Companies that market water distilling and RO systems indicate that the minerals in water are of no health value, as these minerals are “unbound” or “inorganic.” While minerals that are bound (chelated) to a protein or other food component are more bioavailable, the WHO Geneva 2004 Study proves that minerals in water are extremely important and bring health benefits.
Dr. Harold Foster has written extensively about the importance of selenium. Research has found that low levels of this important trace mineral are associated with a depressed immune system, depression, anxiety, joint pain, thyroid problems, Alzheimer’s Disease and HIV. Geographical areas with the lowest levels of selenium in the soil and water have a higher incidence of HIV and Alzheimer’s disease.
While dissolved minerals in drinking water may provide a direct health benefit, water that is high in minerals provides indirect health benefits, as mineral rich water is less corrosive than demineralized water (RO or distilled), resulting in less contaminants absorbed from containers, cookware, or materials with which the water comes in contact. Water is called the universal solvent because it can dissolve, absorb and combine with a wide variety of elements.
When water is produced by RO or steam distillation its corrosivity and acidity result in a greater absorption of contaminants, chemicals and metals from any materials with which the water comes in contact, including storage containers and cookware.
Health Risks From Drinking Demineralized Water
The dangers of drinking demineralized water produced by steam distillation and reverse osmosis (RO) have been well documented. The aggressive nature of demineralized water results in the absorption of heavy metals and chemical substances from pipes, coatings, storage tanks (plastic and stainless steel), containers and hose lines.
Research published by the World Health Organization indicates that low concentrations of minerals in water are associated with high blood pressure, headache, dizziness and osteoporosis. Consuming water that is low in magnesium is associated with a higher risk of pregnancy disorders, cancer and sudden death from cardiovascular disease.
Drinking demineralized water increases the excretion or elimination of potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium and chloride from the body. Studies have shown that the reduced mineral intake from water is not compensated for through diet. Mineral deficiencies can affect hundreds of vital enzymatic and biochemical reactions in the body.
Many believe that alkaline foods, alkaline water, and alkalizing supplements may help to slow down the aging process and lower the incidence of many degenerative diseases. Demineralized water absorbs carbon dioxide from the air resulting in more acidic water.
Reducing Toxins in the Body
Research into the causes of disease often points to elevated levels of toxins in the body. While mercury and lead are well known toxins, the popular water additives fluoride and chlorine have also been linked to a wide variety of health concerns. To achieve optimum health we must avoid chemical toxins which are pervasive in our environment, foods, air, and water. Reducing the level of toxins to which we are exposed starts with drinking pure, chemical free, mineral rich water.