1 October 2010

Can mineral water make you look younger?

A recent study has show that drinking Willow Water, a mineral water from the Lake District, can reduce the appearance  of wrinkles. Now, this is the sort of press release that really makes me sceptical!

We all know that drinking water, and generally staying hydrated keeps skin looking more plumped up, and therefore naturally reduced the appearance of wrinkles. So where's the story?
The trial took 54 men and women aged between 24 and 43, half of them were given 1.5 litres of Willow Water to drink per day, the other half drank 1.5 litres of a 'leading brand of mineral water'. Curiously, the results even shocked the medics involved in the trial.
Harley Street doctor Peter Ashby, FRCS, said he had been surprised when he analysed subjects’ complexions: “I must admit I was sceptical when I was first told about the study – I thought it was going to be a waste of time but in all honesty I was amazed that those drinking Willow Water did see an extra improvement in their wrinkles” 

After eight weeks the doctors found an average 20% reduction in the appearance of wrinkles across the entire study, with women showing an average 24% reduction. However, and perhaps proving that none of us drink enough water, the placebo group also saw a reduction in their wrinkles - by 19%.

So the women in the group's  wrinkles were 5% more reduced that those who just drank standard mineral water. Apparantly this is due to the
salicin and high levels of calcium in the water. Salicin is an anti-inflammatory agent that is produced from willow bark. It's closely related in chemical make-up to aspirin, and when consumed, it is metabolized to salicylic acid - the very same stuff that's put into many anti-ageing creams.

While that's scientifically interesting - I'm not sure it's a significant enough amount to justify buying one particular type of water. But then again maybe if I was particularly troubled by wrinkles I'd give it a go, I hear on the grapevine that the girls from Coronation Street are all trying it.

Willow Water is priced at around £1.80 for a 1.5 litre bottle, or you can get a discount buying in bulk from their website.

And if it's not for you, at least make sure you drink a couple of litres of something every day - and alcohol, tea and coffee don't count!

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