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Is boosted bottled water worth it?

August 15, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
More than $200 million was spent on promoting bottled waters in 2007. Many of them claim to contain everything from vitamins, mineral and herbs, to protein. Consumer Reports and ABC7 found out if we really want all of those extras in our water.

Shoppers are seeing more and more enhanced waters on the shelves. "Metromint Chocolate Mint Water" says it has "turned water into chocolate." "Aquamantra" says it is infused with mantras such as "I am lucky," "I am healthy" and "I am loved."

"Water now plays host to calcium, electrolytes, herbs and even weight-loss ingredients," said Jaime Hirsch, Consumer Reports.

Kellogg's "Special K20 Protein Water" even says it has five grams of protein and "can be used as a dietary exchange for one serving of very lean meat or meat substitute."

Consumer Reports says these fancy waters aren't cheap. Jamie Hirsch asked 10 of the bottled water manufacturers what was wrong with regular water.

"Pepsi-Cola, which makes Aquafina Alive, said consumers are now looking for water that multi-tasks. And Kellogg's, which makes Special K20 Protein Water, said that consumers are looking for easy, portable ways to add more protein to their diets," said Hirsch.

While the ads for enhanced waters keep coming, drinking tap water is a lot cheaper and a lot better for the environment.

Tap water costs less than a cent a day, which is about 50 cents a year. Buying a weekly case of a standard 16-ounce bottle of a bargain brand, costs about $270 per year. In addition, that would possibly add about 25 billion empty water bottles to the landfill.

 

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