American bottled water consumption has increased in recent years. According to MarketWatch, average yearly consumption per person has gone from 5 gallons in 1986 to 39.3 gallons in 2016.
Water serves many purposes in your body. It helps to maintain the balance of fluids in your body; it’s a much healthier choice than soda; it energizes your muscles by helping deliver electrolytes; and it helps your kidneys to filter your blood. It also promotes healthy saliva production.
Drinking plenty of water is a crucial part of your overall health, including your oral health. But which type of water is best—bottled or tap?
Tap Water is One of the Best Sources of Fluoride
You can’t see or feel it, but your teeth are constantly losing and taking in minerals. Consuming healthy minerals– like phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, and fluoride—keeps your teeth strong and protects them from decay.
One of the most important minerals that keeps your teeth healthy is fluoride. Dental professionals recommend that you take in this mineral through external means, like from a toothpaste or rinse, and from internal means, like through tap water or a supplement. Since most towns add fluoride to the tap water, adults and children can get the dietary fluoride they need from their tap water.
During the bottled process, minerals and substances are removed from water in order to prevent those minerals from affecting the taste. For many bottled water companies, this means removing fluoride.
Tap water is the better choice for your oral health, but that isn’t the only reason to quit bottled water. Keep reading to learn three other reasons to give it up.
3 Reasons to Stop Drinking Bottled Water
- It’s Likely That You Can’t Taste the Difference: Last May, ABC News ran a blind test on Good Morning America’s Studio audience. The goal was to determine whether New York City tap water or various brands of bottled water would be preferred.
After audience members voted for their top choice, the breakdown looked like this:
- Tap Water-45%
- Poland Spring Bottled Water-24%
- O-2 Oxygenated Water-19%
- Bottled Water Means Waste: Plastic bottles can take centuries to decompose in a landfill. And if they aren’t sent there, they are incinerated, which releases toxic gases into the atmosphere.
- Bottled Water is a Terrible Value: According to Food & Water Watch, tap water costs $0.005 per gallon. Bottled water costs $9.47, more than 3 times the cost of milk and gasoline. Using bottled water to consume the recommended 8 glasses per day would be $1,400 per year if you only drank bottles of water. To drink 8 glasses of tap water per day for one year, you would need to pay $0.49.
If you aren’t sure how the tap water is in your area, take a look at your local water fluoride report from the CDC.