Category Archives: Water Filter

How the Drought is Poisoning California’s Drinking Water

california drought water quality

As California struggles through the fourth year of its historic drought, the effects are starting to hit a little closer to home… and our health.

The results of a 10-year study of California groundwater quality showed some disturbing findings.

Normally, Californians get about 30% of their drinking water from aquifers, but the drought has forced Californians to rely on these aquifers for more than 60% of our water needs.

The study found that roughly 20% of our groundwater is contaminated with high concentrations of dangerous substances like arsenic, uranium and nitrates. And it’s not getting any better…

As groundwater keeps getting lower, our drinking water will become more and more unsafe.

The longer the drought continues, the more we will rely on groundwater. You can probably see how this is quite the vicious cycle. But is there an answer? In order to understand that, we have to know what caused this quality issue.

 

Where do the contaminants come from?

Contaminants enter California’s water artificially – through heavy use of nitrogen-based fertilizers on farms – and naturally – through erosion of natural deposits.

Heavy reliance on nitrogen fertilizers (and animal waste) has led to increased levels of nitrates in the water. At levels above 10 ppm (parts per million), nitrates can impede the blood’s ability to carry oxygen, leading to birth defects and cancers of the ovaries and thyroid.

Agriculture alone isn’t the only source of contamination; arsenic – which is not used on farms – turned up more than nitrates. The study also found an alarming amount of aquifers poisoned with uranium, which is a contaminant not used in farms, but which has been pushed further into the water table (5-10 feet per year) by irrigation.

According to Kenneth Belitz, the study’s lead author and chief of the USGS’s National Water Quality Assessment Program, the process of contaminants slowly moving further down into the water table affects all areas of California.

Former agricultural areas that have evolved into suburban (Santa Ana, for example) will start to see the effects of years-old nitrates sinking into their water tables. Today’s farming hotspots – especially the San Joaquin Valley (where San Diego gets a portion of its water) – could be slowly building up nitrate levels year by year that could lead to much higher nitrate levels in well water.

 

How is the drought making it worse?

This heart-wrenching video from High Country News depicts how the drought is exacerbating the level of contaminants in California’s water. It shows the situation in East Orosi, one of the areas hit hardest by the drought.

Chad Fischer, East Orosi District Engineer, explains how landowners are digging a higher level of wells, putting more stress on the aquifers:

“It’s simple, drill a lot of wells, produce a lot of water. The water tables are going to drop and the level of contaminants is going to go up.”

As groundwater levels drop and the level of contaminants stays the same, the concentration of nitrates in groundwater supply will continue to increase.

Think of it as a small amount of poison that’s diluted by a large amount of water. The poison is relatively harmless as long as the water level stays high enough. But when the water level decreases, there’s not as much to dilute the poison, making it much more dangerous.

This issue is hitting areas of California at different times. East Orosi is getting the worst of it now. Residents use five-gallon plastic jugs for drinking, cleaning, brushing teeth, making tea and coffee, making soup and cleaning fruits and vegetables.

East Orosi’s situation serves as a stark warning to the rest of the state about the dangers of the drought on water quality. Hopefully it serves as a canary in the coal mine demonstrating that serious actions need to be taken for the health and safety of the people.

When will it end?

That’s the bad news. According to NASA Analysis, California’s aquifers are extremely depleted (by 11 trillion gallons, to be exact). Lower rainfall in the coming years and steady or increased farming will only continue to diminish these sources, therefore raising contaminant concentration.

As the drought continues, it’s imperative that California residents continue to monitor their local drinking water quality. Every municipality is required to send out a Water Quality Report (or CCR) annually, detailing local contaminant levels.

As always, the safest solution for your water’s safety is to install water filter systems in your home to ensure the highest quality clean water in your home regardless of outside circumstances. See your home water filter options HERE.

 

More information: Mother Jones on California’s Drinking Water

 

What’s the Difference Between Water Softeners & Water Conditioners?

whole home water conditioner softener

As a new homeowner, you’ll likely face a common question: do I need a water softener? After some research, you’ll likely come across some info about a similar piece of equipment called a water conditioner. The differences between the two can be confusing, but making the right choice can have a significant impact on you and your family’s health and your home’s appearance and value. 

