This section contains answers to frequently asked questions. We’ve divided them into twelve categories to keep things simple.
A big thank you to Ms Anne Endrizzi, ETH food scientist, for her expert assistance with the research.
- Valser Classic/Naturelle contain a lot of calcium. How much and what is its purpose?
- Valser Classic/Naturelle contain 418 milligrammes of calcium per litre. EDI Regulation SR 817.022.32 puts an adult’s daily intake requirements at 800 milligrammes, which means that just 1 litre of Valser Classic/Naturelle will cover 52 per cent of the calcium we need each day.
We need calcium to stay healthy, as it is an essential building block in our teeth and bones. It also plays an important role in signal transmission in the nervous system, muscle stimulation and coagulation.
The Swiss Nutrition Society (SGE) even recommends a daily intake of 1,000 milligrammes of calcium for adults and 1,200 milligrammes for children and adolescents.
- What can you tell us about the bioavailability of calcium in (Valser Classic/Naturelle) water, compared to milk?
- They have more or less the same bioavailability.
Source: Robert P. Heaney, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 84, No. 2, 371–374, August 2006.
- Why do Valser Classic/Naturelle and Valser Silence taste differently?
- Valser Classic/Naturelle and Valser Silence vary in their mineralisation and therefore taste differently as well. High mineralisation like in Valser Classic/Naturelle produces a very distinct flavour, especially in the still version Valser Naturelle: The significant calcium content gives the water a flavour a bit like gypsum. In contrast, the low mineralisation found in Valser Silence makes it more neutral, and the palate perceives it as soft and reserved. Perhaps you are among the people who appreciate the highly mineralised flavour of Valser Naturelle – or maybe you prefer a mild water like Valser Silence. Besides health aspects, your choice of water depends of course on your individual tastes.
- Are the aromas in Valser Viva natural?
- They are.
- Are the sweeteners added to Valser Viva harmless?
- Yes. Latest scientific insight confirms that all of the sweeteners used in Valser Viva are entirely harmless.
- What should we drink, and how much of it should we drink per day?
- People should drink 1.5 to 2.0 litres of fluids per day, preferably in the form of unsweetened drinks, for instance drinking water, mineral water or fruit and herbal teas. Drinks containing caffeine (coffee, black or green tea) should be taken in moderation: source: Food pyramid by the Swiss Nutrition Society
- Is ice-cold water unhealthy?
- Chilled water can be extremely refreshing, especially if you are very thirsty. It’s not exactly unhealthy, but water is healthier if it’s taken at room temperature. By drinking ice-cold water, you will trick your body into believing that the weather is getting colder – and our sophisticated metabolism will respond by stoking our internal heating systems. So what we believe will cool us down actually achieves the opposite, and instead of the refreshment we long for we end up sweating more. Our bodies will no longer have to adjust their heat regulation systems if the water is at room temperature. So: You’re better off drinking uncooled mineral water on hot days. It will not throw your temperature regulation off balance, and your body will be saved the effort of heating you up unnecessarily in response to drinking a cold beverage. And you will sweat less as a result.
But do remember that open bottles need to be kept in a clean and cool place to prevent them going bad. You’ll learn more about this in the section on shelf life.
- I’m a real sports buff. What should I know about Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- It doesn’t matter what kind of sport ticks your boxes, if it gets you sweating, you will lose minerals and trace elements as well as the water, and you will need to give them back to your body. Magnesium, calcium, potassium and sodium deserve special mention. Interestingly, Valser Classic/Naturelle are rich in minerals and therefore contain disproportionately more calcium and magnesium than many other mineral waters.
- I’m getting on in age a bit now. What should I know about Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Changes in lifestyle that are associated with getting older can affect your diet in many ways. Older people are particularly at risk of experiencing micronutrient deficiencies. A deteriorating sensitivity to taste and smell, perhaps the loss of teeth and the need to take various medications, not to forget a mild sense of depression, can cause the person to eat less, which in some cases may lead to anorexia among the aging.
But even without these serious risk factors, nutrient intake in the group of over-50s is restricted by the reduced energy metabolism compared to younger generations. While the recommended daily intake for people aged 25 to 50 is 2,400 kilocalories (men), or 2,000 kilocalories (women) per day, the daily requirements of those aged 51 to 65 drops by 200 kilocalories, and so is only 1,900 kilocalories (men) and 1,700 kilocalories (women) for 65-year-olds and older. So it is necessary to counteract the tendency to eat less through a greater intake of micronutrients to ensure that we maintain the recommended levels vitamin and mineral constituents in our diets.
