90-Day Life Challenge: Say Yes to Tap Water

Drink Tap Water to Save Money

I can only speak to the grocery trends in Raleigh, NC, but here, bottled water tends to run around $4-5 for a 24-pack. Not too shabby right? Well, it depends entirely on how many you drink per day and whether or not you reuse the bottles. Assuming you typically use-and-reuse once from a water fountain, you will still spend roughly $200 per person annually on a free resource. In comparison, a 4-pack of Rubbermaid 20-ounce water bottles is $15--not on sale. Most reusable water bottles no longer contain any BPAs, but if you choose to replace them annually, your cost will max out at $60 per year per person (or less if each person chooses 1 bottle).

Drink Tap Water to Protect Your Body

According to the "Facts About Water," from the Drinking Water Research Foundation, water provides numerous health benefits, including:

  • Moistens tissues
  • Protects organs
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Improves digestion
  • Aides kidney and liver function
  • Stimulates metabolism
  • Improves brain function
  • Lubricates joints
  • Carries nutrients/oxygen to cells

Not too shabby. And as if this isn't enough, water also helps improve your sleep. Of course, energy drinks, sports drinks, and vitamin-infused juices may claim to give your body what it needs, but really, all they accomplish is giving your body something else to process. Save the money and the drama. A simple daily multivitamin and water will do the trick.

The Alternative Argument About Bottled Water

To show I intend no bias, I will pull my information in this section from the International Bottled Water Association.

First, as the IBWA correctly points out, all bottled water containers are 100% recyclable, and have the smallest carbon footprint of any "packaged drink" (i.e. soda, juices, and water). Now I know what you're thinking...I recycle all of my water bottles, so how is this wasteful? Well, according to the IBWA's own website in 2013, it was estimated that 1.39 liters of fresh water are required to produce just 1 liter of bottled water. Why the waste? If you drink the recommended 64 oz. plus per day, you will need to have 4-20 oz. bottles on hand (which includes that you did not drink from the last bottle). This translates to 1.6 liters of wasted water per day or 580 liters of water wasted each year. And that's just for one person. Anyone maintaining a passing knowledge of the current environmental crisis knows that fresh water is a precious commodity we are running out of.

Secondly, what about the cost of producing the bottles themselves? If used more than 10 times, the environmental cost of packing bottled water in your own reusable bottles will lower, almost to the level of tap water; however, bottled water is packaged in containers only designed to be used for a week at most. The reusable water bottles (e.g. Brita, Rubbermaid, etc...) are designed to be refilled hundreds of times. This is what you want.

My Personal Mission

Starting today, I will no longer buy bottled water for drinking. I will stockpile a small amount for situations such as a power outage, but I will not purchase drinking water. In fact, no more soda, sports drinks, energy drinks. It's 1 gallon of good, old-fashioned tap water for me. Let me know if you're with me.

Happy reading,

Your Devoted Friend

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