Many areas across the country – especially Southern California – have “hard water,” which means your tap water has exceptionally high mineral content.

Hard water is not particularly unhealthy, but it’s capable of causing some costly problems for your home. The most costly issues include scaling, pipe blockage and even pipe leaks. 

Your Home’s Health

Scaling is the buildup of minerals to form a deposit called lime scale. Hard water mixed with soap forms nasty soap scum, which leaves a bathtub ring on your surfaces. 

hard vs soft water

The difference in scaling between a showerhead with hard water and soft water is obvious.

Excessive scaling can lead to clogged pipes, which decrease water flow rate to your faucets and showerheads and can even affect the life of toilet flushing units.

hard water damage

A pipe clogged with hardness minerals.

Eventually, the scaling in your pipes will allow less water to flow through. Showerheads will dribble instead of spraying and faucets will deliver a weak stream of water. Buildup in your faucets can also lead to faulty shutoff mechanisms and dripping faucets.

The third costly effect of hard water is when dissolved minerals eat through pipes causing leaks and water damage in your home. It’s important to realize this potential issue early, because there are water pipes throughout your home and even a small hole can result in VERY costly damage.

hard water pipe damage

Pipe with a significant leak due to hard water.

 

Your Health and Happiness (and Sanity)

The effects of hard water are not limited to your home and plumbing fixtures; it can also affect your quality of life. Hard water requires more soap or detergent and water for showering and laundry.

åAdditionally, mixing soap and hard water on the body can cause what’s referred to as a “curd,” which can remain on the skin after rinsing, clogging pores. This serves as a breeding ground for bacteria, rashes and dry skin irritations.

Hard water also leads to mineral deposits in your hair, making it harder to untangle post-shower.

So What’s the Solution?

Now that you understand the multitude of issues surrounding hard water, let’s discuss the best way to get rid of hard water in your home. A water softener may be the more popular option, but I’m going to explain to you why a water conditioner is the better option for your home, your health and your wallet.

Water Softeners vs. Water Conditioners

Both water softeners and water conditioners solve the problems associated with hard water. The two are significantly different, though, in 3 main ways:

  1. Water Quality
  2. Simplicity
  3. Price

Water Quality

The biggest difference between water softeners and water conditioners is water quality. The reason is pretty simple: water softeners DO NOT filter your water and water conditioners do.

Water softeners use what’s called “ion exchange,” which swaps hardness mineral ions for sodium, reducing the water’s hardness. The problem is that softeners only focus on hardness, not contaminants such as chlorine and carcinogenic disinfectant byproducts like chloroform. 

Chlorine is generally the most noticeable contaminant in tap water (due to the large amount added in at a municipal level in order to disinfect water). It is also quite dangerous and damaging to your health and beauty. Chlorine can cause cancer over time when ingested and is notorious for drying out skin and hair. In addition to being dangerous to the body, chlorine can contribute to pinhole leaks in your pipes.

Without a conditioner, you will not be able to remove chlorine and other dangerous contaminants – you will simply have softer, dirty water.

Simplicity

As I mentioned above, water softeners use a process called “ion exchange,” which is about as complicated as it sounds. It requires electricity (which drives up cost of operation) and maintenance such as buying, hauling and adding salt periodically. In addition to being physically trying and time-consuming, adding salt also requires upwards of $200 per year.

Ion exchange is also not eco-friendly in any way. The process requires waste water to be expelled through a special drain. Research showed that this briny waste water was actually affecting area water supplies, leading to the recent ban of salt-based water softeners in cities such as San Diego and Los Angeles. That’s right: if you live in Southern California, you are likely outlawed from even purchasing a salt-based water softener.

Water conditioners do not use any electricity, saving your energy bill. They also create zero wastewater and require no maintenance aside from annual filter changes. Additionally, water conditioners use significantly less floor space in your garage and make no noise.

