Time Out tests the water in Dubai's supermarkets as we attempt to find the healthiest bottle in the city.
With the Water Codex III* under our belt and Dr Lanalle Chapman Dunn, naturopathic physician at Medi-Clinic’s expertise at hand, Anna Whitehouse checks out the best H20 for you. (*The higher the Water Codex, the better the taste).
Ferrarelle Dhs15 for 500 ml Sodium: Not declared Chloride: 19 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘This should be fine. It’s a little concerning they don’t have the sodium levels on there, but the chloride is nothing to worry about other than a little bloating.’ Water Codex: 40 Time Out: ‘There’s a weird air of citrus, bordering on the chemical’ Go to:www.ferrarelle.com
Aquafina Dhs3 for 600 ml Sodium: 16 mg per litre Chloride: Not declared H2-Oh: ‘The problem with sodium is that it increases thirst and needs to be offset with an adequate balance of electrolytes. There’s no concern here, although again, they should declare the chloride.’ Water Codex: 32 Time Out: ‘If anything a little bit metallic, but not bad overall’ Go to:www.aquafina.com
Arwa Dhs2 for 500 ml Sodium: 3.3 mg per litre Chloride: 1 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘If you suffer from water retention, this is a great water. It’s also good for anyone with blood pressure issues.’ Water Codex: 42 Time Out: ‘A good little thirst quencher’ Go to:www.arwa.com
San Pellegrino Dhs24 for 1.5 litres Sodium: 36.1 Chloride: 57.5 H2-Oh: ‘Soda waters can decrease calcium, so anyone with osteoporosis or women going through menopause should drink in moderation.’ Water Codex: 44 Time Out: ‘The Kate Moss of water bottles. And it tastes decent too’ Go to:www.sanpellegrino.it
Super Gulf Dhs5 for 1.5 litres Sodium: 30 mg per litre Chloride: 45 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘If something tastes bitter it’s usually not a good sign.’ Water Codex: 12 Time Out: ‘If the label doesn’t put you off, the taste will. Only for emergencies’ Go to:www.supergulf.ae
Qvarzia Dhs24 for 750 ml Sodium: 1.9 mg per litre Chloride: 5.2 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘Again, the sodium and chloride levels are low here, so anyone suffering water retention would be good on this water.’ Water Codex: 42 Time Out: ‘Watery with H20 overtones and a very real sense of wetness. Tasty.’ Go to:www.quarzia.com
Oxygizer Dhs8.50 for 500 ml Sodium: 1.2 mg per litre Chloride: 0.6 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘Oxygenated water is a bit of a fad. If it was pumped with ozone then that would make a difference because it negates the effects of nitrates.’ Water Codex: 38 Time Out: ‘It tastes like a breath of fresh air’ Go to:www.oxygizer.com
Crystal Dhs2 for 500 ml Sodium: 20 mg per litre Chloride: 60 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘This is fairly high in sodium and potassium, so again bloating is likely to occur.’ Water Codex: 10 Time Out: ‘Nothing much to report other than a faint chemical after taste’ Go to:www.crystal.com
Evian Dhs5 for X ml Sodium: 6.5 mg per litre Chloride: 6.8 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘I drink Evian. It’s full of minerals that quite a few Dubai waters (other than Masafi) tend to lack.’ Water Codex: 34 Time Out: ‘A well loved brand, but tastes similar to Masafi.’ Go to:www.evian.com
Wattwiller Dhs24 for 500ml Sodium: 3 mg per litre Chloride: 5 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘This sounds like it’s worth its price tag. Both sodium and chloride levels are low and equal and will reduce bloating.’ Water Codex: 58 Time Out: ‘Earthy, full, but soft… it’s like it’s come from the ground’ Go to:www.wattwiller.com
Masafi Dhs2.50 for 1.5 litre Sodium: 10 mg per litre Chloride: 47 mg per litre H2-Oh: ‘I would drink Masafi – I prefer it to Aquafina. It’s because the former is packed with good minerals.’ Water Codex: 34 Time Out: ‘Tastes like Evian’ Go to:www.masafi.com
Acqua Panna Dhs24 for 1.5 litre Sodium: Not declared Chloride: Not declared H2-Oh: ‘The mineral levels should be on the label. Again, this is soda water, so I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone with osteoporosis or the menopause.’ Water Codex: 48 Time Out: ‘Surprisingly dry in taste but with a hint of earth about it’ Go to:www.acquapanna.com
All tastings are based on The San Pellegrino and Acqua Panna Water Codex III and are intended as a guide only. Call The harbour Hotel & Residence’s restaurant, Azur (04 319 4794) for more information.