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Does Carbonated Water Leach Calcium?



Carbonated water has not been scientifically proven to leach calcium.

More Info: Calcium is a vital mineral that helps build strong bones, teeth, and muscles. Without adequate levels of calcium, bones will lose density, which could eventually lead to osteoporosis as well as many other health-related issues. It has been speculated that the phosphorus in carbonated beverages interferes with calcium absorption. However, the amount of phosphorous is so minute that there is no direct connection. Phosphoric acid is found in sodas, not in carbonated water.

Fact: Carbonated water simply contains carbon dioxide gas, a natural gas produced by the human body and given off during respiration, or breathing. In carbonated water, this gas is found in the form of carbonic acid. It is not related to a loss of calcium.

Fact: Calcium loss occurs when adequate amounts of calcium are not consumed in one’s daily diet. Researchers speculate that the connection between calcium loss and carbonated beverages may exist because those consuming the beverages may be doing so in place of calcium rich foods such as milk.  In the United States alone, between 1970 and 1997, the consumption of carbonated beverages has increased by 118% while at the same time the consumption of milk has decreased by 23%.

For those that enjoy carbonated water, it is a delicious and satisfying way to increase your daily intake of hydrating fluids.



Heaney, Robert P, and Karen Rafferty. “Carbonated Beverages and Urinary Calcium Excretion.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 74.3 (2001): 343-347. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Web. 5 June 2010.

Lantham-New, SA. “Importance of Calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin K for Osteoporosis Prevention and Treatment.” The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society 67.2 (2008): 163-176. National Institue of Health. Web. 5 June 2010.

“Drink to Your Health.” UCLA Dining Services. UCLA, n.d. Web. 4 June 2010.

Heaney, RP. “Dietary Protein and Phosphorus Do Not Affect Calcium Absorption.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 72.3 (2000): 758-761. National Institue of Health. Web. 5 June 2010.

“How To Stay Healthy Update.” Health Information and Medical Information – Harvard Health Publications. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 June 2010.


Expert Opinion

“So feel free to enjoy seltzer water without worrying, but don’t overdo the caffeinated beverages, whether carbonated or not. And if you suspect that by drinking seltzer water, coffee, colas, or other soft drinks you may be reducing your intake of healthy beverages — such as calcium-fortified juices or vitamin D–fortified low-fat or skim milk — make sure you get enough calcium (1,200 to 1,500 mg per day) from other sources to compensate.”

Celeste Robb-Nicholson, M.D.
Editor in Chief, Harvard Women’s Health Watch

“Weight-bearing and resistance exercise, limiting alcohol and caffeine intake, smoking cessation, and fall prevention strategies are part of a bone-healthy lifestyle used to manage postmenopausal osteoporosis.”

American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy

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