Let’s Ask Bertil Wosk: Should You Filter Your Water?
It’s time for another segment of “let’s ask Bertil Wosk” here on the blog. Finally! Our dear friend Bertil, nutrition guru and founder of the supplement brand Holistic, is as wise as an owl. The last question was about eggs and this time, we asked him to tell us about tap water.
– Do we need to filter our drinking water?
I wish I could say no, but tap water can contain toxic chemicals you don’t want to consume. Here in Sweden, it’s a modern problem that did not exist 50 years ago. The wastewater treatment plants kill bacteria and remove contaminants (larger particles) from raw water to produce water that is pure enough for human consumption. Ultraviolet (UV) light, for example, has been used to disinfect water supplies for many years.
Most contaminants are filtered out or killed at treatment plants, but since wastewater treatment plants are not designed to remove chemicals, many industrial toxins still manage to sneak through. The treatment plants are only able to remove urine, faeces and toilet paper – that’s it. And therefore, unused drugs, pharmaceuticals, household cleaners and skincare products should never be flushed.
Unfortunately, our urine also contains toxins and chemicals. Many of them come from pharmaceuticals, or they’re excess estrogen from birth control pills. Other toxins that wastewater treatment plants are not designed to remove are xenoestrogens (a type of xenohormone that imitates estrogen), pesticides and Bisphenol A (BPA). Even though chemicals are present in trace amounts, we drink approximately 2-3 liters of water daily, and ingestion over a longer period of time can have significant health consequences.
– Is bottled water better?
Most bottled water is just tap water in a plastic bottle. Basically, you are paying to drink tap water. Bottled spring water is better, but you should still consider BPA, a chemical used in some plastic bottles. Some experts believe that BPA can leach from the plastic into the liquid inside.
This may sound like a lot, but remember, water is essential to your health. Drinking a lot of water every day is incredibly important for keeping both body and mind working in optimum condition. One glass of wine or a piece of chocolate won’t damage your health, but changing your daily habits may actually change your life. In the future, when the earth is clean and healthy, this will be a non-issue. Hopefully, that day will be here soon.