Is Bottled Water Really Better?

There are plenty of people who swear by bottled water. Some say that they prefer the taste while others are adamant that bottled water is better for you than plain old tap water. Last year, Americans consumed 11 billion gallons of bottled water. There are certainly a lot of people drinking bottled water, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s better for you than regular water from your tap.

Water is essential. Water makes up 60 percent of your body weight, and its job is to flush toxins from your body and deliver nutrients throughout your body. Whether it’s coming from a plastic bottle or from a tap in your home, you need water. The Institute of Medicine recommends that men drink 100 ounces of water every day, and women drink 75 ounces of water every day.

Bottled water is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, while tap water is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency. The two groups use comparable safety standards. In terms of safety, tap water and bottle water are equally safe to drink.

In fact, a lot of the bottled water that you buy at the store is basically just tap water. While 55% of bottled water comes from springs and ground water, 45% of bottled water, including big brands like Dasani and Aquafina, are purified municipal water.

Those who strongly favor bottled water argue that while the water might be held to the same standards when tested at a facility, the EPA doesn’t account for contaminants that can get into drinking water due to old or faulty pipes. With bottled water, you know you’re getting contaminant free water. However, investing in a home water filtration system is a good way to get rid of any contaminants or minerals that may find there way into tap water.

So bottled water isn’t actually a healthier choice, but it is a more expensive, less environmentally friendly choice. And, for some people, it’s an easier and more accessible choice — which means they’ll be more likely to drink as much as they should. Weigh the pros and cons in terms of convenience, cost, and your personal needs and values.

Then, whichever choice you make, be sure to drink plenty of water!