By kicking the bottled water habit you save money, free up space, protect the environment, and make the smartest choice! This sounds like a plea to quit smoking. Well, the same medium that got you sold on bottled water also got millions to become smokers — before the truth about tobacco was revealed. That medium is advertising!
Our society has become addicted to bottled water. We have unwittingly developed this habit through very intoxicating advertising by bottled water companies. We have been sold on the idea of buying bottled water when there are much less expensive and more convenient options.
Most people who I’ve talked with about this immediately disagree. “No way!” they say. “Bottled water is the best and healthiest choice, especially when you compare it to tap water,” they declare. “Is it? Are you sure? Or have you been sold an image, an idea, and a concept and not true reality?” I would reply.
This is where many people shut down. Why? Because they have been so thoroughly brainwashed by bottled water advertising that can’t even imagine any other reality. Let me give you a little background.
The bottled water industry began in the late 1970s with the introduction of Perrier. Seeing the massive profit potential, the big boys jumped on board and it has grown by leaps and bounds ever since.
So the public has been constantly exposed to these advertising messages since the late 1970s! And they have gotten more sophisticated with each passing year. This is when I hear, “I’m not stupid. I’m not being brainwashed!” “Oh no?” I thought. Their defensiveness clearly shows that they have been. They are firmly on the side of the bottled water industry and they have no idea why. Here’s why. Constant promotion in every imaginable form for decades!
“Brainwashing is not possible. Not on such a basic product like water,” they would say. It is basic. But that’s what makes it so incredibly profitable. Let’s face this brainwashing issue head-on. How do you suppose the tobacco companies persuaded the majority of the U.S. population during the early to mid-20th century to take up smoking? They did it through massive advertising efforts that targeted not only the consumer, but also the entertainment industry, medical community, and the government.
Let me share some information with you about the bottled water industry. Then you can decide for yourself.
Bottled Water Industry
The majority of the water that is bottled in the U.S. comes from municipal water sources. Most of the rest comes from reservoirs. A relatively tiny portion comes from true mineral or alpine springs.
The bottled water industry is controlled by a hand full of gigantic corporations. These include Nestle, Coke, and Pepsi. These companies have come up with some very appealing names for their bottled water products. They have also developed highly effective advertising campaigns that have taught us to believe that their product is far superior to municipal water sources.
Why did they spend huge amounts of money to promote their products? They did it because bottled water has up to a 1,000 percent markup. Based on that, I would imagine that it could easily be their most profitable product.
Do they provide a far superior product like their advertisements suggest? The test results from some sources say no. There are studies that have found toxic substances in some of the most respected bottled water brands. How could this be possible? Here’s the rub.
Bottled water companies have no testing requirements imposed by any U.S. government agency. None! They are left to do their own testing as they deem necessary. However, city municipal water facilities are highly regulated by the U.S. government and are required to test their water many times a day! And it must meet minimum standards established by the government.
Based on this, the water you get from your tap might be as good or better than many bottled water products. Put it through a home water filtration system of some kind and you might surpass many bottled water products in purity and taste!
The other alarming part of this is the bottle itself. The materials used to make the bottles can contain harmful substances. Interestingly, there are reports of a higher incidence of various cancers among residents who live near particular factories that make plastic bottles.
Because of the billions of bottled water containers being produced and discarded on a daily basis, our planet is becoming polluted by them. Really polluted! Especially by single-use bottled water containers.
This problem is compounded by the fact that plastic bottles take 450 to 1,000 years to biodegrade depending on the material used to make them. Can you imagine how many plastic bottles are out there? Must be trillions!
Recycling programs are helping, but bottled water is unique in that people take them everywhere. Many of these places may not have a recycling bin or even a trash can. In these situations that are occurring by the millions worldwide as you read this, people are just tossing them… wherever.
My awakening and education on this topic came from watching a documentary entitled, “Tapped.” The inspiration and a lot of the material for this article came from this documentary.
Although I watched it twice, I hope that I’ve presented the facts correctly. If you watch the documentary and find otherwise, please let me know.
I shared this information to inspire you to embrace a solution that will reward your life and the environment at the same time!
Your personal rewards for kicking the bottled water habit are huge! You’ll save a lot of money. You’ll have more space in your home for more important things. And you will no longer have to haul tons of water from the store to your car and from your car to your home.
When I gave up bottled water, the thing I appreciated the most was not having to haul all those bottles of water every two weeks. That water, regardless of the type of container it was in, was by far the heaviest item in my shopping cart. Although I’m very fit and can easily lift them, I felt stupid doing it. I often thought, “There must be a better way.” Fortunately, I found it.
Although in-home water filtration may not be necessary for some locations, it’s good practice to ensure maximum purity and it makes the water taste better. City water municipalities can be pretty aggressive in their use of purification chemicals like chlorine to make sure they meet testing standards. Water filters remove these unpleasant-tasting chemicals.
Since I’m living in an apartment right now I have a water filter pitcher that serves the purpose. If I were living in a house, I’d definitely invest in a central water purification system.