Does Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration Live up to the Hype? Or is it a Wash?

What is Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration

If you have ever looked into residential water filters you may have come across several different types. When it comes to residential water systems, what makes the most sense for home use? Drinking water and utility water (dishwasher, shower, etc.) of course will have different needs. In a shower, for example, you may simply need a soft water filter to help reduce hard water build up. This may not seem that common at first, however over 80% of U.S. households have hard water that contains high levels of calcium and magnesium.

When it comes to drinking water, however, reverse osmosis residential water filters may be the way to go. But what exactly is reverse osmosis? How does it work? And what does it mean?

Reverse osmosis is a water purification technique that uses a membrane that is partially permeable (meaning only certain molecules can pass through it). This partially permeable membrane removes ions, unwanted molecules, and larger particles from drinking water.

In reverse osmosis, a pressure is applied to overcome osmotic pressure. This can remove many types of chemicals and other particles from the water. However because the membrane is “selective,” it allows water molecules to pass through, leaving the other ions and particles behind. Generally, reverse osmosis is one of the best types of residential water filters. If you have never “tasted” it before, reverse osmosis filtered water will taste quite smooth, almost like it is gliding off your tongue and into your stomach.

Enough with the chemistry though – are there any health benefits?

Health Benefits of Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water

Here are some of the main benefits of reverse osmosis filtered water:

Lead Free: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has stated that reverse osmosis water filtration can safely and effectively remove lead particles from water. Lead can be present in small amounts in drinking water. This can lead to a build up of lead in the body and kidneys, which can eventually be toxic for humans. Removing the lead results in a safe and healthy drinking water. Additionally, excess levels of lead in the body can lead to other health problems such as infertility, muscle and nerve damage, and high blood pressure.

Cancer Patient Friendly: Medline Plus has reported that reverse osmosis drinking water is safe and healthy for cancer patients to consume during and after treatment. During radiation or chemotherapy, the immune system in cancer patients is severely weakened. Using untreated water for cooking may not be an issue when the immune system is functioning at full force, however with how fragile it is after cancer treatment, it is good to be extra careful. Reverse osmosis drinking water can filter out harmful micro organisms and germs that could hamper a cancer patients health.

Gets Rid of Cryptosporidium: Crypto-what-now? Cryptosporidium is a parasite that is found in contaminated water. This parasite, when ingested, will infest the small intestines which can cause cramps, fever, and diarrhea. For children, cryptosporidium will cause dehydration and malnutrition as well. According to the CDC, reverse osmosis is an effective water treatment for completely eliminating cryptosporidium from water.

Removes Salts: Salt is notoriously difficult to remove from water. Reverse osmosis filtration does the trick though. Again, the CDC reported that large sodium molecules cannot pass through reverse osmosis membranes used in the filtering process. That means reverse osmosis water is great for people who have high blood pressure, need sodium restriction, or have other kidney or liver problems requiring a low sodium lifestyle.

Your home should be a place of safety. When it comes down to it, installing residential water filters is something all of us should consider. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to cut down on cleaning hard water stains or looking for cleaner drinking water. In addition to adding an extra measure of health to your drinking water, filtered water can also be great for the environment. There are over 50 BILLION plastic water bottles purchased each year. Less than 40% of those get recycled. Having a home water filtration system ensures you get filtered water without the extra plastic.

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