Water is so important in keeping everyone healthy and strong. We can’t live without it, literally. But what happens when the one thing that’s meant to help you is harmful to you?
Well, that’s what happens when people drink contaminated water, and most of the time, it’s the tap water that’s doing the damage. Luckily, there are ways around it. Is filtered water healthier than tap water?
Keep reading to find out
What Is Tap Water?
Most people are familiar with tap water. You turn the sink on and out comes a non-stop flow of H2O.
Although tap water is regulated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, water contamination can still occur. Here are some of the ways it happens:
- Sewage releases
- Malfunctioning wastewater treatment systems such as septic systems
- Organic chemicals and minerals like radon and arsenic
- Land use such as fertilizers, pesticides, and livestock
- Manufacturing procedures that create heavy metals and cyanide
What’s in Tap Water?
Tap water isn’t all bad. In fact, the risk of infections and bacteria is pretty low. However, the chemicals used to purify the water is the problem. Not to mention, the plumbing that transports the water is made of lead, which could have corrosion.
Even tap water that is within the EPA guidelines contain questionable elements. Here’s what is in tap water:
Most of the plumbing infrastructure in the United States is done through lead piping, lead plumbing, and lead service lines—many of which are several decades old. Water contaminated by lead is a serious issue. High concentrations of it could cause liver malfunction, fertility issues, etc.
At high doses, fluoride is a neurotoxin that hinders brain function. High levels of fluoride in water could mean a seven-point decline in IQ. Luckily, the EPA has reduced the max number of fluoride that’s permitted in U.S. drinking water from 1.2 mg/L to 0.7 mg/L.
The EPA’s new standard makes sure the fluoride stays at a safe level of neurotoxicity. However, the more pressing issue with fluoride is that it harms the thyroid. It interrupts the thyroid’s hormone production, even at 50% of the max concentration permitted in drinking water.
Chlorine and Chloramine
There have been several studies that link chlorine to bladder and colorectal cancer, but the U.S. government still sanitizes its water with chlorine.
In some areas, chlorine was switched for chloramine, but that’s also a problem. Chloramine doesn’t kill contaminants as chlorine does. Plus, it corrodes lead which leads to more of a problem.
Even worse, the byproducts in chloramine don’t destroy pathogens, so it can’t be removed through boiling or distilling.
Can Tap Water Make You Sick?
The short answer to this question is no. Tap water in this scenario isn’t the issue, but contaminated water can most certainly make you sick. Unlike filtered water, tap water has a higher risk of being polluted if something goes wrong.
Certain contaminants in water can cause reproductive issues, gastrointestinal diseases, and neurological disorders. Elderly adults, pregnant women, infants, young children, and people with weak immune systems are more prone to illness.
Also, the presence of E. Coli in drinking water could lead to vomiting, cramps, diarrhea, headaches, fatigue, nausea, fever, and even death.
Healthy Water Testing
The EPA follows standards and rules to test the presence of various contaminants within public drinking water. They look for contaminants such as E.coli, cryptosporidium, lead, salmonella. The Safe Drinking Water Act was put in place to ensure healthy drinking water for all Americans.
Under the Act, the United States Environmental Protection Agency has the primary authority to set the regulations for drinking water quality. All U.S. public water systems must follow the rules set by the EPA.
What Is Filtered Water?
Filtered water goes through a process of removing and lowering the levels of particle matter within the water. Some of the most common elements found in water are bacteria, algae, fungi, viruses, parasites, and suspended particles.
There are also other unhealthy chemical and biological contaminants. Once water is filtered, it creates clean water that’s safe to drink and use for medical and pharmaceutical purposes.
How to Filter Water
The information above should help you see how important it is to filter your drinking water. No one wants to run to risk of becoming ill, so it’s worth the effort. Below are a few ways to filter water:
This method is one of the simplest techniques of how to filter tap water. It does a good job of purifying the water, but if you also want to remove the solid matter in the water, you’d still have to filter it.
2. A Water Filter
Water filters come in multiple forms. You could buy a pitcher that filters the water or attach one to your faucet. They remove bacteria and other particles, which is great. However, water filters have to be cleaned or replaced on a regular basis.
3. Ultraviolet Light
This technique is sort of fancy, but it gets the job done. It looks similar to a small flashlight and kills bacteria within minutes. Whirl it around in the water, and that’s it. But again, the solid particles would still have to be filtered.
If you’re interested in more advanced solutions for the water in your home, check out this Kinetico water softener review.
Is Filtered Water Healthier Than Tap Water?
Filtered water is a much better option than the faucet version. Yes, you could drink tap water and be fine, but why risk it?
With all the different ways to filter water, there’s no reason to settle for less. So, is filtered water healthier than tap water? Absolutely!
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