Photography: Frenchescar Lim; Styling: Alice Chua

Here's what we've learned about the new drink for when you want something other than regular H20.

 

1. Birch water comes from, well, birch trees

Photo: Tapped

Or rather, what you’re drinking is clear sap drawn from these trees. Birch trees - which grow in temperate forests in Nordic countries - are only tapped once a year in spring, when the sap is rising through the trunks. The process is carried out over a period of just two weeks. The sap is then pasteurised so it can be kept for longer and drunk all year round.

 

2. It tastes like Japanese sake. Kind of.

Photo: 123rf

Pure sap has a similar mouthfeel to water but with a tinge of bittersweetness that’s similar to Japanese sake. It’s best drunk chilled. If that’s not your thing, Tapped, which distributes birch water here, also offers it flavoured with elderflower, apple and ginger, as well as bilberry and lingonberry.

 

3. It’s supposed to be good for you

Photo: Tapped

Pure sap has diuretic effects, so it can relieve the discomfort of water retention, says dietitian Derrick Ong of Eat Right Nutrition Consultancy. It also contains xylitol - which reduces tooth decay by preventing cavity-causing bacteria - and saponins, which help lower cholesterol levels.  Birch water also has less sugar than its coconut counterpart. “In contrast to coconut water which contains around 6g of sugar a cup, birch water has only 2-3g of sugar a cup,” says Derrick. Stil, he notes that extensive studies have not been done on the benefits of birch water, so if you want to lower your cholesterol, for example, you’re better off seeing a doctor and eating better.

 

4. Birch water doesn’t hurt the environment

Photography: Frenchescar Lim; Styling: Alice Chua

Seasonal extraction means trees are not harmed, or cut down.

Get your fix: You can get Tapped’s range of birch water at Redmart and Saladstop! Stores.

This story was originally published in the July 2018 issue of Her World. 

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