Aluminum water bottles are often considered the alternative to plastic, but beware of potential health hazards.
The great news is that people across the country have started to make the sustainable choice and are using more reusable water bottles as opposed to single use plastic water bottles. With plastic water bottles linked to obesity, excessive landfill waste and other forms of pollution, eco-conscious individuals are turning to alternatives such as aluminum water bottles. This may seem like a good idea until you really begin to understand the health risks associated to aluminum. So before you run out to the local market and pick out a new bottle, arm yourself with the facts so that you can make the right choice for the planet and your health.
Aluminum is quite common naturally, in fact, its abundance in the environment and consumer products is one of the reasons scientists began to study the element. First, we should point out that aluminum has a very low level of toxicity to humans, meaning in general it can be considered safe. The concern comes from overexposure, a problem that could occur more easily in the modern era. Studies have pointed out that increased amounts of dietary aluminum may contribute to skeletal issues in preterm or at risk infants. Additionally, in higher doses the metal can cause neurotoxicity of the blood-brain barrier.
Often, the main risk is not the aluminum within the water bottle that is of concern; it is the additional chemicals and compounds that may be present. For example, just because you purchased an aluminum water bottle instead of a plastic one doesn’t mean it is BPA free. The hard plastic spout or straw may contain high levels of BPA, a chemical linked to genetic disorders among other health risks. Some of the bottles may also have a lining to limit chemical leaching or staining inside the bottle. Top brands may claim that it is free of BPA but won’t disclose what it really is, so how can you know if it is safe?
We are not out to be alarmists here and we are not suggesting you run away from aluminum foil fearing the worst. It is quite the opposite; it is about understanding the potential risks and finding healthy and sustainable green product choices. When it comes to reusable water bottles, there are many choices – some better than others.
Based on all the available research, we recommend a good stainless steel reusable water bottle, without a plastic spout or at a minimum, one that states the spout is BPA free. Steel does not leach chemicals, is easy to sanitize and has years of studies proving these facts. All we ask is that you make an informed decision the next time you reach for a sip of water. By doing so you will help us create a sustainable earth and help eliminate waste at the same time.Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net