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5 Parental Hacks for Keeping Your Kids Hydrated—and How Much They Need

Water Quality

5 Parental Hacks for Keeping Your Kids Hydrated—and How Much They Need
All living things need water to survive, including your child. Along with milk, water is the best liquid for kids because it's very healthy with no calories and no added sugar. Mineral water in particular is some of the healthiest water. It keeps bones, teeth, and joints healthy, helps important development and bodily functions, and aids children in maintaining a healthy weight into adulthood. Overall, proper hydration is essential for children, but the amount of water your child needs depends on their age. Recommended Water Intake for Kids by Age Group The amount of water your kid needs also depends on the weather and their activity levels. Children need even more water when exercising. Your child should drink filtered water before, during, and after physical activity—even if they aren’t thirsty because it helps to prevent dehydration during the activity and overhydration afterward. Here's a general guideline of the amount of water needed per day for kids of different ages: 6 months: Babies can be introduced to water at 6 months old. They only need 4 to 8 ounces a day until they are a year old because they get the rest of their liquid from formula or breastmilk.1-3 years: 4 glasses4-8 years: 5 glasses9-12 years: 7 glasses13+: 8 to 10 glasses 5 Hydration Tips to Get Your Kids to Drink More Water If you're concerned that your child doesn't want to drink water or might not be drinking enough water, here are a few tips that might help you encourage them to hydrate. 1. Make It Fun With Games and Cute Cups A fun bottle can encourage your child to drink more water. Carrying around a special bottle or cup will help you keep them hydrated, and refillable bottles don’t generate waste. Your child might prefer a cup with a straw or a small bottle (that's less intimidating) that you can frequently fill up. You can also turn it into a game by challenging your child to drink to a certain level of the cup or bottle. For example, if the bottle has Dora the Explorer printed on the front, encourage your child to drink their water until they reach the bottom of Dora’s shoe. 2. Try Giving Them Fruit-Infused Water Many children don’t like the taste of plain water, so try to give them some fruit-infused water instead. You can also freeze some fruit into ice cubes or use exciting-shaped ice. 3. Offer Them Water Regularly Throughout the Day Making water readily available is a good way to encourage your child to drink it. Always make sure to offer them water regularly throughout the day and have their bottle or a glass of water within reach at all times. There are minerals in tap water, so if you live in an area with clean water, or even if you have water filters, teach your child how to pour water themselves from the faucet. 4. Give Them Fruits and Veggies With a High Water Content If liquid water is not doing the trick, try and incorporate more fruits and vegetables into their diet. Fruit and vegetables have a high water content, so they're a great way to sneak in some extra hydration. Baby carrots, strawberries, and watermelon are a few child-friendly favorites to try. 5. Have the Potty Talk You can also turn this into a game. Teach your child that they can tell how much water they’ve been drinking by the color of their urine. Dark-colored urine means not enough water, and light-yellow urine means that they're winning at the water game. If your child is a little older, explain to them that if their urine is darker, they should grab some more water. How to Keep an Eye Out for Signs of Dehydration If your child is mildly dehydrated, they may have symptoms of: dizzinessdark yellow or brown urinenausea or headachesfewer wet nappies or toilet breaksdry tongue, mouth, throat, or lips If your child has severe dehydration, they may have symptoms of: extreme thirstlethargypale and have sunken eyescold hands or feet breathing faster than usual and an elevated heart rate irritable, drowsy, or confused The best treatment for mild dehydration is to give your child more water immediately. If your child refuses to drink water, try and give them some dehydrated apple juice. If your child shows symptoms of severe dehydration, take them to your nearest GP right away. Conclusion Children are often at risk of dehydration, especially when playing sports in hot weather. By the time they feel thirsty, they're likely already dehydrated. It's up to the parents to make sure their child is drinking enough water. When getting your child to drink water, start with yourself and be an example of the behavior you'd like them to follow.
Glass vs. Plastic Water Bottle: Which Is Best for Drinking?

