It’s no secret that consuming water consistently every day keeps keep our energy levels strong, decreases appetite, clears our bodies of toxins and helps to shed some pounds. If you are not used to keeping up with the suggested intake of water on a daily basis, it may seem daunting to incorporate the average eight, eight-ounce glasses of water most health authorities recommend. One easy way to get drink water is to purchase a water bottle to keep with you throughout the day. Treat yourself to a bottle with fun colors or designs to keep water drinking fun and motivating. If you always keep it with you, your bottle will serve as a visual reminder to drink up. But, with so many bottles on the market, it’s hard to know where to start. Here’s a breakdown of what to look for (and what to avoid) when selecting the best water bottle for you:
Skip the Bottled Water
Research suggests that drinking bottled water is no safer than getting hydrated via the sink tap. About 25 percent or more of bottled water is just tap water anyway, according to the National Resources Defense Council. Why add more plastic to our planet when it is seemingly unnecessary? If you find yourself in a situation where convenience leads you to buying a bottle of water, just be sure not to reuse the bottle when you are finished. Instead, properly dispose of it in a recycling bin. Most one-time use bottles of water on the market contain Polycarbonate terephthalate (PET), a thermoplastic polymer.
When one of these bottles is reused, the PET degrades and it can release bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), a probable carcinogen, into the water. And, because the plastic is thin and molded into various shapes, germs can build up in the bottle’s crevices. You and the planet are better off skipping the convenience, yet wastefulness of disposable bottled water and going with a permanent bottle that can be reused over and over again.
Be Wary of Plastic
The jury is still out whether it is a good idea to drink from reusable water bottles made from plastic. At the very least, you will want to find a bottle that is bisphenol A- (BPA) and bisphenol S- (BPS) free. According to Science Daily, BPAs interfere with animals’ reproductive development and are linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes in humans. Water bottles that have soft “nipples” or valves can also be problematic. They oftentimes contain phthalates, which are hormone disruptors linked to birth defects and reproductive issues. Because there are still many “unknowns” when it comes to plastic bottles, you may want to avoid the confusion by picking stainless steel or glass.
Water bottles made from glass or stainless steel are your best bets. With these types of bottles, you don’t need to worry about chemicals compromising the quality of your drinking water. If your life is busy and demanding, stainless steel may work best, since it can be (lightly) banged around without breaking it or causing major dents. Just be cautious when making your purchase, as some stainless steel bottles have interior linings containing BPA. Glass options may be heavier and more fragile, but some glass bottles are sold with silicone sleeves for added protection. With both of these healthy options, be sure to verify whether the cap is free of BPA, BPS, phthalates, PVC and polycarbonates.