Bottled water is one of the most popular beverages in the world, but how safe are they? The answer may shock you. It turns out that bottled water can contain microplastics! What are these plastics, and what do they have to do with your health? Here is more information about microplastics in bottled water.
Microplastics in Bottled Water
Microplastics are plastic particles that measure five millimeters or smaller. These tiny plastics may be part of larger pieces of plastic, but they could also come from broken down pieces of plastic bottles and bags. Microplastics can also form when larger pieces of plastic break down in the ocean, and smaller plastics gather together to form a bigger piece over time.
Microplastics can be found in tap water because they use polyethylene terephthalate or PET plastics to hold the water. These PET plastics could break down into microplastics when exposed to sunlight and other elements that degrade plastic. Since bottled water does not use a pipe system like tap water, there is a higher chance that microplastics could contaminate the water source. In addition, since bottled water comes from various sources, there is always a possibility that it will contain microplastics if the water originally came from plastic.
Microplastics and Health Risks
The problem with these tiny plastics is that they do not dissolve in either tap or bottled water. For this reason, people could be consuming these small plastic particles when they drink from a bottle or a glass of tap water. Microplastics could also get into the air and contaminate other food sources as well. Many scientists find microplastics a major health concern because they do not dissolve and contain harmful chemicals that can cause problems with the body’s biochemical makeup.
These tiny plastics could also contain chemicals that have been shown to cause health issues. Previous research has found that phthalates, a chemical found in plastic, can affect the development of toddlers and babies. More chemicals may be linked to health issues as scientists continue their research on microplastics.
The Future of Plastics
With the growing research on the dangers of microplastics, scientists are creating plastics that can break down in seawater and soil. Scientists can use these natural elements as a model for creating plastics that do not threaten the world’s oceans. In addition, many companies have been looking into ways of recycling plastics, so they do not have to be manufactured from scratch from petroleum products. These innovations will help reduce the number of microplastics in the environment.
A solution would be to drink bottled water brands with biodegradable plastics or invest in a filtering system for tap water. Alternately, you could drink from a reusable bottle made from stainless steel, bamboo, glass, or even aluminum.
While the effects of microplastics in bottled water have not been determined, studies have shown that they can be harmful to an individual’s health and the environment. More research needs to be done on how microplastics affect humans and whether or not people should continue using plastic bottles and other products made with plastics. If you want to avoid ingesting microplastics, consider using a reusable bottle and refilling it with filtered water from a water filtration system.
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