Water Quality

Glass vs. Plastic Water Bottle: Which Is Best for Drinking?
Billions of single-use plastic bottles are manufactured every year, and only a small number of them are actually recycled. The contents of plastic bottles are typically filtered water, mineral water, or spring water. However, chemicals from the plastic leach into the water. But by opting for a glass bottle over a plastic bottle, you avoid this negative effect in addition to reducing pollution in the ocean and gaining financial benefit from carrying a reusable bottle. Let’s Talk Glass Bottles Sustainability When it comes to the sustainability of glass vs plastic bottles, glass is 100% recyclable and reusable. It can be reused infinitely without losing quality, and it can take as little as a month for a bottle to be back on the shelves. Chemicals Glass is the safest reusable water bottle material because it's chemical-free, made from natural materials, and dishwasher safe. Glass water bottles don't leach harmful chemicals into your water and is another way to reduce or avoid microplastics. Research has shown that bottled water contains about 50% more microplastics than tap water. Hygiene While glass water bottles should still be washed frequently, they carry fewer germs and bacteria because glass is less porous than plastic and metal. It's also easier to see the inside of a glass water bottle to see if it’s clean. Taste Glass is a more inert material, so it’s less likely to affect the flavor and odor of your water. Cost The initial purchase of a glass bottle will cost more than a plastic bottle. However, in the longer run, it will end up saving you a lot more money. Borosilicate glass is a popular choice for glass bottle production. Borosilicate glass is made with boron trioxide, which means this glass is heat resistant and will not crack under extreme temperature changes. This type of glass is strong and very durable, making it less likely to shatter. The Downsides of Plastic Bottles Sustainability The UN Environment Programme’s recent report shows that the current 11 million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year will triple by 2040. Of the 7 billion metric tons of plastic waste generated globally so far, less than 10 percent has been recycled. Plastic waste is an increasing problem, and one of the biggest challenges is single-use plastic because it ends up in landfills and the ocean. Chemicals Disposable plastic bottles can lead to chemical leaching and toxicity. Chemical leaching occurs when heat or damage (like denting the bottle) causes toxic chemicals from the plastic to be released into the water. Hygiene Wear and tear on the bottle from reusing it can create cracks and scratches on the surface where bacteria grow. It's more difficult to clean the bacteria out because it grows inside the tiny cracks. Taste Drinking from a plastic water bottle could lead to your water tasting like plastic, especially if the chemicals from the plastic are leaching into the water. Cost Plastic water bottles can cost anywhere from $1 to $3. If you're drinking 5 bottles a day, the cost adds up very quickly. So, Which Bottle Should You Choose? Glass is more sustainable than plastic, because it can be endlessly reused and recycled. There are many advantages of borosilicate glass in particular, and when cared for, a glass bottle can last you many years, making it a sustainable option for your drinking water. The dangers of plastic water bottles are gradually increasing. In an attempt to cut down on single-use plastic, people are reusing these water bottles. However, as already discussed, there are many disadvantages to doing reusing plastic bottles. It's better to skip the plastic bottle altogether and invest in a good-quality glass bottle. Conclusion A decent glass bottle will last you a lifetime. They're easy to clean, durable, don't leach harmful chemicals, are less of a viable environment for bacteria growth, and have less impact on the environment. Mayu Water’s glass bottles are a great way to cut down on plastic bottles and enjoy wonderful tasting, chemical-free water.
3 Steps to Naturally Increase the pH of Drinking Water

