The Dirty on Tap Water
Water is one of the most important building blocks of good health. We are made up of ~70% water and most people are just not receiving enough water each day. Just as important as receiving enough water is the quality of your water. Did you know that in 2015, about 77 million Americans were drinking water that was violating federal protections? And many individuals continue to drink water (and tap water) that is contaminated without awareness of what it can be doing to their health.
Here are some common contaminants found in tap water:
- Heavy metals like lead, arsenic, and mercury
- Chlorine treatment by-products
- Bacteria, Viruses, Parasites
- Vinyl Chloride
- Radioactive Contaminants
- Trihalomethanes (THMs)
These contaminants contribute to various imbalances in our health, including neurological concerns, hormonal imbalances, immune system suppression, and cancer promotion. Although tap water is treated with chlorine, chlorine can react with the organic matter found in water and produce toxic byproducts that are also harmful to our health. And if drinking the water isn’t enough to cause harm, bathing and showering in tap water is just as harmful. That warm shower causes the chlorine in the shower water to become absorbed readily through your skin and lungs.
What are the next steps to take?
- You can test your water at a certified lab center to determine which specific contaminants might be in your drinking water.
- Invest in a shower filter as well as water filters for drinking water. Whole house filtration systems are ideal, but if you cannot install a whole house system, consider some of the following types of filters:
- Carbon Block Filters: remove most chemicals and impurities while leaving naturally found minerals in the water. I recommend checking with the company to see what contaminants they don’t remove, as each brand varies.
- Reverse Osmosis Filters: remove many impurities and about 70% fluoride, but removes natural minerals as well, so you have to add minerals back into the water.
- Distillation Filters: are similar to reverse osmosis filters but also removes all healthy minerals.
- Ion Exchange Filters: removes heavy metals and charged ions, but does not remove other types of contaminants as effectively.
- Ozone Filters or UV Light Filters: removes bacteria and microorganisms but does not remove chemicals.
- Limit bottled water consumption, as up to 25-40% of companies use tap water, and there are harmful pollutants that can be leached into your water from the plastic materials themselves. Not to mention, you are increasing the already growing environmental burden we have. If you are going to drink bottled water regularly, make sure it is a good quality brand that is treated with filtration or reverse osmosis.
Find the best products and methods that work for you and your family. If you are concerned if you have been exposed to chemicals and heavy metals in your drinking water, we have great environmental testing panels to determine your exposure levels.
Stay hydrated with pure sources of water to keep your health in tip-top shape!
Here’s to your health,