From lead to PFAS pollution to chromium-6, the quality of drinking water across the United States is increasingly coming into question. In our post-Flint world, we’re seeing more investigation, reporting and concern about what exactly is in the water coming out of American taps.
With this is a backdrop, a recent Thrillist Health article with the honest and straightforward headline “There’s a Good Chance the Water You’re Drinking Is Bad for You” provided a handful of practical tips to ensure the water you’re consuming is the healthiest it can be. They include:
Find out where you water comes from
A lot of water pollution takes place at the source. So where is your water coming from and what are some potential issues that may be present there? Find out by contacting your water authority and doing some research.
Don’t assume bottled water is better
Most of us think bottled water comes from a clean source. But the truth is that a lot of bottled water is just filtered water. Drinking water is actually much more closely monitored than bottled water. The article notes that the Environmental Working Group (EWG) recommends filtered water over bottled water.
Choose the right filter and change it regularly
When you get a water filter for your home, make sure you know: (1) what contaminants you want to remove, and (2) what contaminants the filter will remove. This will require a little legwork, but it’s the best way to ensure you’re getting the right filter for your water. Also, make sure you change your water filter regularly. As the articles accurately notes, “old filters can harbor bacteria, and won’t work as effectively.”
Beware of hard plastic pitchers and containers
Whenever possible, choose to store and drink water out of glass or stainless steel. The article specifically mentions bisphenol A (BPA), a carcinogen that can leach out of hard plastics and get into your water. So if you have or get a plastic pitcher, make sure it’s BPA-free. Also, avoid reusing water bottles.
Consider a whole-home water filtration solution
The article suggests that the best option for filtering water in your home is a whole-home system “so every sink and faucet emits the best, safest filtered water for cooking, bathing, and even brushing your teeth.” While this is the most effective way to get the cleanest, healthiest water throughout your home, it does come with a higher upfront investment. It’s up to the individual homeowner to decide if that investment is worth it.