Your Water and You

From feature article in Kindred Issue 28, Bottled Water, it’s not what you think

The human body is a water-based machine; while it runs on glucose and oxygen, it needs plenty of water as a catalyst. Every life-giving and healing process that happens inside our body happens with water. Water is a key to supporting the body in its effort to strive towards wellbeing.

Dehydration leads to muscle fatigue and loss of coordination. It also leads to fuzzy thinking. Do a little experiment to find out from your own experience—the next time you are feeling tired and unclear, drink a tall glass of water and see how you feel after a few minutes. Many report that their symptoms disappear with a drink of water.

Follow these guidelines to keep your drinking water good for you:

  • Carry water in safe containers. Most bottles that water comes in are of questionable safety, but now we know that even hard plastic bottles (#7) can leach a harmful chemical called bisphenol A (BPA) into water. Carry stainless steel or other BPA-free bottles, and store your water in glass bottles.
  • Don’t reuse bottled water bottles. The plastic can harbour bacteria and break down to release the plastic’s chemicals.
  • Drink filtered tap water—carbon filters reduce many common water contaminants including chlorine (check with the manufacturer). Reverse osmosis, a more expensive option, also removes things that a carbon filter cannot such as fluoride, arsenic, and heavy metals like lead and mercury.
  • Learn what’s in your water—call your local council to find out what’s in your tap water. They are usually happy to let you know. Currently Australia does not publish regular tap water quality reports specifically for consumers, but with some encouragement, this could be possible. Water suppliers in the US publish all their water quality tests. (Bottled water companies don’t.) Look up any US city’s water in EWG’s National Tap Water Atlas . Do you have a private well? Get it tested.

With thanks to the Environmental Working Group

Published in Kindred, Issue 28

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