On an aesthetic level, conditioners produce water that mixes well with soaps and detergents, allowing you to use less of each, saving you even more money. Conditioned water also feels better in the shower, whereas softened water leaves a distinct “slippery” feel on the skin. 

Price

Of course, one of the most important aspects of any home improvement purchase is the price. What is it worth for you to have clean water and fortified investments in your kitchen and bathroom fixtures? Obviously, many companies will use this argument to justify ridiculously-priced items. But water conditioners are actually priced significantly below water softeners.

The Evolution Whole Home Water Conditioner starts at only $795, compared with softeners in the thousands of dollars, plus maintenance costs. Conditioners also save you from the electricity and water costs associated with a complicated softener. 

Most importantly, though, a Water Conditioner preserves the health of you and your family, as you can be sure the dangerous contaminants found increasingly in tap water supplies will be eradicated at the source. 

Call 619-356-3766 or email info@evolutionhealthworks.com today for more info about how a Water Conditioner can help improve your life and the value of your home!

Why is LA’s Water Dirty?

Los_Angeles_River_through_downtown_evening

It’s not quite as bad as San Diego’s water, but Los Angeles’ water quality ranks among the lowest of U.S. cities (83rd out of the top 100, to be exact).

This lackluster ranking comes as a result of a harmful cocktail of chemicals in the water that combine to be 4 times more than the recommended number of chemical pollutants.

“Looking at the data, we’re definitely concerned about water quality in Southern California. We recommend utilities really look at their processing. There’s much room for improvement,” said Olga Naidenko, a senior scientist at the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit environmental watchdog based in Washington, D.C.

“We recommend residents get water filters

“The nation’s tap water has been compromised by weak federal safeguards and pitiful protection of drinking water supplies,” said Jane Houlihan, senior vice president for research at Environmental Working Group, in a statement.

What exactly is so dangerous in Los Angeles’ water?

The Main Dangers In Your Water

1. Trihalomethanes

Trihalomethanes are a group of 4 carcinogenic (cancer-causing) chemicals created as byproducts of the chlorine and other disinfectants used to treat bacteria in drinking water. These exceed the federal health standards in Los Angeles.

2. Arsenic

Heavy metal that enters the water supply via mining runoff, erosion, pesticides and emission from glass production. Arsenic has also been shown to cause cancer and often contains radioactive elements.

3. Perchlorate

Perchlorate is a component of rocket fuel associated with thyroid illness.

4. Manganese

Naturally occuring elemtn released from mineral products and industrial use. Shown to negatively effect the nervous system and function as a carcinogen

We recommend getting a water filter immediately. Check out our products today!

What’s the Deal with Fluoride in My Water?

fluoride

The controversy over fluoridated water is making news lately, as more and more concerned citizens question their local governments about the benefits and possible drawbacks of adding fluoride to drinking water.

In 1945, dental researchers and city officials in Grand Rapids, Michigan agreed to fluoridate the city water supply for experimental purposes. After eleven years, the results were staggering; tooth decay rates had dropped 60%.

Ever since, cities across the country have adopted fluoridation. The American Dental Association and other prominent public health organizations endorse the practice wholeheartedly.

In a situation becoming more familiar in our information-heavy world, though, people are speaking out and challenging institutions on the benefits of fluoridation. Similar to the anti-vaccine and anti-GMO movements, there is a spectrum of dissent ranging from legitimate concern to government conspiracy mongering.

It’s hard to argue with the wealth of information proving that fluoridated water has improved dental health, but it’s also important to acknowledge that many beneficial public health policies have detrimental side effects.

(For example, adding chlorine to public water supplies for disinfection purposes was one of the great inventions of the 20th century, improving life expectancy for millions. But chlorine reacts with natural materials in water to create dangerous, cancer-causing disinfectant byproducts.)

Fluoride’s drawbacks are documented at length across the web, but few have been widely accepted. A recent British study showed a link between water fluoridation and thyroid issues (hypothyroidism). One undisputed fact is that an excess of fluoride (fluorosis) causes tooth decay. There is minimal evidence of fluoride as a carcinogen.

The real issue with fluoride in public water supplies is informed consent.

