Distilled water is safe for babies to drink or use in a baby formula. It’s often preferred to tap water since it goes through purification to remove minerals and contaminants.
The adult immune system is more capable of resisting these minerals and contaminants if consumed in small amounts. Babies, however, have a higher risk developing conditions such as fluorosis, for instance, due to their weak immune system.
Distilled water reduces these risks, as the distillation process completely removes minerals from water.
Are Distilled Water and Purified Water the Same?
Purified water is simply contaminant-free water. It is water that has passed through a filtration process (e.g reverse osmosis) to remove contaminants. Distilled water, on the other hand, is purified water gotten through distillation. The distillation process removes both contaminants and minerals.
In distillation, the water is first boiled to evaporation after which the water vapor is then collected as it condenses, leaving many of the contaminants behind. Once the water returns to its liquid form, it is stored and left to cool in a clean container.
Distillation is an excellent method for inactivating bacteria, viruses, and protozoan cysts. It also removes dissolved solids, such as iron and manganese, as well as nitrates, chloramines, chlorine, and radionuclides. Due to its effectiveness, distillation is often used in medical institutions.
Reverse osmosis water purification method can also remove all the contaminants mentioned above — perhaps even more effectively — and eliminate salts and metal ions, chromium, phosphorus, lead, and arsenic.
The terms “purified water” and “distilled water” are sometimes used interchangeably, although purified water encompasses a wide range of purification methods.
Should You Use Purified or Distilled Water for Babies?
You can use either of them. Both methods are effective at removing contaminants, so it’s down to your preference.
If you already have a reverse osmosis system (or any type of water filter in your house), then you don’t need distilled water. However, if you don’t have one, then you should consider buying commercially produced distilled water from established water brands.
Can Babies Drink Distilled Water?
Yes, babies can safely drink distilled water, and it can also be used for baby formula.
However, it’s worth pointing out that distillation also removes water minerals that babies actually need, although these minerals can also be gotten through baby formula or using nursery water instead of distilled water. Nursery water is the preferred choice for mineral-rich baby water.
Is Infant Water the Same as Distilled Water?
Infant water refers to water that is safe for infants to drink, regardless of the purification method used. Infant water can be water that’s purified via a certain filtration method, distilled, or even produced commercially using a variety of water treatment methods.
Are Distilled Water and Soft Water the Same?
Yes, all distilled water is considered soft water, but not all soft water is distilled water.
Soft water is a term used for water that has very little dissolved mineral content – mainly calcium and magnesium. In most cases, water is considered soft if it has less than 60 mg/l of calcium carbonate.
Distilled water, in particular, has almost all of its minerals removed, so you can think of it as soft water.
Best Distilled Water Brands for Babies
Buying distilled water from reputable brands is the safest option if you can’t make distilled water at home. When on the market for bottled distilled water, it’s important to pay close attention to what each brand is offering. This is to make sure that your baby will get exactly what he/she needs.
Keep an eye on the water bottle label and ask yourself the following questions:
- Does the packaging say that it’s BPA-free?
- What type of distillation process was applied?
- Is the water enriched with minerals?
Let’s take a look at some of the best distilled water brands for babies:
Bay Bay Water
The multi-step distillation process used to make Bay Bay Water ensures that the water is free of contaminants and minerals.
Bay Bay water comes in packs of 12 and 24, which is a lot more convenient than buying a big container. Big containers are difficult to carry, while the Bay Bay package can be split as needed.
The bottles weigh 16.9 ounces each, and thanks to their convenient design, they fit into a diaper bag perfectly.
Parent’s Choice Water
Parent’s Choice Distilled Water – as the name suggests – is one the most popular distilled water brands. The water comes in large one-gallon packages, and is purified using the steam distillation which is very good for isolating temperature-sensitive compounds. The vapor then goes through condensation before it’s collected and stored.
One thing to keep in mind: This water is enriched with minerals, so carefully read the packaging if you want to control your baby’s mineral intake.
The container is recyclable, and the packaging comes with a separate baby jug.
Poland Spring Water
Poland Spring Distilled Water has a great reputation for being a brand that goes above and beyond when it comes to purifying its water. It is one of the highest quality distilled water brands.
Another plus for Poland Spring is that their packages are very lightweight, so carrying the water to and fro the car or up the stairs will be easier.
However, given the fact that brands like Parent’s Choice cost as little as $1.08 per 1-gallon jug, one could argue that Poland Spring is on the pricier side. It’s more affordable if you purchase their bottles in bulk (e.g, six jugs), as the price is then around $12 per jug.
Zephyrhills is among the most popular and coveted brands of distilled water on the market today for a reason. Their products have been known to offer maximum benefits due to their thorough distillation process.
The filtered water is first held in the storage silo, then distilled and micro-filtered, and before the bottling process, it goes through ultraviolet and/or ozone disinfection.
The packaging is free of trace elements, making it safe for babies.
Snugell Distilled Water is produced entirely in the USA. The water is distilled, UV-treated, ozone-treated, and purified. On top of being a good choice for drinking or mixing with food, including baby food, their product is also great for air humidifiers.
The packaging is neat and convenient for daily use and traveling.
Glacéau Smartwater uses vapor distillation to purify water. This method resembles the hydrologic cycle of continuous water circulation between the Earth and the atmospheric system. This cycle involves evaporation, transpiration, condensation, precipitation, and runoff. The vapor distillation of water follows this cycle to remove contaminants.
This water comes with no added sugars, calories, or coloration. No artificial flavors are used at any point in the process.
Aquapap is a very common distilled water brand. It’s not specifically marketed for baby use, but it is baby-friendly. It comes in convenient small packaging, ideal for carrying when traveling or visiting friends or family. The process used for this water is vapor distillation, similar to the Glaceau Smartwater.
For the most part, you need not worry about mixing your baby formula in distilled water. Distilled water is perfectly safe and can be used regularly.
To make sure that your baby is getting the best possible nutrition, get informed about the differences between individual brands of distilled water. Some might use vapor, and others steam distillation. Some brands add minerals to the distillation-purified water, so you should read the label carefully. Also, pay attention to whether the packaging is eco-friendly and BPA-free.
Finally, it’s best to purchase distilled waters labeled as baby-friendly.