How much minerals?

Labels of Natural Mineral Water will list not only the minerals under a 'typical analysis', but should also give the Total Dry Residue, or Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), at 180ºC, which is an indication of the quantity of minerals that would be left if the water was boiled off at that temperature.

This figure is likely to be in the region of 130 milligrams per litre (mg/l), which is the equivalent of a small pinch of salt. Such a low concentration is considered a good thing by those in search of a water that has a neutral flavour, with a pure, clean finish.

Some mineral waters, however, have a rather higher TDS value, and as a result a more distinctive flavour. The Italian water San Pellegrino, for instance, has a TDS of 1109 mg/l, and the French water Badoit 1200 mg/l. Mineral waters associated with healing powers may have TDS values many times higher still.

Most standard mineral waters have a pH (acidity) value fairly close to pure water (pH 7.0); the lower the pH, the more acid the water.

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