To study the distribution of trace elements in natural water of the Du River Source National Nature Reserve and to assess the water quality and health risks, Zhushan County in Hubei Province was selected as the study area. Element content in 361 natural water samples collected from Zhushan County were measured by ICP-MS, ICP-OES, and HG-AFS. The main anions and cations present in water samples from Zhushan County are Ca2+ and HCO3−. The water chemistry is predominantly influenced by the weathering of carbonate rocks. The water samples with high content of selenium (Se) (0∼82.9 μg/L, mean 4.6 μg/L) in natural water in Zhushan County are mainly distributed in the northern part of Zhushan. The strontium (Sr) content of 49.6% of the water samples (0.001–2.177 mg/L, mean 0.234 mg/L) reached the criteria of natural mineral water for drinking in China (Sr ≥ 0.2 mg/L), which is distributed throughout the county. The high content of metasilicic acid (H2SiO3) (0.026–35.910 mg/L, mean 12.598 mg/L) and zinc (Zn) (0∼407.218 μg/L, mean 12.406 μg/L) are concentrated in northern Zhushan County. 99.7% water samples were freshwater and 98.9% meet the criteria of “good” water quality. All of the natural water samples have low health risk and low heavy metal pollution. 6.1% water samples meet the criteria of Se-type mineral water, while 45.4% meet the criteria of Sr-type mineral water, and 4.4% water samples meet the criteria of “low sodium, high Se, and high Sr” mineral water. Zhushan County has the potential for Se-type mineral water and Sr-type mineral water development. The findings of this study hold immense significance for the public health implications of drinking water in Du River Source, thereby offering valuable insights for effective water resources management.

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