Water is one of the fundamental building blocks of life. Our bodies are comprised of seventy percent water, and our brains around ninety percent; our cells, our blood—everything about us that makes us human—is built on the basis of water, and we need a regular supply to keep functioning.
In human prehistory, access to drinkable water was the determining factor for migratory movements and the foundation of civilization, while control of water sources has been the catalyst for innumerable wars and conflicts. It’s important, and any doctor will tell you that hydration is crucial to maintaining overall good health and well-being.
Millions of Americans go about their daily lives in a state of chronic dehydration, suffering the physical consequences of not drinking enough water without even realizing that there’s a problem.
Symptoms of chronic dehydration impact everyone differently and can include headaches, sluggishness, poor digestion, and high cholesterol, as well as long-term effects like weight gain, premature aging, and increased risk of autoimmune diseases like chronic fatigue syndrome and multiple sclerosis.
Many of us learn to function through chronic dehydration, often reaching for chemical remedies like painkillers and concentration aids to help us power through when all we really need is to drink more water.
Like everything else, we have choices when it comes to our drinking water, and where there are choices there will inevitably be confusion. Many bottled waters vie for our attention in advertising copy, “healthy” fads like alkaline and distilled water tout themselves as cure-alls for common ailments, and, of course, the taps in our homes provide easy, unlimited access to the municipal water supply.
However, according to numerous studies and medical investigations, the water we reach for by default may often be harmful to our health in ways we don’t think about.
Filtered water has often been demonstrated to be the safest long-term choice, but countertop and faucet-mounted carbon filters are laborious to maintain and, depending on the method and brand, may not actually be as helpful as they claim in keeping your water free of contaminants.
A certified plumbing and AC contractor can install a filter at your home’s source, and, while it may seem unnecessary at first glance due to the ubiquity of available water options, a Reverse Osmosis system filtering your whole house’s water supply can save you thousands in medical concerns later on.
Tap Water: A Dangerous Default
There’s nothing easier than turning a tap and, when we need a quick glass of water, that’s often where we reach. We also tend to use regular tap water for cooking, cleaning, and bathing; the water that comes out of your shower is the same water that comes out of the sink, after all. Tap water is the go-to for untold millions of Americans, and some people even have a dismissive attitude about it like: “I don’t need fancy water; tap is fine for me.”
While they’re right in asserting that “fancy water” is mostly just snake oil marketing, the tap water you drink on a daily basis can contain all sorts of contaminants that you’d otherwise never consider putting in your body.
If you heard, for example, that a certain restaurant’s food contained unsafe levels of arsenic or chemical runoff from landfills, you’d probably never eat there again. The fact is, these poisons, and more, are often present in the municipal water supply and are piped straight into your home via the taps; any plumbing and AC installer worth their salt can tell you about the various chemicals and additives necessary to keep public water from turning poisonous, but these chemicals themselves often present a risk in their own right.
Chlorine, for example, is often used to disinfect public drinking water. It’s great for it; that’s why we use it to kill all the bacteria that would turn our swimming pools into murky swamps if left unchecked.
However, think about how your skin feels when you get out of a chlorinated swimming pool—dry, itchy, sapped of all moisture. Now think about what high levels of chlorine in the drinking water would do to your insides. Even small amounts, consumed daily over long periods of time, put us at risk: According to the U.S. Council of Environmental Quality, “Cancer risk among people drinking chlorinated water is 93% higher than among those whose water does not contain chlorine.”
Many Americans’ drinking water also contains aluminum, which is useful for ridding water of disease-causing microorganisms. Yet, aluminum itself can cause massive health problems including liver disease, gastrointestinal distress, skin problems, and Parkinson’s disease. Long-term exposure has also been linked to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease in adults and learning disabilities in children. It’s not good for our bodies, but it’s right there in our drinking water.
Add in the additional exposure from cooking and showering, and the numbers only get worse. This is why having an affordable plumbing service install a reverse osmosis water filter for your home’s incoming water supply is the best way to keep you and your family safe; it’s better, in the long run, to know that any water sourced from your home is safe and clean, rather than having to worry about long-term risks.
Bottled Water: Expensive in More Ways Than One
Everyone knows, to some extent, that bottled water is a bit of a scam. After all, we’re essentially paying for serving-sized portions of a free commodity, when, with a little preparation, we could easily use refillable containers from home.
Tap water is dangerous, though, and many bottled water companies play up the “fact” that their products are clean, pure, and bottled at the “source.” Why even bother consulting with a plumbing filtration and AC installation specialist when you can just grab a 24-pack of bottled water and keep it in the trunk?
Many people, in a misguided attempt at health consciousness, try to exclusively drink bottled water. It makes a kind of sense when you think about it, especially if bottling companies’ claims of purity and filtration were true.
The fact of the matter is that up to forty percent of bottled water is literally the same as stuff as tap water, acquired from the same sources and bottled for convenience and profit. Independent testing has shown that bottled water contains hidden contaminants and pollutants just like tap water because it’s the same exact thing.
Bottled water also comes with the added detriment of being packaged in plastic, which might be inexpensive for bottled water producers but, ultimately, presents huge health concerns. Most plastic bottles contain a chemical compound called BPA, which functions as a synthetic hormone disruptor.
When plastic bottles are exposed to heat or direct sunlight, BPA can leach into the water within and even further contaminate your drinking supply; anyone who’s ever worked in shipping or warehouse management can tell you how hot it gets in the back of semi-trucks, and how long pallets can sometimes sit in direct sunlight on loading bays before being received and sorted.
Most of the chemicals and carcinogens in tap and bottled water are trace amounts, which don’t cause harm any immediate harm with minimal exposure. Yet think about how much water you need every day to stay healthy—common practice says eight glasses, as a rule, while some specialists suggest halving your body weight and drinking at least that many ounces throughout the course of your day.
All that water adds up, and exclusively drinking tap or bottled water will create a buildup of toxins and impurities in your body over time that increases your risk for cancer, coronary disease, and many other ailments.
Reverse Osmosis Filtration: Peace of Mind Pays for Itself
Most people would give anything for a guarantee of long-term health and wellbeing. After all, we spend so much time and money on fitness programs, diet plans, cleanses, and various skin and hair treatments in an attempt to stave off the advance of time and keep ourselves at peak performance.
The reality and irony of the situation are that having access to legitimately clean water and drinking enough of it on a daily basis is the best way to achieve these ends.
We simply don’t drink enough water, and, as illustrated above, the water we do drink, more often than not, contains impurities that threaten our longevity and well-being in the long term. The process of reverse osmosis filtration works to remove impurities from the freely provided water that’s tapped into our homes and represents an affordable plumbing solution that will work to keep you healthy, happy, and worry-free when it comes to staying hydrated.