There is no doubt that, plastic water bottles are the most convenient way to access water and keep yourself hydrated. But let us tell you that this is a half-truth. The full truth is that, apart from being convenient, there is a growing concern about the leaching of toxic chemicals from plastic bottles into water.
This issue has raised questions about the safety of consuming bottled water from plastic bottles. Everyone around the world has started discussing the potential risks associated with drinking chemical-affected water.
If you are one who is also concerned about the chemicals leaching from plastic bottles into your drinking water, then this guide is for you.
Are Chemicals from Plastic Water Bottles Leaching into Your Drink?
The answer is yes; there is a strong possibility that hazardous chemicals from your plastic bottle can leach into your water, making it unsafe for drinking purposes.
The leaching occurs when chemicals in plastic bottles, such as phthalates, BPA, and antimony, are released into the water that is stored in the bottle. However, remember, leaching of chemical into the water can happen due a number of reasons that are discussed below in detail.
- Extreme temperature:If the plastic water bottle is stored or placed in extreme temperatures such as in a car, or in direct sunlight, then it can cause the chemicals and plastics in a bottle to break down and end up dissolving into the water.
- Prolonged storage:If the water in a plastic bottle is stored for a prolonged period of time, it can increase the chances of the gradual release of toxic chemicals into the water, making it unsafe and unhealthy.
- Physical stress:Squeezing, shaking and bending the plastic bottle can also become a cause of releasing chemicals in the water.
So, these are some of the reasons through which chemicals in plastic bottles can leach into the water and make it contaminated.
Major Health Risks Associated with Chemical Leaching
Regular exposure to water that is affected with hazardous contaminants can pose serious health threats to human health, some of which are discussed below in detail.
1. Endocrine Disruption:
Endocrine disruption is natural and human-made chemicals that can interfere with the human body’s endocrine system. This system is responsible for regulating hormones. And do you know? Chemicals such as Phthalates and BPA that plastic bottles contain are also known to be endocrine disruptors.
So, when you drink water that is polluted with them, then it can cause damage to hormone functioning in the human body. This damage can further result in reproductive and development, especially for pregnant women, infants, and younger children.
Antimony is a common chemical that is used in the production of plastic bottles, and it has been found and confirmed by multiple studies that it can be leached into the water stored in bottles.
However, it is important to note the amount of antimony chemicals leaching into the water is quite low. But continuous exposure can greatly increase the risks of cancer.
3. Neurological Effects
Certain chemicals in plastic, like phthalates, can harm the brain and nervous system, causing cognitive and behavioral problems. Even though plastic bottle exposure usually has low phthalate levels, continuous contact over time may build up and affect neurological health.
4. Immune System Effects:
Chemicals from plastic can make your immune system weaker, increasing the chances of getting sick. Pay attention to how these chemicals might affect your overall health and immune function.
Different Ways to Minimize the Exposure of Chemical Leaching into Water
There are several ways to minimize the exposure of chemical leaching into the water when it comes to plastic bottle alternatives.
1. Start using a water filtration system:
This is the most effective way through which you can completely minimize exposure to chemicals. A water filtration system will provide you with high-quality yet tasty water, resulting in improved health. And the good thing is that using a water filter will also save you valuable cash and time that you spend on purchasing bottled water.
2. Stainless Steel Bottles:
Stainless steel bottles are a good choice instead of plastic. They are made of safe stainless steel that does not release harmful chemicals into water. They are tough and can be used again and again, and do not corrode. Moreover, you can find them in different sizes and styles for easy on-the-go water carrying.
3. Glass Bottles:
Glass bottles are a smart and eco-friendly alternative to plastic. They are a safe option because they do not absorb flavors or harmful chemicals, making them ideal for storing water.
In addition, they are 100% recyclable, but they can also be reused multiple times, contributing to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly choice for beverage containers.
4. BPA-Free Plastic Bottles:
BPA stands for Bisphenol A. It’s a chemical often used in some plastics and has been connected to health risks. BPA-free plastic bottles are a safe and eco-friendly option. They are made without BPA, so there is no health risk of it getting into your water.
These bottles use different materials that do not have BPA. Moreover, they’re light and convenient for carrying water, reducing exposure to harmful chemicals.
4. Silicon Bottles
Silicone is a safe and strong material that does not release harmful chemicals. Bottles made of silicone are soft, collapsible, and easy to clean. They are a good option instead of regular plastic bottles because they are non-toxic and can handle both high and low temperatures. The best thing about silicone bottles is that they are reusable and come in different colors and designs.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Do chemicals from plastic water bottles leach into the water?
The answer to this question is yes; chemicals in plastic water bottles can leach into the water. And this process can become quicker if the water is hot.
Do drinks that are made from recycled plastic bottles contain dangerous chemicals?
According to the report, experts from Brunel University London looked over 91 international research that looked at chemical contamination from plastic bottles. They discovered 150 chemicals of which 18 had levels above legal limits that had seeped into beverages from plastic bottles.
There is no doubt that, chemicals of plastic water bottles can be leached into the water, making it totally unsafe to drink. And exposure to these chemicals can pose serious health threats to human health. That’s why, it is necessary to always avoid water from plastic bottles.