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Why the Convenience of Water Bottles Isn’t Worth It

March 26, 2013 · 40 comments

bottled water.jpg
I can’t wait to hear what you guys think about the below video clips on bottled water.  Find out:  Does it really taste better?  Is it really cleaner or from higher quality sources?  Or are we just getting screwed and paying more for nothing?  And not only that, are we putting our health at risk from the BPA or other toxins in the plastic?

Will you ever buy bottled water again?

I wish I could say I never will.  Even though I can’t promise that, I can for sure say that just like with food, this is also a journey.  I used to buy a 24-pack every week, but now I buy one every 6 months or so.  And instead, get this, we refill our own water bottles from our tap!  Crazy concept, huh?  :)

What we use:

I have some glass bottles I refill, and I also got a whole bunch of BPA-free water bottles for the van so I don’t have to worry about them breaking.  They’re wide-mouth so they go into the dishwasher easily.  (And I never put anything hot in plastic, ever.)  These go with us if we’re exercising or off to one of the kids’ sporting events.

Our water is filtered to get the Chlorine, Fluoride, and any pharmaceutical or other contaminants out, all with a reverse osmosis filter.  But the problem with those is that they also filter out the much-needed minerals.  So if I had it to do over again, I’d get one of these water filters.

Since we got the RO before we knew better, now I add a drop or two of these mineral drops per glassful to our drinking water.  (Except we forget a lot…)

Now watch these videos and let me know your thoughts in the comments afterward!

Do you filter your water?  If so, what filter do you have?  Do you supplement with mineral drops?

If you’re interested in reading more about Fluoride dangers, plastic water bottle toxins, and water filters, click here for my post archive list on drinking water.

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  • { 40 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Jenny March 26, 2013 at 7:02 am

    No longer buy bottled water unless traveling and I do not trust a drinking fountain to refill my stainless water bottle. Never considered that bottled water may end up taking over my well by taking over the aquafier. Scary. I guess the ads worked when they scared everyone to death over drinking tap water. After seeing videos I will b finding more ways to transport my own water when traveling. Thanks.

    Reply

    2 Soli March 26, 2013 at 7:05 am

    I want a filter, or something more than the Britta pitcher I currently use. It’s a matter of money though.

    And I only buy bottled water when I am in a place where I have not brought my own full bottle. Unless it’s San Pellegrino. I do LOVE that mineral water, and I know it’s not like something from the average American tap.

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    3 Cathy F. March 26, 2013 at 7:07 am

    We just recently traded out our reverse osmosis filter for a Water Marque brand that attaches directly to the cold tap. It preserves the good minerals but filters out the heavy metals and chlorine. Only problem, it only removes about 75% of the fluoride. Unlike us (easy marks for a salesman) you may want to research it a little more before making a switch– I don’t know how well they compare to other brands.

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    4 April March 26, 2013 at 7:15 am

    I live in an area with very bad city water and we have been using a Pur filter for years. Our family of 7 drinks lots of water (5 of us drink 3-5 Camelbak water bottles a day). We just got a Crown Berkey last week. It’s amazing! I am actually drinking more water :-) This model has Space for 8 filters but only comes with 2. It’s very slow, so we are talking about getting at least 2 more and some alkalizing rocks.

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    5 Nevra @ ChurnYourOwn March 26, 2013 at 8:01 am

    Kelly – Good topi!. I hate plastic bottles. While you may not put hot water in them, I am sure that they get exposed to heat while being stored in non climate-controlled warehouses and also while being transported long distances in the summer months in trucks/trailers.

    I considered water filtration systems for a long time, but in the end it just didn’t feel right. Kind of like modern processed foods: you subject them to all sorts of chemical and physical abuse, then you “fortify” them to replace lost vitamins. Not the same as the original, non-adulterated version.

    I just recently made the switch to getting Mountain Valley Spring Water delivered to my house. It comes from Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas. Unlike most water, it’s delivered in glass bottles. Yeah, I know – the health benefits might be almost cancelled out by the risk of a back injury from lifting a 5 gallon glass bottle full of water! Costs around $20 per bottle plus $2 delivery in my local area (I’m buyign it through a distributor based in MD). Just wondering if your choice for a filtration system vs. spring water was based on economics or other factors.

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    6 Jill March 26, 2013 at 8:57 am

    Ok, an island of plastic garbage the size of TEXAS in the ocean is the most disturbing part of this whole thing for me. How on earth are we going to deal with THAT? I am unaware of any major international campaign to eliminate plastic disposable…stuff….so I assume that that plastic island will grow in size until, what, I don’t know!

    With that said first, I will say that I buy a case of bottled water from SAM’s club about once every 6 months. I keep it in a closet and grab about one a week, when I work at our farmer’s market (for which I am a vendor), and also to have on hand in case something weird happens to our water supply and takes a bit to fix. When I was a kid our small town ended up having a water quarantine because of giardia (sp?) contamination in the town’s water supply, and a LOT of people became very ill. Maybe that’s why I always feel we have to have a clean water backup that will last a few days.