Americans have always been fiercely individualistic; the explosion of the internet has magnified this trait. Citizens can now pull up information on other countries’ fluoridation practices quickly and realize that the U.S. adds fluoride more widely than any other country in the world.

People can also look up the fact that fluoride is a chemical, one being prescribed to them without consent. This issue is also at the core of the anti-vaccine movement, but there is one very important difference.

If you don’t vaccinate your child, others are at risk of catching a disease from him or her. If you don’t opt to fluoridate your water, you are not putting anyone else at risk.

This is the core of the fluoridation issue today. People deserve the option of what they consume, especially if it has the potential to affect their health.

All Evolution Healthworks drinking water products reduce fluoride content by 65%. For those wishing to remove more than two thirds of fluoride, we offer an additional filter attachment to remove 99.9% of fluoride.

The Issue With Using A Brita Water Filter

water-filter-pitcher

It’s critical to filter your drinking water in order to remove contaminants that can affect your health negatively.

As with most home products, there’s an array of different filter options varying in price, benefits and point-of-use.

For many consumers, a Brita filter is the easiest option. It comes in a easy-to-use pitcher, can be bought from your local Target, and is relatively easy on the wallet.

Brita products use a standard activated carbon and ion-exchange resin disposable filter as their primary filtering mechanism.

What does that mean for your drinking water?

It means that you are not adequately filtering your water. Brita technologies only use a basic carbon filter, which does not remove all of the contaminants in the water.

This holds especially true for San Diego, where we have very high amounts of agricultural runoff and heavy metals in our water.

Another issue is that Brita filters do not remove or kill bacteria in the water. This means any living organisms that are in your drinking water are affecting your health.

Are there any risks to using a Brita?

Beyond not removing all contaminants, Brita is a fine filter to start out with.

However, it is critical to change and remove filters. If you don’t there are some serious risks associated.

When the filters are not changed, they become breeding grounds for bacteria. This means that if you’re not changing your filters, your supposedly filtered water may actually be more dangerous that normal tap water. Research suggests that this occurs no later that 6 months.

Why Evolution Products?

1. Evolution Water goes through a 3-phase filter system:

  • Cleans your water with an activated carbon filter
  • Introduces healthy trace minerals such as calcium and magnesium
  • Features a region-specific third filter to remove contaminants native to YOUR geographic area

2. What separates Evolution Water is the ability to make it alkaline, which is desirable for a number of reasons:

 

Call us today today at 619-356-3766 to learn more about how Evolution can help you Drink Clean!

7 Easy Ways to Drink More Water

filtered water

Amidst the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to forget about staying hydrated. After all, drinking water isn’t exactly the most fun thing to do. Research suggests that the easiest way to learn new habits is by incorporating them into your existing routines.  This is what we’ve done with these 7 easy ways to make sure you’re staying hydrated!

1. If you eat, drink

An easy way to start drinking water more often is to have a glass before every meal. It’s a simple transition, because most likely you drink something while you’re eating. Drinking water also helps you eat less, so your waistline will thank you. This trick applies to drinking as well – try having a glass of water for every cocktail or beer you order. It’ll help with your hangovers!

2. Take it with you

You can’t drink water if you don’t have access. Carrying your own water bottle is a great way to avoid costly, wasteful bottled water. It’s also important to avoid plastic, which can leach harmful BPAs. Our Evolution Healthworks Glass DrinkSafes are perfect on-the-go bottles because they have a neoprene sleeve with handles.

3. Eat your veggies!

You don’t always have to drink in order to stay hydrated. Many vegetables and fruits are packed with water, so you can stay hydrated without chugging all day!

4. Set an alarm

If you’re anything like us, you and your smartphone are inseparable. Let’s face it: phones are becoming our appendages, so we might as well use them to our benefit. It’s simple – go to your Calendar app and set alerts for several times tomorrow (i.e. 9am, 12pm, 3pm, 6pm, 9pm) with any label – maybe a Wave emoji? Then, click on the Repeat option and set it to Every Day. Now, as you’re Buzzfeeding your day away, you’ll be reminded to stay hydrated!