Water Quality

3 Steps to Naturally Increase the pH of Drinking Water
Generally, the pH level of water varies between 6.5 and 8.5. Drinking water too far out of this range may not be safe. Normal drinking water has a neutral pH of 7. Once the pH level reaches 8 or 9, water is considered alkaline. Advocates of alkaline water consider this to be the healthiest water and believe that drinking water with a higher pH can neutralize the acid in the body. Alkaline water has a higher number of alkalizing minerals than the minerals in tap water. In this article, we have outlined the best steps to naturally increase the pH of your drinking water. 1. Start by Testing Your Water’s pH Level Whether you're drinking filtered water from a bottle, using an at-home water filter, or drinking tap water, it's possible to test your water's pH level. There are two easy ways to do this: pH Meter: Fill up a clean container with water and let it sit for a few minutes to stabilize. Ensure the water level covers the tip of the electrode to get an accurate reading. Place the probe into the container and allow enough time to pass for the meter to reach an equilibrium. You can read the pH meter to get the results of your water sample. You can purchase a pH meter at any hardware store.pH Papers: This is a simple and accurate way to test the pH of your water. Fill up a clean container and make sure it's deep enough to cover the testing strip. Dip the test strip into the container of water for a few seconds. Once the strip changes color, you can match it to the chart provided to see the pH level. You can buy pH papers at almost any drug or grocery store. 2. Add an Alkaline Substance to Your Water If your water is neutral, or even on the acidic side, there are some natural substances you can add to increase its alkalinity. Fresh Lemon Although lemon juice is acidic, adding it to your water in small amounts has an alkalizing effect on the body. Lemons are anionic, so once you drink the water, it becomes alkaline as your body reacts with the lemon's anions. Squeeze the juice from one fresh lemon into 8 glasses of water to sip on throughout the day. Baking Soda Baking soda is a simple ingredient found in most kitchens. Baking soda sits at around 8.4 on the pH scale. The effect of baking soda will depend on your water's current pH level, and you won't be able to raise it past 8.4. However, mixing in 1 tsp (4 g) of baking soda with 250ml of water will raise its pH, making it more alkaline. Milk of Magnesia Milk of magnesia is an alkaline suspension, which means it causes neutralization when it encounters anything acidic. This makes this substance great for water on the more acidic side. Milk of magnesia comes in liquid form with a dosing cap or in tablet form. Add one dose to 8 glasses of water to sip on throughout the day. pH Drops pH drops contain potent, concentrated alkaline minerals. These drops can be purchased from health stores or online. Follow the specific instructions on the pH drops bottle when it comes to putting them in your water. 3. Check Your Water’s pH Again Once you've added your chosen substance to your drinking water, check the water's pH level again to ensure it's between 8 and 9 and not too high. While drinking water with a higher pH is likely safe, be mindful of how your body reacts and drop the alkalinity if there are adverse reactions. Health Benefits of Drinking Higher-pH Water While there isn't much research to support the health benefits of drinking alkaline water, many health professionals believe there are advantages. Better Hydration A study done in 2017 showed that alkaline water had a positive effect on hydration, especially after a workout. It also has a positive effect on the pH of urine. Improved Digestion Alkaline water is considered therapeutic by many people who suffer from acid reflux. Alkaline water can aid digestion by reducing acidity in the intestinal tract and permanently destroying any pepsin that's present. Pepsin is one of the main contributors to acid reflux. Slowed Aging Process Research has suggested that drinking alkaline water slows down the aging process and may result in a longer lifespan. Better Bone Health Some research has shown that alkaline water has a positive effect on bone resorption, the process where the tissue in bones is broken down and absorbed by the body. Conclusion Reducing the body's overall acidity level achieves a more desirable and less inflammatory state, which puts you at less risk for chronic disease. Drinking alkaline water is a safe and natural way to boost your overall well-being.
4 Health-Boosting Ways to Remineralize Reverse Osmosis Water

