The Health Benefits of Spring Water
Some Water is Good, Some Water Is Great
The noted anthropologist Andrea Ballestero (2019) states: “…water is always more than itself; its force and material presence constantly frame people’s efforts to address the fundamental question of what it means to live life collectively…”
The study of water leads to understanding and appreciating even more the infinite ways our lives’ are supported by water.
But not all water is the same, but some water offers exceptional health benefits, such as natural mineral enriched spring water.
Mineral Springs with Unique Health Benefits
What is the best water for our health? What a great question! There are many sources of mineral spring water that could be at the top of the list of best drinking water.
Mineral spring water is classified as such because it comes from a recognised underground source of water guaranteed to be free from pollution and includes a consistent mineral composition not just limited to calcium, magnesium, potassium, etc, and it can’t be chemically treated.
Mineral spring water gathers a mineral content as it rises from within the earth passing through rock fissures, underground caverns and volcanic strata gathering and dissolving a mineral content. Each spring has its own unique taste and balance of minerals depending on the nature of the geology from the source to the outlet.
There are many mineral springs known all over the world that are valued because of the health benefits of the spring appreciated by the locals. Some springs have been deemed an essential part of the culture for thousands of years.
In the 19th century, the medical establishments’ view on mineral waters shifted from an all-encompassing general “cure-all” to, recognising not all spring water was the same, some being more suited to specific health problems than other springs. For example, some saline springs work as gentle purgatives, sulphurous springs are well known to improve skin problems and chalybeate mineral water that is rich in salts of iron can be recommended as a kidney and blood tonic.
Georgia: The Country of Healing Waters
Georgia has a wealth of natural spring water reserves regarded as premium water rich in minerals and trace elements. There are over 2000 sources of mineral spring water, many of which have established reputations centuries old as being a health tonic with restorative abilities
One of the most well-known mineral springs in Georgia is Bojormi Spring.
Bojormi Springs pass through volcanic strata dissolving a unique blend of minerals including bicarbonate, calcium, fluoride and iodide to formulate an enriched mineral water with health benefits.
Set among a peaceful mountain landscape, Bojormi Spring water is more than just good for healthy bones and teeth. Health spas in the region are a popular tourist destination known for the restorative spring waters used by therapists in the treatment of chronic and metabolic disorders.
This spring water is also bottled and sold to an appreciative following of water lovers.
The Czech Mineral Spring Spa Triangle
The Czech Republic also has a vast wealth of groundwater resources. The most well-known mineral waters in the Czech Republic are noted for the dissolved carbon dioxide and mineral content that gives the water a slightly sour taste but is still valued for its health benefits. Many of the springs in this region are also hot water springs.
The Czech Spa Triangle includes Karlovy Vary (Carlsbad), Marianske Lazne (Marienbad) and Frantiskovy Lazne (Franzensbad). Waters from this region have a high content of sodium, sulphate, chloride, hydrogen carbonate and carbon dioxide and 40 other mineral elements vital for health and well being.
The Drinking Water Cure
Mineral waters in the Spa Triangle are used to treat metabolic disorders such as diabetes, obesity, and gastrointestinal disorders, and as such, the mineral waters have famously been referred to as the Drinking Water Cure beneficial for the treatment of stomach disorders, ulcers, Crohn’s disease, hepatitis, chronic liver disorders, gall bladder and the pancreas.
Because the skin readily absorbs dissolved minerals, the mineral baths complement the benefits of ‘The Drinking Water Cure’ and may assist skeletal and muscle disorders.
There is a long-standing and well-researched tradition about the benefits of the mineral springs in Karlovy Vary. It was discovered each of the springs in the region offers variations of mineral compositions of secondary minerals and trace elements, which ascribe to the different curative qualities each spring offers.
The Water Cycle And The Life Cycle Are One
We can be inspired to think about what process these precious spring waters were subject to before emerging from the earth into the light. Mineral and thermal springs have a history of more than 4000 years and in many ways, it is today’s wellness industry that keeps the ancient history and the knowledge of our ancestors alive.
We continue to gather knowledge about mineralised spring waters and the benefits, learning why specific compositions of minerals, trace and other pharmacodynamic elements in the water have proven health benefits that can restore and maintain our body in good health.
By studying the distribution and movement of groundwater and the influences these waters are subject to, patterns emerge regarding water quality and the associated health benefits these spring water elixirs offer. Natural mineral springs are revealed to be a complex and fascinating treasure.
The water cycle and the life cycle are one, just as the quality of the water we drink and our health are inalienably aligned.
Ballestero, A. (2019). The Anthropology of Water. Annual Review of Anthropology, Vol. 48, pp. 405-421. Link: https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/pdf/10.1146/annurev-anthro-102218-011428
Burford, T. (2015). Georgia. Bradt Travel Guides Ltd. Link: https://books.google.com.ar/books?id=WAxWCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA173&lpg=PA173&dq=minerals+springs+bjormi&source=bl&ots=5Eg7HA48U8&sig=ACfU3U2AzWyZII8S_t4HuHL0SrgXn13iTQ&hl=cs&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiPyI7hsKLqAhVlIrkGHY0sC6k4ChDoATABegQIBxAB#v=onepage&q=minerals%20springs%20bjormi&f=false
Erkomaishvili, G. (2015). Consumer Market for Mineral Water and Development Policy in Georgia World. Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology International Journal of Economics and Management Engineering. Vol. 9, No. 5. Link: https://zenodo.org/record/1338236/files/10001169.pdf
Georgian Journal (2018). Discover Georgia. Link: https://www.georgianjournal.ge/discover-georgia/34849-discover-borjomi.html
Manning, P. (2012). Semiotics of Drink and Drinking. Blomsbury Academic. https://books.google.com.ar/books?id=SxMlAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA98&lpg=PA98&dq=Bjormi+spring+health+benefits&source=bl&ots=LxERtkXlO0&sig=ACfU3U3O0dw_kt1j16xqPzLRY3WV8lK_tw&hl=cs&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwilg-a7wKLqAhW-GbkGHbnXAyMQ6AEwCHoECAoQAQ#v=onepage&q=Bjormi%20spring%20health%20benefits&f=false
The AsianN (2016). 10 Interesting Facts About Borjomi Mineral Water. Link: http://www.theasian.asia/archives/96318
Verbuggen, K. (2016). Wander Water. The value of water. EuroGeoSurveys. Link: https://www.eurogeosurveys.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/Water-Book-Layout_full-low-double-no-print.pdf
Veronika MacKu Master of Arts (M.A.) in Social and Cultural Anthropology
Veronika is a social and cultural anthropologist holding a Master’s degree from Vrije Univesiteit Amsterdam. She conducted her ethnographic fieldwork in India and Argentina. She specialized in researching cultural patterns in history and identity, agricultural processes, sustainable development practices, circular economy and social business. Currently, Veronika is working as a social science teacher and freelance researcher and writer. She is passionate about anthropology, nature, people’s behaviour and politics.