5. Make a game out of it

Like playing games? Of course you do. Like competition? Of course you do. Studies have shown that adding a social or competitive aspect to your goals leads to much higher levels of achievement. Think Weight Watchers meetings. Or people posting their workout numbers on social media every day. Adding this layer of social pressure leads to much better results.

Now you don’t have to throw it in everyone’s faces, but you can start a mini-competition between yourself and a few friends. Just set some stakes (first round of drinks?) and keep track. Whoever hits 8 glasses a day for the longest wins!

6. Get your money’s worth

Here at Evolution Healthworks, we’ve had numerous customers tell us that they started drinking much more water after they purchased one of our home water filtration systems. We all like to get our money’s worth. If you buy a gym membership, you’re going to use it. The same goes for drinking water systems – the only difference is its much easier to drink more water than it is to go to the gym. Even better, you’ll see results much faster.

7. Reward yourself

At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that we’re all humans. The reason you’re dehydrated in the first place is because life is hectic and it’s easy to forget to drink water. So when you succeed, make sure to reward yourself. We’ll let you decide how to do this, but whatever it is – make it worth your while to stay hydrated!

Why is San Diego’s Tap Water So Bad?

san diego water

If you didn’t already know (and if you live here, you know) San Diego has some very subpar tap water. In fact, it has some of the worst tap water in the country, according to a study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). It’s a shame that such a beautiful city nestled up to a pristine blue ocean has tainted drinking water.

It’s easy to complain about the water here, but it’s also important to understand why the water quality is so poor and the effects it can have on our health and well-being.

This information is pertinent for many people outside of San Diego, too. There have been a number of incidents in the past year compromising drinking water supplies across the country.

Why San Diego?

With the ocean down the street, it’s easy to forget that San Diego is actually in a desert. If you know one thing about deserts, it’s that there is very little water. We’re still some time away from desalination plants (like the one in construction in Carlsbad) being a significant source of drinking water. Thus, we get our water from thousands of miles away.

Our two main sources are the Colorado River and the California State Water Project in Northern California. There are a number of issues with each of these sources.

The Colorado River provides the majority (60%) of San Diego’s water. It runs through canyons and rocks which deposit volatile organic chemicals.

20% of San Diego’s water comes from the California Water Project in Northern California, the hotbed of agriculture for the whole country. The problem with this is the vast amount of fertilizers used on these farms. Fertilizers contain nitrates and nitrites, which make their way into the water table and into our tap water.

These problems aren’t unique to San Diego, though. A five-year study by the EPA found more than 300 contaminants in tap water across California. And worse, California water authorities were cited for 5,514 federal and state violations over that five-year period.

 

What are the effects of contaminated tap water?

Everything. Pollutants in your tap water are just as bad as they sound.

Below are some of the worst offenders present in San Diego’s water along with their health effects.

  • Arsenic – Skin damage, circulatory problems, increased risk of cancer
  • Asbestos (from the cement in water mains) – Increased risk of cancer and intestinal polyps
  • Lead – Impaired mental and physical development in children, attention and learning deficits, high blood pressure
  • Nitrates/Nitrites – Oxygen distribution problems, Blue Baby Syndrome

What can we do?

It’s easy to be alarmed at the quality of our tap water, but it’s important to take steps toward making it safer. The government is too strapped for cash and too slow-moving to take the initiative, so it’s up to us to manage our own water.

1. Contact your county health department for a report on your local water quality and to learn about any recent violations.

2. Read our guide to Comparing Water Filters to understand the different options you have for getting clean, healthy water in your home.

3. Call 619-356-3766 to speak with a water expert about how you can get the Certified Healthiest Water in your home today.

Helping You Compare Water Filters

compare water filters

As awareness of the importance of clean water in the home rises, more and more people are starting to consider what water filter is right for them.

With this increase in demand, water filter suppliers are flooding (so to speak) the market with products. This can lead to confusion, especially when companies make over-the-top claims.

We don’t want to confuse you – we want you to compare the different water filters available on the market so you can decide what’s best for you and your family. Below are some simple explanations of water filter options.

