Is Bottled Really Better?
Grocery shelves are filled with many types and flavors of bottled water, but is it really better for you than tap water? Before you spend your money on bottled water, here are a few things to think about.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees bottled water, while the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates tap water. Both government agencies use similar standards for measuring water quality and safety. Keep in mind that the EPA does not regulate private wells. If your tap water comes from a private well, you should test it each year for contaminants.
An environmental drain
Americans go through about 50 billion water bottles a year and most are not recycled. More than 80% of recyclable plastic bottles end up in landfills each year. These bottles don’t break down naturally and release toxic chemicals when they finally do decompose.
Bottled water health costs
The plastic used in single-use bottles is safe if only used once. When reused, they can pose more of a contamination threat than water. A plastic called PET is the most common resin used in disposable bottles. As these bottles are reused, they leach chemicals such as DEHA and BBP, which may cause cancer.
What about vitamin water?
Most likely, you won’t benefit from drinking vitamin water if you’re eating a balanced diet. Vitamin water has been fortified with electrolytes and nutrients, and some also add flavorings, artificial colors, caffeine, and sweeteners. Always remember to read the ingredients label and check the calorie count of anything you drink. You should get your calories from food and avoid liquid calories whenever possible.
Did you know?
The cost of bottled water equals about $7.50 per gallon or 2,000 times more than tap water, which costs only $0.0004 per gallon! Americans are the biggest bottled water drinkers on the globe, accounting for 15% of total consumption.