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Spring water vs. purified water

Differences, recommendation and hydration tips

Although it may look the same and taste similar, not all water is identical. This article compares spring and purified water, so you know what to choose.

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This article is based on scientific evidence, written by experts, and fact-checked by experts.
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Spring water vs. purified water: Which is better?
Last updated on September 9, 2023, and last reviewed by an expert on February 1, 2023.

Drinking enough water is essential to your health, as it helps every cell in your body work properly. That’s why it’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day.

Spring water vs. purified water: Which is better?

Many types of water are on the market, with spring and purified varieties being among the most popular. This may lead you to wonder how they differ, and whether you should choose one over the other.

This article explains the difference between spring water and purified water.

In this article

What is spring water?

Spring water is a popular form of bottled water. It comes from groundwater, underground aquifer watering at or below the earth’s natural water table.

As water naturally flows to the ground’s surface, it’s collected at the opening of a spring. It can also be collected directly underground from a borehole.

This water is generally considered pre-purified, as it has traveled through natural filters like limestone, sandstone, and clay.

Once collected, it’s sampled and analyzed to ensure it meets strict safety standards set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Finally, it’s bottled and ready to be sold.

Summary: Spring water comes from underground water. It has been naturally filtered and collected at a spring’s opening or from a borehole.

What is purified water?

Purified water has been mechanically filtered or processed to remove impurities like bacteria, viruses, chemical pollutants, and minerals like lead and copper.

In most developed countries, including the United States and Canada, tap water is purified to ensure it’s safe for consumption.

It undergoes various treatment methods. Simply put, these include:

Other purification methods may also be used to produce bottled water or at home, such as:

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If companies meet the required FDA and EPA guidelines for safety, they can label their water as “purified”.

If preferred, you can purchase at-home filters to purify your tap water. For example, the Brita filter uses activated carbon ion exchange to remove lead, chlorine, and mercury contaminants.

Summary: Purified water usually comes from groundwater or tap water. It’s treated in a water processing plant to remove impurities and contaminants. You can also purchase in-home filters to purify your tap water.

Which is better?

If you’re wondering which type of water to choose, rest assured that both are excellent choices.

Both spring and purified water must meet strict safety standards set by the FDA and EPA, making them safe to drink.

The type of water you should choose depends mostly on your preferences and what’s accessible to you. People often choose the water that tastes best, which can be largely subjective.

Suggested read: 12 simple ways to drink more water

Ultimately, you should choose the water you will most likely drink.

Summary: Spring and purified water meet strict safety standards and are safe for humans to drink. Choose the type that best aligns with your preferences and is accessible.

Tips for drinking more water

How much water you need daily depends on many factors, including your physical activity levels, climate, age, health status, and more.

As such, it’s best to follow these general principles:

If you’re trying to drink more water, here are some helpful tips:

Summary: To keep yourself hydrated, make water your drink and enjoy it regularly throughout the day.

Summary

Water is essential to life, and drinking enough has many benefits.

In most developed countries, we’re privileged to have a variety of options for clean, safe drinking water to choose from. Spring water and purified water are popular and excellent choices.

Spring water is naturally filtered underground. It’s collected from springs or boreholes. Meanwhile, purified water is any water that has undergone a controlled filtration and purification process to remove impurities and contaminants.

The type you choose should largely depend on your preferences and what’s accessible to you. Both are safe options that meet strict safety standards.

Pick the type of water you’re most likely to drink.

Try this today: Set a reminder to drink water on your phone every 30 minutes during the day. You may notice a difference in energy and hydration levels when you drink water more consistently.

Suggested read: Can you drink rainwater, and should you?

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