Reverse Osmosis, My Journey to Clean Water

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Recently I have been concerned about the number of contaminants in water these days.  On the rise is the amount of people per capita that are taking one type of pharmaceutical or another, and that my friends when urinated out, CANNOT be filtrated out of the water by normal water treatment processes. What does that mean, simply this?  The birth control that all your area neighbors might be taking; that cannot be filtered out of the water when at the water treatment plant, as ONLY reverse osmosis does that. Men this should be especially alarming to you.  Let us also consider the amount of psychotropics being prescribed in modern times, and the use of heavy narcotics is certainly on an upswing.  You know the ones that come with these warnings (High risk for addiction and dependence. Can cause respiratory distress and death when taken in high doses or when combined with other substances, especially alcohol.)  So, I am not here to preach what you should or should not take, and let’s not get down that rabbit hole. What I am saying is if your doctor is not prescribing these medications, it might not be a great idea to be getting them through your drinking water. Just sayin’. Also, the water tastes SIGNIFICANTLY better!!!

Let me illustrate this visually for a better understanding. The World Health Organization (WHO) put together a comprehensive outline of pharmaceuticals in the water.  Ok, so my two cents, for WHO to address this, logic tells me – this is a growing concern.

The following was taken from the WHO document.  Which I will provide the link to: Read Here
Occurrence of pharmaceuticals in water Pharmaceuticals  are  synthetic  or  natural  chemicals that  can  be  found  in  prescription medicines,  over-the-counter  therapeutic  drugs  and  veterinary  drugs.  Pharmaceuticals contain active ingredients that have been designed to have pharmacological effects and confer significant benefits to society.  The occurrence of pharmaceuticals in the environment and the water cycle at trace levels (in the range of nanograms to low micrograms per litre) has been widely discussed and published in literature in the past decade.  The increase in detection is largely attributable to the advances in analytical techniques and instrumentation.  Many surveys and studies have confirmed the presence of pharmaceuticals in municipal wastewater and effluents, and these have been identified as a major source of pharmaceutical is in drinking-water (Figure ES1).

Reverse Osmosis Systems Remove Contaminants
Certainly, tainted water and its long-term negative effects on health have been making a lot of headlines lately, but as illustrated above, so have the effects of pharmaceuticals in our water systems. No matter where you live, there’s a lot more than just H2O in your home’s water. This is why in our house we made the plunge to drastically reduce those unwanted contaminants. The special membrane filters take out the vast majority of microscopic organisms and heavy metals and pharmaceuticals. Reverse osmosis can also remove

  • lead
  • arsenic
  • copper
  • nitrates and nitrites (hexavalent & trivalent)
  • chromium
  • selenium
  • fluoride
  • radium
  • barium
  • cyst (cryptosporidium)
  • total dissolved solids (TDS)


What are the disadvantages of Osmosis:
Skeptics point to two things.  One, I can see, but honestly there is a solution for that (see below).  So the first aversion is: reverse osmosis is a commitment, the tank that fills with water has to be completely used each time or there is water wasted.  Here is my take, anything worth doing takes commitment, and in truth – the commitment is so minimal compared to the immense health benefits.  I bought from a huge glass 2.5 Gallon Glass Beverage Dispenser with Stainless Steel Spigot and Metal Stand for $59.00 (there are plenty of styles to choose from). This proudly sits on the end of my counter where the spigot hangs right over the edge so any large item I need to fill, i.e. the juice of life coffee pot, my main addiction in life, easily dispenses the water, in fact at a rate of speed similar to my water spigot.  See dispenser below.


So, in my effort to reduce all plastic drinking water bottles too; I invested in 5 glass water bottles with shock covers to reduce breakage at $14.97 each. Ok yes, you actually have to pay attention to not slamming your bottle around, but the amount of money you will save and the way the water tastes is marked. So much of a marked difference, that I will never drink out of a plastic bottle again. Not to mention the seepage that happens with plastic, that is an entirely different subject I will expand upon at a later date.


Now onto the second aversion.  Skeptics of reverse osmosis point out as a disadvantage that the system can filter out minerals, which they assume are valuable to their health.  In reality, you should be getting most of the mineral your body needs from the food you eat. Furthermore, the dissolved mineral found in drinking water are organic, which means your body has a difficult time absorbing them. This negates any potential health benefits. The bottom line is that the impressive benefits of reverse osmosis water far outweigh any minor objections.  Honestly, the largest hurdle (if you can call it that) is just a change in your habits to gain so much in your life overall health.  In the morning I fill up the 2.5-gallon dispenser and my coffee pot and depending at times I also fill my water bottles too.  So that is my only habit change, except no more plastic bottles, which is environmentally sound, and the taste is unrivaled.  The most important bit of information I want to pass on is again –  reverse osmosis is the only water purification that takes our pharmaceuticals. Even distilled water does not.


What is the best system:
I don’t care what brand you use, I just want you to use one.  The installation will take a moment to do.  For some you might even want to have someone install it.  My husband installed mine for me in just over 2 hours. Honestly, what took more time was me reorganizing under the sink to make room, its not that difficult of an installation.  I got mine from Costco, only because I do like their return policy and I was not taking any chances on quality either. In truth, many of the products I have bought over the years from Costco do last, and I have had little to no issues with.  You buy from where you like, my main point to this article is to bring awareness to the ever-growing issue of our drinking water and the health risks of pharmaceuticals contaminating our most precious resource of life.  I am not purporting propaganda etc., simply stating some truths I found and how I implemented them into my life.  Decide for yourself.  Do what speaks to you.


Kari Gaffney

Kari Gaffney

Since 1988 Kari-On Productions has helped artists get an even footing in the industry through jazz promotion in the genres of Jazz, World & Latin Jazz through Jazz Radio and Publicity. Why do we do both, because they compliment each other, and we care about fiscal longevity for the artist.

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