Can you drink distilled water?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Can you drink distilled water?” and will discuss the side effects of drinking distilled water.

Can you drink distilled water?

Yes, you can drink distilled water. However, you’ll likely find it bland. That’s because it lacks essential minerals like calcium, salt, and magnesium, which give tap water its distinctive taste. It’s simply hydrogen and oxygen remaining, with nothing else.

Distilled water is made by heating water to a high temperature, collecting the steam, and then re-liquefying it. This procedure cleans the water by removing any unwanted minerals or contaminants.

Drinking distilled water may purify your body and enhance your health, according to certain sources. Many say drinking distilled water might be harmful to your health since it removes minerals from your system. However, none of these assertions is accurate.

However, desalination processes significantly reduce virtually all of the ions in drinking water to the point that people who traditionally consume unreconstituted desalinated or distilled water may be consistently receiving smaller amounts of some nutrients compared to people who consume water from some more traditional sources and thus are disadvantaged if their diets do not provide sufficient intake, since some of the chemicals of interest in drinking water include calcium, magnesium, sodium, chloride, lead, selenium, potassium, bromide, iodide, fluoride, chromium, and manganese (1).

There are both advantages and disadvantages to using distilled water

Dissolved minerals like calcium and magnesium, which are present in tap water, are absent from distilled water.

To maintain a proper equilibrium, distilled water will often draw minerals from anything it comes into contact with. There are minute levels of minerals in distilled water that may be drained from the body, including from the teeth.

Drinking distilled water shouldn’t leave you short in minerals, since you obtain the majority of them through your food already. It’s important to remember to obtain your recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables even if you’re drinking distilled water.

On the other hand, distillation can remove nearly all impurities from water, reducing risks of contaminations. Operated properly, it effectively inactivates microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, and protozoan cysts. Distillation also can remove many organic compounds, heavy metals (such as lead), chlorine, chloramines, and radionuclides (2).


The health benefits of drinking distilled water may depend on where you reside. You’re better off drinking distilled water if the tap water in your town is contaminated with dangerous chemicals or pesticides. Distillation can remove up to 99.5 percent of impurities from water, including volatile compounds, when an active carbon filter is placed in the water feed line to the distiller. That means, the water will be free from pesticide residues and solvents, including benzene and toluene (2). 


It’s possible that storing distilled water will be a bigger issue. Minerals may be drawn from any substance that comes into contact with distilled water. If the container contains plastic or any other material, it will be able to absorb a little quantity of it.

In addition, drinking distilled water can have negative effects. It has been adequately demonstrated that consuming water of low mineral content has a negative effect on homeostasis mechanisms, compromising the mineral and water metabolism in the body. An increase in urine output (i.e., increased diuresis) is associated with an increase in excretion of major intra- and extracellular ions from the body fluids, their negative balance, and changes in body water levels and functional activity of some body water management-dependent hormones (1).

Purified vs. distilled water

Minerals and pollutants are both removed in the distillation process, resulting in distilled water. Although pesticides and other impurities have been eliminated, purified water may still include minerals.

To get clean water, one of the following methods must be used (2):

·         A semipermeable membrane is used in reverse osmosis to filter the water. This substance is permeable, but it filters out salt and other pollutants. Distillers use heat to boil contaminated water and produce steam.

·         After boiling, the steam rises and enters a cooling section containing condensing coils. The steam cools, condenses back to a liquid, and the water flows into a storage container. This collected water can have up to 99.5 percent of impurities removed.

·         Salt and other mineral ions (molecules) are removed from water during deionization.

·         Online shopping for distilled and filtered water.