    I REALLY need to get a good re-usable, non-plastic water bottle to take with me to the market each week and leave the case of water as a true emergency back up. This post is a good motivator for me!

    We have a regular, run-of-the-mill, charcoal, PUR refrigerator filter to reduce chlorine, other chemicals, and microbial cysts. It doesn’t do a thing for fluoride, but fortunately our water district doesn’t fluoridate the water. Otherwise, I’d be in the market for something a little more sophisticated!

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    7 Louis March 26, 2013 at 8:59 am

    Interesting things to think about. I use only stainless steel or glass for beverages now. Even if a plastic says ‘BPA free’ or ‘food grade’ I still just can’t trust it. I get a nice hard water from a well (city water not available where I am), and run it through a KDF85 or KDF55 filter, then through a catalytic GAC, then through a uV lamp.

    Granted some of these components are made of plastic, but I flush the water for a minute before using it so the contact time is not great, and it is cool water flowing through the lines. It isn’t sitting in plastic for weeks or months before consumption.

    Sometimes I add a bit of Azomite to the water to increase the trace mineral content. The water is nice and hard with lots of calcium and other minerals naturally. It does bring up some hydrogen sulfide in it though and smells a bit like eggs, but the filters clean that right out.

    I picked that filtration method because it leaves the natural mineral content intact. Reverse osmosis removes nearly all mineral content. I am thinking of removing the KDF portion of the filter. I put that in to filter heavy metals, as sometimes well water can contain arsenic and other things. But I suspect if it does contain arsenic it may be the form that is easily eliminated from the body anyway.

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    8 Michele March 26, 2013 at 9:25 am

    After having watched Tapped last year my husband and I will not buy bottled water..What a wake up call! We have a Big Berkey that we use for our water and we fill up our glass bottles when we are on the go. =)

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    9 Sarah March 26, 2013 at 10:28 am

    We purchased a Berkey Light. I would have preferred to get a Royal Berkey, however, we live in California and are very limited on the choices that we can have sent to us. Hoping the choice was not a mistake. It is supposed to be okay. It is not exposed to heat. I will be so happy when we are able to leave this state! It is beautiful though.

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    10 Laura Green March 26, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Just a random thought on the 20/20 clip. The fancy french bottled water “Evian” is “Naive” spelled backwards. We have the berkey sport filter bottles for our family and drink water from wherever we find a tap to fill it up. On the recommendation of a close friend we will be investing in a stainless counter top Berkey filter at some point soon.

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    11 Jeanmarie March 26, 2013 at 11:32 am

    I’m glad you’re bringing attention to this issue, Kelly. The ultimate fate of many used plastic water bottles that end up as part of the Pacific Garbage Patch (bigger than Texas now, reportedly) is another tragedy.

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    12 Chris March 26, 2013 at 11:36 am

    It is of no surprise so many people were suckered into buying bottled water, it is the marketing that sold us. Even before we can speak we are poluted with hearing and seeing ads, we are programmed to respond positively to advertisements especially if they claim to have our health in mind. To make it worse when you see EVERYONE near you sipping out of bottled water containers you figure what the hell everyone else is, well let me tell you most of us are just good little robots doing what the corporations want, consuming and building their profit base. It’s BULLSHIT people, if you want good water distill it, I don’t mean buy distilled water you can make your own or buy a quality distiller. Another option is to make sure your pipes at home are in good shape many of our pipes are old and that is what is changing the taste of water.

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    13 ValerieH March 26, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    We had this discussion at our WAPF-like club. My house was built with septic and a well. In the late ’70’s, the house was converted to city water from the nearby river. The well was not removed and is used for outside watering. My only access to the water is an outside faucet. I am not sure of the laws in my city about converting the house back to the well water. The laws in IL require ALL cities to fluoridate their water. For this reason we installed a reverse osmosis filter int he kitchen. I have heard a few bad things about RO water:
    1. it wastes a lot of water
    2. it doesn’t always get the fluoride out
    3. lack of minerals
    4. houseplants wither when fed only RO water

    My main concern is fluoride and loss of minerals. I have mineral drops but I have not consistently used them and instructed other family members about them. My friends suggest I get a plumber to install an inside faucet from the well (assume the code allows it) and pour that into a Berkey for drinking and cooking. I have also considered a whole-house chlorine filter (for bathing) but I haven’t looked into it.

    I have a few stainless steel bottles for bringing water with me when I’m out. I don’t always bring them. Some of the lids leak. My company just sent me an ALUMINUM bottle with a bpa-free plastic lining inside it. There’s no way I’ll drink out of it.

    What bugs me about this bottled water debate is the fact that it ignores all other plastic-bottled beverages. It isn’t specifically water that is the problem – it is plastic bottles. Soda pop isn’t a good thing to ingest. I’m sure it is made worse with plastic bottles. Soda companies are also in the bottled water industry. I don’t know how this issue is only about water. When I am out, if all my choices are bottled in plastic, I choose water. I am grateful there is such a thing as fluoride-free bottled water. I don’t want to have to choose between high-calorie-blood-sugar-bomb-chemical-shitstorm and exitotoxin-chemical-shitstorm.

