Raw water: The latest drinking trend

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Raw vegetables and raw fish have long been considered healthy – but should also “raw water” be good, right? In the US, a heated debate has broken out over this. And a lot of companies do a considerable business. 15   display In many parts of the world, clean water is a precious, scarce resource – in western, prosperous regions, on the other hand, water comes from the supply network in good quality and in any quantity. But more and more people on the US west coast seem to be no longer satisfied with the water of standard providers: They rely on the trend “raw water”.

The Americans love their special preference: 9.5 liters of unfiltered, untreated and unsterilized spring water in a glass jar costs more than € 30 at a San Francisco store, the New York Times reported. For more than twelve euros can then be refilled. Apparently, the number of consumers is growing, especially in the southwestern part of the US, worrying about their drinking water.

Several companies and start-ups have identified a need there and offer alternatives to public water systems. Not only untreated water from remote sources is demanded – plants for the extraction of water from the atmosphere find the interest of critical consumers.

Fluoride in tap water What may have sensitized citizens in many parts of the US is the widespread addition of fluoride to drinking water in several US communities. Although this well-intentioned prevention of tooth decay may contribute to improved dental health, many people may be left with the unpleasant afterthought that their drinking water is unintentionally manipulated.

On this basis, unscientific debates quickly develop, which is good for the calorie-free thirst quencher. The treatment with ozone or UV light against pathogens is then for radical “raw water” pendant to unwanted killing health-promoting bacteria. Filters designed to keep algae out of drinking water, for example, are suspected of removing vital minerals.

Even though the desire for pure, natural water has always existed, the market for “conscious water consumers” is only now gaining momentum. A sophisticated marketing and influential supporters from the Silicon Valley awaken a need for a number of health-conscious people, investors are scenting a million dollar business.

Hormone residues burden drinking water

That tap water is not always the best source to cover the fluid requirement, can not be completely dismissed despite many esoteric arguments. In fact, there are always found residues of medicines and above all of hormonal contraceptives. In addition, unappetizing contamination of pipes can occur in the last few meters in front of the tap.

As a rule, however, these are exceptional cases and a health risk is to be expected rather when using “raw water”. Because doctors warn shaking their heads before the new hype. Although viruses and bacteria are usually eliminated by a natural filtration in the soil, but contamination of the well and during the filling process can never be ruled out. It can not be scientifically argued against sterilization of the water, for example by ultraviolet light, when it comes to health benefits.

How big the risk of a “Raw Water” drinker, however, is difficult to estimate. For the US authorities, the distribution of water from Summit Spring Water Inc., Maine, is not a problem, reports the Portland Press Herald. The company’s “Tourmaline Spring” water is completely untreated, but meets the quality requirements demanded by the state.

Like every bottling company, the company is regularly inspected. Never before have increased levels of exposure to bacteria, nitrate, lead, arsenic and other metals been measured. In the US, the NY Times article on “raw water” has received broad media interest. It is discussed emotionally, many critics of the new wave smile at “medieval views” of supporters of the trend. The risks of the “Raw Water” fans are likely to affect their health but rather their budgets.

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