H2O-kay: 3 Tips To Determine If Your Water Is Safe To Drink

Water does a body good. But make sure it’s good to go in your body.

It’s such a beautiful substance. Water has numerous health benefits, including: hydrating our largest organ — our skin; flushing toxins out of the body; assisting with the digestion process; and possibly helping with weight loss. But are you aware of the contents and quality of the liquid you drink from a bottle or the tap? Here are some ways to ensure that your H20 is okay and safe.

Assess The Quality If Your Water

If, as with as the majority of homes and apartments, your residence draws its water from the city, the law requires all water companies to monitor their product supply for contaminants and to reduce such materials to safe levels set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

To stay informed, request water-safety reports through your city’s website or contact the supplier via the phone number on your utility bill, says Nneka Leiba, MPH, deputy director of research at the Environmental Working Group in Washington, DC. If you draw water from a well, the EPA recommends homeowners conduct annual well tests for harmful solvents. Reliable testing labs can be found at water.epa.gov.

Invest In A Good Water Filter

Be advised, monitoring of water is only a starting point. “There can still be trace amounts of impurities present in tap water, including impurities like lead that leach from household plumbing,” says Cheryl Luptowski, Home Safety Expert for NSF International, a public health certification and research foundation.

Yet, even significantly low levels of lead in drinking water have been linked to cognitive issues, particularly in children. A special water pitcher outfitted with a carbon filter removes most contaminants. However, if your water-safety report shows even small trace amounts of arsenic, perchlorates, or hexavalent chromium, you should invest in a reverse-osmosis carbon filter (which can be installed under your sink for a few thousand dollars).

Don’t Assume Bottled Water Is Superior

Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates bottled water for safety, that water is not necessarily any more pure than the water that flows from of your tap or faucet, notes the National Safety Foundation. Like city-supplied water, laws simply dictate that bottled water not contain contaminants at a level exceeding maximum allowable concentrations.

The feel-good takeaway is that drinking filtered tap water is just as good as chugging anything from a fancy bottle. Besides, the first option is more eco-friendly; so, you’ll feel even better about the health benefits water provide.

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