Know Your H2O
Receive news and insights on the current state and impact of our water and explore the benefits of aerated, mineral-rich water.
Water qualityMineral 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.
Filtering waterBottled Spring Water vs. Filtered Tap Water: Which Is Better?Drinking enough water is essential to your well-being. With that being said, there are so many different types of water on the market, so it can become slightly overwhelming to know which is the best option for you. People often wonder which is healthier and safer, bottled spring water or filtered tap water. Thankfully, you don't have to worry. We have summarized what you need to know about each one in this article. Differences Between Bottled Spring Water and Filtered Tap Water Spring water is a favored form of bottled water. Spring water comes from groundwater, which exists underground in aquifers that sit below the earth’s natural water table. Spring water collects at the opening of a spring when water naturally flows along the earth’s surface, and is considered pre-purified because it travels through natural filters. Filtered tap water has been mechanically processed or filtered to remove impurities like viruses, bacteria, lead, copper, and chemical pollutants like trihalomethanes. However, there are still essential minerals in tap water. Benefits of Bottled Spring Water The primary benefit of bottled spring water is its high essential mineral content and the fact that it undergoes natural filtration, unlike other types of water that need mechanical or chemical filtration. Spring water is naturally purified as it flows through underground rocks, clay, and limestone. This also gives the water its high mineral content, leaving it enriched and purified free of toxins and chemicals. The minerals in spring water are in ionic form, which means they are more easily absorbed into the body—more than minerals in food, supplements, and those added to other bottled water. Spring water contains the highest level of minerals compared to any other type of water. Additionally, the high mineral content enhances the water’s taste, providing a refreshing drinking experience. If the bottled spring water is obtained directly from the aquifer, it is pure and free of toxins, bacteria, heavy metals, and added chemicals like fluoride that are used to treat tap water. Benefits of Filtered Tap Water There are many benefits to filtering your tap water. Filtering tap water removes potentially harmful bacteria, viruses, impurities, and contaminants like chlorine, heavy metals, and disinfection byproducts. At the same time, water filters still ensure that important minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, and zinc are retained. Filtered tap water also tastes and smells better due to the impurities being removed. On an environmental level, filtering your tap water is much more eco-friendly due to the production of plastic for bottled water. Bottled water is a big source of pollution—it also uses three times as much water to produce the plastic bottle as it does to fill it. Using a water filter to purify your tap water at home will help the environment. Using a water filter is also more cost-effective than buying bottled water. The once-off cost of purchasing a water filter will end up saving you lots of money in the long run. So... Which Is Better? On a health level, natural bottled spring water is the best option due to its rich mineral content that is highly absorbed by the body. However, that is not to say that filtered tap water is unhealthy. Filtered tap water is still very beneficial because it does not contain any potentially harmful contaminants and still provides you with essential minerals. On an environmental and cost-effective level, filtered tap water is the better option. Filtering your tap water means less spent on bottled water and fewer bottles in landfills or the ocean. It is also important to remember that many bottled water companies do not disclose the source of their water, so you cannot always be 100 percent sure you are drinking natural, pure spring water. However, at the end of the day, both bottled spring water and filtered tap water are safe and beneficial, so the choice depends entirely on personal preference and what’s more convenient and accessible to you.
Filtering water7 Important Health Benefits of Filtered Water Water is an essential part of our survival, and often we don’t stop to consider where it’s being sourced and what the quality is like. We naturally assume we are receiving the best possible output, but is that always the case? In many places, it’s not possible to simply turn on the tap and drink a glass of water—the tap water is deemed undrinkable. That is where filtered water comes into play. Filtered water is essential because it gives people access to clean water that tastes good, is free of contaminants, and is a reliable source of hydration. Without water filters, there is the risk of becoming ill from contaminated water. There are many types of water filters out there, but all of them offer the basics of the water purification process. Water filtering involves water that undergoes the removal of bacteria, viruses, dirt, harmful chemicals like trihalomethanes, pesticides, and other particles that contaminate the water. There are systems in place that filter public water supplies, but these processes vary from state to state. The primary importance of water filtration is to prevent water-borne illnesses and diseases. Babies, seniors, and people with poor immune systems are more susceptible to getting sick from contaminated tap water. Home water filters allow everyone to hydrate themselves with safe, healthy water. Apart from filtered water being safe to drink, it has an array of health benefits that are valuable to our overall wellbeing, such as the following: 1. No Metals or Impurities Potentially harmful impurities are removed through the filtration process, including sediment, dirt, mold, and rust. These impurities come from dirty, rusty pipes that the tap water runs through and may give the water a metallic taste. That means whatever is lying in the pipes goes into your glass. Filtered water removes these impurities, so you don’t need to worry about them. 2. Removes Chlorine Chlorine is used to treat tap water to prevent water-borne illnesses and diseases. While chlorine is good for decontamination, high doses can also prove harmful to your health. Filtering water removes the chlorine and its health implications. 3. Better for the Environment People typically turn to bottled water in an effort to avoid tap water without realizing the harm it causes to the environment. The production of making the plastic bottle uses three times more water than just filling the bottle. Then there is the issue of plastic waste in the ocean and landfills. When you filter your own water, you can cut out the excess plastic and save the environment from the harmful impact of plastic production. 4. Improves Digestion Filtered water improves the healthy mineral content, which in turn improves and promotes better digestion and hydration. When you are properly hydrated with water that contains essential minerals, your body can more easily transport and process these nutrients to where they are needed. 5. Better Taste and Smell Filtering your water also improves its taste and smell. Tap water can have all sorts of strange flavors and unpleasant smells, which are not very inviting. This is especially the case with areas that have lots of natural water sources. Filtering your water allows you to enjoy a cleaner, more purified taste. 6. Removes Bad Bacteria A water filter removes thousands of potentially harmful microorganisms from your water supply. Some of the bacteria and viruses found in water can make people sick. Filtered water is safer for consumption because it contains no harmful microorganisms. 7. Provides Necessary Vitamins and Minerals Although filtered water removes the potentially harmful compounds, it retains the minerals, so you can still consume all the necessary essential minerals through your filtered water. Some of these minerals include calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Is Filtered Water Better Than Tap Water? Scientists say that most tap water is just as good as the water in bottles or streaming out of a filter, and there are still essential minerals in tap water. However, that is highly dependent on where in the world you live. Assuming that tap water complies with all health and safety codes, it is perfectly fine to drink—but there is always the chance that there may be unwanted sediment or microorganisms in your glass. Filtered water is the safer bet as it purifies the water and makes it safe for consumption while retaining the essential minerals the body needs. Filtered water does wonders for your health through optimum hydration and nutrient absorption.