Water Quality

4 Health-Boosting Ways to Remineralize Reverse Osmosis Water
There are many benefits of reverse osmosis water. The reverse osmosis filtration process effectively removes contaminants that could potentially lead to health implications. However, because this filtration process is so thorough, it also removes all the essential minerals from the water. Reverse osmosis water is not considered to be the healthiest water because the lack of minerals causes it to leach minerals from the body when consumed. This means that all the minerals you consume through vitamins and food are urinated away, which causes serious negative side effects and big health problems. Essential Minerals That Disappear During Reverse Osmosis There are many minerals in tap water, including calcium, magnesium, sodium, fluoride, copper, iron, and zinc. Minerals are essential for our health and proper bodily functions. They contribute to strong teeth and bones, healthy hair and skin, the growth and development of the body, and optimal neurological functioning. Not getting enough essential minerals or having them leached from your body by reverse osmosis water disrupts your body's ability to function properly and leads to many negative consequences. Here is a look at the role of these essential minerals in your body: Calcium: Essential for strong teeth and bones and plays an important role in the digestive system.Magnesium: Helps prevent heart disease and strokes. Magnesium is also essential for the mineralization and development of the skeleton.Fluoride: Important for strengthening the teeth.Sodium: Helps regulate blood pressure, the functioning of muscles and nerves, and electrolyte balance.Copper: Required to maintain good health, strengthen the bones, and support host defense mechanisms.Iron: Essential for transporting oxygen in your blood.Zinc: Required for normal development, growth, DNA synthesis, sensory functions, and immunity. Therefore, mineral water is a vital part of a healthy diet and strong consideration should be given to remineralizing water if it has undergone reverse osmosis. So, How Do You Remineralize Reverse Osmosis Water? Here are some easy ways to remineralize reverse osmosis water to ensure your body is getting what it needs. 1. Add Some Mineral Salt Salt, like Himalayan salt, contains all the essential trace minerals that reverse osmosis removes from your drinking water. It's important to use rich mineral salt and not table salt. This method is also one of the most cost-effective ways of remineralizing your water. You can either add a tiny pinch to every glass of water or you can add a quarter of a teaspoon to every 4.5 liters of water. 2. Add a Few Mineral Drops Mineral drops are a concentrated liquid solution that you drop into your water to increase the mineral content. These drops are considered the quickest and easiest way to replace the essential minerals lost during reverse osmosis and are easily absorbed by the body. Mayu's Essential Blend provides an estimated 60 servings per container and suggests adding 8 drops to every 1 liter of water. 3. Use a Remineralizing Water Filter A remineralizing filter can be added to most reverse osmosis systems, but someone who works at a water filter store will be able to help you choose the right water filter. The filter contains minerals, and as the reverse osmosis water passes over the minerals, they're dissolved back into the water. This happens at the end of the filtering stage. The pH and temperature of the water determine how many minerals dissolve. This is another easy solution since you don’t need to worry about doing any manual work. 4. Use an Alkaline Pitcher An alkaline pitcher adds, filters, and raises the pH level of your reverse osmosis water by adding minerals to it. These essential minerals make the water a bit more alkaline, which means the pH of the water is slightly raised. This ensures that the necessary and adequate amount of minerals is added to the water. An alkaline pitcher is an easy way to store your water and will automatically remineralize it. Alternatively, there are natural ways to increase the pH level of water. Conclusion Reverse osmosis water is not necessarily bad for you. In some places, it's essential to use a reverse osmosis system, or you may be susceptible to water-borne diseases. However, it's better to play it safe and remineralize your water. The minerals in water are essential for a reason and adding them back to clean reverse osmosis water is a guaranteed way to avoid any harmful contaminants as well as get the minerals essential for your health.
Not All Water Is Equal: Pick the Healthiest Water for You

