How is bottled water safe? Do we need to worry about it? What is better: tap water or bottled water? Bottled water gained popularity when some celebrities endorsed it. Before them, Nestle introduced a single-use PET bottle that attracted customers. Americans spend $31 billion last year on bottled water.
Why people prefer bottled water over tap water?
One of the biggest reasons is water safety. Plenty of people think that municipal water could be contaminated with chemicals, especially with chlorine, lead, or arsenic. Besides, the bottled water industry ignited fears pointing out tap water is suitable for irrigation and cooking.
Avoidance of sugary drinks
Another reason to choose bottled water is the willingness to avoid sugary drinks.
Yes, people in this way are right because of sugar consumption that leads to chronic diseases.
The usage of sugar creates plenty of problems besides diabetes and obesity. It removes vital nutrients and creates an addiction consuming more sweets.
Commercials and online influence
The third reason is the constant commercial that points out about benefits and convenience of drinking bottled water.
The reality check-up
Consumer Reports found out as they always do what facts regarding bottled water safety are telling a different story.
IBWA or so-called International Bottled Water Association turn facts upside down when asked about test results.
For example, in 1999, the IBWA website posted a question:” Does bottled water contain any harmful chemicals that can pose a threat to human health?”
Overall, it would be strange that they would answer yes. However, according to Consumer Reports,
federal records show that in the 1990 there were around 50 recalls of bottled water for excessive chlorine, mold, and fecal coliforms.
What do you think about how IBWA answered what?
They pointed out that it meant to be “general nature,” and there was no risk to human health.
Overall, I think that they have a strange sense of humor. Why? Fecal coliforms show that something is fishy with the treatment of water.
Wikipedia explains it perfectly:
In general, increased levels of fecal coliforms provide a warning of failure in water treatment, a break in the integrity of the distribution system, possible contamination with pathogens. When levels are high there may be an elevated risk of waterborne gastroenteritis. Tests for the bacteria are cheap, reliable and rapid (1-day incubation).
Independent tests showed in 1999 that 1 in 4 of more than one hundred brands violated California limits for arsenic or other carcinogens. You do not need to be a scientist to know about the harm of arsenic.
This stuff, I mean arsenic, is found naturally in Earth’s crust, water, air, animals. However, inorganic arsenic can be dangerous because of the nature of how it was produced. Industries use arsenic for various purposes, such as in smelters or for herbicides and pesticides.
Is a plastic bottle safe?
Nah, especially if these plastic bottles kept in hot areas such as in the sun. Studies show that antimony trioxide, a carcinogen, may be released into the water if bottles are kept too long, such as five days. Federal limits are 167 degrees after five days, but in some cases, it happens after a few hours.
Think about plastic bottles left in the car on the hot summer day. I saw some people put these bottles back into the cooler and reusing them again. No wonders why various environmental illnesses surround us.
Consumer Reports have a story about the study made in 2019. It shows that microscopic pieces of plastic could leach toxins into the water. People, who drunk only bottled water, consumed on average, 90,000 microplastics annually. Individuals who guzzled only tap water got only 4,000.
What is horrible about these tiny pieces of plastic is what they help create reproductive problems, obesity, and other nasty things.
How does tap water become bottled water?
A few years ago, I heard saying that bottled water is the same as water from the tap. Previously I sneered at the tap water because of lack of knowledge. I was happy with San Pelegrino, which comes in glass bottles.
Thankfully, my wallet and my body got better alternatives because of learning about the benefits of minerals.
I will talk about it later, but for now, let’s check how tap water becomes suitable for famous brands.
I never was crazy about Coca-Cola, except the company’s commercials at Christmas time and beautiful design of bottles or about Nestle, which strips communities and lakes taking water for their own needs.
However, when I read in Consumer Reports article about the usage of tap water by these famous brands, I was confused. Is it a crime or just fooling of consumers giving tap water names such as Dasani, Aquafina, Poland Spring, or Zephyrhills Natural Spring Water?
Yes, you understand, right.
Companies use water from the tap, create a brand name, and make a nice profit. Besides, companies such as Nestle drain out lakes, the resources of local people.
How about tests of bottled water
According to Consumer Reports, “Government regulators generally don’t test bottled water themselves, and bottled water makers aren’t required to publish their results.”
Besides, companies are not responsible for making the results of tests available to the public.
What does it mean?
It means that there is no consumer protection at this point. You depend on the generosity and sanity of manufacturers who can be honest or think about profits. You heard plenty of stories about how people were left behind when something serious happened. The city of Flint is one of having this reputation.
Of course, I doubt if tap water from Flint could go into bottled water because of the color. However, there are plenty of toxins that do not appear visible to the human eye.
Funny story about Fiji water
It is op to you decide how much fun is here, especially if you would be a customer who used this particular Fiji bottled water.
At 2006, Fiji had an ad which stated that water is good in bootle because of the different origin, not taken from the tap in Cleveland.
Officials in Cleveland did not get excited over this statement and checked their tap water and water in Fiji bottles.
What do you think they found?
Cleveland’s municipal water was good. Fiji bottled water had arsenic in it. How about that?
Here is a peak of Fiji’s reaction to findings. The company told us that it was only a joke. Uh!
Let’s see how tap water can serve for us
The majority of the USA have access to safe tap water, except in some communities, there are real problems. The lack of investment in water systems leads to disasters such as Flint or in the Hudson, Mass.
It is good news for tap water users that systems that provide water to 90 percent of the USA consumers are safe. Only less than ten percent had at least one health-based quality violation.
You can learn about your tap water safety, receiving annual water quality, called the Consumer Confidence Report. If you do not get one, you need to call the local water supplier. People who rent can ask reports from their landlords.
It is advisable to test the water using test kits because of lead danger. Why? Municipalities can provide excellent water to you, but lead can reach your water from pipes that go into your house.
EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) recommends using a certified lab. Sometimes communities can provide test kits free of charge.
Filtering tap water prevents you from headaches and possible problems coming with contamination from bottled water or the tap, mainly if you do not test it.
Filters are various depending on the quality and price.
According to Consumer Reports, osmosis filters are the most reliable. They can remove arsenic, lead, bacteria, chlorine, and other chemicals.
It is essential to know and make sure that filters are certified to NSF International standards by an independent lab.
What does it mean?
It means that these labs are not associated with manufacturers and not have influence from them.
What do I use?
Osmosis filters are too expensive for me, and they require a lot of space. I choose the Pure Earth Technologies Inc. filtration system. You can select various cartridges for your needs. The quality is excellent and price affordable.
If you would read more about water filtration and devices for it, please check this link.
Water is the main staple for humans. However, we need to be conscious of the quality of it. As you see, there are no strict requirements from regulation agencies about testing. Bottled water seems convenient to use, especially when you see celebrities doing that. The majority of bottled water sold today appears to be safe. However, you are the most important person who must have the responsibility for your health.
It is an adage about first taking care of yourself, and then later on that others will help you too.
Having filters at your home or the renting place will save you from the problems being sick and at the same time will save you money when you refill your glass bottle without the need going to the store.
I add some magnesium ReMag and some of the Himalayan salt. It is a perfect drink that gives benefits not just for the body but for the mind too. Would you like to read about the best magnesium supplement? Check this link here.
If you have questions or remarks, please leave a comment.