Yay!! I’ve lost 25.6 pounds total so far with 54.4 pounds to go to reach my goal! My BMI has dropped from 36.9 to 33.1 and my goal is 24.9.
Natural Weight Loss
Water from your household tap or faucet usually comes from either surface water or ground water.
Surface water is run-off water from ponds, creeks, streams, rivers, and lakes, and is collected in reservoirs.
Ground water is water filtered through the ground to the water table and extracted a well.
Approximately half of the tap water in the US comes from lakes, rivers, or other surface sources.
Underground aquifers and municipal wells provide 35% of tap water, and the remaining 15% comes from private wells.
The Safety of Tap Water
Most people assume when they turn on the kitchen tap, they’re getting clean, safe, healthy drinking water.
Unfortunately, this often isn’t the case.
Your tap water may be full of harmful chemicals and inorganic minerals your body can’t use.
Some undesirables found in water – including radon, fluoride, arsenic, iron, lead, copper, and other heavy metals – can occur naturally.
Other contaminants, like fertilizers, asbestos, cyanides, herbicides, pesticides, and industrial chemicals, may leach into ground water through the soil, or into tap water from plumbing pipes.
Many of these chemicals have been linked to cancer and other disorders.
Water can also contain biological contaminants, including viruses, bacteria, and parasites.
Still other things – including chlorine, fluorides, carbon, lime, phosphates, soda ash, and aluminum sulfate – are intentionally added to public water supplies to kill bacteria, adjust pH, and eliminate cloudiness.
Even if the levels of these things are within “allowable” limits, the total of all contaminants present may be harmful to your health.
And private wells may not be regulated at all, except at the local level.
The greatest concerns about water quality today focus on chlorine, arsenic, atrazine and other pesticides, lead, herbicides, and parasites.
Chlorine is added to public water supplies to kill disease-causing bacteria.
The levels of chlorine in drinking water today can be quite high, and some by-products of chlorine are known carcinogens.
Pesticides pose a risk in any area where the tap water is taken from an underground source.
These chemicals are suspected of causing, or at least contributing to, an increased incidence of cancer, especially breast cancer.
The pesticide problem is a particular concern in areas where agriculture is (or was) a major part of the economy.
These chemicals are persistent.
Residues from pesticides used decades ago may still be present in water coming out of your tap today.
The presence of bacteria and parasites in drinking water – especially a parasite called cryptosporidium – is a serious problem in the US.
In 1993, as many as 370,000 people in and around Milwaukee, Wisconsin, were stricken by the parasite Cryptosporidium parvum from the city’s water supply.
Thousands suffered from severe diarrhea, and up to 100 deaths were attributed to the outbreak.
The same organism has created controversy over the safety of the water in New York City.
Many people with weakened immune systems claim cryptosporidia in the city water have made them sick, even though local officials insist the water is safe to drink.
For people with HIV or AIDS, cryptosporidia can be lethal.
The chlorine added to water to kill bacteria isn’t effective at killing these parasites.
Giardiasis is also caused by an intestinal parasite and can be contracted through drinking water.
And like cryptosporidia, giardia resists the effects of chlorine and poses a more serious problem for people with diminished immune response.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the EPA now suggest immune-compromised individuals boil tap water for at least 1 minute before use, use an appropriate filtration system, or buy quality bottled drinking water.
The biggest problem is the regulations are weak and have been written in such a way it’s relatively easy to comply.
For example, there’s no safe level for arsenic in drinking water according to recent studies.
The EPA sets it limits based on the risk of developing cancer as 1 in every 10,000 people.
Average levels of arsenic in drinking water are around 5 parts per billion (ppb).
In 2002, the EPA upgraded the standard for arsenic from 50 to 10 ppb (the lower the amount the better the standard).
The National Academy of Sciences has found even at 10 ppb, the lifetime risk of developing life-threatening cancer is 1 in 333.
This is 30 times higher than the EPA’s own standard for what it says is acceptable risk.
The good news about drinking city water is the contaminants are published on the EPA website.
With bottled water, you need to contact the manufacturer to get this information.
Whatever the source of your water, it’s important to know some warning signs of bad water.
Watch for cloudiness or murkiness.
Chlorination can cause some cloudiness, but it usually clears if the water is left to stand, whereas bacterial or sedimentary cloudiness will remain.
Foaming may be caused by bacterial contamination, floating particles of sediment, or by soaps or detergents.
Bacteria can be destroyed by boiling water for at least 5 minutes, while sediment should settle out if you let the water stand for several hours.
Strange smells or tastes in previously fine water could mean chemical contamination.
However, many toxic hazards working their way into water don’t change its taste, small, or appearance.
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