Water Quality

Not All Water Is Equal: Pick the Healthiest Water for You
Water makes up 60 percent of the human body, and every cell, tissue, muscle, and system requires water to run effectively. Most people need eight glasses of water daily, but with so many different water types, it may be overwhelming to know which one is the best for you. We've outlined the main types of drinking water along with their benefits and drawbacks to make your decision easier. Types of Drinking Water While water is essential, it’s not all the same. Here are seven of the most common types of drinking water. Tap water Tap water comes out of your faucet. It's sourced from either underground or from surface water like a river or stream.Mineral water Mineral water is abundant in essential minerals like sulfur, magnesium, and calcium, and comes from underground sources. These essential minerals give this type of water a characteristic salty taste.Spring or glacier water Spring or glacier water is bottled water that claims to be bottled at the source from where the water flows—either a glacier or a spring. This water is typically clean, free of toxins, and high in minerals.Distilled water Distilled water is any water that has been purified by boiling the water until it turns into a vapor, capturing the gas, and condensing it back to a liquid state.Alkaline water Alkaline water has a pH of 8 or 9, which is higher than normal tap water.Purified water Purified water is typically tap or groundwater that has been treated to remove harmful substances like bacteria and parasites. Reverse osmosis water is an example of purified water.Structured water Structured water, also called hexagonal water, is water with a structure that has been altered to form a hexagonal molecule cluster. It's believed that structured water shares similarities with water that has been uncontaminated by human processes. Which Water Is the Healthiest to Drink? Now that you’re familiar with the different types of water, we'll look at which water is the healthiest. Here is a list of pros and cons for each type of drinking water. Tap Water Pros Contains natural minerals.Cheap and readily available.Better for the environment because there are no plastic bottles needed. Cons Distinct odor or taste in certain areas may be unappealing.Could contain small amounts of harmful compounds, such as microplastics and chlorine. Mineral Water Pros: The high mineral content helps to lower blood pressure, boost muscle growth, and improve bone density. Cons Some brands of mineral water have high levels of sodium. Spring or Glacier Water Pros Comes straight from the source, so it's considered to be free of harmful contaminants.Contains good levels of essential minerals.Refreshing taste. Cons Could potentially still contain contaminants like metals, nitrates, chlorine, and other unwanted elements. Distilled Water Pros Good for if you live somewhere or visit somewhere where the tap water is contaminated. Cons No vitamins and minerals, which could negatively affect your health through mineral leaching. Alkaline Water Pros May hydrate the body better than regular bottled or tap water. Cons More research is needed to confirm the alleged health benefits of alkaline water.Could change the acid levels of the stomach, which could cause discomfort for certain people. Purified Water Pros A good option if your primary water sources are contaminated. Cons Contains no vitamins and minerals, which could negatively affect your health through mineral leaching. Structured Water Pros The idea behind structured water is that the molecules are charged, allowing them to hold energy and recharge and hydrate the body more thoroughly than ordinary drinking water. Cons There are limited studies supporting the health benefits of structured water.Could still contain contaminants like metals, nitrates, chlorine, and other unwanted elements. How to Choose the Right Water for You When choosing the right water for you, ask yourself a few key questions: What does the water taste like? Do I like it?Does it contain harmful contaminants?Does it have potentially negative health risks?How much is it going to cost?Is it easy and convenient for me to drink? Once you have answered these questions, you can come to a conclusion that works for you and your family. Conclusion Mineral and pure spring water are some of the healthiest water you can drink because they're clean and contain all the essential minerals your body needs. There are still benefits of filtered water, even though they have no minerals. Tap water is also a good choice in most areas as it’s less expensive, contains essential minerals, and doesn’t create single-use plastic waste. The most important thing is that you're drinking enough water and keeping your body hydrated.
Why Reusing Plastic Water Bottles Is Damaging Your Health