Source: "Die Bedeutung der Mikronährstoffe", Heilberufe 03/2005, Risikogruppen für Mikronährstoffdefizite: “Der alte Mensch”, Prof. Hans K. Biesalski, Institute for Biological Chemistry and Nutritional Science, University of Hohenheim.
So older generations are certainly advised to pick highly mineralised water like Valser Classic/Naturelle, as it will give the body precious minerals, but without stacking up the calories.
- My child is experiencing a growth spurt Are Valser Classic/Naturelle suitable choices at this age?
- Children and adolescents can only benefit from high calcium intake. They have the capacity to create calcium deposits during the growth phase, from which they will benefit their whole lives. In doing so they lay the foundation for strong bones, healthy teeth and beautiful skin. Calcium deficiency can impair coagulation, so people with an inadequate calcium intake may find that injuries do not heal properly.
The 5th Swiss Nutrition Report and the Swiss Nutrition Policy stress that calcium deficiency among school-age children can present a problem. So Valser Classic/Naturelle are ideal for children in (pre-)school age into puberty, as we as for the young at heart, however old they may actually be!
- My infant is 18 months old. What should I pay attention to in regard to Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Children under the age of 18 months should be given water with low mineral contents. After all, their baby food will mostly contain all the minerals the little ones need – and that’s doubly true of mother’s milk. That’s why it is particularly important to pick a water without added minerals for children in this age group. You can gradually increase the mineral intake above 18 months. Studies have observed rare cases in which children whose formula was prepared with sulfurous water experience a slightly elevated stool frequency. Swiss Paediatrics (Swiss association) therefore recommends using water with a sulfate content below 250 milligrammes per litre to prepare baby bottles. Valser Classic/Naturelle contain substantially more and are therefore not suitable for children under 18 months. But they remain a great choice for everyone else!
- I am pregnant and also a nursing mother. What should I know about Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Expectant and breastfeeding mothers require 10 to 40 per cent more calcium and magnesium than otherwise, depending on the phase. And while the diets of most adults in Switzerland usually contain sufficient amounts of calcium and magnesium, this may no longer be true given the increased requirements during pregnancy and lactation. Children need a sufficient supply of calcium to ensure that they grow healthy bones, and it also reduces the risk of osteoporosis among mothers. Expectant and breastfeeding mothers also need more magnesium. Valser Classic/Naturelle has high calcium and magnesium contents and is therefore an ideal mineral water during this period.
- I have intestinal complaints. Is it wise for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle in this case?
- We sometimes feel bloated or get heartburn or indigestion when we’ve eaten a little too much. And there’s an age-old remedy to help out in these cases: water with a high sulfate content. Water with a high sulfate content, taken with meals over the course of the day, is ideal to help with digestion. After all, sulfate contributes to detoxifying the liver and to cleansing the kidneys. Sulfate also stimulates the flow of bile and therefore digestion as well. What’s more, mineral water with a high hydrogen carbonate content helps prevent heartburn and makes greasy food more palatable. Interestingly, at 941 milligrammes per litre, Valser Classic/Naturelle are among the mineral waters with the highest sulfate contents. We nevertheless recommend that you consult your doctor if digestive problems persist.
- I am suffering from constipation. Is it wise for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle in this case?
- Many people experience constipation, and often it’s simply because they are not drinking enough! In many cases the cure will be simply to increase the fluid intake. Deliberately choosing waters like Valser Classic/Naturelle that are rich in sulfate is an ideal and natural way of stimulating the digestive system. Sulfate has a mild laxative effect, especially combined with magnesium and sodium. At 941 milligrammes per litre, Valser Classic/Naturelle are among the mineral waters with the highest sulfate contents and are therefore ideal remedies for constipation. You should regularly drink Valser Classic/Naturelle at room temperature for several weeks, especially on an empty stomach after getting out of bed, as well as before meals. This could well be enough to get your intestines firing on all cylinders again. This is the most natural way to ensure healthy digestion, when combined with a high-fibre diet!
- I have a bladder infection. Are Valser Classic/Naturelle suitable for me in this case?
- It’s important to drink 2 to 3 litres per day to rinse your urinary system if you are suffering from a bladder infection. Bladder and kidney teas are ideal, taken with still water like Valser Classic/Naturelle. Cranberry juice is also a useful remedy. It’s also a good idea to keep your pelvis warm, and above all to take it easy.
But you should definitely consult your doctor if the symptoms do not subside noticeably within a few days. The bacteria may otherwise spread and you might even contract pyelitis.