Carbon Filters

Activated Carbon products are the most common filters on the market. You probably know them better as pitchers or attachments on your sink. These are helpful if you’re renting or staying somewhere temporary. They take care of foul odors and tastes, but do not remove bacteria or microorganisms.

Other than lacking in how much junk they can remove, the main downside to carbon filters is that they don’t last long. You know what I’m talking about if you’ve ever had a filter pitcher blink red at you after a month in the fridge.

Reverse Osmosis Systems

RO systems became popular because they are very powerful and filter almost all dissolved solids in tap water. They are usually installed under the sink, which is nice because they don’t take up counter or fridge space. There are a few problems with RO, though. While it filters lots of bad stuff from your water, it also removes good stuff such as healthy trace minerals. This can pose some serious health issues down the road. Another issue is that RO systems create a large amount of waste water, almost 5 times as much as they do filtered water in some cases.

Remineralizers

The best alternative to RO’s mineral-deficient water is remineralized water. They are harder to find, but quality water filter companies often have a remineralizer included in their filtration systems. It’s important to make sure that you aren’t just adding minerals to unfiltered water, though.

 

Ionizers

These are the worst offenders when it comes to ridiculous health claims. Multi-level marketing companies got a hold of ionizers a few years back and started selling them without integrity. These are not miracle-machines, but they do have significant health benefits.

Ionizers charge minerals in the water to raise its alkalinity. The resulting alkaline water (above 7 on the pH scale) has been shown to raise overall blood alkalinity, act as an antioxidant capable of killing leukemia cells and increase bone health. These are claims backed by accredited scientific studies, not commercial science.

It’s very important to make sure you only use an ionizer with a water filter, since there is no research on the effects of ionized contaminants. Also, since water can’t be ionized – only the minerals in it – it’s important to have a remineralizer included with your ionizer.

Whole Home Systems

The water you drink isn’t the only water you’re exposed to in the home. If you live in an area with poor water quality (see the EWG’s 10 Best and Worst Water Utilities here), a whole home water filter system would be a good investment because you’re at risk from showering in contaminants.

Hot showers open up your pores, allowing you to absorb contaminants directly into your bloodstream. Similarly, water vaporizes in the heat, leaving your vulnerable to inhaled pollutants such as trihalomethanes (a byproduct of chlorine disinfectants) or fluoride.

Many whole home water filter systems cost thousands of dollars, but there are many more affordable systems on the market that will provide you with much cleaner water.

Which one is for you?

You’ve seen the options – which one fits best for you? If you’re not yet sure, we’d love to talk.

Give us a call at 619-356-3766.

In health!

Total Dissolved Solids In Your Drinking Water

Stilles_Mineralwasser

The harmful contaminants that are in your tap water are too small to see with the naked eye. In order to get a better read on the water quality, these contaminants are grouped into a measurement know as total dissolved solids.

What are total dissolved solids?

Total dissolved solids (often abbreviated as TDS) is a measurement of the amount of dissolved particles in your water. A dissolved particle can pass through a filter with pores of two microns in size.

A measurement of total dissolved solids in water includes a variety of different forms of contaminants, some of which are more harmful than others. Some of the most common dissolved solids in water include calcium, chlorides, THM’s, nitrates, phosphorus, iron, sulfur and bacteria.

What effects do total dissolved solids have on water quality?

Total Dissolved Solids are a very wide range of contaminants, so they have different effects based on which ones are in the water, and what levels.  However, a high TDS count will generally result in:

  • A higher potential for poor water quality. When your water is high in total dissolved solids, it has an elevated chance of containing contaminants that will affect the quality of the water you use for drinking and bathing.
  • Bad tasting water. Water with a high TDS count is often described as tasting salty, bitter or metallic.
  • Bad smelling water. Water with a high TDS count also usually contains particles that negatively affect its smell.
  • Corroding of plumbing appliances. If your water contains a high level of total dissolved solids, it can corrode and shorten the life of your plumbing appliances.

How can you reduce the amount of total dissolved solids in your water?