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Why Reusing Plastic Water Bottles Is Damaging Your Health
One million plastic drinking bottles are bought around the world every single minute. This creates a huge amount of waste that ends up in oceans and landfills. It's common practice for people to reuse plastic water bottles by refilling them. It saves money, avoids having to repeatedly buy new bottles, and reduces the amount of plastic waste. However, these bottles were not meant to be reused. Recent revelations about the toxic chemicals found in plastic bottles should be enough to prevent anyone from reusing them—or buying them in the first place. While reusing your plastic bottle is convenient, we've outlined why it’s not the best idea to carry on with this practice. Risks of Reusing Plastic Water Bottles Apart from the environmental impact of plastic water bottles, there are two significant health risks associated with reusing these bottles. Chemical leaching Most single-use plastic bottles are made from flimsy material, which gets damaged through normal wear and tear, and while being washed. Repeatedly using a plastic bottle significantly increases the chance that chemicals will leak out of the tiny cracks in the bottle that develop over time. One of these chemicals is bisphenol A (BPA), which has been linked to some serious health risks like fertility issues, breast and prostate cancer, diabetes, and metabolic disorders.Bacteria Plastic bottles also harbor harmful bacteria, which can be just as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than chemical leaching. Scratches and cracks can not only cause chemical leaching, but are the ideal spot for bacteria to thrive. Bacterial growth happens very quickly by simply placing your mouth on your bottle and it can be difficult to remove, even with a thorough cleaning. Studies have revealed that water bottles that go uncleaned for a week contain 300,000 bacteria cells per square centimeter, which is more bacteria than in a dog’s water bowl. How Long Can You Reuse A Plastic Water Bottle? Most water bottles will display a number printed inside a triangle, which shows what kind of plastic the bottle is made from. That number also determines how often the bottle can be reused before it becomes unsafe. Here are three of the most common plastics water bottles are made from: Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) If there is a "1" in the triangle, it means it was made using PET plastic. This is a very lightweight plastic that's commonly used for water bottles and containers like nut butter, sauce bottles, and other food packaging. It's intended for single-use applications, and repeated use increases the risk of leaching and bacterial growth.High-density polyethylene (HDPE) If there is a "2" in the triangle, it means it was made using high-density polyethylene. HDPE is a more sturdy, durable plastic, which makes it a good material for detergent bottles, soap bottles, and gallon-size liquid containers. HDPE is reusable.Other (BPA, Polycarbonate and LEXAN) If there is a "7" in the triangle, it means it was made using materials that don’t fit under any other category. Some water bottles in this category may contain BPA. These plastics are not for reuse. Safe Alternatives to Plastic Bottles There are several water bottle materials that are safe alternatives to plastic bottles, including: Glass Glass as opposed to plastic bottles may be fragile, but they are sterile, don't affect the taste of the water, and don't leach any harmful chemicals.Stainless Steel Stainless steel bottles are typically lined so that there's no metallic taste in the liquid they hold. They are sterile and durable.Reusable Plastic Bottles Plastic water bottles are not all bad. It depends on the type of plastic used to make the bottle. Most reusable plastic water bottles are manufactured from plastic polymers like polypropylene and copolyester. Make sure that the bottle you are choosing is BPA-free. Conclusion Reusing a plastic water bottle might feel like an eco-friendly alternative because you’re not throwing the bottle away after every use. However, with the potentially harmful effects of reusing plastic water bottles on human health and their impact on the environment, the best decision is to skip single-use plastic altogether.
Glass vs. Plastic Bottles: The Sustainable Option

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Glass vs. Plastic Bottles: The Sustainable Option
Plastic tends to get a bad rep from environmentalists, especially because only 9 percent of all plastic is recycled. However, there's a lot more to consider regarding the manufacturing and recycling processes of both glass and plastic, and their impact on the environment. There's some debate about which is truly a more sustainable option. We've outlined everything you need to know in this article. Is Glass Really Environmentally Friendly? There are a few reasons why glass is viewed as more sustainable water bottle material than plastic. Glass is much more durable than plastic and can last many years when handled properly. Glass can also be cleaned and sterilized easily. Glass is endlessly recyclable (back to its original use) and never loses its purity or quality. However, just like with anything manufactured in the world, there will be an environmental impact. Here are three of the concerns around the environmental impact of glass: Resources Manufacturing new glass requires sand, and while we have tons of sand in deserts and on beaches, that's not the sand required for glass production. We use more sand than oil, and we're using it faster than it can be replenished. The sand needed for glass is harvested from seabeds and riverbeds. Removing this sand from the natural environment disrupts the ecosystem and causes flooding and erosion. Production The furnaces used to create the glass utilize fossil fuels, which create a lot of pollution. Glass also weighs more than plastic and is more prone to breaking during transit. This means the transportation involved with shipping glass produces higher emissions and costs more. Recycling Less than 35 percent of glass waste is recycled worldwide. While glass is completely recyclable, certain facilities choose to crush the glass and use it as landfill cover instead. Sustainability of Glass Bottles vs. Plastic Bottles A glass water bottle is still considered more eco-friendly and safer than a plastic bottle. Plastic is everywhere: it’s lightweight, waterproof, and doesn't break when it’s dropped. However, there are a lot of negative implications involved in its production: Resources Plastic is petroleum-based which is a non-renewable resource. Plastic is made from petroleum gas, natural gas liquids, and natural gases, accessed by drilling deep into the earth’s crust. Its production pollutes the air with greenhouse gas emissions, and the extraction process of natural resources often leads to contamination of waterways, rivers, and topsoil. Pollution Plastic bottles also end up in landfills, oceans, and waterways. Not all plastic is recyclable, and plastic never truly breaks down. It turns into microplastics that have been found in oceans, rivers, rain, and drinking water. Plastic bottles leach harmful chemicals into the earth. A single plastic bottle can leach up to 8700 different substances into the water and soil. Bisphenol A (BPA) People try to reduce plastic waste by reusing plastic bottles. However, this is unadvisable because plastic bottles also leach chemicals into the liquid they're holding. A study from the Harvard School of Public Health showed that people who drank from plastic water bottles for one week had an increase of two-thirds of the BPA chemical in their urine. BPA has been shown to have negative effects on human health. Comparison to Glass Bottles On the other hand, glass is made from sand, limestone, ash, and other recycled glass. Most of these resources are widely available, with a minimal impact on the earth. Glass bottles have higher durability and last much longer than plastic bottles. The lifespan of a glass bottle is years, while a plastic bottle is more often than not single-use. While both glass and plastic impact the environment, a glass bottle is 100 percent recyclable, and fewer emissions are released into the air through its recycling and production processes. The glass recycling process is fairly quick, and a new bottle is back on the shelf in about 30 days. Conclusion The use of natural resources and manufacturing will always result in an unwanted impact on the environment. However, a lot less glass is produced and discarded thanks to its reusable properties, making glass bottles a more sustainable option.
How and Why Microplastics Are Damaging Your Health

