Are you an avid consumer of bottled water? While top bottled water manufacturers have promoted them as the “ultimate water source,” there are a few things you need to know about them: they’re not as healthy as you think.
For one, the plastic used in bottled water is harmful to the environment. Also, you’ll be surprised that the precious money that you spend may be going to products that are questionable in terms of quality. To be more specific, here are reasons why bottled water is unhealthy.
The Water in Bottled Water: Is It Really Purified?
The price of bottled water often starts at 1.50 dollars, and this is 1,900 times the price of tap water. This matters because research shows that about 40 percent of bottled water contains tap water, which may or may not have had additional treatment.
It is also important to note that the purity standards of private bottlers are often lax compared to those of municipal tap water companies. While public water suppliers are required to test for contaminants multiple times during a day, bottled water manufacturers are told to do so only once a week, once a year, or even once every four years – and this depends on the contaminant.
To make matters worse, the Environmental Working Group performed a test on bottled water and found 38 contaminants lurking within it. About 10 brands of bottled water carried an average of eight harmful substances, such as bacteria, arsenic, industrial matter, nitrate, Tylenol, caffeine, fluoride, and disinfection byproducts (DBPs).
However, the dangers of bottled water is not only limited to the water – there are also hazards to the plastic bottles containing them.
The Health and Environmental Hazards of Plastic Bottles
The bottles used in bottled water products are made of plastic, which are created with hazardous chemicals such as BPA and phthalates. These two substances often leach from the bottle and can act as hormones. Your exposure to these two is often increased when the bottle is exposed to heat and stress when left inside a car.
Exposure to even tiny amounts can lead to these problems:
- Brain damage
- Impaired learning and hyperactivity
- Increase in accumulated fat and higher risk of obesity
- Immune system problems
- Early puberty and gender-specific behavior changes
- Stimulation of prostate cancer cells
Apart from the dangers to your health, bottled water poses a threat to the environment. With every second that passes, about 1,500 bottles are disposed of, and most of these are not recycled. The production process of plastic bottles is also a hazard to nature, as it releases toxic compounds like nickel, ethylbenzene, ethylene oxide, and benzene.
Your Healthier Options: Sources That Provide Clean Water
While it is easy to trust the marketing efforts of private bottlers, bear these facts in mind and prioritize your health.
If bottled water should be avoided, what are your options? According to experts, one of the best water sources is a gravity-fed raw spring. Instead of being purified through processing, this type of water is filtered by the earth. The living organisms in this type of water are beneficial to your health. This type of water does not need any additional filtration.
Another advantage attached to this is that spring water is free. All you have to do is find one near your area and bring containers.
Your next option would be to obtain tap water and take the time to filter them. This way, you’ll be secure with the water you consume. You should invest in a drinking water filter that can remove not only bacteria and chemicals, but also disinfection byproducts. You should check online sources to find out how to pick the best water filter.
Madeline Mann is an advocate of natural health and a concerned mother of three children. She is currently researching and writing about finding a drinking water filter, as well as on other related topics that can help other netizens or Web enthusiasts. In the past, she has written several web articles on parenting and nutrition.