Distilled water has a variety of purposes

·         Mineral-free distilled water is often utilized in automobiles and home appliances. Here are a handful of the most typical ways in which you’ll see it in action:

·         Aquariums may be cleaned using steam from an iron (mineral supplements should be added to the fish food)

In addition, distilled water has medical uses. Distilled water is used worldwide to check on hemostasis at the end of pelvic oncological operations. After extensive pelvic surgery, e.g. oncological operations or surgery for endometriosis, the surgeon can be confronted with a raw, oozing area in the pelvis. Stopping small venous bleeders to achieve adequate hemostasis is often a difficult task in these areas. Distilled water lavage makes the detection of the sources of bleeding much easier (3).

·         Soaking the plants in water

·         CPAP machines for sleep apnea, for example, are being tested in laboratories using automobile cooling systems.


While it’s unlikely that drinking distilled water will have a significant positive impact on your health, it also isn’t expected to have a negative impact. You can drink distilled water if you don’t mind the flavor and you obtain adequate minerals from a balanced diet.

However, some studies reported that distilled water introduced into the intestine caused abnormal changes in epithelial cells of rats, possibly due to osmotic shock. Experiments in animals, primarily rats, for up to one-year periods have repeatedly shown that the intake of distilled water or water with total solids ≤ 75 mg/L leads to: 1.) increased water intake, diuresis, extracellular fluid volume, and serum concentrations of sodium (Na) and chloride (Cl) ions and their increased elimination from the body, resulting in an overall negative balance and 2.) lower volumes of red cells and some other hematocrit changes (1).

Distilled water may also be used in the home. To avoid mineral accumulation in your iron or car’s cooling system, add it to the water. Fill your aquarium or water your plants with it.

Is there a difference between purified water and regular water?

Having enough water in your system is critical to your overall health. You need to stay hydrated throughout the day since every cell in your body relies on water for effective operation. Many individuals are aware of the need for drinking water, but they aren’t sure what sort of water to choose. Purified, distilled, and normal water are all examined in this article to determine which is better for hydration.

What is purified water?

Pure water is water that has gone through a purification process. Impurities like chemicals and other pollutants are removed from purified water by filtration or processing. Groundwater or municipal tap water is often used to make it.

 Many sorts of pollutants may be eliminated by purification, including:

 ·         Bacteria

·         Algae

·         Fungi

·         Parasites

·         Pollutants from metals like copper and lead

Commercially and domestically, a variety of techniques are used to remove impurities from water. Drinking water is usually subjected to one or more treatment processes aimed at improving its safety and/or its aesthetic quality. Fresh waters can be treated by one or more processes such as coagulation, sedimentation, granular media filtration, adsorption, ion exchange, membrane filtration, slow sand filtration, and disinfection, and sometimes softening (1).

 Most Western nations purify their public drinking water before it is made available to the public. As a result, the criteria for drinking water in different countries and regions are based on official rules or international norms. Over 2.1 billion people do not have access to clean drinking water, according to the World Health Organization.

There are a variety of ways to ensure that public drinking water is safe, including: 

·         Particles that have a negative charge may be removed from water by using coagulation and flocculation techniques. It creates bigger particles, known as flocs.

·         It is because of its size that the floc sinks to the bottom of the water supply and becomes isolated from clean water.

·         Several sands, charcoal, and gravel-based filtering systems are used to further purify the potable water at the top of the supply. This eliminates dust, germs, viruses, and other pollutants.

·         After the first few processes, the water is disinfected using chemicals like chlorine, which kills any lingering bacteria or viruses.

·         In terms of water treatment, it is crucial to keep in mind that the quality of the local water may have a significant impact on the process.

Other FAQs about Water that you may be interested in.

How long is bottled water good for?


In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Can you drink distilled water?” and discussed the side effects of drinking distilled water.


  1. Kozisek, Frantisek. Health risks from drinking demineralised water. Nutrients in drinking water. 2005, 1, 148-163.
  2. Dvorak, B.I. and Skipton, S.O. Drinking Water Treatment: Distillation. 2013. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 
  3. van den Tillaart SA, Busard MP, Trimbos JB. The use of distilled water in the achievement of local hemostasis during surgery. Gynecol Surg, 2009, 6, 255-259.