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The Truth About Bottled Water

Here are some little known facts my research on bottled water revealed:

  • 40% of all bottled waters are just filtered tap water, including Coca Cola’s Dasani and Pepsi’s Aquafina.
  • Municipalities are required by the EPA to test their water supplies 300-400 times a month, and are required to publish the results of those tests.  Meanwhile, the bottled water industry is completely self-regulated, is allowed to do its own testing and are not required to publish or reveal the results of testing.
  • Plastic for water bottles is PET or PETE – chemicals used to make this plastic include 1) Paraxylene, a clear liquid byproduct from crude oil refining and a known carcinogen in the benzene family, and 2) bisphenol A (BPA), which acts a lot like estrogen and has been called by scientists the most damaging chemical ever created.  700 peer reviewed studies looked at by the National Institutes of Health show that BPA is dangerous for human consumption and is linked to obesity, breast cancer, diabetes, liver disease, ovarian diseases, and prostate cancer.
  • The National Resources Defense Council tested over 1,000 bottles of water encompassing 7 of the most prevalent brands in the U.S.  The first group of bottles was pulled straight off store shelves, and was found to contain chemicals like toluene, a constituent of gasoline and paint thinner and a known neurologic and reproductive disrupter.  The second group of bottles was left in a car trunk for 1 week.  This group when tested contained styrene, a known carcinogen and reproductive disrupter, and phthalates, known reproductive disrupters.  The tests found 1) arsenic leeching from plastic bottles, and 2) bacterial contaminants, in the water from both groups.
  • There is only 1 individual in the entire FDA whose job it is to oversee and regulate the entire bottled water industry, and that individual has many other duties besides bottled water.
  • Only 20% of plastic bottles in the U.S. ever actually get recycled, and the waste from all the bottled water we are buying and disposing is causing major environmental issues in landfills and oceans.

Given the information about bottled water above that my research uncovered, along with the high prices we pay today for bottled water, I’ve recently looked into various methods of filtration that will allow me to use tap water whenever possible.  Please visit these Water Filtration Options for a very thorough summary of today’s filtration methods broken down by cost and effectiveness.