Water qualityEverything There Is to Know About Trihalomethanes in Drinking WaterTrihalomethanes are a group of volatile and potentially toxic chemical compounds formed when water is treated with chlorine, which then reacts with organic matter in water. Trihalomethane compounds are colorless and evaporate from the water into the air. At elevated levels, trihalomethanes have been associated with negative health effects like cancer and adverse reproductive outcomes. We have outlined everything there is to know about trihalomethanes in this post. Examples of Trihalomethanes There are four significant trihalomethanes found in disinfected drinking water, and their combined concentration is known as total trihalomethanes (TTHM). To understand trihalomethanes, it is important to first consider methane, which is a single carbon with four bonds linked to four hydrogen molecules (CH₄). To make a trihalomethane, three of those hydrogen atoms are removed and replaced with three halogens. A halogen is any element from the seventeenth column of the periodic table. If all three of the substituted halogens are chlorides, it creates chloroform (CHCI₃). If all three molecules are bromide, it creates bromoform (CHBr₃). One bromide and two chlorides make bromodichloromethane (CHBrCl₂). Therefore, trihalomethanes are a group of four chemicals: bromoform, bromodichloromethane, chloroform, and dibromochloromethane. Bromoform Bromoform is a colorless liquid with a chloroform-like odor. It is denser than water and slightly soluble. It has been classified as a human carcinogen and is toxic by ingestion, inhalation, and skin absorption.Bromodichloromethane Bromodichloromethane is colorless and dissolves in water but also quickly evaporates into the air. Bromodichloromethane was formerly used as a flame retardant or solvent for fats and waxes because of its high density for mineral separation. It is harmful if ingested and causes liver and kidney damage.Chloroform Chloroform is a colorless liquid that quickly evaporates into a gas. Chloroform is harmful to the eyes, skin, liver, kidneys, and nervous system. These chemical compounds can be toxic if swallowed or inhaled, and exposure to chloroform could also cause cancer.Dibromochloromethane Dibromochloromethane is a colorless to yellow liquid with a sweetish odor. It has been classified as a possible human carcinogen. How Do Trihalomethanes Affect the Human Body? The standards of drinking water are called maximum contaminant level or MCL. MCLs have been put in place to reduce the risk of chemicals in drinking water. Some MCLs limit the levels of chemicals that pose a long-term risk, and others limit the daily amount consumed for chemicals that pose an immediate risk. The trihalomethane MCL is set at a safe level that balances long-term health risks but also keeps the drinking water safe from bacterial contamination. The Environmental Protection Agency has stated that the maximum level of trihalomethanes in large surface public water systems is 80 parts per billion. Individuals could be exposed to trihalomethanes in water by ingesting them or absorbing them through the skin. Trihalomethanes easily vaporize into the air, so inhalation exposure to these compounds can be significant, especially when bathing and showering. High levels of trihalomethanes are dangerous. Trihalomethanes have been associated with negative health effects. People who consume trihalomethanes over many years have an increased risk of developing cancer. These chlorination by-products have also been linked to heart, lung, liver, kidney, and central nervous system damage. Pregnant women are also at a greater risk as trihalomethanes have been shown to negatively impact reproduction and cause miscarriages. Can You Remove Trihalomethanes From Drinking Water? Fortunately, trihalomethanes can be removed from drinking water. The easiest way to reduce or eliminate trihalomethanes from drinking water is to use a water pitcher with a carbon filter or install a tap-mounted carbon filter. Other methods include reverse osmosis, enhanced coagulation, UV filters, and water softeners. In Summary The chlorination process is essential for purifying water to make it safe for human consumption. The levels of chlorine in water are carefully monitored to ensure they remain at a safe standard. However, the chlorination process also produces trihalomethanes, which can be harmful to human health. Trihalomethanes are known carcinogens and increase the risk of cancer and miscarriage in pregnant women. It is recommended to have your water tested to see the level of trihalomethanes.