Consider these truths about drinking bottled water to become a healthier person, a conscious consumer, and a mindful global citizen!
Drinking bottled water is just not sustainable.
No matter what we’ve been told about drinking bottled water vast amounts of fossil fuels and water are used to manufacture these bottles and ship them around the globe. So first things first, this is NOT a good carbon footprint! In addition, the bottles are NOT biodegradable in any meaningful way, so what you drink in a few minutes will probably stick around for a thousand years. Even though recycling is high on everyone’s agenda, 6 out of 7 plastic bottles consumed in the U.S. alone get ‘downcycled! This means this rubbish is sent somewhere out of sight and out of mind and for the next millennia toxins from degrading plastic containers could leach into watersheds and soil. This is a terrible legacy to your global neighbours and future generations.
Drinking bottled water can sometimes be just glorified tap water marked up 10,000 times.
The labeling on bottled water may picture a peaceful mountain stream implying the water inside is pure and pristine, but this is not always the case. In reality, some bottled water comes from springs or groundwater sources, but it turns out that approximately 25% of bottled water is sourced from the tap! Of course, this water I’m sure is filtered or passed through an ultraviolet light before hitting the shelves to you at several thousand times the cost of municipal tap water. (Examples include Aquafina, Dasani, and many other brands.)
Furthermore, studies show that bottled water samples have contained phthalates, mold, microbes, benzene, trihalomethanes, even arsenic and only recently did the FDA start regulating bottled water for E. Coli, thanks to the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The reality is, bottled water markup is excessive and health standards are often a wash and may even favor tap water. You’d certainly save yourself in the long run if you simply installed a good quality filtration system under your sink and get yourself a BPA FREE bottle to bottle your own water.
Some bottled water has been found to contain toxins.
Plastic is not good for YOU and it’s terrible for our planet. Some drinking bottled water companies are using BPA-free plastic, but the reality is, laced into plastic bottles are other chemicals that can seep out if bottles are exposed to heat or sit around for a long time. Some of these chemicals are possible endocrine disruptors, but the reality is, no one really knows for sure what the health risks are. So here’s my question to you – Do you really want to be part of that experiment?
There is a growing thirst for reusable food and drink storage products that are safe to use, just look for the ‘BPA-free’ labels. I mean it’s ridiculous economically and environmentally to keep buying bottled water to only throw the bottle away each time. Even if you choose to reuse a drinking water bottle, they could still potentially be harmful due to the leaching of chemicals into the water.
There is research published in Environment International that shows that pregnant women exposed to high doses of Bisphenol A (BPA) could potentially lead to low birth weight (LBW) in newborn children. BPA plastic was first introduced in the 50’s and is today used to manufacture everyday items such as plastic food containers, plastic goggles, helmets, paper receipts, and as a coating for metal tins and cans mainly used to store food. So due to BPA being so widely used almost everyone carries the compound in their blood at varying levels, so anything you can do to reduce this compound entering your system makes sense.
Around the world, governments and health regulators have varying opinions on the harmfulness of BPA, emphasizing the need for more research to continue investigating whether the substance is truly toxic. Interestingly Canada has banned the use of BPA, and Sweden and Turkey have issued a partial ban, stopping its use in baby food and drink containers. The US and EU, including the UK’s Food Standards Agency don’t have a ban in place, stating current levels found in humans is below what they believe can cause harm. BPA was under review over a three-year span by America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the EU released their latest opinion in January 2013. Even though these countries found no ‘definitive’ proof to link BPA exposure to low birth weight, it is still concerning as children born with lower weight measurements may experience health issues that include obesity, infertility, and heart risks.
The reality is that there is growing evidence of widespread contamination from plastic and in fact, a Harvard study showed participants’ BPA levels increased after just one week of drinking from plastic bottles! But even removing just this one compound may not be enough.
- Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) polymer is used to produce plastic bottles and has been previously shown to affect the hormonal system.
- Research has shown BPA can mimic the neurological properties of estrogen
- A recent investigation published in Environmental Health Perspectives has shown that in some cases, BPA-free PET containers could leach more oestrogen-like chemicals.
For sure there have been some hoaxes stating BPA in plastic food and drink containers can lead to cancer, and the World Health Organisation has dismissed this, stating there is a lack of “convincing evidence” for this claim. But the public is becoming more aware of the impact of potentially hazardous chemicals in our everyday products, so this will be I hope added pressure on the governing bodies.
Here is the good news! There ARE fabulous alternatives for drinking bottled water!
Make the choice to use a durable, re-useable water bottle that is BPA-free or, even better, made from stainless steel. They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes to suit your needs and can easily be ordered online.
To improve the quality of your water in your home, you have a few options. You can opt for a simple water carafe and filter or an in-sink or countertop filtration system and you’ll find more information about these options in another article.
Change is simple—and makes a real difference!
Go on ditch the disposable drinking bottled water and guess what, you will save money, live a healthier life, and join the ever-growing movement for global sustainability. It really is so easy if you want to keep drinking bottled water and feel in control of what you are putting into your body. Once you’ve purchased your very own water bottle, you just need to create a new habit, remembering to fill it up before you head out the door. If your keys, wallet, shopping list etc. are on your mental checklist adding one more item that saves you money and protects the planet is a, NO BRAINER.
Be part of the solution and get in control of your life.