We at Evolution Healthworks offer solutions to the problems caused by TDS. Our Aura H2O Water Filter removes these contaminants and provides the healthiest drinking water. Also, we offer Whole Home Systems which can filter the water that comes out of all the taps.

 

5 Reasons Reverse Osmosis is Bad For Your Health

reverse osmosis bad

If you’ve researched water filter systems for your home, then you are probably familiar with reverse osmosis.

For those of you who are not familiar, reverse osmosis is commonly described as the most complete way to filter your water. In some ways, this statement is valid. Reverse osmosis uses a membrane to very finely remove almost all dissolved solids from tap water.

This sounds like a great system, right? After all, the point of water filtration is to take out all of the bad substances and leave us with safe water.

It’s not that simple, though.

To get truly safe and healthy water, it’s very important to consider the adverse effects of drinking water that has no beneficial constituents.

The World Health Organization released a report summarizing some eye-opening findings about reverse osmosis and the “demineralized” water it creates. Below are 5 reasons from the report that reveal why reverse osmosis is bad for your health.

 1. It leads to mineral deficiencies 

Water is the universal solvent. When it is demineralized – or run through a reverse osmosis system – it aggressively seeks new metals and minerals to leach and absorb.

This becomes a problem when you RO water – it leaches beneficial minerals such as calcium and magnesium from your body.

Studies from around the world over a fifty-year period agree that water low in calcium and magnesium leads to a higher rate of bone fractures, cardiovascular disease, pregnancy disorders and some cancers.

2. It makes you urinate more

This might sound obvious – of course drinking water results in more trips to the restroom – but it’s more complicated than that.

Reverse osmosis water throws off water homeostasis in the body, causing a 20% increase in diuresis (aka need to urinate).

3. It negates the nutrients you get from food

Most reverse osmosis companies will advise you to use your demineralized water for cooking. While cooking with the right water can make a significant difference, this is NOT the case for reverse osmosis.

The study explains that cooking with demineralized water actually removes about 60% of the beneficial minerals from your food. Since the majority of our nutrients come from what we eat, cooking with demineralized water can be very detrimental to your dietary health.

4. It leads to more toxic chemicals in your water

Just as reverse osmosis water is likely to absorb minerals in your body, it is also highly aggressive to materials with which it comes into contact before entering your body.

It readily dissolves metals and organic substances from your sink’s pipes, coatings, storage tanks, hose lines and fittings before entering your glass.

Low-mineral water intensifies the leaching process, raising your chances of getting lead poisoning from your kitchen’s plumbing.

5. It’s less thirst-quenching

The report explains that since demineralized water throws off homeostasis in the body, it leads to more thirst.

What’s wrong with a little additional thirst? It means more of all the problems listed above. Welcome to the vicious cycle of reverse osmosis.

 

What’s an acceptable alternative?

It’s important to look for a Drinking Water System that reintroduces healthy trace minerals to your water, in addition to removing harmful contaminants.

The Aura H2O Water Filter not only removes 99.9% of contaminants, but also adds minerals such as calcium and magnesium back to your water. Also, the Evolution Healthworks system wastes no water, compared to the average reverse osmosis system that wastes about 5 gallons for every 1 it filters.

 

More info: The World Health Organization on Water, Sanitation and Health
Protection and the Human Environment 

 

What doesn’t kill you makes you sicker

chlorine-Danger

Following last month’s drinking water crisis in Ohio, city officials around Lake Erie started adding more chlorine to the area’s water supply to combat the effects of microorganisms originating from an algae bloom. This is another reminder of the widespread practice of adding disinfectants to city water supplies in order to combat contaminants.

Disinfectants such as chlorine are effective in killing dangerous microorganisms, but they can also wreak havoc on our bodies. Studies have shown that repeated exposure to chlorinated water can cause bladder cancer. form harmful byproducts called tri-halomethanes (THM) that can wreak havoc on our bodies.

One well-known THM is chloroform, which is classified by the EPA as a carcinogen. Other effects of chloroform ingestion, absorption or inhalation include kidney and liver damage, immune system dysfunction and birth defects.

