Photo: PepsiCo

PepsiCo's new LIFEWTR brand features "enhanced" water, a current trend in the health food realm, that is pH-balanced with added electrolytes. But is there any scientific backing to why these waters are better?

Hayley Sugg
February 08, 2017

You may have not noticed the new product until their Super Bowl ad, but PepsiCo recently launched a line of enhanced waters.

LIFEWTR is the beverage giant's latest release, and is available in the U.S. starting this month. The new drink boasts extra benefits over regular bottled water, touting itself as pH-balanced and containing added electrolytes. 

While this isn't the first time a soda brand has ventured into unusual territory, LIFEWTR is an example of a new trend in beverages: specialized waters. We've all seen maple water, cactus water, charcoal water, and other unusual versions that claim to give you peak hydration. But do all of these drinks live up to their claims?

In short: not really. Your body regulates its own pH levels, with no need for outside help from foods and drinks. Alkaline waters aren't regulated by the FDA, meaning that even if you buy products labeled "pH-balanced" there's no guarantee their levels are any different than a regular bottle of tap water. On the subject of added electrolytes, for most day-to-day activities and workouts, there's no need for electrolyte-enhanced products. 

To put it simply, in most situations plain old water will suffice. Unless you're running a marathon or partaking in an intense hike, most of us don't need added electrolytes in our beverages. Plus, there's no scientific evidence that "pH-balanced" products give any benefits. So stick with tap, or bottled if you prefer, because LIFEWTR is likely to be nothing more than regular water in a pretty bottle.