Water – the precious Element
Both human beings and the earth's surface consist of up to 75% of one of our most vital elements - Water. However, not only the quantity, but, above all, the functions it fulfills in our body show the importance of water.
For example, water sustains all our cells as it is the one agent which dissolves all important nutrients from food and transports them through the cell membrane to the cell nucleus.
It regulates our temperature and our metabolism. Concomitantly it ensures, that similar to a waste water system, toxic substances are transported out of the body. From the brain (which incidentally consists of 85% water) down to the big toe (through whose blood vessels only pulse because of its liquid content), water sustains, cleans, and maintains the bodily functions. Adequate water supply increases the body's energy and circulation, optimizes brain functions and can thus improve the intellectual capacity. Even our largest organ, the skin (which comprises of 80% water), reacts to water supply. An adequate supply of water (2 to 3 liters a day) keeps it healthy, supple and even counteracts the aging process.
Water – the ideal thirst quencher
As a thirst quencher water is on everyone's lips. Up to the age of 60 we ingest approximately 55,000 liters of water on average. This corresponds to the contents of more than 430 bath tubs filled to the top.
In order to optimally supply the body, doctors recommend a daily liquid intake of at least 1.5 liters. Since it is completely free of calories and without sugar, sweeteners, dyes or flavourings, water inherently appears to be the best choice for this. In order for the water which we ingest to be able to optimally fulfill its tasks, it should however be naturally pure and without undesirable constituent substances.
It is therefore good if our mineral water, but above all our tap water —which in the meantime is being drunk by many people instead of bottled water and in any case always used to prepare, e.g., coffee or tea — fulfills these requirements.
In order to ensure this, our tap water is treated in sewage treatment plants and waterworks and subjected to regular controls. However, since some substances cannot be detected with the procedures used there, certain undesirable substances, such as hormones and medicinal residues or residuals from industry or agriculture, get into our drinking water. Additionally, on the way from the waterworks to our homes, additional substances, which should not be there, seep into the water. Thus, copper or lead from old pipes for example seep into our water and when we drink it, also into our bodies.
Water – a straightforward choice?
Despite elaborate filter systems, a diverse spectrum of undesirable substances, e.g. chemicals from sewage treatment plants or medicinal residues from households and hospitals enter our water lines unnoticed with the water. These substances not only do away with the water's naturalness, but can also impair our health.
For example, it is possible for heavy metals, which frequently dissolve in pipe systems and pollute the water, to be deposited in the human body. Also pesticides, which originate in industrial agriculture, enter our mains systems via the ground water.
In addition, hormone residues are repeatedly found in drinking water samples. Above all, estradiol, the synthetic hormone used in oral contraceptives, enters our drinking water cycle via waste or ground water at some point. The potential effects of this continual hormone uptake have not yet been completely investigated.
In order to eliminate viruses and bacteria, e.g., chlorine and UV light are used in sewage treatment plants. Despite this procedure, some of the pathogens survive and can be found in random samples — just as chlorine residues do.
Unfortunately, our water is also sporadically polluted with nitrates and nitrites, which are used as fertilizers in industrial agriculture, and even with asbestos. These chemicals are patently considered to be hazardous to health.
Finally, the grave fact that many bottled mineral waters also exhibit similar pollution is a serious problem. Additionally, there is an artificially elevated concentration of minerals in many cases. In this context, they are present in inorganic form, and it is much more difficult for the body to absorb them than is the case with organically-bound minerals such as those that naturally occur in vegetables, grain, fruit or meat.
Most of these inorganic minerals which have been added to the mineral waters are thus excreted from our body without having been beneficial.
|Bacteria||Hospitals and water lines|
|Insecticides||Insect poisons, industrial agriculture|
|Pesticides||Pest control, industrial agriculture|
|Herbicides||Weedkillers, industrial agriculture|
|Hormone residues||Residues of hormone preparations, both from human medicine (oral contraceptives, hormone replacement preparations for the treatment of menopause), and from animal husbandry (growth hormones, fertility hormones)|
|Medication residues||Households (up to 3,000 metric tons of pain killer residues annually), hospitals|
|Heavy metals||E.g. lead and copper from old pipe systems|
|Phthalates||Plasticizer from plastics|
|Asbestos fibres||From water mains|
|Surfactants||From colourants and detergents|
|Fluorosurfactants||Textile and paper industries|