Why worry, though? Even if we drink a little chloroform, why would we absorb or inhale it? This is where it gets scary, folks.

Did you know that we can absorb and inhale more chloroform in a 10-minute shower than we would drinking eight glasses of water in a day? This is because warm showers open up our pores, allowing contaminants to be easily absorbed. Showers also create steam, which we inhale, introducing chloroform to our respiratory system.

Cities have been chlorinating water supplies for over a century. Despite the setbacks, disinfection is necessary to combat microorganisms that would make us very sick, very quickly. Since the practice is not going to end any time soon, it’s our responsibility to manage the water coming into our homes.

The only way to ensure that every drop of water in your home is free from dangerous THMs and byproducts is to install a Whole Home Water System. Be careful in your search, though. Many companies charge thousands of dollars for these systems, using their size as justification for a hefty price.

The Evolution Healthworks Whole Home Water System is extremely effective and is priced affordably. It is also smaller than other similar products on the market, leaving you more room in the garage to store your gear.

Big Fracking Problem: How oil drilling wreaks havoc on your water

pumpjack silhouettes

The highly controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing – better known as fracking – is back in the news again after a recent report revealed that regulations protecting municipal drinking water sources are not adequate.

This comes on the heels of California’s announcement last months that it would be shutting down 11 fracking wastewater disposal sites for leaks that contaminated drinking water aquifers.

Many expected the Government Accountability Office report to finally raise concerns about fracking’s effects on personal and environmental health, but a study by Media Matters found that the media is dropping the ball on covering the report’s findings.

Fracking has mustered a great deal of support because of its proposed benefits, including increased energy independence and beefy economic stimulus (to the tune of $24-28 billion annually in large fracking states such as California). The practice’s drawbacks, though, negate its benefits.

How does it work?

Oil companies love fracking because it is an an effective method for extracting more oil than regular vertical drilling. The hydraulic fracturing process drills down into the earth and then pumps a mixture of fluid chemicals and sand at a very high pressure to create horizontal fractures, releasing oil from rock formations. The oil – and the chemicals – then bubble to the surface.

The chemicals used for fracking include “ethylene glycol, which can damage kidneys; formaldehyde, a known cancer risk; and naphthalene, considered a possible carcinogen.”

Once separated from the oil, the chemicals are disposed of in “wastewater injection wells.”

The problem

The safety of these wastewater injection wells is basically a crapshoot. The regulations for constructing one vary by location. For example, Ohio’s Department of Natural Resources issues permits to construct wells, but companies in Pennsylvania must go to the EPA for permits. The result? 200 wastewater injection wells in Ohio and only 10 in Pennsylvania.

The GAO’s report suggests that these hastily granted permits (Ohio DNR typically processes applications in 6 weeks versus the EPA’s 6 months) result in poorly regulated wells that are responsible for poisoning water supplies.

Despite being built of mostly steel and concrete, the wastewater injection well casings are highly susceptible to seismic activity, which wouldn’t be as much of an issue if fracking wasn’t also scientifically proven to cause earthquakes.

Frequent earthquakes, caused by the process of injecting water into faults in the earth, damage these deep injection wells and allow dangerous chemicals to leak into the earth, and eventually into your tap water.

Why isn’t this a bigger story?

The fact that constant reports of fracking’s negative effects on municipal drinking water haven’t been covered in the news is highly alarming. The Media Matter study found that in four of the states doing the most fracking (Texas, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and Colorado), only one major newspaper reported on the GAO’s findings.

Several of these papers have published editorials in support of fracking, likely revealing the reasoning behind their failure to cover the GAO report.

What can you do?

As fracking continues to boom, the number of dangerous wastewater injection wells will also increase.

Check out this map to see if fracking occurs where you live.

As always, you can write a letter to your local Congressman, but unless you’re ready to include a fat check rivaling those oil and gas industry lobbyists are writing, your letter is likely to go unnoticed.

If fracking is happening in your area, your water could be at risk today. Take matters into your hands and find out how a Whole Home Water System can protect you from the carcinogens fracking is releasing into your water.

 

Update: More info on this topic from a member of the National Resources Defense Council