Also read: Should you consume alkali water?
Use of water purifiers has become more of a norm than exception in recent times.Most of the water purifiers work on the principle of Reverse Osmosis (R.O.)
The R.O. water purification method involves forcing water through a semi-permeable membrane, which filters out a select number of water contaminants, depending on the size of the contaminants.
In general, if the contaminants are larger in size than water molecules, those contaminants will be filtered out. If the contaminants are smaller in size, they will remain in the drinking water.
Advantages of R.O. purified water
The main health advantage R.O. water has over tap water is that an R.O. system removes some unhealthy contaminants.
A good R.O. system can remove contaminants such as arsenic, nitrates, sodium, copper and lead, some organic chemicals, and the municipal additive fluoride.
Disadvantages of R.O. water purifiers?
- The water is demineralized.
The World Health Organization conducted a study that revealed some of the health risks associated with drinking demineralized water.
Just a few of the risks include gastrointestinal problems, bone density issues, joint conditions, and cardiovascular disease.
- The water is usually acidic.
R.O. water is unhealthy because removing the minerals makes the water acidic (often well below 7.0 pH). Drinking acidic water will not help maintain a healthy pH balance in the blood, which should be slightly alkaline. In the natural health and medical communities, acidosis in the body is considered an underlying cause of most degenerative diseases.
According to the WHO study, low mineral water increased diuresis (the production of urine by the kidneys) 20% on average and markedly increased the elimination of sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium and magnesium ions from the body.
- Some critical contaminants are not removed.
It does not remove volatile organic chemicals, chlorine and chloramines, pharmaceuticals, and a host of other synthetic chemicals found in municipal water.
However, some R.O. systems now have multi-stage filtration media (in addition to the R.O. membrane), such as Activated Carbon, which does remove chlorine and certain pesticides.