The latest health claim says that drinking water from a copper cup boosts health by reducing inflammation, bolstering brain functioning, aiding in weight loss, slowing aging, fighting cancer, and acting like an anti- microbial.
Whoa, does this mean people should toss out their glasses and buy a supply of copper mugs? Is it even possible that drinking from a certain type of cup can do anything other than make a Moscow Mule taste better? Or is this just the latest health fad?
“Drinking out of a copper mug is neither healthy or not healthy,”
says Dr. Michael Lynch, medical director for the Pittsburgh Poison Center and assistant professor in the department of emergency medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
Or, to put another way:
“I don’t think it is harmful, but it is not a magic bullet,”
says Lauren Blake, a registered dietitian at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.
There are no studies that find drinking from a copper cup helps with weight loss, improves brain function, slows aging, fights cancer, or reduces inflammation. But a study did find that leaving water in a copper vessel kills off bacteria.
“I still don’t know how much it would kill,” says Blake. “That would probably be a good space to use it, but I wouldn’t trust it to kill all the bacteria.”
Copper plays an important role in overall health and many of these overblown claims about copper cups seem to originate from what’s known about that mineral. It helps with brain function, can partner with other enzymes to work as an antioxidant, encourages red blood cell production, and maintains collagen and elastin, aiding in bone health.
“It is important because it helps in terms of iron absorption,”
says Leslie Bonci, a nutritionist and owner of Active Eating Advice.
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