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    14 Chris March 26, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    You don’t need minerals in your water, they are inorganic and inorganic minerals settle in our joints to create problems lime Osteoarthritis. If you want minerals eat more plants, plants take those inorgainic minerals and convert them into organic minerals that we CAN use. Distilled water is where it is at, not the shit you get in the gallon jugs at the store, but stuff you make yourself or through a quality distiller.

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    15 Kate @ Modern Alternative Mama March 26, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    I filter with a Berkey. We kept all the glass bottles from when we used to buy the Bionaturae strained tomatoes (before I started canning my own sauce) and these serve as our water bottles! Occasionally I use mason jars. They’re hard to break and nice to use. And I like that they have lids so that I can carry them around and kids don’t spill them. Very awesome and also free, up-cycled!

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    16 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    Reverse osmosis water.

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    17 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    Filtered well water in a glass jar. Nothing more delish.

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    18 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Filtered fluoride free only!

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    19 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Any suggestions for reliable filters that remove the flouride from municipal water? That’s the only reason right now why we buy bottled spring water.

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    20 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    We have a well.

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    21 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Water is very confusing! R/o creates dead water that with minerals added back in… Tsp water in our town is full of chlorine and fluoride. Spring water is the best but its in a plastic jug… Berkey offers a fantastic filter canister but it has to sit on your counter top taking up space. Distilled water? Is dead water with anything beneficial stripped from it. You have steam water you can have delivered to your home but it’s pretty pricey per 5gallon jug and again there’s the plastic. Yes it’s recycled #4 but that’s not “perfect”. A whole house filter action system can cost minimum 5k!

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    22 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Filtered fridge water

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    23 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    The Berkey is the only filter I know that has a fluoride filter attachment. That’s what we use.

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    24 Jacqueline March 26, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    FILTER/SCHMILTER We live in the country and have a well. I drink it straight from the faucet, no filter, just like we did while growing up. I don’t buy bottled water except occasionally on a road trip and recycle the bottle when we get home.

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    25 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Local spring water in 5 gallon plastic jugs. I fill my Kleen Kanteen with that to take to work, etc. City water here uses chloramine, which is chlorine plus ammonia. Very hard to filter compared to plain chlorine and you still have fluoride to deal with. They even warn people not to use city water in fish tanks because the ammonia can kill the fish!

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    26 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    Berkey with flouride filter!

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    27 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    I talk about which filters in the post. :)

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    28 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    we only drink rainwater, filtered through charcoal and boiled

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    29 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    actually I drin kDeer Park spring water bottled because I’m super sensitive to flouride and even the Berkey with the flouride filter left me getting heartburn from the flouride remnants :-/

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    30 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Our water is from a double carbon Culligan under-sink filter. The Culligan men were shocked at our chlorine levels—-we’re not as taking a bath smells no different than swimming in the city pool!

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    31 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    Look I live on an Army base in housing that was built on a WWII Ammo supply point and dump Site, Ain’t gonna drink Nothing from my tap , Bottle water can’t be as bad ;)

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    32 Trixie F March 26, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    We have no concrete proof, but there is an exceptionally HIGH incidence of a myriad of different cancer’s in our neighborhood. The water smells, looks, and tastes HORRIBLE. We have taken samples for testing with the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission and other regulatory agencies and they all claim that it is perfectly safe to drink but I have my doubts. We buy bottled water and will continue to do so. BOTH of my parents who are/were exceptionally healthy people have developed cancer after living in the neighborhood for 17 years. I lost my beautiful mother. Bottle water is the only hope for us.

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    33 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    well water…I dont put too much thought into it after that. maybe I should but I am too busy obsessing over every other food/drink related thing in our lives, lol

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    34 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    Great tasting tap water from a spring 100 dt down. We are on a narrow 1/2 mile wide portion of land between Torch Lake and Lake Mi. Lots of great springs, I’m guessing. When I was growing up, our well water elsewhere was something to be desired. I’ll be picky about the water when we move someday, for sure!

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    35 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 10:33 pm

    Stephanie- I was military, too. We never drank the water on base…absolute at work on base, too. Yuck.

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    36 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    Lol not absolute…Absopure;)

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    37 Colleen B March 26, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    We were about to buy a Berkey and we watched a video that a local chiropractor did about water and pH. Now I am looking into the alkalizer. I am finding my pH is too acidic and want to move it in the other direction. Does anyone have any experience with the alkalizing systems? They are not cheap so I want to make sure of what we are getting!

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    38 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 26, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    Haaaaa! Absolute sounds better. :)

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    39 %kelly the kitchen kop% via Facebook March 27, 2013 at 8:38 am

    wanting a bekley water filter!!!

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    40 jmr March 27, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    I use a Berkey at home, but I travel several days a week. I drink bottled water when traveling. There’s no way I’m drinking the water out of the airplane storage tank…those things never get cleaned, and the water is whatever local water they filled it with at the airport.

    Reply

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