I have recently been introduced to the negative side of water. I realize how dramatic that sounds but it completely blew my mind to learn how the element that we need to survive has been marketed and mass produced same as foods and other goods in order to make a profit. I know, we all need to make money - however in my extensive research I have gone around full circle and I feel as though I'm more confused than I was before I started "drinking consciously."
The first thing I learned about what Bisphenol A - otherwise known as BPA. this chemical is used in plastic materials as well as in some food containers to maintain the quality of foods and beverages with a protective coating that is supposed to keep things fresh. According to the FDA studies using standardized toxicity tests have shown BPA to be safe at the current low levels of human exposure. But based on other evidence, largely from animal studies, the FDA expressed "some concern" about the potential effects of BPA on the brain, behavior, and prostate glands in fetuses, infants, and young children.
Scary! After reading more into BPA I quickly made the transition at home to stop drinking bottled water, and in the process learned more about why water bottles aren't the way to go. At the time I buying 2-3 packs of Dasani water bottles every 10 or so days to hold my husband and myself over. That's A LOT of plastic! According to Mind Body Green, water bottles are NOT sustainable:
"Using vast quantities of fossil fuels and water, these bottles are manufactured, filled, and shipped around the globe. (Not a good carbon footprint!) Neither are bottles biodegradable in any meaningful way: what you drink in a few minutes can stick around for a thousand years. Even with recycling efforts, 6 out of 7 plastic bottles consumed in the U.S. are “downcycled”—sent somewhere out of sight and out of mind where, for the next millennia, toxins from degrading plastic containers can leach into watersheds and soil. That’s just not something we need to give to global neighbors and future generations."
Upon further research I learned that BPA is not the only chemical we need we worry about in the packaged water bottles. Even when bottles are labeled as BPA free, there are other chemicals that can seep into the water when they are exposed to heat or are left sitting around for a long time. Some of these chemicals have been found to be endocrine disruptors that can affect your hormone functions. I personally have enough craziness going on in my hormones and do not need any help in this department! It was settled, no more water bottles in the Luce residence!
So then, what's the alternative? tap water would be the easiest choice but living in San Antonio we have very hard water filled with chlorine and I personally cannot stomach the taste of it. How picky of me I know - but I really love water and I don't want it to be a big chore to have to drink it if I don't like the taste of it. I went to our our neighborhood Whole Foods Market and found that they had a 3 gallon BPA free container available for $15, and I could come in and fill it up with deionized water for a little less that $2. I had finally found our solution... for about two weeks.
All of my prenatal care books and apps heavily recommended that I get my teeth cleaned during my first trimester. I was due for one anyway so I scheduled it and everything went great until my dental hygienist found out I was drinking deionized water. She said my teeth need the minerals that are taken out of deionized water to stay strong and since I've never had a cavity she recommended that I get a healthy amount of fluoride in my water. Also, since our baby is forming teeth in there (so crazy - I still can't wrap my mind around that!) she mentioned that those nutrients would travel down to make his or her teeth strong from the time they're in the womb. Therefore I should mix some tap water in my deionized water once a day to get the best of both worlds. This all sounded crazy to me because I was under the impression that fluoride was bad for us... Oy vey.
For the next 10 days I did the worst thing I could do for myself and the baby. I stopped drinking water in fear of all the information I had been given. My husband Zach eventually caught onto my new habit and made a really good point when I started explaining why I can't make a decision - he said that all of the water facts were meant to try to get me to make the best decision on our water consumption, yet I had somehow decided to make the worst decision of all which was to stop drinking water all together. He was right...
So now I'm back to water bottles. #waterfail
However I do have a plan! I remember going to Costco and doing a water tasting there a few months ago. The nice gentleman at the booth was talking about their water station that I can rent monthly for about $2 if I remember correctly - and they come and deliver your water in a glass container. Unfortunately Costco does not have his number so I'm going to have to try and catch him there during another one of his tastings. I think he may only be there on the weekends and I don't think we'll be able to make it out there this weekend. Therefore my water journey is inconclusive and I welcome any and all feedback so I can make the best decision for our little family. Who knew drinking water could be so difficult!