When you need clean drinking water, there are a few possibilities. You can buy bottled water, boil water (as inconvenient as that is) or purchase a water filter.
One filtration device that has been popular for the last 40 years is reverse osmosis. But a closer look at this system has forced people to ask: does reverse osmosis make water safe to drink?
With so many other filtration technologies on the market, they have really exposed the shortcomings of reverse osmosis purification, although there are some positives too. So let us look on both sides of the coin here.
Reverse osmosis (ro) can remove salt, dirt and organic chemicals. Because many synthetic chemicals, such as herbicides and pesticides are smaller, molecularly, the semi-permeable membrane of the ro purification unit cannot prohibit them from passing. Therefore they remain in drinking water.
Further, this filtration system doesn’t remove microbiological matter, which many experts agree is the most dangerous of all the contaminants that can affect drinking water
This is why many experts urge consumers to use carbon filtration with ro systems. If you use carbon filters then you can rid water of the chemicals that ro systems cannot handle.
If you do not use carbon filters with your reverse osmosis purifier, then there are thousands of chemicals that remain in your drinking water. Think about how gross it would be if you knew that you were drinking bacteria and chemicals daily via a glass of water!
Another disadvantage of reverse osmosis it removes the essential trace minerals that your body needs from tap water. This some experts believe could result in mineral deficiency. A body in this condition will draw minerals from teeth and bones, effectively weakening these structures.
Also, water that has no minerals in it is more acidic than alkaline. Drinking this type of water could increase the production of free radicals, causing an increased risk of cancer. Many studies suggest that cancer cells can grow only in an acid environment.
Whilst some experts believe that human beings get most of their minerals from food and not water, it is worth noting that naturally occurring water has minerals in it. This could be an indication that human beings are not meant to drink mineral-free water.
Perhaps the biggest drawback of reverse osmosis water filters has nothing to do with safety but its
cost. A ro unit delivering 5 gallons of treated water per day may discharge 40 to 90 gallons of waste
water per day to the septic system. Plus they are very expensive to maintain.
So, to answer the question; does reverse osmosis make water safe to drink, the answer is that in many ways, it is safer than tap water. But whether it is safe or not to drink mineral-free water on a consistent basis; this is something you should discuss with your doctor.
One thing is for sure though, you need to have a quality water filtration system in your home