Time and again we hear how great drinking water is for us. It aids in weight loss, flushes out toxins, prevents headaches and illness and giving us clear, supple skin. Yet, do we really know what we’re getting when we twist open a bottle of water?
According to the Environmental Working Group, most bottled water companies are not very forthcoming about what exactly is going into their bottles. Only 3 of the 173 companies the nonprofit analyzed disclosed information on where their water comes from, how or if their water is treated, and whether the results of purity testing are made public. Some of the worst-rated brands, from the companies disclosing little or no information, also happen to be some of the best-selling in the country. Aquafina, Dasani, and Poland Spring all received a grade of D for information disclosure.
According to the EWG, the only A grade option is filtered tap water. Properly filtered tap water is purer than bottled water, not to mention less expensive and better for the environment.
Unlike bottled water, tap water is regularly tested with the test results openly reported. A simple, faucet-mounted water filter can improve the smell and taste of drinking water by removing chlorine and bacterial contaminants. [Click here for additional water filtration options.]
Not sure you want to splurge on a $35 water filter and $10 re-usable bottle? Consider this: Some bottled water can cost up to 1,900 times more than tap water. According to the New York Times, a person drinking only bottled water will spend about $1,400 a year compared to the 49 cents it costs for a year's supply of tap water.
There's also the cost to the environment. One and a half million barrels of oil are used every year to manufacture disposable plastic water bottles for the U.S. That's enough to fuel 100,000 cars for a year. About 80% of those bottles will end up as litter or in landfills where they’ll take at least 450 years to break down. Plus, the process of bottling water actually wastes two gallons of water for every gallon of water packaged.
So, want to drink cleaner, cheaper, greener? Just turn on the tap!