverage with 0.0% Alcohol—Sonoma, CA, 95452. Available online: https://h2oseltzer.com/ (accessed on 17 July 2020).
  11. Hard Seltzer. Available online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hard_seltzer#cite_note-7 (accessed on 2 August 2020).
  12. Available online: https://locator.whiteclaw.com/?gclid=Cj0KCQjwyJn5BRDrARIsADZ9ykHmZNmIy7mTS0PTWBDSGe-AI0vIIvxxANqCykxrJlRL7PElVanWtf4aAruHEALw_wcB (accessed on 2 August 2020).