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The Myth of Healthy Bottled Water

Bottled water -- it's one of the most popular beverages on the planet, second in popularity in North America only to carbonated soft drinks, and consumption of it continues to grow rapidly in most countries. But what if people found out that bottled water can cause infertility, cancer, obesity and cancer?

Between 2002 and 2007, world consumption of bottled water jumped by 7.6 per cent per year, from 130.95 billion litres to 188.8 billion litres. The United States consumes the most bottled water on the planet (33.4 billion litres) while residents of the United Arab Emirates consume the most bottled water per capita (259.7 litres per person per year).

“Tapped” examines the role of the bottled water industry.

Most consumers concerned about tap water quality, turn to bottled water, hoping to find a guarantee of safety and quality. However the very same bottled water that you’re paying a premium for is, in about 40 percent of cases, simply bottled tap water, which may or may not have received any additional treatment.

Chemical contaminants in bottle water pose a health risk for all of us, although some people may be more vulnerable to these pollutants than the general population. These more sensitive populations include infants, the elderly, as well as people with weakened immune systems due to viral infections, immune disorders and cancer.

Drinking From Plastic Bottles is Not a Wise Health Move

When drinking bottled water you need to think not only about the water but also about the bottle itself. Plastic is not an inert substance as its manufacturers would like you to believe. It contains chemicals like BPA and phthalates, which mimic hormones in your body.

Even tiny concentrations can cause problems such as:

  • Structural damage to your brain
  • Hyperactivity, increased aggressiveness, and impaired learning
  • Increased fat formation and risk of obesity
  • Altered immune function
  • Early puberty, stimulation of mammary gland development, disrupted reproductive cycles, and ovarian dysfunction
  • Changes in gender-specific behavior, and abnormal sexual behavior
  • Stimulation of prostate cancer cells
  • Increased prostate size, and decreased sperm production
Anytime you drink from a plastic bottle you risk exposure, but if you leave your bottle of water in a hot car or reuse it, your exposure is magnified because heat and stress increase the amount of chemicals that leach out of the plastic.

Populations are putting trillions of plastic bottles in the garbage yearly, a number that is steadily increasing. Plastic bottles leach BPA (Bisphenol-A), a toxic chemical that is now entrenched in the soil.

In addition to damaging effects on the land, there are damaging effects on our wallets. Bottled water costs thousands of times the price of tap water and is often full of the same contaminants. We can use affordable water filters to reduce the contaminants in tap water by more than 95%. Use a reusable BPA-free water bottle like CamelBak or any reputable stainless steel (preferably insulated) bottle for storage and portability of your filtered water.

A Simple Solution is at Your Disposal 

One you realize that many sources of bottled water is:

  • No safer than tap water
  • Extremely expensive
  • Often contaminated by plastics chemicals
  • Contributing to massive environmental harm
...the choice to stop using it becomes simple. Fortunately, the alternative to having pure water is also simple: filter your own at home.

If we continue on the destructive path, we will only have ourselves to blame. Drink plenty of filtered water for health and drink it for free. Your body and the environment will thank you.

May 7, 2010


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