Grocery store aisles are over-flowing with bottled water options. Gone are the days when the main difference between these options is from which fresh spring the water was drawn. The labels now include descriptions that spread like foreign languages: ionized, hydrogenated, isotonic, and artesian.
Someone with a science background may understand what hydrogenated or isotonic water is, but when asked about artesian water — that same person would likely come up blank. Unlike its grocery aisle neighbors, artesian water isn’t named for its chemical makeup but instead invokes a historical narrative.
To help you understand what artesian water is and if it’s good for you, we’ve thoroughly researched this subject and broken down our findings into an easy to read format so you can understand what’s on store shelves.
what is artesian water?
Artesian water is a specific type of free-flowing, spring water that comes from underground wells. Unlike traditional wells which require a pump, water in artesian wells moves to the surface naturally due to pressure.
The attraction to artesian water comes from the belief that the intense natural pressure acts to filter contaminants and add beneficial minerals, though the government has stated it is no different chemically or physically from regular groundwater.
Where does Artesian come from?
The most famous artesian wells are located in Artois, France, which was known as the Roman city of Artesium during the Middle Ages. In fact, this is where the term “artesian wells” comes from.
The artesian water you see on store shelves today may come from anywhere in the world. In the US, you’ll find artesian wells in Florida and Georgia, though the largest and deepest source of artesian water is located in Australia. The Great Artesian Basin, as it is known, stretches more than 660,000 square miles and is nearly 10,000 feet deep in some areas.
How are artesian wells formed?
Artesian wells are formed when water flows down a land decline into a porous rock substance such as limestone, sand, or gravel. This by itself wouldn’t force water upwards, but when the porous ground is surrounded by a layer of impenetrable rock — the water source experiences significant pressure. This pressure forces the water upwards where it’s released into a well and resembles a geyser (sans steam).
Some of these artesian wells are so strong that they are able to provide enough water pressure for multi-storied buildings!
In order to create an artesian well, you only have to tap into the source – literally. As a result, drilling companies around the world have created artesian wells to gain access to this unique type of spring water.
What are the supposed benefits of artesian spring water?
Artesian spring water is of interest to your neighborhood hipster because companies that sell artesian bottled water claim that because the water travels at a high pressure through a porous surface, it’s naturally filtered. Furthermore, artesian water companies say that this process is nature’s way of purifying the water while also providing some beneficial minerals from the soil.
It’s important to note, though, that similar to other water brands derived — at least on paper — from a natural geological source, artesian well water does not differ much from most regular well water.
Unfortunately, this means that artesian water is subject to any of the standard contaminants that can be found in any untreated water source – pesticides, bacteria, viruses, lead, chromium 6, arsenic, and more.”
Florida and Georgia are great examples of how artesian well water might not be safe to drink. The National Resources Defense Council says these states have some of the least-safe drinking water in the U.S. Based on population, Texas had the most violations in the U.S., followed by Florida, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Georgia. Moreover, the 2017 report found nearly 80,000 violations impacting drinking water systems in every state.
Artesian water still runs the same risk of exposure to many contaminants found in all spring water, well water, tap water, and bottled water. Unfortunately, in this instance, Mother Nature can’t quite keep up with modern technology.
Enjoy healthy water that’s backed by science
Science suggests artesian water is no healthier than regular well water despite bottled water brand claims.
To ensure your water is actually being filtered by a scientifically-backed method, consider installing one of our many water filtration systems which are tested and certified to remove harmful contaminants, all while retaining beneficial minerals.
Our Whole House Water Filters enable you to get clean, filtered water from every faucet — but you can also check out our Under Sink or Countertop filtration options to find a solution catered to your unique needs.