Health Implications of Plastic Beverage Consumption
Even after Plastic Free July, we strongly advise people to continue minimizing their use of plastic because bottled water is extremely harmful to our health and the environment. 50 billion water bottles are purchased annually by Americans, contributing to an industry that is predicted to reach $334 billion in sales by 2023. Many consumers of bottled water are duped into believing they are purchasing a better product. But a lot of businesses are essentially bottling tap water! The next time you go for a bottle of purportedly "pure" water, give it some more thought. It's possible that the water is contaminated with dangerous chemicals and small plastic particles from the plastic bottles.
We are surrounded by plastic. Many of us associate plastic pollution with environmental damage. The EPA reports that only 8.4% of plastic in the United States was recycled in 2017, but the problem also affects our health. Recent studies reveal bottled water has high levels of microplastics - tiny plastic fragments smaller than five millimeters. Orb Media’s research found that 93% of the 11 bottled water brands they tested had microplastics in them. The study included brands like Aquafina and Evian, with Nestle Pure Life being one of the most polluted. They also discovered bottled water had about 50% more microplastics than tap water.
PET, or plastic #1, is the material used to package most bottled water. Research suggests that PET may disrupt our hormonal balance. While BPA is absent from this plastic, it may nonetheless leak additional chemicals called phthalates into your water, particularly if the bottles are heated or stored for an extended period of time. Certain brands—Poland Spring, for example—use #7 plastic in their 3-gallon water bottles. This material contains BPA, which is prohibited due to its detrimental effects in several nations, including China and the European Union. Exposure to BPA can lead to a number of health concerns, including heart difficulties, cancer, brain abnormalities, and infertility
Bottled water companies do not have to do lab tests or tell consumers where their water comes from. On the other hand, tap water providers have to do tests to show how clean their water is, give quality reports to consumers, follow EPA rules, and reveal their water sources. This means tap water may be safer than bottled water. Also, bottled water can cost 1,000 times more than tap water on average. So what makes us buy bottled water that harms our environment and health? I was curious to know why people chose to buy bottled water. After talking to many people, I found a common reason: they wanted to drink water that was safe and healthy.
We need to make our city water better so we can have a safer and greener option. The Clean Water for All Act says that clean water is very important and everyone has the right to have it. Contact your congressman to do something and show them you are for this bill
Check your Consumer Confidence Report, which indicates the level of contamination in your tap water, to ensure that it is pure. To find out more about your water source, we also urge you to get in touch with your neighborhood water supplier.
We all have a role to play in stopping plastic waste. Learn more about the ReThink Disposable program1, which won an award from Clean Water Action. It helps people, businesses, schools, and communities change from using disposables to reusables. This will not only cut your costs but also make you healthier and protect our environment.