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How and Why Microplastics Are Damaging Your Health
Microplastics are tiny plastic particles 0.33 mm to 5 mm in size. Microplastics come from several sources, including larger plastic debris that degrades into smaller pieces, and microbeads used in facial scrubs. Microplastics are extremely persistent, meaning removing them from the environment where they accumulate is almost impossible. Scientists have warned that the microplastic situation is out of control. Microplastics have been found almost everywhere they have been looked for, including on mountains, in Artic sea ice, oceans, the air, drinking water, and the human body. This article outlines everything you need to know about microplastics and their effect on human health. How Do Microplastics Enter the Human Body? People don’t purposefully eat plastic, but that doesn't mean we're not consuming it every day. Microplastics are in our drinking water, food, soil, and air. We're constantly exposed to microplastics and once we've consumed them, they make their way to the gut, pass through the intestinal membrane, and enter the bloodstream. For the first time, researchers discovered that 17 out of 22 people had microplastics in their blood, and in March 2022, researchers published a study with another new discovery—11 out of 13 people had microplastics in their lungs. The most common type of plastic found was polyethylene terephthalate (PET), which is used to make plastic water bottles. The other culprits were clothing fibers and polystyrene. What Are the Effects of Microplastics on the Human Body? Plastic may be pervasive now, but it has only been widely used for the past 70 years. The discovery of microplastics is even more recent. Therefore, few studies are examining the effect of microplastics on human health and in what quantities microplastics are harmful. Scientists are still unsure of how the body processes, metabolizes, or eliminates these particles. Experts do have concerns regarding microplastics in humans: The effect of microplastics on inflammation in the digestive system is being studied. In a small study, people with inflammatory bowel disease had more microplastic in their stool than those without IBD.Microplastics are known to absorb pesticides and heavy metals, which we then absorb indirectly. This could increase our exposure to harmful chemicals that could lead to toxic effects on the body.Plastics also contain additives like bisphenol-A (BPA). BPA has been associated with cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, endometriosis, fertility issues, and prostate and breast cancer. Are the Effects of Microplastics Permanent? Microplastics have been linked to neurotoxic effects in wild fish, which increase oxidative damage and can theoretically lead to greater cancer risks. We do ingest microplastics, which pass through our digestive system, but scientists don't know whether they go somewhere else in the body after ingestion and what the long-term health effects are on humans, if any. How Do You Avoid Microplastics? Unfortunately, avoiding microplastics is impossible, but you can reduce some of your direct exposure. Here are some tips on how to cut down: Drink tap water over bottled water: while there are still microplastics in tap water, a study by Orb Media found that bottled water contains 50 percent more microplastics than tap water. Filter your water: using a water filter with a membrane that filters particles smaller than 5mm in size will drastically reduce the number of microplastics in your drinking water.Wear clothing made from natural textiles: synthetic fibers shed plastic microfibers while you wear or launder them.Vacuum your home regularly: microplastics can linger in dust, and regular vacuuming may reduce the amount you inhale at home.Avoid ordering food that’s served in styrofoam packaging: these containers contain polystyrene, which makes up many of the microplastics found in oceans. Conclusion While it’s likely that the world will never stop using plastic, we can all find ways to use less plastic, which will help reduce the overall amount of microplastic we put into the world.
Mineral Water: What Am I Drinking?

