What water to drink?

Who I am
Robert Maurer


Author and references

"It's easy you'll see, like drinking a glass of water". How many times have we said or heard that?

However, it is not always easy drink the water, especially in the choice.

We are surrounded by advertising of all kinds: to drink the water of the plin-plin, to drink the water where a particle suffers from loneliness, to drink the water of the sparrows ... Are these really only the alternatives?

And if we chose that of the tap? Gods are needed filters? Which? Let's try to unravel the problem. Or at least let's try.


The running waters

Many call it "the water of the Mayor" or "that of the green dragon": it is the water that comes out from our home taps.

It has made a long journey from the clouds to the ground, collecting the compounds placed on it, and then leaching into the aquifers and from there in aqueducts and in the gods water treatment plants.

The treatment it undergoes is complex, aimed at eliminate all pollutants that water has found along its path; the stages of treatment are the filtration, which eliminates suspended impurities, and the purification, usually with a clorazione which kills bacteria.

We pay for it, of course, but little (about 60 cents per 1000 liters!). We waste it, too often. Do we drink it? Almost never. Because? We're not sure, maybe.

Here is a summary of the characteristics of running water that we have at home:

  • Immediately available
  • Suffers mandatory treatments
  • It undergoes frequent checks: between 4 and 12 times a year
  • At zero km, therefore ecologica
  • Economica (about 60 cents per 1000 liters!)


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Bottled waters

They are the ones who we know better, even if not all are the same, and not just for the labels and bottles of different colors.

The bottled waters are defined as "mineral waters"Or, according to the law," waters which, originating from an underground aquifer or reservoir, come from one or more natural or perforated springs and which have particular hygienic characteristics and, possibly, properties favorable to health ".

Le properties of mineral waters they depend on their source, or on the mineral salts they encountered on their way, according to which they are classified as:

  1. Minimally mineralized: the mineral salt content (fixed residue) is less than 50 milligrams per liter; poor in mineral salts, they can promote diuresis;
  2. Oligominerali: the mineral salt content (fixed residue) does not exceed 500 milligrams per liter; they are suitable for daily consumption;
  3. Minerals: the fixed residue is between 500 and 1000 milligrams (1 g) per liter. They must not be drunk in excessive quantities (maximum one liter per day and not every day), alternating them with low mineral content water. They have different health benefits depending on the type of substances present in them (calcium, sulfur, iron, magnesium, bicarbonate ...);
  4. Rich in mineral salts: the fixed residue is over 1500 milligrams (one and a half grams) per liter. They should only be drunk for curative purposes and on the advice of a doctor.

Here are the general characteristics of mineral waters:

  • they come from springs or underground strata,
  • are bacteriologically as well all’origine,
  • have cchemical omposition and constant characteristics,
  • they must be bottled near the source
  • are controlled at the source and in each phase of the production cycle;
  • undergo proceedings for bottling, storage, transport.


The filtered running waters

In our tap water, depending on the area, there may be traces of limestone or chlorine - always within the foreseen limits - which however do not exactly coincide with our tastes.

One can choose to drink it as it is or filter it in different ways, eliminating excess limestone.

Here are some types of running water filters:

  • Filter jugs: they are good for filtering small quantities of water; they have low costs and do not have the problem of installation. Some filters are slow, tend to clog and have a limited duration over time;
  • Filters on the tap: for filtering drinking water and for cooking. They are easy to install and allow you to switch from filtered to unfiltered water and vice versa. This type of filter is not applicable to all taps and can slow down the flow of water;
  • Filters under the sink: they allow you to filter large quantities of water without excessive bulk. They take up space under the sink and require plumbing changes.
  • Kitchen countertop filters: filter large quantities of water without modifying the pipes; it is more difficult for them to clog up than jugs or filters on taps. They can be cluttered on the kitchen counter.
  • Filters for the whole house: installation must be carried out by professionals; they remove rust and chlorine from all the water in the house and any other deposits, even if not all the dangerous metals that may be present. They are long lasting.


Running waters: reverse osmosis

They deserve a separate discussion reverse osmosis filters. For their use it is foreseen the modification of some pipes and the installation of a special tool under the sink: running water in it will pass through a special membrane that removes particles and contaminants.

Reverse osmosis filters must be periodically disinfected, sanitized and replaced with precise cadences; work with slowness, they take up a lot of space and waste from 3 to 5 liters of water per liter filtered.

Some reverse osmosis purifiers add ions to the water to make it alkaline: we talk about ionized water, which is also obtained by means of special tools (ionizers) to be applied to taps or to pre-existing filters.

There are various disputes over the beneficial effects of alkaline water, that we limit ourselves to briefly listing:

  • counteract theacidity of the body,
  • improve the health ofintestine,
  • increase the effectiveness of antioxidants.


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