- I have pyelitis. Is it advisable for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Pyelitis is a severe infection with pain in the kidney region, high fever and a distinct feeling of illness. It needs to be treated with antibiotics. But you can support the healing process by drinking 2 to 3 litres of liquid per day, for instance Valser Classic/Naturelle or bladder and kidney teas to rinse the urinary system thoroughly. It’s also a good idea to keep your pelvis warm, and above all to take it easy. We recommend that you consult your doctor in this case as well.
- I have kidney stones. Is it advisable for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Two things are recommended that help prevent the reemergence of any kind of kidney stone: Drink plenty of liquids (so at least 2 to 2.5 litres per day) and exercise regularly. People laboured under the misconception for ages that a calcium-rich diet would increase the likelihood of contracting kidney stones. Today we know this is untrue. Sufficient dietary calcium even seems to help prevent the growth of kidney stones.
Sources: New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), Archives of Internal Medicine, US National Institute of Health and www.medscape.com.
So the latest scientific insight clearly endorses the use of Valser Classic/Naturelle among people with kidney stones. But you should certainly consult your doctor if you suffer from kidney stones.
- My blood pressure is too high. Is it advisable for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Valser Classic/Naturelle contain very little sodium, just 10.5 milligrammes per litre, and are certainly recommended for you as a person suffering from hypertension. You should definitely give a wide berth to mineral water with a high sodium content (above 200 milligrammes per litre) and do what you can to keep your salt intake low. The best place to get advice is from your doctor.
- I am lactose intolerant. Is it advisable for me to drink Valser Classic/Naturelle?
- Well, Valser Classic/Naturelle are actually ideal for people with a lactose intolerance, as calcium-rich mineral waters are the most important source or calcium, aside from the increasingly prevalent lactose-free dairy products, of course. At 425 milligrammes per litre, Valser Classic/Naturelle contain a particularly large amount of this important mineral – just 1 litre is sufficient to cover 52 per cent of your recommended daily calcium intake!
- How long does mineral water keep?
- Mineral water has a practically infinite shelf life, provided it comes in glass bottles. The labels state a shelf life of 1 to 2 years in order to ensure regular rotation of the bottles and to ensure they are replaced in the warehouses.
But things are a little different for carbonated mineral water in PET bottles: While they come with the benefit of weighing less, the bottles are not hermetically sealed and the carbon dioxide will gradually escape. So older mineral water may not have the fizz that the consumers are expecting. This is why an expiry date is printed on the packaging, although pure water will essentially keep for ever, provided it is stored correctly.
Source: Association of Swiss Mineral Springs and Soft Drink Producers (SMS).
- How and for how long can I keep a bottle mineral water once it is open?
- You should drink open bottles inside of a few days. Generally speaking, beverages should be stored cool and dry and protected from sunlight, obtrusive aromas and chemicals.
- For how long can I drink from the same bottle?
- We advise you against drinking straight from the bottle. Instead you should use a glass. In this case, the water from an open bottle will remain enjoyable for at least 2 to 3 days. But you might be in for an unwelcome surprise if you have a sensitive stomach and drink straight from a bottle that has been open for longer. Bacteria in your saliva will be transmitted to the bottle if you touch it with your lips. And they can proliferate quickly. The bottle will acquire an unpleasant aroma, which may even lead to gastrointestinal problems. So: The best procedure is to keep the bottle free of germs at all times and to finish it as quickly as possible.
Imported mineral water
- Why are imported mineral waters often cheaper than the Swiss ones like Valser?
- The lower production costs contribute to the price (cheap labour, packaging, energy costs, etc.) Swiss manufacturers like Valser would quickly get into economic difficulties if they employed the same bottom-feeder policies. One third of the mineral water consumed in Switzerland is now imported, and the main reason is the price. The environmental factor – shorter transports inside Switzerland – tends to be given short thrift.
Source: Association of Swiss Mineral Springs and Soft Drink Producers (SMS).
- Is it not nonsense to pick a mineral water that needs to be brought here from some faraway bottling plant?
- In many cases it is not possible to avoid transporting the bottles over longer distances, as the bottling plant needs to be directly adjacent to the spring and transport in large receptacles (containers, tanker lorries) is not permitted. Transporting the water in bottles guarantees that its quality remains constant, right through to the consumer. A free market economy must also grant access to goods that are transported over longer distances. Aside from the environmental concerns, there is no reason why foreign mineral waters should not compete on the Swiss market, in the same way – albeit to a far lesser extent – that Swiss waters are also sold abroad. It’s ultimately a discretionary decision by the consumer which brand he or she prefers to purchase.
Source: Association of Swiss Mineral Springs and Soft Drink Producers (SMS).