Water Quality

Mineral Water: What Am I Drinking?
Different waters may all appear the same, but mineral water possesses its own distinctions. Mineral water is found in certain springs that contain salts and sulfur compounds and can be still or effervescent. By definition and FDA regulations, mineral water must contain at least 250 parts per million of total dissolved solids (TDS) from a protected underground water source. Mineral water contains lots of minerals that are good for you, and these minerals all occur naturally. Minerals Contained in Mineral Water The minerals contained in mineral water are different from the minerals found in tap water. Mineral water is rich in dissolved minerals and gases that benefit the human body, including the following: Calcium Essential for the regulation of muscle contraction, bone development, and transmission of nerve impulses.Magnesium Essential for protection from cardiovascular diseases and bone formation.Bicarbonate Promotes digestion by neutralizing gastric activity.Silica Possesses bone-strengthening properties.Potassium Regulates muscles and acid-base balance.Sodium Essential for the fundamental regulation of body fluids.Chloride Essential in the formation of hydrochloric acid (stomach juices).Sulfate Regulates intestinal peristalsis and possesses laxative properties. Are These Minerals Safe to Consume? Although mineral water is deemed safe for most individuals, there are a few drawbacks to be aware of. Water Intoxication This is the opposite of dehydration and refers to a medical condition where too much water is consumed over a short period. It can dilute the body’s salt and electrolyte levels, leading to a homeostatic imbalance and abnormal kidney functioning. Mineral water can accelerate water intoxication in cases of athletes and people performing high-intensity workouts. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder (GERD) GERD is the repeated backflow of stomach acid into the esophagus. Consuming excessive amounts of carbonated mineral water can exacerbate this condition in people who already suffer from regular acid reflux. Drinking non-carbonated mineral water is advised for those with GERD conditions. Microplastics There's always the concern that microplastics from plastic water bottles are an issue for human health. While the long-term health implications of microplastics are still unknown, some research suggests it could link to disruption of stomach functions, inflammation, obesity, cardiovascular disorders, induced oxidative stress, and cancer. High Sodium Levels Some mineral water brands may be too high in sodium for those who need a low-sodium diet. Excess sodium retains fluid in the body and causes an increase in blood pressure, increasing the risk of stroke, heart failure, stomach cancer, kidney disease, and osteoporosis. People at risk of metabolic syndromes and cardiovascular conditions should avoid sodium-rich mineral waters. Benefits of Drinking Mineral Water Because of the unique composition of minerals and organic compounds, mineral water offers some great health benefits. Improved Bone Health Mineral water is a great source of calcium which is important for bone health at all stages of life. In addition to magnesium and bicarbonate, calcium supports the body in the development and maintenance of bones. Calcium is also absorbed more efficiently from mineral water than from dairy products. Reduced Blood Pressure Magnesium and calcium levels in mineral water also contribute to lowered blood pressure. One study showed that 70 adults with high blood pressure found that drinking at least 1 liter of natural mineral water a day significantly reduced their blood pressure levels. Improved Heart Health Carbonated mineral water has been shown to protect against heart disease because it contains magnesium. Two studies found that postmenopausal women who drank 1 liter of carbonated mineral water per day significantly reduced their levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol and increased their levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. Eased Constipation Mineral water works to prevent and treat constipation. The sulfate and magnesium draw water into the intestines and relax the intestinal muscles. This makes the stool softer and easier to pass. Adequate fluid intake is important for regular bowel movements in general, but mineral water helps with this process even more. In Summary Pure mineral water bottled at the source contains rich levels of minerals that are beneficial to our overall well-being. However, keep it simple and reach for whichever type of water you’re most likely to drink enough of, including reverse osmosis water and remineralized water.

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